Monopterus albus


Selenium (Se) is an essential micronutrient with important functions in human health and relevance to several pathophysiological conditions. It is also known as the 21st amino acid, a cysteine analogue with selenium instead of sulphur. The biological effects of Se are mediated by selenium-containing proteins (selenoproteins) present in all three domains of life. However, some selenoprotein genes are absent in many species and these can not synthesize Selenocysteine (Sec). Here, we present a study based in the identification of selenoproteins in the recently sequenced specie Monopterus albus by comparing its genome with Danio rerio’s genome using a combination of different bioinformatic tools. The results revealed 32 selenoproteins, 6 cys-homologues and 8 machinery proteins in Monopterus albus. On the other hand, 8 selenoproteins and 1 machinery protein could not be predicted. Our study identified the genes that encode for selenoproteins in the genome of Monopterus albus and provided additional information on the phylogenetic distribution of selenoprotein containing genomes.