Degenerate evolution of the hedgehog gene in a hemichordate lineage.

  title={Degenerate evolution of the hedgehog gene in a hemichordate lineage.},
  author={Atsuko Sato and Helen White-Cooper and Karen Doggett and Peter W H Holland},
  journal={Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America},
  volume={106 18},
The discovery of a set of highly conserved genes implicated in patterning during animal development represents one of the most striking findings from the field of evolutionary developmental biology. Existence of these "developmental toolkit" genes in diverse taxa, however, does not necessarily imply that they always perform the same functions. Here, we demonstrate functional evolution in a major toolkit gene. hedgehog (hh) encodes a protein that undergoes autocatalytic cleavage, releasing a… CONTINUE READING