16 September 2017

Gene-making: some questions answered

In my previous post I attempted to identify all the ways that a new gene can come about, after defining what I meant by "new" and "gene." Two questions came up, one a comment on the post, and the other via Facebook.

1. What about exon shuffling? Isn't that a mechanism by which new genes are made?

Exon shuffling is, roughly, the creating of new coding sequences (genes, as I'm defining them in this series) by the rearrangement of pieces of coding sequence. (An exon is a piece of coding sequence in DNA or RNA.) It's a nice descriptive phrase: the exons are gene pieces, and they can be moved around to make new cominbations that code for new proteins. So is this an additional mechanism for the creation of genes?

No, it's not.