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Title: The origin of language-like features in DNA
Author: Hurworth, Allan Christopher
ISNI:       0000 0001 3584 9811
Awarding Body: University of Southampton
Current Institution: University of Southampton
Date of Award: 2000
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Non-coding DNA is known to account for a significant proportion of the genomes of many organisms. The discovery by the use of three statistical tests - the Zipf analysis, the fluctuation analysis and the Shannon entropy - of linguistic features and long-range correlations within non-coding DNA has given rise to the suggestion that this higher-order structure may form the basis of a biological language in non-coding DNA. This work describes the development of a model to explain the origin of these language-like features in DNA. The model is based on observed genome reshaping processes - namely, transposable element insertion/excision events and point mutations - and involves the repeated duplication of transposable element target sites to build up repetitive blocks of DNA. This model shows that the observed language-like features can be generated by known genetic rearrangements and therefore suggests that any function of non-coding DNA has been acquired opportunistically, through the use of these language-like features.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Non-coding; Linguistic features; Biological