This Isarachnanthus nocturnus tube anemone has the largest animal mitochondrial genome reported to date. Image: Sergio Stampar
Sea anemones: complex genome outside the nucleus - life short science news

While most of the genetic information (DNA) is packed in a cell’s nucleus, some DNA is found in mitochondria, the cell’s power plants that generate energy.

Sea anemones have now been found to have the largest mitochondrial collection of DNA of all species analyzed, containing 81,000 base pairs (the basic units of genetic information). For comparison, the human mitochondrial genome contains 17,000 base pairs.

It is not quite known why such apparently simple animals have such large mitochondrial genomes that are furthermore organized in a linear instead of the normal circular way.

Read the full story: Ohio State University
Scientific publication: Scientific Reports