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Evodevo. 2018 Apr 21;9:10. doi: 10.1186/s13227-018-0098-x. eCollection 2018.

The role of retinoic acid signaling in starfish metamorphosis.

Author information

1
Graduate School of Life and Environmental Sciences, University of Tsukuba, Tsukuba, Ibaraki 305-8572 Japan.

Abstract

Background:

Although retinoic acid (RA) signaling plays a crucial role in the body patterning of chordates, its function in non-chordate invertebrates, other than its mediation of environmental cues triggering metamorphosis in cnidarians, is largely unknown. We investigated the role of RA signaling in the metamorphosis of starfish (Echinodermata).

Results:

We found that exogenous RA treatment induced metamorphosis in starfish larvae. In contrast, inhibitors of RA synthesis and RA receptors suppressed metamorphosis triggered by attachment to a substrate. Gene expressions of the RA signaling component were detected in competent larvae.

Conclusions:

This study provides insight into the ancestral function of RA signaling, which is conserved in the metamorphosis of cnidarians and starfish.

KEYWORDS:

Echinoderm; Metamorphosis; Retinoic acid signaling; Starfish

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