Joined: May 2002
Came across some refs on transport systems and even some discussions of evolutionary origins:
Biochim Biophys Acta 1999 Feb 25;1422(1):1-56
Phylogenetic characterization of novel transport protein families revealed by genome analyses.
Saier MH Jr, Eng BH, Fard S, Garg J, Haggerty DA, Hutchinson WJ, Jack DL, Lai EC, Liu HJ, Nusinew DP, Omar AM, Pao SS, Paulsen IT, Quan JA, Sliwinski M, Tseng TT, Wachi S, Young GB.
Department of Biology, University of California at San Diego, La Jolla, CA 92093-0116, USA. email@example.com
As a result of recent genome sequencing projects as well as detailed biochemical, molecular genetic and physiological experimentation on representative transport proteins, we have come to realize that all organisms possess an extensive but limited array of transport protein types that allow the uptake of nutrients and excretion of toxic substances. These proteins fall into phylogenetic families that presumably reflect their evolutionary histories. Some of these families are restricted to a single phylogenetic group of organisms and may have arisen recently in evolutionary time while others are found ubiquitously and may be ancient. In this study we conduct systematic phylogenetic analyses of 26 families of transport systems that either had not been characterized previously or were in need of updating. Among the families analyzed are some that are bacterial-specific, others that are eukaryotic-specific, and others that are ubiquitous. They can function by either a channel-type or a carrier-type mechanism, and in the latter case, they are frequently energized by coupling solute transport to the flux of an ion down its electrochemical gradient. We tabulate the currently sequenced members of the 26 families analyzed, describe the properties of these families, and present partial multiple alignments, signature sequences and phylogenetic trees for them all.
This review of a proceedings volume mentions:
Transport of molecules across microbial membranes
The book ends with a stimulating chapter from Saier &Tseng on the evolutionary origins of transport systems, withseveral surprises about the likely evolutionary origin andfrequency of `genesis' of permease families, topologicalconstraints operating in membrane transporters, and mosaicand modular construction. This topic how it all started, howit may have evolved and how it may evolve in future is afitting terminal chapter to the symposium volume.
Here is the full ref:
Saier, M.H. Jr. and Tseng, T.T. 1999. Evolutionary origins of transmembrane transport systems; in Transport of Molecules Across Microbial Membranes. Symposium 58. Society for General Microbiology. Broome-Smith, J.K., Baumberg S., Stirling C.J. and Ward F.B. (eds.). Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, pp. 252-274.
The introduction to the volume is freely available online here as a sample chapter: