1932

Abstract

Transposable elements (TEs) are mobile DNA sequences that propagate within genomes. Through diverse invasion strategies, TEs have come to occupy a substantial fraction of nearly all eukaryotic genomes, and they represent a major source of genetic variation and novelty. Here we review the defining features of each major group of eukaryotic TEs and explore their evolutionary origins and relationships. We discuss how the unique biology of different TEs influences their propagation and distribution within and across genomes. Environmental and genetic factors acting at the level of the host species further modulate the activity, diversification, and fate of TEs, producing the dramatic variation in TE content observed across eukaryotes. We argue that cataloging TE diversity and dissecting the idiosyncratic behavior of individual elements are crucial to expanding our comprehension of their impact on the biology of genomes and the evolution of species.

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2020-11-23
2024-04-18
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