Evidence for lateral gene transfer between Archaea and Bacteria from genome sequence of Thermotoga maritima
The 1,860,725-base-pair genome of Thermotoga maritima MSB8 contains 1,877 predicted coding regions, 1,014 (54%) of which have functional assignments and 863 (46%) of which are of unknown function. Genome analysis reveals numerous pathways involved in degradation of sugars and plant polysaccharides, and 108 genes that have orthologues only in the genomes of other thermophilic Eubacteria and Archaea. Of the Eubacteria sequenced to date, T.maritima has the highest percentage (24%) of genes that are most similar to archaeal genes. Eighty-one archaeal-like genes are clustered in 15 regions of the T. maritima genome that range in size from 4 to 20 kilobases. Conservation of gene order between T. maritima and Archaea in many of the clustered regions suggests that lateral gene transfer may have occurred between thermophilic Eubacteria and Archaea.