Lessons from a gene regulatory network: echinoderm skeletogenesis provides insights into evolution, plasticity and morphogenesis.

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Abstract or Description

Significant new insights have emerged from the analysis of a gene regulatory network (GRN) that underlies the development of the endoskeleton of the sea urchin embryo. Comparative studies have revealed ways in which this GRN has been modified (and conserved) during echinoderm evolution, and point to mechanisms associated with the evolution of a new cell lineage. The skeletogenic GRN has also recently been used to study the long-standing problem of developmental plasticity. Other recent findings have linked this transcriptional GRN to morphoregulatory proteins that control skeletal anatomy. These new studies highlight powerful new ways in which GRNs can be used to dissect development and the evolution of morphogenesis.




Published In

Development, 136, 1, 11-21.