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Nature. 2014 Jun 5;510(7503):109-14. doi: 10.1038/nature13400. Epub 2014 May 21.

The ctenophore genome and the evolutionary origins of neural systems.

Author information

1
1] The Whitney Laboratory for Marine Bioscience, University of Florida, 9505 Ocean Shore Blvd, St Augustine, Florida 32080, USA [2] Department of Neuroscience & McKnight Brain Institute, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida 32611, USA [3] Friday Harbor Laboratories, University of Washington, Friday Harbor, Washington 98250, USA.
2
Department of Biological Sciences, Auburn University, 101 Rouse Life Sciences, Auburn, Alabama 36849, USA.
3
The Whitney Laboratory for Marine Bioscience, University of Florida, 9505 Ocean Shore Blvd, St Augustine, Florida 32080, USA.
4
1] The Whitney Laboratory for Marine Bioscience, University of Florida, 9505 Ocean Shore Blvd, St Augustine, Florida 32080, USA [2] Friday Harbor Laboratories, University of Washington, Friday Harbor, Washington 98250, USA.
5
1] Centre for Genomic Regulation (CRG), Dr. Aiguader 88, 08003 Barcelona, Spain [2] Universitat Pompeu Fabra (UPF), Barcelona 08003, Spain.
6
1] Department of Psychiatry, Brudnick Neuropsychiatric Research Institute, University of Massachusetts Medical School, 303 Belmont Street, Worcester, Massachusetts 01604, USA [2] Vavilov Institute of General Genetics, Russian Academy of Sciences (RAS), Gubkina 3, Moscow 119991, Russia.
7
Department of Chemistry and the Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, Illinois 61801, USA.
8
European Research Institute for the Biology of Ageing, University of Groningen Medical Center, Antonius Deusinglaan 1, Building 3226, Room 03.34, 9713 AV Groningen, The Netherlands.
9
Department of Medical Biophysics and Department of Immunology, University of Toronto, Sunnybrook Research Institute 2075 Bayview Avenue, Toronto, Ontario M4N 3M5, Canada.
10
Vavilov Institute of General Genetics, Russian Academy of Sciences (RAS), Gubkina 3, Moscow 119991, Russia.
11
Department of Neuroscience & McKnight Brain Institute, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida 32611, USA.
12
Genetic Information Research Institute, 1925 Landings Dr., Mountain View, California 94043, USA.
13
Program in Molecular Medicine, University of Massachusetts Medical School, 222 Maple Avenue, Shrewsbury, Massachusetts 01545, USA.
14
Friday Harbor Laboratories, University of Washington, Friday Harbor, Washington 98250, USA.
15
Department of Computer Science, Royal Holloway, University of London, Egham, Surrey TW20 0EX, UK.
16
1] Centre for Genomic Regulation (CRG), Dr. Aiguader 88, 08003 Barcelona, Spain [2] Universitat Pompeu Fabra (UPF), Barcelona 08003, Spain [3] Institució Catalana de Recerca i Estudis Avançats (ICREA), Pg. Lluis Companys 23, 08010 Barcelona, Spain.
17
1] Department of Psychiatry, Brudnick Neuropsychiatric Research Institute, University of Massachusetts Medical School, 303 Belmont Street, Worcester, Massachusetts 01604, USA [2] Vavilov Institute of General Genetics, Russian Academy of Sciences (RAS), Gubkina 3, Moscow 119991, Russia [3] Center for Brain Neurobiology and Neurogenetics and Institute of Cytology and Genetics, RAS, Lavrentyev Avenue, 10, Novosibirsk 630090, Russia [4] Faculty of Bioengineering and Bioinformatics, Lomonosov Moscow State University, Leninskiye Gory, 119991 Moscow, Russia.

Abstract

The origins of neural systems remain unresolved. In contrast to other basal metazoans, ctenophores (comb jellies) have both complex nervous and mesoderm-derived muscular systems. These holoplanktonic predators also have sophisticated ciliated locomotion, behaviour and distinct development. Here we present the draft genome of Pleurobrachia bachei, Pacific sea gooseberry, together with ten other ctenophore transcriptomes, and show that they are remarkably distinct from other animal genomes in their content of neurogenic, immune and developmental genes. Our integrative analyses place Ctenophora as the earliest lineage within Metazoa. This hypothesis is supported by comparative analysis of multiple gene families, including the apparent absence of HOX genes, canonical microRNA machinery, and reduced immune complement in ctenophores. Although two distinct nervous systems are well recognized in ctenophores, many bilaterian neuron-specific genes and genes of 'classical' neurotransmitter pathways either are absent or, if present, are not expressed in neurons. Our metabolomic and physiological data are consistent with the hypothesis that ctenophore neural systems, and possibly muscle specification, evolved independently from those in other animals.

PMID:
24847885
PMCID:
PMC4337882
DOI:
10.1038/nature13400
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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