The carnivorous bladderwort, a mysterious aquatic plant has revealed its mysterious genome, which has fascinated scientists for a long time. Although smaller in size than most other plants, it is known to have many more genes than other plants. A new study has revealed that the aquatic plant has a smaller genome than most other plants, but it contains many more genes.
The Journal, Molecular Biology and Evolution, has published a detailed study of the intriguing aquatic plant, the carnivorous bladderwort. The study found out that the plant has a genome smaller than most other known plants, but the number of genes in it is greater than in them. Scientists explain it by comparing the plant’s genome to that of a grape genome.
The carnivorous bladderwort is made up of 80 billion DNA base pair. The grape genome, on the other hand, has size time more number of genomes. Nevertheless, the aquatic plant still has 28,500 genes while the grape has merely 23,600 genes.
The study author from the University of Buffalo, Victor Albert, after a thorough research on the plant, found out that it does not have as much “junk” DNA as other plants. These DNA are explained as those that are not responsible for immediate proteins coding. It contains merely 3% of such DNA, hence making more use of its genetic makeup than any other organism. It might be interesting to note than the human DNA contains 90% of “junk” DNA.
The study also claims that the carnivorous bladderwort has replicated its genome at least thrice in its entirety. Each time, it evaluates its DNA carefully and alters it to keep only the useful part of the composition. “It turned out that those rates of evolutionary turnover — especially the rate of loss — was incredibly high compared to other plants,” explained Albert. “The genome was subjected to some heavy duty deletion mechanisms.”