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The olfactory receptor gene superfamily of the mouse

Abstract

Olfactory receptor (OR) genes are the largest gene superfamily in vertebrates. We have identified the mouse OR genes from the nearly complete Celera mouse genome by a comprehensive data mining strategy. We found 1,296 mouse OR genes (including 20% pseudogenes), which can be classified into 228 families. OR genes are distributed in 27 clusters on all mouse chromosomes except 12 and Y. One OR gene cluster matches a known locus mediating a specific anosmia, indicating the anosmia may be due directly to the loss of receptors. A large number of apparently functional 'fish-like' Class I OR genes in the mouse genome may have important roles in mammalian olfaction. Human ORs cover a similar 'receptor space' as the mouse ORs, suggesting that the human olfactory system has retained the ability to recognize a broad spectrum of chemicals even though humans have lost nearly two-thirds of the OR genes as compared to mice.

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Figure 1: Mouse OR families.
Figure 2: Chromosomal distribution of mouse OR genes. Blue, intact genes; red, pseudogenes.
Figure 3: OR gene clusters, with detailed distribution of OR genes in each of the 27 clusters.
Figure 4: Sequence logos for the open reading frames of Class I and Class II ORs.
Figure 5: Unrooted phylogenetic tree of human and mouse ORs.

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GenBank/EMBL/DDBJ

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Acknowledgements

We wish to thank P. Feinstein, P. Mombaerts and the members of the Firestein lab for critical comments on the manuscript. This work was supported by grants from US NIDCD and HFSP. This data was generated through use of the Celera Discovery System and Celera's associated databases made possible in part by the AMDeC Foundation, Inc.

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Correspondence to Stuart Firestein.

Supplementary information

41593_2002_BFnn800_MOESM1_ESM.jpg

Supplementary Figure 1. Profile HMM OR classifier. Two profile HMMs were built with intact human ORs (49 Class I and 273 Class II ORs). Query sequences were compared with both profile HMMs. E-values and log likelihood ratio (log10EI/EII) were calculated. OR versus non-OR was determined by the smaller E-value, and Class I versus Class II was determined by the log likelihood ratio. (JPG 49 kb)

Supplementary Figure 2. Flow chart of mouse OR data mining (see Methods for details). (JPG 54 kb)

Supplementary Methods (PDF 13 kb)

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Zhang, X., Firestein, S. The olfactory receptor gene superfamily of the mouse. Nat Neurosci 5, 124–133 (2002). https://doi.org/10.1038/nn800

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