Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Trichoplax Genome Sequenced: 'Rosetta Stone' For Understanding Evolution

Date:
September 8, 2008
Source:
Yale University
Summary:
Molecular and evolutionary biologists have produced the full genome sequence of Trichoplax, one of nature's most primitive multicellular organisms, providing a new insight into the evolution of all higher animals.

Trichoplax.
Credit: Ana Signorovitch/Yale

Yale molecular and evolutionary biologists in collaboration with Department of Energy scientists produced the full genome sequence of Trichoplax, one of nature's most primitive multicellular organisms, providing a new insight into the evolution of all higher animals.

The findings reported in the August 21 online edition of the journal Nature show that while Trichoplax has one of the smallest nuclear genomes found in a multi-cellular creature, it contains signature sequences for gene regulation found in more complex animals and humans. Further, it defines Trichoplax as a branching point of animal evolution.

"Trichoplax placozoans are animals that have only four body cell types and no structured organs. They represent descendents of the oldest multi-celled animal, perhaps older even than sponges," said author Stephen Dellaporta, professor of molecular, cellular and developmental biology at Yale.

This study shows that compared with the nuclear genome of humans that contains 3 billion base pairs, Trichoplax has only 98 million. Earlier sequencing work showed that the mitochondrial genome of Trichoplax is over twice the size of those found in most animals with genes, introns and spacer sequences like the most primitive organisms.

However, size is not all that matters. DNA sequences that organisms share in common represents what was in their genomes at the time of their divergence. Unlike other model systems for studying evolution, including fruit flies and worms, even the arrangement of genes is conserved between the Trichoplax and human genomes.

"Trichoplax shares over 80 percent of its genes with humans," said Dellaporta. "We are exited to find that Trichoplax contains shared pathways and defined regulatory sequences that link these most primitive ancestors to higher animal species. The Trichoplax genome will serve as a type of "Rosetta Stone" for understanding the origins of animal-specific pathways."

Trichoplax is from an ancient lineage and brings significant insights to understanding how animal life evolved from the common ancestor 600 million years ago. The consortium believes that the Trichoplax genome establishes a new standard basal group for the comparative analysis of animal genomes, genes, and biological processes.

The genome portal for Trichoplax is http://genome.jgi-psf.org/Triad1/Triad1.home.html.

Study co-authors include Mansi Srivastava, Emina Begovic, Jarrod Chapman, Uffe Hellsten, Takeshi Kawashima, Alan Kuo, Therese Mitros, Asaf Salamov, Meredith Carpenter, Ana Signorovitch, Maria Moreno, Kai Kamm, Jane Grimwood, Jeremy Schmutz, Harris Shapiro, Igor Grigoriev, Leo Buss, Bernd Schierwater, Stephen Dellaporta and Daniel Rokhsar. Funding for this work was from the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, the National Science Foundation, the German Science Foundation and the Human Frontiers Science Program.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Yale University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Yale University. "Trichoplax Genome Sequenced: 'Rosetta Stone' For Understanding Evolution." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 8 September 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/09/080903172419.htm>.
Yale University. (2008, September 8). Trichoplax Genome Sequenced: 'Rosetta Stone' For Understanding Evolution. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 18, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/09/080903172419.htm
Yale University. "Trichoplax Genome Sequenced: 'Rosetta Stone' For Understanding Evolution." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/09/080903172419.htm (accessed September 18, 2014).

Share This



More Fossils & Ruins News

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Egypt Denies Claims Oldest Pyramid Damaged in Restoration

Egypt Denies Claims Oldest Pyramid Damaged in Restoration

AFP (Sep. 17, 2014) Egypt's antiquities minister denied Tuesday claims that the Djoser pyramid, the country's first, had been damaged during restoration work by a company accused of being unqualified to do such work. Duration: 00:56 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
King Richard III's Painful Cause Of Death Revealed

King Richard III's Painful Cause Of Death Revealed

Newsy (Sep. 17, 2014) King Richard III died in the Battle of Bosworth in 1485, and now researchers examining his skull think they know how. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Researchers Explore Shipwrecks Off Calif. Coast

Researchers Explore Shipwrecks Off Calif. Coast

AP (Sep. 16, 2014) Federal researchers are exploring more than a dozen underwater sites where they believe ships sank in the treacherous waters west of San Francisco in the decades following the Gold Rush. (Sept. 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Museum Traces Fragments of Star-Spangled Banner

Museum Traces Fragments of Star-Spangled Banner

AP (Sep. 12, 2014) As the Star-Spangled Banner celebrates its bicentennial, Smithsonian curators are still uncovering fragments of the original flag that inspired Francis Scott Key's poem. (Sept. 12) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins