Gene regulatory networks evolve through rewiring of individual components—that is, through changes in regulatory connections. However, the mechanistic basis of regulatory rewiring is poorly understood. Using a canonical gene regulatory system, we quantify the properties of transcription factors that determine the evolutionary potential for rewiring of regulatory connections: robustness, tunability and evolvability. In vivo repression measurements of two repressors at mutated operator sites reveal their contrasting evolutionary potential: while robustness and evolvability were positively correlated, both were in trade-off with tunability. Epistatic interactions between adjacent operators alleviated this trade-off. A thermodynamic model explains how the differences in robustness, tunability and evolvability arise from biophysical characteristics of repressor–DNA binding. The model also uncovers that the energy matrix, which describes how mutations affect repressor–DNA binding, encodes crucial information about the evolutionary potential of a repressor. The biophysical determinants of evolutionary potential for regulatory rewiring constitute a mechanistic framework for understanding network evolution.
Nature Ecology and Evolution
1633 - 1643
Igler C, Lagator M, Tkačik G, Bollback JP, Guet CC. Evolutionary potential of transcription factors for gene regulatory rewiring. Nature Ecology and Evolution. 2018;2(10):1633-1643. doi:10.1038/s41559-018-0651-y
Igler, C., Lagator, M., Tkačik, G., Bollback, J. P., & Guet, C. C. (2018). Evolutionary potential of transcription factors for gene regulatory rewiring. Nature Ecology and Evolution, 2(10), 1633–1643. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41559-018-0651-y
Igler, Claudia, Mato Lagator, Gašper Tkačik, Jonathan P Bollback, and Calin C Guet. “Evolutionary Potential of Transcription Factors for Gene Regulatory Rewiring.” Nature Ecology and Evolution 2, no. 10 (2018): 1633–43. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41559-018-0651-y.
C. Igler, M. Lagator, G. Tkačik, J. P. Bollback, and C. C. Guet, “Evolutionary potential of transcription factors for gene regulatory rewiring,” Nature Ecology and Evolution, vol. 2, no. 10, pp. 1633–1643, 2018.
Igler C, Lagator M, Tkačik G, Bollback JP, Guet CC. 2018. Evolutionary potential of transcription factors for gene regulatory rewiring. Nature Ecology and Evolution. 2(10), 1633–1643.
Igler, Claudia, et al. “Evolutionary Potential of Transcription Factors for Gene Regulatory Rewiring.” Nature Ecology and Evolution, vol. 2, no. 10, Nature Publishing Group, 2018, pp. 1633–43, doi:10.1038/s41559-018-0651-y.
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