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Genome sizes
The course has been completed by 296 students

Table of selected genome sizes

 
Organism Number of bp Number of genes Notes

Phi-X 174

5386

10

virus infecting E. coli

Human mitochondrion

16569

37

subcellular organelle

Epstein-Barr virus (EBV)

172282

80

causes mononucleosis

Nanoarchaeum equitans

490885

552

This parasitic member of the Archaea has the smallest genome of a true organism yet found.

Mycoplasma genitalium

580073

483

three of the smallest true organisms

Ureaplasma urealyticum

751719

652

causes non-specific urethritis, smallest true organism

Mycoplasma pneumoniae

816394

680

causes epidemics of pneumonia, smallest true organism

Chlamydia trachomatis

1042519

936

most common sexually-transmitted disease (STD) bacterium

Rickettsia prowazekii

1111523

834

bacterium that causes epidemic typhus

Treponema pallidum

1138011

1039

bacterium that causes syphilis

Mimivirus

1181404

1262

A virus (of an amoeba) with a genome larger than the six cellular organisms above

Rickettsia conorii

1268755

1374

causes Mediterranean spotted fever

Pelagibacter ubique

1308759

1354

smallest genome yet found in a free-living organism (marine α-proteobacterium)

Borrelia burgdorferi

1471725

1738

bacterium that causes Lyme disease

Aquifex aeolicus

1551335

1749

bacterium isolated from a hot spring in Yellowstone National Park

Campylobacter jejuni

1641481

1708

frequent cause of food poisoning

Helicobacter pylori

1667867

1589

chief cause of stomach ulcers (not stress and diet)

Thermoplasma acidophilum

1564905

1509

Archaeal prokaryote

Methanococcus jannaschii

1664970

1783

Archaeal prokaryote

Aeropyrum pernix

1669695

1885

Archaeal prokaryote

Pyrococcus horikoshii

1738505

1994

Archaeal prokaryote

Haemophilus influenzae

1830138

1738

bacterium that causes middle ear infections

Thermotoga maritima

1860725

1879

marine bacterium

Streptococcus pneumoniae

2160837

2236

the pneumococcus

Archaeoglobus fulgidus

2178400

2437

another member of the Archaea

Neisseria meningitidis

2184406

2185

causes occasional epidemics of meningitis in less developed countries.

Neisseria meningitidis

2272351

2221

the most frequent cause of meningitis in the U.S.

Propionibacterium acnes

2560265

2333

causes acne

Deinococcus radiodurans

3284156

3187

on 2 chromosomes and 2 plasmids; bacterium noted for its resistance to radiation damage

Synechocystis

3573470

4003

a marine cyanobacterium ("blue-green alga")

Vibrio cholerae

4033460

3890

in 2 chromosomes; causes cholera

Mycobacterium tuberculosis

4411532

3959

causes tuberculosis

Mycobacterium leprae

3268203

1604

causes leprosy

Bacillus subtilis

4214814

4779

object organism in molecular biology

Escherichia coli

4639221

4377

4,290 of these genes encode proteins; the rest RNAs; model organism

Agrobacterium tumefaciens

4674062

5419

Useful vector for making transgenic plants; shares many genes with Sinorhizobium meliloti

Salmonella enterica var Typhi

4809037

4395

+ 2 plasmids with 372 active genes; causes typhoid fever

Yersinia pestis

4826100

4052

on 1 chromosome + 3 plasmids; causes plague

Schizosaccharomyces pombe

12462637

4929

Fission yeast. A eukaryote with fewer genes than many bacteria

E. coli O157:H7

5440000

5416

strain that is pathogenic for humans

Ralstonia solanacearum

5810922

5129

soil bacterium pathogenic for many plants; 1681 of its genes on a huge plasmid

Pseudomonas aeruginosa

6300000

5570

Increasingly common cause of opportunistic infections in humans.

Streptomyces coelicolor

6667507

7842

An actinomycete whose relatives provide us with many antibiotics

Sinorhizobium meliloti

6691694

6204

The rhizobial symbiont of alfalfa. Genome consists of one chromosome and 2 large plasmids.

Saccharomyces cerevisiae

12495682

5770

Budding yeast. A eukaryote.

Cyanidioschyzon merolae

16520305

5331

A unicellular red alga.

Plasmodium falciparum

22853764

5268

Plus 53 RNA genes. Causes the most dangerous form of malaria.

Thalassiosira pseudonana

34500000

11242

A diatom. Plus 144 chloroplast and 40 mitochondrial genes encoding proteins

Neurospora crassa

38639769

10082

model organism, filamentous fungus

Caenorhabditis elegans

100258171

19427

a worm; The first multicellular eukaryote to be sequenced.

Arabidopsis thaliana

115409949

28000

a flowering plant (angiosperm); model organism

Drosophila melanogaster

122653977

13379

the "fruit fly"

Anopheles gambiae

278244063

13683

Mosquito vector of malaria.

Takugu rubripes (a pufferfish)

329000000

23000

Although pufferfish seems to have about the same number of genes as we do, it has much less "junk" DNA so its total genome is about a tenth the size of ours.

Rice

390000000

37544

 

Sea urchin

814000000

23300

 

Dogs

2400000000

19300

 

Homo sapience (human)

3300000000

23000

 

Salamander

100000000000

?

 

Psilotum nudum

250000000000

?

 

adopted from Lesk, 2006