ZFIN ID: ZDB-PUB-061020-13
Evolution and origin of vomeronasal-type odorant receptor gene repertoire in fishes
Hashiguchi, Y., and Nishida, M.
Date: 2006
Source: BMC Evolutionary Biology   6: 76 (Journal)
Registered Authors:
Keywords: none
MeSH Terms:
  • Animals
  • Evolution, Molecular*
  • Fishes/genetics*
  • Multigene Family*
  • Phylogeny
  • Receptors, Odorant/genetics*
  • Species Specificity
  • Vomeronasal Organ*
PubMed: 17014738 Full text @ BMC Evol. Biol.
BACKGROUND: In teleost fishes that lack a vomeronasal organ, both main odorant receptors (ORs) and vomeronasal receptors family 2 (V2Rs) are expressed in the olfactory epithelium, and used for perception of water-soluble chemicals. In zebrafish, it is known that both ORs and V2Rs formed multigene families of about a hundred copies. Whereas the contribution of V2Rs in zebrafish to olfaction has been found to be substantially large, the composition and structure of the V2R gene family in other fishes are poorly known, compared with the OR gene family. RESULTS: To understand the evolutionary dynamics of V2R genes in fishes, V2R sequences in zebrafish, medaka, fugu, and spotted green pufferfish were identified from their draft genome sequences. There were remarkable differences in the number of intact V2R genes in different species. Most V2R genes in these fishes were tightly clustered in one or two specific chromosomal regions. Phylogenetic analysis revealed that the fish V2R family could be subdivided into 16 subfamilies that had diverged before the separation of the four fishes. Genes in two subfamilies in zebrafish and another subfamily in medaka increased in their number independently, suggesting species-specific evolution in olfaction. Interestingly, the arrangements of V2R genes in the gene clusters were highly conserved among species in the subfamily level. A genomic region of tetrapods corresponding to the region in fishes that contains the V2R cluster was found to have no V2R gene in any species. CONCLUSION: Our results have indicated that the evolutionary dynamics of fish V2Rs are characterized by rapid gene turnover and lineage-specific phylogenetic clustering. In addition, the present phylogenetic and comparative genome analyses have shown that the fish V2Rs have expanded after the divergence between teleost and tetrapod lineages. The present identification of the entire V2R repertoire in fishes would provide useful foundation to the future functional and evolutionary studies of fish V2R gene family.