Sulfolobus islandicus: A model system for evolutionary genomics

Changyi Zhang, David J. Krause, Rachel J. Whitaker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Sulfolobus islandicus has been developed as a model system for combining approaches of evolutionary and molecular biology in Archaea. We describe how the application of this interdisciplinary approach can lead to novel hypotheses derived from patterns of natural variation that can be tested in the laboratory when combined with a diversity of natural variants and versatile genetic markers. We review how this approach has highlighted the importance of recombination as an evolutionary parameter and provided insight into a molecular mechanism of recombination that may be unique in the archaeal domain. We review the development and improvement of the model system S. islandicus that will enable us to study the mechanism and genomic architecture of recombination guided by evolutionary genomic analysis of Nature's ongoing experiments in wild populations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)458-462
Number of pages5
JournalBiochemical Society Transactions
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2013


  • Chromosomal marker exchange
  • Evolution
  • Recombination
  • Sulfolobus islandicus

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry


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