Athanasia C. Tzika

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Reptiles are largely under-represented in comparative genomics despite the fact that they are substantially more diverse in many respects than mammals. Given the high divergence of reptiles from classical model species, next-generation sequencing of their transcriptomes is an approach of choice for gene identification and annotation. Here, we use 454(More)
Vertebrate skin is characterized by its patterned array of appendages, whether feathers, hairs, or scales. In avian skin the distribution of feathers occurs on two distinct spatial levels. Grouping of feathers within discrete tracts, with bare skin lying between the tracts, is termed the macropattern, while the smaller scale periodic spacing between(More)
Syncytins are fusogenic envelope (env) genes of retroviral origin that have been captured for a function in placentation. Syncytins have been identified in Euarchontoglires (primates, rodents, Leporidae) and Laurasiatheria (Carnivora, ruminants) placental mammals. Here, we searched for similar genes in species that retained characteristic features of(More)
Using nine nuclear species-specific microsatellite loci and two mitochondrial gene fragments (cytochrome b and control region), we investigated the processes that have shaped the geographical distribution of genetic diversity exhibited by contemporary dusky dolphin (Lagenorhynchus obscurus) populations. A total of 221 individuals from four locations (Peru,(More)
The Galápagos land iguanas (genus Conolophus) have faced significant anthropogenic disturbances since the 17th century, leading to severe reduction of some populations and the extinction of others. Conservation activities, including the repatriation of captive-bred animals to depleted areas, have been ongoing since the late 1970s, but genetic information(More)
The Jamaican boa (Epicrates subflavus; also called Yellow boa) is an endemic species whose natural populations greatly and constantly declined since the late 19th century, mainly because of predation by introduced species, human persecution, and habitat destruction. In-situ conservation of the Jamaican boa is seriously hindered by the lack of information on(More)
Until recently, facultative automictic parthenogenesis within the squamate reptiles exhibiting ZZ:ZW genetic sex determination has resulted in single reproductive events producing male (ZZ) or female (ZW) offspring. With the recent discovery of viable parthenogenetically produced female (WW) Boa constrictors, the existence of further parthenogenetic events(More)
Array comparative genomic hybridisation (aCGH) profiling is currently the gold standard for genetic diagnosis of copy number. Next generation sequencing technologies provide an alternative and adaptable method of detecting copy number by comparing the number of sequence reads in non-overlapping windows between patient and control samples. Detection of copy(More)
Hox genes are required for the development of the intestinal cecum, a major organ of plant-eating species. We have analyzed the transcriptional regulation of Hoxd genes in cecal buds and show that they are controlled by a series of enhancers located in a gene desert flanking the HoxD cluster. The start site of two opposite long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs),(More)
Given the availability of full genome sequences, mapping gene gains, duplications, and losses during evolution should theoretically be straightforward. However, this endeavor suffers from overemphasis on detecting conserved genome features, which in turn has led to sequencing multiple eutherian genomes with low coverage rather than fewer genomes with(More)