The evolution of the long and short repetitive DNA sequences in sea urchins

Nirupa Chaudhari, Sydney P. Craig

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


The rates of evolution of purified long and short repetitive DNA sequences were examined by hybridisation analysis between the DNAs from several species of sea urchins. We find that the rates of nucleotide substitution are very comparable within mutually retained sequences for the two classes of repetitive DNA. The loss of hybridisable sequences between species also occurs at similar rates among both the short and long repetitive DNA sequences. Between species that separated less than 50 million years ago, hybridisable short repetitive sequences are lost all through the spectrum of reiteration frequencies. The long repeats contain a few sequences which are highly conserved within all of the species examined, and which amount to approximately 1% of the total genome. The short repetitive class, on the other hand, does not seem to contain any such highly conserved elements. The long repetitive sequences internally appear to contain short 'units' of reiteration, which may comprise families within the long repetitive class. We find no evidence to indicate that the majority of long and short repetitive sequences evolve by different mechanisms or at different rates.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)438-452
Number of pages15
JournalBBA Section Nucleic Acids And Protein Synthesis
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 24 1979
Externally publishedYes


  • (Sea urchin)
  • DNA sequence evolution
  • Evolution
  • Reassociation
  • Repetitive DNA sequence

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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