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Genomic overview of mRNA 5′-leader trans-splicing in the ascidian Ciona intestinalis

By Yutaka Satou, Makoto Hamaguchi, Keisuke Takeuchi, Kenneth E. M. Hastings and Nori Satoh


Although spliced leader (SL) trans-splicing in the chordates was discovered in the tunicate Ciona intestinalis there has been no genomic overview analysis of the extent of trans-splicing or the make-up of the trans-spliced and non-trans-spliced gene populations of this model organism. Here we report such an analysis for Ciona based on the oligo-capping full-length cDNA approach. We randomly sampled 2078 5′-full-length ESTs representing 668 genes, or 4.2% of the entire genome. Our results indicate that Ciona contains a single major SL, which is efficiently trans-spliced to mRNAs transcribed from a specific set of genes representing ∼50% of the total number of expressed genes, and that individual trans-spliced mRNA species are, on average, 2–3-fold less abundant than non-trans-spliced mRNA species. Our results also identify a relationship between trans-splicing status and gene functional classification; ribosomal protein genes fall predominantly into the non-trans-spliced category. In addition, our data provide the first evidence for the occurrence of polycistronic transcription in Ciona. An interesting feature of the Ciona polycistronic transcription units is that the great majority entirely lack intercistronic sequences

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Publisher: Oxford University Press
OAI identifier: oai:pubmedcentral.nih.gov:1488885
Provided by: PubMed Central
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