Evolution of the calcium-based intracellular signalling system

Elodie S G Marchadier, Matthew Oates, Hai Fang, Philip Donoghue, Alistair Hetherington, Julian Gough

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

28 Citations (Scopus)
282 Downloads (Pure)


To progress our understanding of molecular evolution from a collection of well-studied genes towards the level of the cell, we must consider whole systems. Here we reveal the evolution of an important intracellular signalling system. The calcium-signalling toolkit is made up of different multi-domain proteins that have undergone duplication, recombination, sequence divergence and selection. The picture of evolution, considering the repertoire of proteins in the toolkit of both extant organisms and ancestors, is radically different from that of other systems. In eukaryotes the repertoire increased in both abundance and diversity at a far greater rate than general genomic expansion. We describe how calcium-based intracellular signalling evolution differs not only in rate but in nature, and how this correlates with the disparity of plants and animals.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2118-2132
Number of pages15
JournalGenome Biology and Evolution
Issue number7
Early online date29 Jun 2016
Publication statusPublished - 14 Jul 2016


  • calcium signaling
  • diversification
  • evolution
  • protein architecture
  • specialization


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