oskar Predates the Evolution of Germ Plasm in Insects

@article{EwenCampen2012oskarPT,
  title={oskar Predates the Evolution of Germ Plasm in Insects},
  author={Ben Ewen-Campen and John R. Srouji and Evelyn E. Schwager and Cassandra G. Extavour},
  journal={Current Biology},
  year={2012},
  volume={22},
  pages={2278-2283}
}
oskar is the only gene in the animal kingdom necessary and sufficient for specifying functional germ cells. However, oskar has only been identified in holometabolous ("higher") insects that specify their germline using specialized cytoplasm called germ plasm. Here we show that oskar evolved before the divergence of higher insects and provide evidence that its germline role is a recent evolutionary innovation. We identify an oskar ortholog in a basally branching insect, the cricket Gryllus… CONTINUE READING

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