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Latest Hox gene Stories

Notion That Hox Genes Acquire New Roles Quickly, Without Compromising Old Ones
2014-03-19 21:55:48

Indiana University Bloomington It’s difficult to identify a single evolutionary novelty in the animal kingdom that has fascinated and intrigued mankind more than the lantern of the firefly. Yet to this day, nothing has been known about the genetic foundation for the formation and evolution of this luminescent structure. But now, new work from a former Indiana University Bloomington graduate student and his IU Ph.D. advisor offers for the first time a characterization of the...

Fish DNA For Fingers
2014-01-22 12:35:31

Brett Smith for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online A new study from a team of Swiss researchers published in the journal PLOS Biology has found that our fish ancestors had the genetic machinery for fingers, but these structures did not develop until the evolution of limbs in amphibians. “The basics of the regulatory mechanism are there in the fish,” said study author Denis Duboule, a geneticist at the University of Geneva and Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne....

2013-08-12 14:03:29

Stowers investigators show that rules governing expression of developmental genes in mouse embryonic stem cells are more nuanced than anticipated A decade ago, gene expression seemed so straightforward: genes were either switched on or off. Not both. Then in 2006, a blockbuster finding reported that developmentally regulated genes in mouse embryonic stem cells can have marks associated with both active and repressed genes, and that such genes, which were referred to as "bivalently marked...

From Fins To Limbs - How We Got Our Fingers And Toes
2012-12-15 07:25:29

April Flowers for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online A multidisciplinary international research project has identified the mechanism responsible for generating our fingers and toes. Dr. Maria Kmita and her colleagues at the Intitut de Recherches Cliniques de Montreal (IRCM) took part in the groundbreaking study that has revealed the importance of gene regulation in the transition from fins to limbs during evolution. The team, which also included members from CRG Barcelona, the...

How Fins Became Legs Revealed
2012-12-10 13:52:58

Cell Press Vertebrates' transition to living on land, instead of only in water, represented a major event in the history of life. Now, researchers reporting in the December issue of the Cell Press journal Developmental Cell provide new evidence that the development of hands and feet occurred through the gain of new DNA elements that activate particular genes. "First, and foremost, this finding helps us to understand the power that the modification of gene expression has on shaping our...

Aquatic Eel Fossil Has Human-like Spine Morphology
2012-05-23 04:48:16

Surprise discovery contradicts theories about anatomy exclusive to land animals For decades, scientists believed that a spine with multiple segments was an exclusive feature of land-dwelling animals. But the discovery of the same anatomical feature in a 345-million-year-old eel suggests that this complex anatomy arose separately from — and perhaps before — the first species to walk on land. Tarrasius problematicus was an eel-like fish that lived in shallow bodies of water in...

2011-12-15 17:05:11

Biologists have long assumed that all jawed vertebrates possess a full complement of nearly identical genes for critical aspects of their development. But a paper in the December 16 issue of Science with Benjamin King of the Mount Desert Island Biological Laboratory (MDIBL) as lead author shows that elasmobranchs, a subclass of cartilaginous fishes, lack a cluster of genes, HoxC, formerly thought to be essential for proper development. Hox genes dictate the proper patterning of tissues...

2011-10-14 09:10:38

From blue whales to earthworms, a common mechanism gives shape to living beings Why don't our arms grow from the middle of our bodies? The question isn't as trivial as it appears. Vertebrae, limbs, ribs, tailbone ... in only two days, all these elements take their place in the embryo, in the right spot and with the precision of a Swiss watch. Intrigued by the extraordinary reliability of this mechanism, biologists have long wondered how it works. Now, researchers at EPFL (Ecole...

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2010-09-09 08:18:03

Discovery could help scientists develop new treatments for motor neuron diseases In a surprising and unexpected discovery, scientists at NYU Langone Medical Center have found that a single type of gene acts as a master organizer of motor neurons in the spinal cord. The finding, published in the September 9, 2010 issue of Neuron, could help scientists develop new treatments for diseases such as Lou Gehrig's disease or spinal cord injury. The "master organizer" is a member of the Hox family of...

2010-05-12 08:08:12

An unknown function that regulates how stem cells produce different types of cells in different parts of the nervous system has been discovered by Stefan Thor, professor of Developmental Biology, and graduate students Daniel Karlsson and Magnus Baumgardt, at Linköping University in Sweden. The results improve our understanding of how stem cells work, which is crucial for our ability to use stem cells to treat and repair organs. The findings are publishing next week in the online,...


Word of the Day
call-note
  • The call or cry of a bird or other animal to its mate or its young.
'Call-note' is newer than 'bird-call,' which originally referred to 'an instrument for imitating the note of birds' but now also refers to 'the song or cry of a bird.'
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