Gemma B. Danks

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Genomes of animals as different as sponges and humans show conservation of global architecture. Here we show that multiple genomic features including transposon diversity, developmental gene repertoire, physical gene order, and intron-exon organization are shattered in the tunicate Oikopleura, belonging to the sister group of vertebrates and retaining(More)
We report the development of OikoBase (, a tiling array-based genome browser resource for Oikopleura dioica, a metazoan belonging to the urochordates, the closest extant group to vertebrates. OikoBase facilitates retrieval and mining of a variety of useful genomics information. First, it includes a genome browser(More)
The trans-splicing of a spliced-leader RNA to a subset of mRNAs is a phenomenon that occurs in many species, including Caenorhabditis elegans, and yet the driving force for its evolution in disparate groups of animals remains unclear. Polycistronic mRNA resulting from the transcription of operons is resolved via trans-splicing, but operons comprise only a(More)
Polycistronic mRNAs transcribed from operons are resolved via the trans-splicing of a spliced-leader (SL) RNA. Trans-splicing also occurs at monocistronic transcripts. The phlyogenetically sporadic appearance of trans-splicing and operons has made the driving force(s) for their evolution in metazoans unclear. Previous work has proposed that germline(More)
In multicellular organisms, epigenome dynamics are associated with transitions in the cell cycle, development, germline specification, gametogenesis and inheritance. Evolutionarily, regulatory space has increased in complex metazoans to accommodate these functions. In tunicates, the sister lineage to vertebrates, we examine epigenome adaptations to strong(More)
Extracellular matrices regulate biological processes at the level of cells, tissues, and in some cases, entire multicellular organisms. The subphylum Urochordata exemplifies the latter case, where animals are partially or completely enclosed in "houses" or "tunics". Despite this common strategy, we show that the house proteome of the appendicularian,(More)
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