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Welcome to TnPedia, the TnCentral Wiki

TnCentral is a Web-resource for prokaryotic transposons, their passenger genes, and their host organisms. It provides a variety of Search functions, BLAST functions for TnCentral and other related databases and a summary page with detailed annotation and a descriptive graphic for each transposon. It also makes available stand-alone scripts for identifying different transposons in genomic sequence data.

This Tnpedia has been written in an attempt to assemble a body of information (including many of the historical articles) generally dispersed in the literature as an aid to understanding how knowledge has been built up to our present view of the key role played by transposable elements (TE) in prokaryotes – both in influencing gene expression, in driving genome evolution and in facilitating horizontal gene transfer (HGT). It is divided into four sections:

General Information on Prokaryotic Elements
A section providing general information about Transposition and Transposable Elements (TE) with emphasis on prokaryotic elements. It was originally written for ISfinder ( with contributions from P. Siguier and E. Gourbeyre. It contains historical, mechanistic and genetic information.

Insertion Sequence (IS) Families [New Content on 06/06/24]
A second section describing each Insertion Sequence (IS) family in some detail. This section has been entirely updated compared to that which was included in a previous ISfinder version. It contains information from a number of reviews and from the primary literature together with analyses undertaken in the framework of ISfinder and TnCentral. P. Siguier and E. Gourbeyre provided a large proportion of these analyses.

Transposon families [New Content on 05/24/23]
A third section presenting detailed descriptions of transposon and transposon families written in the framework of TnCentral.

Transposition Glossary [In progress]
An alphabetical list of commonly used transposition terms with the definitions for those terms.

All sections will be updated periodically here, but can also be accessed through TnCentral.

Acknowledgments: The entries in this Tnpedia have been written by Michael Chandler with contributions from Patricia Siguier and Edith Gourbeyre. Alessandro M. Varani and Danillo O. Alvarenga coded and designed the website and edited the original material.

If you have comments, suggestions, improvements, errors, etc. Please contact Mick Chandler at or Alessandro Varani at

How to cite TnPedia ?

If you use TnPedia in your work, please cite:

Ross K, Varani AM, Snesrud E, Huang H, Alvarenga DO, Zhang J, Wu C, McGann P, Chandler M. TnCentral: a Prokaryotic Transposable Element Database and Web Portal for Transposon Analysis. mBio. 2021 Oct 26;12(5):e0206021. doi: 10.1128/mBio.02060-21. Epub 2021 Sep 14. PMID: 34517763; PMCID: PMC8546635.

São Paulo State University - Brazil
São Paulo State University (UNESP) - Brazil       

Georgetown University - US
Georgetown University - Washington, D.C - US       
Protein Information Resource (PIR)
Protein Information Resource (PIR)