ISSN 2286-6493
Journal of Asian Association of Schools of Pharmacy

Phylogenetic analysis of mcrA gene of methanogenic archaea  Research Paper 

Wannaporn Muangsuwan1, Pattarawan Ruangsuj1, Pichai Chaichanachaicharn1, Kosum Chansiri2 and Montri Yasawong1
1 Department of Biochemistry, Faculty of Pharmacy, Mahidol University, Bangkok. Thailand.
2 Department of Biochemistry, Faculty of Medicine, Srinakharinwirot University, Bangkok, Thailand.


    Methane (CH4) is the forceful greenhouse gases, which produced from methanogens. The key enzyme for methane production is methyl-coenzyme M reductase (MCR). The α-subunit of MCR is encoded by mcrA gene. The mcrA gene was applied as a specific marker for study of methanogens diversity. The study was based on the collection of mcrA gene sequences. The gene sequences were obtained from genome database (GenBank). Phylogenetic tree was reconstructed using mcrA gene sequences. Methanopyrus kandleri (AE009439) was selected for an out group of the Bayesian analysis. The phylogeny was not only illuminated the evolution of mcrA gene but also represented the relationship between the methane production pathways and the habitats of the methanogens. Two lineages of methanogenic archaea were appeared on the consensus tree (group A and B). The group A methanogens contained two subgroups (subgroup A1 and A2). The group A methanogens possesses three methanogenesis pathways, which were hydrogenotropic, acetoclastic and C1-pathway. The group B methanogens were mostly thermophiles or hyperthermophiles. Hydrogenotropic pathway was the main process for methanogenesis of the methanogens group B.  


1 mcrA gene
2 methyl-coenzyme
3 M reductase
4 methanogens

Published in

JAASP Volume 3
January - December, 2014

Page: 290-298

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