Mar 30, 2020

Testing theoretical minimal genomes using whole-cell models

Aziz BelkadiLaurent Abel


Numerous authors have pondered what the minimal gene set for life might be and many hypothetical minimal gene sets have been proposed, including at least 10 for Mycoplasma genitalium (M. genitalium). None of these have been reported to be tested in-vivo or in-silico. In-vivo testing would be extremely difficult as M.genitalium is very difficult to grow in the laboratory and laborious to engineer. However, the M. genitalium whole-cell model provides the first opportunity to test them in-silico. We simulated eight hypothetical minimal gene sets from the literature, and found none could produce in-silico cells that could grow and divide. Using previous research on in-silico gene essentiality in M. genitalium, we were able to repair the sets by reintroducing select genes, so that they produced dividing in-silico cells.

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Mentioned in this Paper

Whole Exome Sequencing
Depth of Respiration
Dideoxy Chain Termination DNA Sequencing
Genome Sequencing
Whole Genome Sequencing
Crohn Disease
Genotype Determination

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