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DNA libraries for sequencing the genome of Ostreococcus tauri (Chlorophyta, prasinophyceae): The smallest free-living eukaryotic cell

Derelle E., Ferraz C., Lagoda P., Eychenié S., Cooke R., Regad F., Sabau X., Courties C., Delseny M., Demaille J., Picard A., Moreau H.. 2002. Journal of Phycology, 38 (6) : p. 1150-1156.

DOI: 10.1046/j.1529-8817.2002.02021.x

Ostreococcus tauri is a marine photosynthetic picoeukaryote presenting a minimal cellular organization with one nucleus, one chloroplast, and one mitochondrion. It has the smallest genome described among free-living eukaryotic cells, and we showed by pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) that it is divided between 15 bands ranging from 1.2 to 0.15 Mb, giving a total size of 9.7 Mb. A Bacterial Artificial Chromosome (BAC) library was prepared from genomic DNA extracted from a culture of O. tauri. A total of 2457 clones was obtained with an average insert size of around 70 kb, representing an 18-fold coverage of the genome. The library was spotted on high density filters, and several probes of coding sequences were hybridized to both the high density BAC library filters and directly to the dried PFGE gels of the O. tauri genomic DNA. These hybridizations allowed a preliminary organization of the library and the localization of several markers on the chromosomes. Randomly selected fragments were also sequenced, representing 12% of the O. tauri genome. Many sequences showed significant similarities in data banks, mainly with plant and algae sequences. About 1000 coding sequences could be identified. These data confirmed the position of O. tauri in the green lineage and the hypothesis of a very compact organization of its genome.

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