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EMBARGOED UNTIL: 2:00 PM, May 29, 2008
Contact: Diana Kenney, (508)289-7139, e-mail: dkenney@mbl.edu

No Sex, But Plenty of Gene Transfer
DNA from many other species is discovered in bdelloid rotifer genomes

MBL, WOODS HOLE, MA—Where do you get your genes?

If you are an animal, you inherit them from your parents at the moment of conception, and that’s about it. No later incorporation of environmental DNA for you, unless you become host to a parasite or an endosymbiont that somehow transfers bits of its genome into yours (which is a rarely documented event).

Unless you are a bdelloid rotifer, that is... More>>>


Photos: Click for high-resolution images.

Irina Arkhipova
A laboratory culture of the bdelloid rotifer Adineta vaga. Rotifers may be able to incorporate DNA from other species into their genomes during the desiccation and rehydration phases of their life cycle. Credit: Eugene Gladyshev.

Irina Arkhipova, assistant research scientist at the Josephine Bay Paul Center.
Gladyshev, E.A., M. Meselson, and I.R. Arkhipova. 2008. Massive Horizontal Gene Transfer in Bdelloid Rotifers. Science 320: 1210-1213.

Previous Reports:

Irina Arkhipova Lab

Matthew Meselson Lab:
At the MBL
At Harvard University

Irina Arkhipova and Matthew Meselson are founding members of the Mobile Genetic Element Cluster at the MBL.