Karl R. Wotton

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Lbx/ladybird genes originated as part of the metazoan cluster of Nk homeobox genes. In all animals investigated so far, both the protostome genes and the vertebrate Lbx1 genes were found to play crucial roles in neural and muscle development. Recently however, additional Lbx genes with divergent expression patterns were discovered in amniotes. Early in the(More)
In the human genome, members of the FoxC, FoxF, FoxL1, and FoxQ1 gene families are found in two paralagous clusters. Here we characterize all four gene families in the dogfish Scyliorhinus canicula, a member of the cartilaginous fish lineage that diverged before the radiation of osteichthyan vertebrates. We identify two FoxC genes, two FoxF genes, and(More)
Understanding the complex regulatory networks underlying development and evolution of multi-cellular organisms is a major problem in biology. Computational models can be used as tools to extract the regulatory structure and dynamics of such networks from gene expression data. This approach is called reverse engineering. It has been successfully applied to(More)
Model organisms, such as Drosophila melanogaster, provide powerful experimental tools for the study of development. However, approaches using model systems need to be complemented by comparative studies for us to gain a deeper understanding of the functional properties and evolution of developmental processes. New model organisms need to be established to(More)
Modern sequencing technologies have massively increased the amount of data available for comparative genomics. Whole-transcriptome shotgun sequencing (RNA-seq) provides a powerful basis for comparative studies. In particular, this approach holds great promise for emerging model species in fields such as evolutionary developmental biology (evo-devo). We have(More)
Model organisms, such as Drosophila melanogaster, allow us to address a wide range of biological questions with experimental rigour. However, studies in model species need to be complemented by comparative studies if we are to fully understand the functional properties and evolutionary history of developmental processes. The establishment of new model(More)
The segmentation gene network in insects can produce equivalent phenotypic outputs despite differences in upstream regulatory inputs between species. We investigate the mechanistic basis of this phenomenon through a systems-level analysis of the gap gene network in the scuttle fly Megaselia abdita (Phoridae). It combines quantification of gene expression at(More)
The FoxL2 genes are a subfamily of the Fox (forkhead box) gene family. FOXL2 is mutated in the disorder Blepharophimosis, Ptosis, and Epicanthus Inversus Syndrome (BPES), which is characterized by eyelid malformations, and Premature Ovarian Failure (POF). In the mouse expression is seen in the perioptic mesenchyme, developing eyelids, ovary and pituitary.(More)
Vertebrate genomes contain numerous duplicate genes, many of which are organised into paralagous regions indicating duplication of linked groups of genes. Comparison of genomic organisation in different lineages can often allow the evolutionary history of such regions to be traced. A classic example of this is the Hox genes, where the presence of a single(More)
Understanding the function and evolution of developmental regulatory networks requires the characterisation and quantification of spatio-temporal gene expression patterns across a range of systems and species. However, most high-throughput methods to measure the dynamics of gene expression do not preserve the detailed spatial information needed in this(More)