Learn More
A clear picture of animal relationships is a prerequisite to understand how the morphological and ecological diversity of animals evolved over time. Among others, the placement of the acoelomorph flatworms, Acoela and Nemertodermatida, has fundamental implications for the origin and evolution of various animal organ systems. Their position, however, has(More)
The insulin/insulin-like growth factor-like signaling pathway, present in all multicellular organisms, regulates diverse functions including growth, development, fecundity, metabolic homeostasis, and lifespan. In flies, ligands of the insulin/insulin-like growth factor-like signaling pathway, the Drosophila insulin-like peptides, regulate growth and(More)
Dietary restriction (DR) extends life span in many organisms, through unknown mechanisms that may or may not be evolutionarily conserved. Because different laboratories use different diets and techniques for implementing DR, the outcomes may not be strictly comparable. This complicates intra- and interspecific comparisons of the mechanisms of DR and is(More)
The ANTP family of homeodomain transcription factors consists of three major groups, the NKL, the extended Hox, and the Hox/ParaHox family. Hox genes and ParaHox genes are often linked in the genome forming two clusters of genes, the Hox cluster and the ParaHox cluster, and are expressed along the major body axis in a nested fashion, following the relative(More)
We report the sequence and analysis of the 814-megabase genome of the sea urchin Strongylocentrotus purpuratus, a model for developmental and systems biology. The sequencing strategy combined whole-genome shotgun and bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) sequences. This use of BAC clones, aided by a pooling strategy, overcame difficulties associated with(More)
While the highly consistent gene order and axial colinear patterns of expression seem to be a feature of vertebrate hox gene clusters, this pattern may be less well conserved across the rest of the bilaterians. We report the first deuterostome instance of an intact hox cluster with a unique gene order where the paralog groups are not expressed in a(More)
Acoel flatworms are small marine worms traditionally considered to belong to the phylum Platyhelminthes. However, molecular phylogenetic analyses suggest that acoels are not members of Platyhelminthes, but are rather extant members of the earliest diverging Bilateria. This result has been called into question, under suspicions of a long branch attraction(More)
We report the characterization of the ortholog of the Xenopus XlHbox8 ParaHox gene from the sea urchin Strongylocentrotus purpuratus, SpLox. It is expressed during embryogenesis, first appearing at late gastrulation in the posterior-most region of the endodermal tube, becoming progressively restricted to the constriction between the mid- and hindgut. The(More)
Genes of the Hox cluster encode for transcriptional regulators that show collinear expression along the anteroposterior (AP) body axis in all bilateral animals. However, it is still unclear when in the evolutionary history of bilaterians the Hox system first conferred positional identity along the AP-axis. Recent molecular phylogenies have convincingly(More)
Acoels are among the simplest worms and therefore have often been pivotal in discussions of the origin of the Bilateria. Initially thought primitive because of their “planula-like” morphology, including their lumenless digestive system, they were subsequently dismissed by many morphologists as a specialized clade of the Platyhelminthes. However, since(More)