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The complete genome of the crenarchaeon Sulfolobus solfataricus P2.

She Q., Singh R.K., Confalonieri F., Zivanovic Y., Allard G., Awayez M.J., Chan-Weiher C.C.-Y., Clausen I.G., Curtis B.A., De Moors A., Erauso G., Fletcher C., Gordon P.M.K., Heikamp-de Jong I., Jeffries A.C., Kozera C.J., Medina N., Peng X., Thi-Ngoc H.P., Redder P., Schenk M.E., Theriault C., Tolstrup N., Charlebois R.L., Doolittle W.F., Duguet M., Gaasterland T., Garrett R.A., Ragan M.A., Sensen C.W., Van der Oost J.

The genome of the crenarchaeon Sulfolobus solfataricus P2 contains 2,992,245 bp on a single chromosome and encodes 2,977 proteins and many RNAs. One-third of the encoded proteins have no detectable homologs in other sequenced genomes. Moreover, 40% appear to be archaeal-specific, and only 12% and 2.3% are shared exclusively with bacteria and eukarya, respectively. The genome shows a high level of plasticity with 200 diverse insertion sequence elements, many putative nonautonomous mobile elements, and evidence of integrase-mediated insertion events. There are also long clusters of regularly spaced tandem repeats. Different transfer systems are used for the uptake of inorganic and organic solutes, and a wealth of intracellular and extracellular proteases, sugar, and sulfur metabolizing enzymes are encoded, as well as enzymes of the central metabolic pathways and motility proteins. The major metabolic electron carrier is not NADH as in bacteria and eukarya but probably ferredoxin. The essential components required for DNA replication, DNA repair and recombination, the cell cycle, transcriptional initiation and translation, but not DNA folding, show a strong eukaryal character with many archaeal-specific features. The results illustrate major differences between crenarchaea and euryarchaea, especially for their DNA replication mechanism and cell cycle processes and their translational apparatus.

Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 98:7835-7840(2001) [PubMed] [Europe PMC]

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