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Retroviral-Like Element in a Marine Invertebrate

Mark S. Springer, Eric H. Davidson and Roy J. Britten
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Vol. 88, No. 19 (Oct. 1, 1991), pp. 8401-8404
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2357947
Page Count: 4
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Retroviral-Like Element in a Marine Invertebrate
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Abstract

Retroviral-like elements (RL elements) include retroviruses and long terminal repeat (LTR)-containing retrotransposons. We report the presence of sea urchin RL elements (termed SURL) in eight species of sea urchins and find that these RL elements belong to several subfamilies. The complete DNA sequence of one SURL element in Tripneustes gratilla is 5266 base pairs long, including 254-nucleotide-long identical long terminal repeats (LTRs). It contains a single open reading frame nearly 4 kilobases long including the gag and pol genes. Comparison of conserved DNA sequences of RL elements from different sea urchin species indicates that active elements have been inserting copies into echinoid genomes for at least 200 million years.

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