Giant Lungfish Genome

This particular topic was mentioned briefly in a 2019 thread - More Junk DNA junk from the DI - #64 by davecarlson.

Here is the awaited genome analysis for the Australian lungfish.

Increased rates of evolution and duplication of genes associated with obligate air-breathing such as lung surfactants and the expansion of odorant receptor gene-families that detect airborne odours contribute to their tetrapod-like biology. These findings advance our understanding of this major transition during vertebrate evolution.


More than 40 Gb, and it’s almost all TEs! What a lovely genome!


Yes clearly to make a lungfish you need tens of thousands of copies of reverse transcriptase. That reverse transcriptase contributes to transposable element proliferation is neither here nor there.


But what of the onion?

The genome of Allium cepa is smaller than the Giant Lungfish genome, but probably just as repetitive.

As for Allium more broadly, measured genome sizes (famously) vary heavily among species, ranging from ~7-8 Gb to upwards of 50 Gb according to the Plant C-values database.

Of course, it’s TEs all the way down.


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