Research on de novo genes has been the subject of a News Feature in Nature, written by Adam Levy. The article presents the case of the arctic cod; comparison of genomic sequences from closely related fish species has shown that a new antifreeze protein has evolved from a non-coding genomic region. The birth of new genes de novo is a recent addition to the field of evolutionary biology. Until not long ago virtually all new genes were believed to originate from previously existing genes. However, studies performed in the past 15 years have accumulated growing evidence that a substantial fraction of the genes is likely to have arisen by other mechanisms. The articles covers some of the first studies on de novo gene birth and explains what we have learnt along the journey.
Read the article: How evolution builds genes from scratch, Nature Oct 16 2019.