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The craniate head is innervated by cranial sensory and motor neurons. Cranial sensory neurons stem from the neurogenic placodes and neural crest and are seen as evolutionary innovations crucial in fulfilling the feeding and respiratory needs of the craniate "new head." In contrast, cranial motoneurons that are located in the hindbrain and motorize the head(More)
Despite the fact that a large body of factors that play important roles in development are known, there are still large gaps in understanding the genetic pathways that govern these processes. To find previously unknown genes that are expressed during embryonic development, we optimized and performed an automated whole-mount in situ hybridization screen on(More)
The colonial ascidians reproduce either sexually or asexually, having evolved a rich variety of modes of propagative development. During embryogenesis, the fertilized egg develops into a swimming tadpole larva that subsequently metamorphoses into a sessile oozooid. Clonal individuals (blastozooids), resembling oozooids, are formed from few bud-forming(More)
Summary The central nervous system (cerebral ganglion) of adult ascidians is linked to the neural gland complex (NGC), which consists of a dorsal tubercle, a ciliated duct and a neural gland. The function of the NGC has been the subject of much debate. The recent publication of the complete genomic sequence of Ciona intestinalis provides new opportunities(More)
Neural crest-like cells (NCLC) that express the HNK-1 antigen and form body pigment cells were previously identified in diverse ascidian species. Here we investigate the embryonic origin, migratory activity, and neural crest related gene expression patterns of NCLC in the ascidian Ciona intestinalis. HNK-1 expression first appeared at about the time of(More)
In extant chordates, the overall patterning along the anteroposterior and dorsoventral axes of the neural tube is remarkably conserved. It has thus been proposed that four domains corresponding to the vertebrate presumptive forebrain, midbrain-hindbrain transition, hindbrain, and spinal cord were already present in the common chordate ancestor. To obtain(More)
Dopamine is a major neuromodulator synthesized by numerous cell populations in the vertebrate forebrain and midbrain. Owing to the simple organization of its larval nervous system, ascidian tunicates provide a useful model to investigate the anatomy, neurogenesis and differentiation of the dopaminergic neural network underlying the stereotypical swimming(More)
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