Hagfish and lamprey Hox genes reveal conservation of temporal colinearity in vertebrates

Juan Pascual-Anaya*, Iori Sato, Fumiaki Sugahara, Shinnosuke Higuchi, Jordi Paps, Yandong Ren, Wataru Takagi, Adrián Ruiz-Villalba, Kinya G. Ota, Wen Wang, Shigeru Kuratani

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

18 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Hox genes exert fundamental roles for proper regional specification along the main rostro-caudal axis of animal embryos. They are generally expressed in restricted spatial domains according to their position in the cluster (spatial colinearity)-a feature that is conserved across bilaterians. In jawed vertebrates (gnathostomes), the position in the cluster also determines the onset of expression of Hox genes (a feature known as whole-cluster temporal colinearity (WTC)), while in invertebrates this phenomenon is displayed as a subcluster-level temporal colinearity. However, little is known about the expression profile of Hox genes in jawless vertebrates (cyclostomes); therefore, the evolutionary origin of WTC, as seen in gnathostomes, remains a mystery. Here, we show that Hox genes in cyclostomes are expressed according to WTC during development. We investigated the Hox repertoire and Hox gene expression profiles in three different species-a hagfish, a lamprey and a shark-encompassing the two major groups of vertebrates, and found that these are expressed following a whole-cluster, temporally staggered pattern, indicating that WTC has been conserved during the past 500 million years despite drastically different genome evolution and morphological outputs between jawless and jawed vertebrates.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)859-866
Number of pages8
JournalNature Ecology and Evolution
Volume2
Issue number5
Early online date2 Apr 2018
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - May 2018

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Hagfish and lamprey Hox genes reveal conservation of temporal colinearity in vertebrates'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this