The evolution of paralogous enzymes MAT and MATX within the Euglenida and beyond
Background Methionine adenosyltransferase (MAT) is a ubiquitous essential enzyme that, in eukaryotes, occurs in two relatively divergent paralogues: MAT and MATX. MATX has a punctate distribution across the tree of eukaryotes and, except for a few cases, is mutually exclusive with MAT. This phylogenetic pattern could have arisen by either differential loss of old paralogues or the spread of one of these paralogues by horizontal gene transfer. Our aim was to map the distribution of MAT/MATX genes within the Euglenida in order to more comprehensively characterize the evolutionary history of MATX.