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Variability in Assembly of Degradation Operons for Naphthalene and its derivative, Carbaryl, Suggests Mobilization through Horizontal Gene Transfer

Department of Biosciences and Bioengineering, Indian Institute of Technology-Bombay, Powai, Mumbai 400 076, India
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Genes 2019, 10(8), 569; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes10080569
Received: 30 May 2019 / Revised: 11 July 2019 / Accepted: 11 July 2019 / Published: 27 July 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Genetics of Biodegradation and Bioremediation)
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Abstract

In the biosphere, the largest biological laboratory, increased anthropogenic activities have led microbes to evolve and adapt to the changes occurring in the environment. Compounds, specifically xenobiotics, released due to such activities persist in nature and undergo bio-magnification in the food web. Some of these compounds act as potent endocrine disrupters, mutagens or carcinogens, and therefore their removal from the environment is essential. Due to their persistence, microbial communities have evolved to metabolize them partially or completely. Diverse biochemical pathways have evolved or been assembled by exchange of genetic material (horizontal gene transfer) through various mobile genetic elements like conjugative and non-conjugative plasmids, transposons, phages and prophages, genomic islands and integrative conjugative elements. These elements provide an unlimited opportunity for genetic material to be exchanged across various genera, thus accelerating the evolution of a new xenobiotic degrading phenotype. In this article, we illustrate examples of the assembly of metabolic pathways involved in the degradation of naphthalene and its derivative, Carbaryl, which are speculated to have evolved or adapted through the above-mentioned processes. View Full-Text
Keywords: xenobiotics; naphthalene; Carbaryl; horizontal gene transfer; mobile genetic elements; transposons; integrative conjugative elements; pathway assembly; evolution xenobiotics; naphthalene; Carbaryl; horizontal gene transfer; mobile genetic elements; transposons; integrative conjugative elements; pathway assembly; evolution
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).
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Phale, P.S.; Shah, B.A.; Malhotra, H. Variability in Assembly of Degradation Operons for Naphthalene and its derivative, Carbaryl, Suggests Mobilization through Horizontal Gene Transfer. Genes 2019, 10, 569.

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