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New genes created by genetic duplication.

Associate Professor, Department of General Education


Gene duplication, a mechanism that generates new genes, occurs when a segment of DNA containing genes is accidentally duplicated during cell division. This duplication can create a new gene if one of the copies acquires a novel function distinct from its ancestral role. While numerous genes have been reported to originate from such events, the post-duplication fate of these duplicated genes remains largely obscure.

The SMIS2 gene in the japanese fire-bellied newt is thought to be a newly emerged gene that originated after the divergence of Salamandridae (relatively recently) through the duplication of the SMIS1 gene.The SMIS1 gene functions only in fertilization, while the SMIS2 gene is expressed in non-fertilization-related locations. This suggests that the SMIS2 gene has acquired novel functions absent in the SMIS1 gene. We are currently investigating the SMIS2 gene using various techniques, including genome editing technologies, to understand how genes with new functions arise

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