Essential clustering

Analysis of essential yeast genes provides more clues about the role of gene clustering.

Jonathan Weitzman(jonathanweitzman@hotmail.com)
Feb 11, 2003

Genes that are expressed together are often found in clusters within the genome. In an Advanced Online Publication in Nature Genetics, Csaba Pál and Laurence Hurst explore the reasons why genes might exist in clusters (Nature Genetics, DOI:10.1038/ng1111, 10 February, 2003).

Pál & Hurst analyzed the genome of the yeast Sacchraomyces cerevisiae, focusing specifically on genes that are essential for life. They found that indispensable genes are highly clustered, and that these clusters can be up to 20 genes in length and differ from those of co-expressed genes. Clusters of essential genes have a much lower rate of recombination.

The authors conclude that gene order and recombination rate may have co-evolved.

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