HGT-Gen: a tool for generating a phylogenetic tree with horizontal gene transfer



Tokumasa Horiike1*, Daisuke Miyata2, Yoshio Tateno3, Ryoichi Minai1



1Division of Global Research Leaders, Shizuoka University, Shizuoka 422-8529, Japan; 2Department of Economics, Chiba University of Commerce, Ichikawa 272-8512, Japan; 3School of Interdisciplinary Bioscience and Bioengineering, Pohang University of Science and Technology, Pohang, 790-784, Republic of Korea.


Email; *Corresponding author


Article Type




Received October 06, 2011; Accepted October 24, 2011; Published October 31, 2011



Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) is a common event in prokaryotic evolution. Therefore, it is very important to consider HGT in the study of molecular evolution of prokaryotes. This is true also for conducting computer simulations of their molecular phylogeny because HGT is known to be a serious disturbing factor for estimating their correct phylogeny. To the best of our knowledge, no existing computer program has generated a phylogenetic tree with HGT from an original phylogenetic tree. We developed a program called HGT-Gen that generates a phylogenetic tree with HGT on the basis of an original phylogenetic tree of a protein or gene. HGT-Gen converts an operational taxonomic unit or a clade from one place to another in a given phylogenetic tree. We have also devised an algorithm to compute the average length between any pair of branches in the tree. It defines and computes the relative evolutionary time to normalize evolutionary time for each lineage. The algorithm can generate an HGT between a pair of donor and acceptor lineages at the same evolutionary time. HGT-Gen is used with a sequence-generating program to evaluate the influence of HGT on the molecular phylogeny of prokaryotes in a computer simulation study.



Horiike et al. Bioinformation 7(5): 211-213 (2011)

Edited by

P Kangueane






Biomedical Informatics



This is an Open Access article which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly credited. This is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License.