Abstract/Details

The evolution of the post-synaptic complex


2008 2008

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Abstract (summary)

The post-synaptic complex, a membrane specialization for signaling and synaptic plasticity, constitutes an important component of nerve cells. Tracking the early origins of the genes that make up this complex has not been possible without genomic information from the earliest branching animals. In this study, the origin and evolution of this complex are investigated by comparative genomics of animal species and their closest uni-cellular relatives. First, by conducting extensive phylogenetic analyses on gene families that constitute the vertebrate synapse, it is shown that the genome of a sea sponge, an animal without a nervous system, possesses a post-synaptic scaffold. Second, a new algorithm is introduced to automatically generate evolutionary histories of gene families. This algorithm and other bioinformatics techniques are employed to study the evolutionary descent of synaptic protein domains. One important protein-protein interaction domain in the synapse is the PDZ domain. The results show that positive selection acting on just a few PDZ domain residues was exploited by evolution to diversify the types of possible binding interactions that had eventually enabled the evolution of membrane scaffolds such as the post-synaptic complex.

Indexing (details)


Subject
Bioinformatics;
Computer science
Classification
0715: Bioinformatics
0984: Computer science
Identifier / keyword
Applied sciences; Biological sciences; Evolmap; Evolution of the PDZ domain; Evolution of the synapse; Post-synapse; Postsynaptic evolution; Reconstructing ancestral genomes
Title
The evolution of the post-synaptic complex
Author
Sakarya, Onur
Number of pages
142
Publication year
2008
Degree date
2008
School code
0035
Source
DAI-B 69/09, Dissertation Abstracts International
Place of publication
Ann Arbor
Country of publication
United States
ISBN
9780549844914
Advisor
Kosik, Kenneth S.; Egecioglu, Omer
Committee member
Agrawal, Divyakant; Oakley, Todd; Singh, Ambuj
University/institution
University of California, Santa Barbara
Department
Computer Science
University location
United States -- California
Degree
Ph.D.
Source type
Dissertations & Theses
Language
English
Document type
Dissertation/Thesis
Dissertation/thesis number
3330479
ProQuest document ID
304660949
Copyright
Database copyright ProQuest LLC; ProQuest does not claim copyright in the individual underlying works.
Document URL
http://search.proquest.com/docview/304660949
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