Diversity is one of the most remarkable features of living organisms. Current assessments of eukaryote biodiversity reaches 1.5 million species, but the true figure could be several times that number. Diversity is ingrained in all stages and echelons of life, namely, the occupancy of ecological niches, behavioral patterns, body plans and organismal complexity, as well as metabolic needs and genetics. In this review, we will discuss that diversity also exists in a key biochemical process, translation, across eukaryotes. Translation is a fundamental process for all forms of life, and the basic components and mechanisms of translation in eukaryotes have been largely established upon the study of traditional, so-called model organisms. By using modern genome-wide, high-throughput technologies, recent studies of many nonmodel eukaryotes have unveiled a surprising diversity in the configuration of the translation apparatus across eukaryotes, showing that this apparatus is far from being evolutionarily static. For some of the components of this machinery, functional differences between different species have also been found. The recent research reviewed in this article highlights the molecular and functional diversification the translational machinery has undergone during eukaryotic evolution. A better understanding of all aspects of organismal diversity is key to a more profound knowledge of life.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Molecular Biology