Conserved Noncoding Elements Influence the Transposable Element Landscape in Drosophila

Manee M. Manee, John Jackson, Casey M. Bergman*

*Kontaktforfatter for dette arbejde

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Highly conserved noncoding elements (CNEs) constitute a significant proportion of the genomes of multicellular eukaryotes. The function of most CNEs remains elusive, but growing evidence indicates they are under some form of purifying selection. Noncoding regions in many species also harbor large numbers of transposable element (TE) insertions, which are typically lineage specific and depleted in exons because of their deleterious effects on gene function or expression. However, it is currently unknown whether the landscape of TE insertions in noncoding regions is random or influenced by purifying selection on CNEs. Here, we combine comparative and population genomic data in Drosophila melanogaster to show that the abundance of TE insertions in intronic and intergenic CNEs is reduced relative to random expectation, supporting the idea that selective constraints on CNEs eliminate a proportion of TE insertions in noncoding regions. However, we find no evidence for differences in the allele frequency spectra for polymorphic TE insertions in CNEs versus those in unconstrained spacer regions, suggesting that the distribution of fitness effects acting on observable TE insertions is similar across different functional compartments in noncoding DNA. Our results provide evidence that selective constraints on CNEs contribute to shaping the landscape of TE insertion in eukaryotic genomes, and provide further evidence that CNEs are indeed functionally constrained and not simply mutational cold spots.

TidsskriftGenome Biology and Evolution
Udgave nummer6
Sider (fra-til)1533-1545
StatusUdgivet - jun. 2018
Udgivet eksterntJa


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