Supplementary Material for: Sequencing and genomic annotation of the chicken <i>(Gallus gallus)</i> Hox clusters, and mapping of evolutionarily conserved regions

Hox genes encode transcription factors that are involved in the regulation of normal development and are mutated in some diseases and malformations. Chicken <i>HOX</i> genes have been extensively studied in the chick limb and other developmental models. To date while the chicken <i>HOXA </i>cluster has been completely sequenced many other chicken <i>HOX</i> genes are known only from partial mRNAs or unfinished genome assemblies. Furthermore, although a finished sequence of the <i>HOXA</i> cluster is available, the sequence has not yet been annotated. We have therefore manually annotated the available <i>HOX</i> sequences and improved the sequences by sequencing PCR fragments that bridge existing gaps in the genome sequences. These sequences complement the published sequences, including the currently incomplete WashUC Gallus_gallus-2.1 build, to give an improved coverage of the cluster. We used phylogenetic footprinting to map the genomic location of 398 Ultra Conserved Regions in the<i> HOX</i> complex 248 of which do not overlap with any known annotated coding exon. These included the hox-related microRNAs miR-10 and miR-196. The chicken <i>HOX</i> clusters appear to be broadly comparable to their human counterparts. A few human orthologues were not recovered from the chicken, presumably because of incomplete sequence.




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