A new lysozyme from the eastern oyster (Crassostrea virginica) indicates adaptive evolution of i-type lysozymes

Q. G. Xue, Naoki Endo, K. L. Schey, Y. L. Li, R. K. Cooper, J. F. La Peyre

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

76 Citations (Scopus)


A new lysozyme (cv-lysozyme 2) with a MALDI molecular mass of 12 984.6 Da was purified from crystalline styles and digestive glands of eastern oysters (Crassostrea virginica) and its cDNA sequenced. Quantitative real time RT-PCR detected cv-lysozyme 2 gene expression primarily in digestive gland tissues, and in situ hybridization located cv-lysozyme 2 gene expression in basophil cells of digestive tubules. Cv-lysozyme 2 showed high amino acid sequence similarity to other bivalve mollusk lysozymes, including cv-lysozyme 1, a lysozyme recently purified from C. virginica plasma. Differences between cv-lysozyme 2 and cv-lysozyme 1 molecular characteristics, enzymatic properties, antibacterial activities, distribution in the oyster body and site of gene expression indicate that the main role of cv-lysozyme 2 is in digestion. While showing that a bivalve mollusk employs different lysozymes for different functions, findings in this study suggest adaptive evolution of i type lysozymes for nutrition.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)82-95
Number of pages14
JournalCellular and Molecular Life Sciences
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2007 Jan 1


  • Adaptive evolution
  • Bivalve mollusk
  • Crassostrea virginica
  • Digestion, host defense
  • I type lysozyme
  • Oyster

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Medicine
  • Molecular Biology
  • Pharmacology
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
  • Cell Biology


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