Link to Pubmed [PMID] – 12743022
Genome Res. 2003 Jun;13(6A):1123-32
An exhaustive search for shortly spaced repeats in 74 bacterial chromosomes reveals that they are much more numerous than is usually acknowledged. These repeats were divided into five classes: close repeats (CRs), tandem repeats (TRs), simple sequence repeats (SSRs), spaced interspersed direct repeats, and “others.” CRs are widespread and constitute the most abundant class, particularly in coding sequences. The other classes are less frequent, but each individual element shows a higher potential for recombination, when the number of repeats and their distances are taken into account. SSRs and TRs are more frequent in pathogens, as expected given their role in contingency loci, but are also widespread in the other bacteria. The analysis of CRs shows that they have an important role in the evolution of genomes, namely by generating duplications and deletions. Several cases compatible with a significant role of small CRs in the formation of large repeats were detected. Also, gene deletion in Buchnera correlates with repeat density, suggesting that CRs may lead to sequence deletion in general and genome reductive evolution of obligatory intracellular bacteria in particular. The assembly of these results indicates that shortly spaced repeats are key players in the dynamics of genome evolution.