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Table 1 DNA and RNA polymerases involved in replication and transcription in cells and viruses

From: The replication machinery of LUCA: common origin of DNA replication and transcription

Polymerase family Core catalytic domain Organisms Functions DNA-RNA switches
DNA-directed DNAPs
 PolA Derived RRM-Palm Bacteria, some phages, mitochondria Repair in bacteria, replication in some phages, plant and fungal mitochondria, and mitochondrial plasmids From DNAP to single-subunit RNAP in phages
 PolB RRM-Palm Archaea, eukaryotes, some bacteria, many large DNA viruses Replication in Crenarchaeota, eukaryotes, viruses; repair in other archaea, bacteria To DNA template and product at origin(?)
 PolC Polβ-like nucleotidyl-transferase Bacteria, a few phages Replication PolyA polymerase in eukaryotes
 PolD 2xDPBB in a single protein Archaea except for crenarchaea and some thaumarchaea Replication To DNA template and product at origin(?)
 AEP RRM-Palm Archaea, eukaryotes, some bacteria, diverse mobile elements, many large DNA viruses RNA priming of replication in archaea, eukaryotes, and dsDNA viruses; replication of plasmids and phages From RNA synthesis during priming to DNA synthesis during plasmid replication
DNA-directed RNAPs
 Two-DPBB RNAP, two subunits 2xDPBB, one in each subunit Bacteria, archaea, eukaryotes, many large DNA viruses Transcription To DNA template at origin(?)
Viroid replication: to RNA template
 Two-DPBB RNAP, single subunit 2xDPBB in a single protein Many phages and linear cytoplasmic plasmids of fungi Transcription Eukaryotic RNAi: to RNA template
 Single-subunit RNAPs Derived RRM-Palm Some phages, mitochondria Transcription None
 RdRP RRM-Palm RNA viruses Replication To DNA synthesis in RT(?)
 RT RRM-Palm Retroelements, reverse-transcribing viruses Replication in viruses and retroelements; telomere synthesis in eukaryotes Using both RNA and DNA templates
 RNAi eRdRP 2xDPBB in a single protein Eukaryotes Small RNA amplification None
  1. AEP archaeal-eukaryotic primase, DNAP DNA polymerase, DPBB double-psi beta-barrel, RNAP RNA polymerase, RdRP RNA-dependent RNA polymerase, RRM RNA recognition motif, RT reverse transcriptase