Evolutionary constraints on codon and amino acid usage in two strains of human pathogenic actinobacteria Tropheryma whipplei.

Journal of molecular evolution

PubMedID: 16557339

Das S, Paul S, Dutta C. Evolutionary constraints on codon and amino acid usage in two strains of human pathogenic actinobacteria Tropheryma whipplei. J Mol Evol. 2006;62(5):645-58.
The factors governing codon and amino acid usages in the predicted protein-coding sequences of Tropheryma whipplei TW08/27 and Twist genomes have been analyzed. Multivariate analysis identifies the replicational-transcriptional selection coupled with DNA strand-specific asymmetric mutational bias as a major driving force behind the significant interstrand variations in synonymous codon usage patterns in T. whipplei genes, while a residual intrastrand synonymous codon bias is imparted by a selection force operating at the level of translation. The strand-specific mutational pressure has little influence on the amino acid usage, for which the mean hydropathy level and aromaticity are the major sources of variation, both having nearly equal impact. In spite of the intracellular lifestyle, the amino acid usage in highly expressed gene products of T. whipplei follows the cost-minimization hypothesis. The products of the highly expressed genes of these relatively A + T-rich actinobacteria prefer to use the residues encoded by GC-rich codons, probably due to greater conservation of a GC-rich ancestral state in the highly expressed genes, as suggested by the lower values of the rate of nonsynonymous divergences between orthologous sequences of highly expressed genes from the two strains of T. whipplei. Both the genomes under study are characterized by the presence of two distinct groups of membrane-associated genes, products of which exhibit significant differences in primary and potential secondary structures as well as in the propensity of protein disorder.