Evolution: Biology's next top model?

  title={Evolution: Biology's next top model?},
  author={Brendan A. Maher},
  • B. Maher
  • Published 8 April 2009
  • Biology
  • Nature
From Antarctic icefish to Galapagos finches, there are some interesting characters at the fringes of developmental biology. Brendan Maher explores a world of alternative model organisms. 
What’s so special about model organisms?
Record breaking achievements by spiders and the scientists who study them
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Three DPP-IV inhibitory peptides from Antarctic krill protein hydrolysate improve glucose levels in the zebrafish model of diabetes
Ant Antarctic krill has 3-10 billion fishing tons annual globally and is particularly enriched in proline, methionine, leucine and lysine, which makes it a good resource for extracting bio-active peptides, such as DPP-IV inhibitor for diabetes, for nutritional or medical purposes.
Collecting eco‐evolutionary data in the dark: Impediments to subterranean research and how to overcome them
The over‐arching goal is to promote caves as model systems where one can perform standardized scientific research and to fully exploit their long‐discussed potential in addressing general scientific questions with implications beyond the boundaries of this discipline.
Plate Section (PDF Only)
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The generation of a genome-wide linkage map is described to allow quantitative trait analysis of evolutionarily derived morphologies in the Mexican cave tetra, a species that has, in a series of independent caves, repeatedly evolved specialized characteristics adapted to a unique and well-studied ecological environment.
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The calmodulin pathway and evolution of elongated beak morphology in Darwin's finches
Calmodulin (CaM), a molecule involved in mediating Ca2+ signalling, is expressed at higher levels in the long and pointed beaks of cactus finches than in more robust beak types of other species, which implicate the CaM-dependent pathway in the developmental regulation of craniofacial skeletal structures.
Nature Genet
  • Nature Genet
  • 2006
A BZ H A N O V J. BU RT O N /N AT U RE PL .C O M 698 NATURE|Vol 458|9 April 2009 NEWS FEATURE 9.4 Next top model.indd MH CNS.indd
  • Nature 442,
  • 2006
Trends Genet
  • Trends Genet
  • 2008