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Title

 

 

 

 

Towards reconstructing a metabolic tree of life

 

Authors

Marina Marcet-Houben, Pere Puigb˛, Antoni Romeu and Santiago Garcia-Vallve*

 

Affiliation

Evolutionary Genomics Group, Biochemistry and Biotechnology Department, Rovira i Virgili University, Campus Sescelades, c/ Marcel li Domingo s/n, 43007 TARRAGONA, Spain

 

Email

santi.garcia-vallve@urv.cat; * Corresponding author

 

Article Type

Hypothesis

 

Date

received November 17, 2007; accepted November 23, 2007; published online December 11, 2007

 

Abstract

Using information from several metabolic databases, we have built our own metabolic database containing 434 pathways and 1157 different enzymes. We have used this information to construct a dendrogram that demonstrates the metabolic similarities between 282 species. The resulting species distribution and the clusters defined in the tree show a certain taxonomic congruence, especially in recent relationships between species. This dendrogram is another representation of the tree of life, based on metabolism that may complement the trees constructed by other methods. For example, the metabolic dissimilarity we demonstrate between Symbiobacterium thermophilum (previously defined as Actinobacteria) and the other Actinobacteria species, and the metabolic similarity between S. thermophilum and Clostridia, combined with other evidence, suggest that S. thermophilum may be re-classified as Firmicutes, Clostridia.

 

Keywords

metablic pathways: enzymes; dendogram; taxonomy; species

 

Citation

Marcet-Houben, et al., Bioinformation 2(4): 135-144 (2007)

 

Edited by

P. Kangueane

 

ISSN

0973-2063

 

Publisher

Biomedical Informatics

 

License

This is an Open Access article which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly credited. This is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License.