The evolutionary landscape of PRC1 core components in green lineage

Planta. 2016 Apr;243(4):825-46. doi: 10.1007/s00425-015-2451-9. Epub 2016 Jan 4.


The origin and evolution of plant PRC1 core components. Polycomb repressive complex1 (PRC1) plays critical roles in epigenetic silencing of homeotic genes and determination of cell fate. Animal PRC1 has been well investigated for a long time, whereas plant PRC1 was just confirmed in recent years. It is enigmatic whether PRC1 core components in plants share a common ancestor with those in animals. We evaluated the origin of plant PRC1 RING-finger proteins (RING1 and BMI1) through comparing with the homologs in some representative unikonts and using BMI1- and RING1-like proteins as reciprocal outgroup, finding both PRC1 RING-finger proteins have the earliest origin in mosses, similar to LHP1. Additionally, the gene structure, copy number, and domain organization were analyzed to deeply understand the evolutionary history of plant PRC1 complex. In conclusion, PRC1 RING-finger proteins have independent origins in plants and animals, but convergent evolution might attribute to the conservation of PRC1 complex in plants and animals. Plant LHP1 as the homolog of non-PRC1 protein HP1 was recruited to fulfill the role of Pc counterpart. Gene duplication followed by functional divergence makes a great contribution to evolutionary progress of PRC1 in green plants.

Keywords: BMI1; LHP1; PRC1; PcG; RING1.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Arabidopsis Proteins* / genetics
  • Arabidopsis Proteins* / metabolism
  • Bryophyta / genetics
  • Bryophyta / metabolism
  • Chromosomal Proteins, Non-Histone / metabolism
  • Evolution, Molecular*
  • Gene Dosage
  • Glucosyltransferases* / genetics
  • Glucosyltransferases* / metabolism
  • Multiprotein Complexes / genetics
  • Multiprotein Complexes / metabolism*
  • Plant Proteins / genetics
  • Plant Proteins / metabolism*
  • Plants / genetics
  • Plants / metabolism*


  • Arabidopsis Proteins
  • Chromosomal Proteins, Non-Histone
  • Multiprotein Complexes
  • Plant Proteins
  • like heterochromatin protein 1
  • Glucosyltransferases
  • PRC1 protein, Arabidopsis