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Ubiquity and evolution of structural maintenance of chromosomes (SMC) proteins in eukaryotes


Inagaki, Yuji; Yoshinaga, Mari (2021), Ubiquity and evolution of structural maintenance of chromosomes (SMC) proteins in eukaryotes, Dryad, Dataset,


Structural maintenance of chromosomes (SMC) protein complexes are common in Bacteria, Archaea, and Eukaryota. SMC proteins, together with the proteins related to SMC (SMC-related proteins), constitute a superfamily of ATPases. Bacteria/Archaea and Eukaryotes are distinctive from one another in terms of the repertory of SMC proteins. A single type of SMC protein is dimerized in the bacterial and archaeal complexes, whereas eukaryotes possess six distinct SMC subfamilies (SMC1-6), constituting three heterodimeric complexes, namely cohesin, condensin, and SMC5/6 complex. Thus, to bridge the homodimeric SMC complexes in Bacteria and Archaea to the heterodimeric SMC complexes in Eukaryota, we need to invoke multiple duplications of an SMC gene followed by functional divergence. However, to our knowledge, the evolution of the SMC proteins in Eukaryota had not been examined for more than a decade. In this study, we reexamined the ubiquity of SMC1-6 in phylogenetically diverse eukaryotes that cover the major eukaryotic taxonomic groups recognized to date and provide two novel insights into the SMC evolution in eukaryotes. First, multiple secondary losses of SMC5 and SMC6 occurred in the eukaryotic evolution. Second, the SMC proteins constituting cohesin and condensin (i.e., SMC1-4), and SMC5 and SMC6 were derived from closely related but distinct ancestral proteins. Based on the above-mentioned findings, we discuss how SMC1-6 have diverged from the archaeal homologs.