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CANCELLED (to be postponed until a later date) - Horizontal invaders: a new transposable element family in Saccharomyces

Thursday 16 April 2020, 1.00PM

Speaker(s): Dr Cooper Alastair Grace, University of York

Transposable elements (TEs) are mobile genetic elements found in almost all eukaryotic genomes. Due to their typically deleterious effects, TEs are generally removed by their host species’ efficient defence mechanisms. Horizontal transfer of TE families allows the survival and proliferation in new host species, but is often limited to populations and species that are able to hybridise.

The budding yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae typically contains families Ty1-5, each of which possess varying copy numbers and activity levels. Here I present the results of my investigations during my PhD at the University of Huddersfield, including the presence of an additional family, Ty6, that may have arisen by horizontal transfer on the American continent. Although it shares sequence identity with the minimally active family of Ty4, the new invader, Ty6, is highly active and currently spreading throughout populations of Saccharomyces.

My work offers a unique opportunity to track not only the invasion of a TE family in a naive model species, but also to observe the migrations of - and interactions between - populations of Saccharomyces worldwide.

Location: Dianna Bowles Lecture Theatre B/K/018