We report the complete DNA sequence of the Euglena gracllis , Pringsheim strain Z chloroplast genome. This circular DNA is 143,170 bp, counting only one copy of a 54 bp tandem repeat sequence that is present in variable copy number within a single culture. The overall organization of the genome involves a tandem array of three complete and one partial ribosomal RNA operons, and a large single copy region. There are genes for the 16S, 5S, and 23S rRNAs of the 70S chloroplast ribosomes, 27 different tRNA species, 21 ribosomal proteins plus the gene for elongation factor EF-Tu, three RNA polymerase subunits, and 27 known photosynthesis-related polypeptides. Several putative genes of unknown function have also been identified, including five within large introns, and five with amino acid sequence similarity to genes in other organisms. This genome contains at least 149 introns. There are 72 individual group II introns, 46 individual group III introns, 10 group II introns and 18 group III introns that are components of twintrons (introns-within-introns), and three additional introns suspected to be twintrons composed of multiple group II and/or group III introns, but not yet characterized. At least 54,804 bp, or 38.3% of the total DNA content is represented by introns.

Author notes

+ Present address: Centro di Invertigacion y Desarrollo CSIC, Dept. Genetica Molecular, Jordi Girona 18-26, 08034 Barcelona, Spain
§ Present address: Department of Chemistry, MIT, Cambridge, MA 02139, USA