Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/2440/43878
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Type: Journal article
Title: Purifying selection drives the evolution of surfactant protein C (SP-C) independently of body temperature regulation in mammals
Author: Potter, S.
Orgeig, S.
Donnellan, S.
Daniels, C.
Citation: Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology Part D: Genomics and Proteomics, 2007; 2 PART D(2):165-176
Publisher: Elsevier Science Inc.
Issue Date: 2007
ISSN: 1744-117X
1878-0407
Statement of
Responsibility: 
Sally Potter, Sandra Orgeig, Stephen Donnellan and Christopher B. Daniels
Abstract: The pulmonary surfactant system of heterothermic mammals must be capable of dealing with the effect of low body temperatures on the physical state of the lipid components. We have shown previously that there is a modest increase in surfactant cholesterol during periods of torpor, however these changes do not fully explain the capacity of surfactant to function under the wide range of physical conditions imposed by torpor. Here we examine indirectly the role of surfactant protein C (SP-C) in adapting to variable body temperatures by testing for the presence of positive (adaptive) selection during evolutionary transitions between heterothermy and homeothermy. We sequenced SP-C from genomic DNA of 32 mammalian species from groups of closely related heterothermic and homeothermic species (contrasts). We used phylogenetic analysis by maximum likelihood estimates of rates of non-synonymous to synonymous substitutions and fully Bayesian inference of these sequences to determine whether the mode of body temperature regulation exerts a selection pressure driving the molecular adaptation of SP-C. The protein sequence of SP-C is highly conserved with synonymous or highly conservative amino acid substitutions being predominant. The evolution of SP-C among mammals is characterised by high codon usage bias and high rates of transition/transversion. The only contrast to show evidence of positive selection was that of the bears (Ursus americanus and U. maritimus). The significance of this result is unclear. We show that SP-C is under strong evolutionary constraints, driven by purifying selection, presumably to maintain protein function despite variation in the mode of body temperature regulation.
Description: Copyright © 2007 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
RMID: 0020070902
DOI: 10.1016/j.cbd.2007.02.003
Description (link): http://www.elsevier.com/wps/find/journaldescription.cws_home/704239/description#description
Appears in Collections:Earth and Environmental Sciences publications
Environment Institute publications

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