Similarities to a LINE element shared by Anopheline and Culicine mosquitos map to the distal end of dihydrofolate reductase amplicons in Aedes albopictus mosquito cells.


To extend our understanding of amplicon structure in methotrexate-resistant Mtx-5011-256 Aedes albopictus mosquito cells, we examined a series of cosmids containing genomic DNA corresponding to the unique 3'-end of the Type 1 dihydrofolate reductase amplicon. Cosmid pWED118 contained five EcoRI fragments ranging from 2 to 5 kb (A, B, C, F, G) that hybridized to cDNA from methotrexate-resistant cells. Of these, fragments B and F hybridized weakly to first-strand cDNA from sensitive cells and shared considerable sequence identity. Fragment G occurred twice in the map of pWED118; one copy mapped within a 10 kb BssHII core fragment from the Type I amplicon and a second copy mapped downstream in the 48 kb BssHII core fragment. Hybridization signals among fragments contained in overlapping cosmids suggested that a branch point defining two or more subtypes of the Type I amplicon occurs within or near the 10 kb BssHII genomic DNA fragment. A 1.8 kb sequence common to fragments B and F included an approximately 0.4 kb region that shared sequence similarities with a LINE element from Aedes aegypti and with a repeated sequence from Anopheles gambiae. In addition, these elements shared amino acid similarity to a reverse transcriptase from the nematode, Caenorhabditis elegans. Shared sequence between Aedes and Anopheles elements supports the hypothesis that an ancestral LINE-like element was active in mosquito genomes prior to the divergence of the subfamilies Culicinae and Anophelinae. The presence of homologies to LINE-like elements near a branch point in the dihydrofolate reductase amplicon is consistent with a possible role of repeated sequences in amplicon shortening.




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