Partial sequence of ribulose-1,5-bisphosphate carboxylase/oxygenase and the phylogeny of Prochloron and Prochlorococcus (Prochlorales)

J Mol Evol. 1995 Jun;40(6):671-7. doi: 10.1007/BF00160516.


The prochlorophytes, oxygenic photosynthetic prokaryotes having no phycobiliprotein but possessing chlorophylls a and b, have been proposed to have a common ancestry with green chloroplasts, yet this is still controversal. We report here that partial sequence comparisons of the large subunit of ribulose-1,5'-bisphosphate carboxylase/oxygenase, including sequence data from two prochlorophytes, Prochlorococcus and Prochloron, indicate that Prochlorococcus is more closely related to a photosynthetic bacterium, Chromatium vinosum (gamma-purple bacteria), than to cyanobacteria, while Prochloron is closely related to the prochlorophyte Prochlorothrix and to cyanobacteria. The molecular phylogenetic tree indicates that a common ancestor of Prochlorococcus and gamma-purple bacteria branched off from the land plant lineage earlier than Prochloron, Prochlorothrix, and cyanobacteria.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Chromatium / genetics
  • Cyanobacteria / enzymology
  • Cyanobacteria / genetics*
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Phylogeny*
  • Plants / genetics
  • Ribulose-Bisphosphate Carboxylase / genetics*
  • Sequence Alignment


  • Ribulose-Bisphosphate Carboxylase

Associated data

  • GENBANK/D21833
  • GENBANK/D21834