Birth of Archaeal Cells: Molecular Phylogenetic Analyses of G1P Dehydrogenase, G3P Dehydrogenases, and Glycerol Kinase Suggest Derived Features of Archaeal Membranes Having G1P Polar Lipids

Shin Ichi Yokobori, Yoshiki Nakajima, Satoshi Akanuma, Akihiko Yamagishi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Bacteria and Eukarya have cell membranes with sn-glycerol-3-phosphate (G3P), whereas archaeal membranes contain sn-glycerol-1-phosphate (G1P). Determining the time at which cells with either G3P-lipid membranes or G1P-lipid membranes appeared is important for understanding the early evolution of terrestrial life. To clarify this issue, we reconstructed molecular phylogenetic trees of G1PDH (G1P dehydrogenase; EgsA/AraM) which is responsible for G1P synthesis and G3PDHs (G3P dehydrogenase; GpsA and GlpA/GlpD) and glycerol kinase (GlpK) which is responsible for G3P synthesis. Together with the distribution of these protein-encoding genes among archaeal and bacterial groups, our phylogenetic analyses suggested that GlpA/GlpD in the Commonote (the last universal common ancestor of all extant life with a cellular form, Commonote commonote) acquired EgsA (G1PDH) from the archaeal common ancestor (Commonote archaea) and acquired GpsA and GlpK from a bacterial common ancestor (Commonote bacteria). In our scenario based on this study, the Commonote probably possessed a G3P-lipid membrane synthesized enzymatically, after which the archaeal lineage acquired G1PDH followed by the replacement of a G3P-lipid membrane with a G1P-lipid membrane.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1802675
JournalArchaea
Volume2016
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Physiology
  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics

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