Evolution of CYP2J19, a gene involved in colour vision and red coloration in birds: positive selection in the face of conservation and pleiotropy.
BMC Evol Biol 2018 02 13;18(1):22. Epub 2018 Feb 13.
Department of Zoology, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, CB2 3EJ, UK.
Background: Exaggerated signals, such as brilliant colours, are usually assumed to evolve through antagonistic coevolution between senders and receivers, but the underlying genetic mechanisms are rarely known. Here we explore a recently identified "redness gene", CYP2J19, that is highly interesting in this context since it encodes a carotenoid-modifying enzyme (a C4 ketolase involved in both colour signalling and colour discrimination in the red (long wavelength) spectral region.) RESULTS: A single full-length CYP2J19 was retrieved from 43 species out of 70 avian genomes examined, representing all major avian clades. Read More