Basal Position (basal + position)

Distribution by Scientific Domains

Selected Abstracts

Steps towards a centralized nervous system in basal bilaterians: Insights from neurogenesis of the acoel Symsagittifera roscoffensis

Henrike Semmler
Due to its proposed basal position in the bilaterian Tree of Life, Acoela may hold the key to our understanding of the evolution of a number of bodyplan features including the central nervous system. In order to contribute novel data to this discussion we investigated the distribution of ,-tubulin and the neurotransmitters serotonin and RFamide in juveniles and adults of the sagittiferid Symsagittifera roscoffensis. In addition, we present the expression pattern of the neuropatterning gene SoxB1. Adults and juveniles exhibit six serotonergic longitudinal neurite bundles and an anterior concentration of serotonergic sensory cells. While juveniles show an "orthogon-like" arrangement of longitudinal neurite bundles along the anterior-posterior axis, it appears more diffuse in the posterior region of adults. Commissures between the six neurite bundles are present only in the anterior body region of adults, while irregularly distributed individual neurites, often interconnected by serotonergic nerve cells, are found in the posterior region. Anti-RFamide staining shows numerous individual neurites around the statocyst. The orthogon-like nervous system of S. roscoffensis is confirmed by ,-tubulin immunoreactivity. In the region of highest neurotransmitter density (i.e., anterior), the HMG-box gene SrSoxB1, a transcription factor known to be involved in neurogenesis in other bilaterians, is expressed in juvenile specimens. Accordingly, SoxB1 expression in S. roscoffensis follows the typical pattern of higher bilaterians that have a brain. Thus, our data support the notion that Urbilateria already had the genetic toolkit required to form brain-like neural structures, but that its morphological degree of neural concentration was still low. [source]

The evolution of the protonephridial terminal organ across Rotifera with particular emphasis on Dicranophorus forcipatus, Encentrum mucronatum and Erignatha clastopis (Rotifera: Dicranophoridae)

ACTA ZOOLOGICA, Issue 2 2010
Ole Riemann
Abstract Riemann, O. and Ahlrichs, W.H. 2009. The evolution of the protonephridial terminal organ across Rotifera with particular emphasis on Dicranophorus forcipatus, Encentrum mucronatum and Erignatha clastopis (Rotifera: Dicranophoridae). ,Acta Zoologica (Stockholm) 91: 199,211 We report on the ultrastructure of the protonephridial terminal organ in three species of dicranophorid rotifers (Dicranophorus forcipatus, Encentrum mucronatum and Erignatha clastopis). Differences between the three species relate to shape and size, the morphology of the filter region and the number of microvilli and cilia inside the terminal organ. A comparison across Rotifera indicates that the terminal organs in D. forcipatus display a number of plesiomorphic characters, but are modified in E. mucronatum and Er. clastopis. This is in accordance with the results of phylogenetic analyses suggesting a basal position of D. forcipatus compared with the more derived species E. mucronatum and Er. clastopis. Moreover, we survey available data on the terminal organ in Rotifera and discuss its evolutionary transformations. The protonephridial terminal organ in the common ancestor of Rotifera consisted of a cytoplasmic cylinder with cilia united into a vibratile flame and a single circle of circumciliary microvilli. Depending on the topology on which characters are optimized, the site of ultrafiltration was formed by longitudinal cytoplasmic columns spanned by a fine filter diaphragm or by pores in the wall of the terminal organ. In several taxa of Rotifera, the terminal organ , probably independently , lost its circumciliary microvilli. [source]

The musculature of three species of gastrotrichs surveyed with confocal laser scanning microscopy (CLSM)

ACTA ZOOLOGICA, Issue 3 2006
Francesca Leasi
Abstract The muscular system of gastrotrichs consists of circular, longitudinal and helicoidal bands that when analysed with confocal laser scanning microscopy, provide new insights into their functional organization and phylogenetic importance. We therefore undertook a comparative study of the muscle organization in three species of Gastrotricha from the orders Macrodasyida (Paradasys sp., Lepidodasyidae; Turbanella sp., Turbanellidae) and Chaetonotida (Polymerurus nodicaudus, Chaetonotidae). The general muscle organization of the marine interstitial macrodasyidans, Paradasys and Turbanella, not only confirms earlier observation on other species but also adds new details concerning the organization and number of helicoidal, longitudinal and other muscle bands (e.g. semicircular band). The freshwater, epibenthic,epiphytic chaetonotid, Polymerurus nodicaudus, has a similar muscular organization to other species of Chaetonotidae, especially species of Chaetonotus, Halichaetonotus and Lepidodermella. Perhaps unique to Polymerurus is the combined presence of an unbranched Rückenhautmuskel (also in Halichaetonotus and Lepidodermella) and a specialized dorsoventral caudal muscle, which flank the splanchnic component of the longitudinal muscles (only in Chaetonotus and Lepidodermella). This combination, together with the presence of splanchnic dorsoventral muscles, known only in Xenotrichulidae, implies a unique phylogenetic position for Polymerurus, and indicates a potential basal position of this taxon among the Chaetonotidae studied so far (i.e. Aspidiophorus, Chaetonotus, Halichaetonotus and Lepidodermella). [source]

Phylogenetic distribution of microRNAs supports the basal position of acoel flatworms and the polyphyly of Platyhelminthes

Lorenzo F. Sempere
SUMMARY Phylogenetic analyses based on gene sequences suggest that acoel flatworms are not members of the phylum Platyhelminthes, but instead are the most basal branch of triploblastic bilaterians. Nonetheless, this result has been called into question. An alternative test is to use qualitative molecular markers that should, in principle, exclude the possibility of convergent (homoplastic) evolution in unrelated groups. microRNAs (miRNAs), noncoding regulatory RNA molecules that are under intense stabilizing selection, are a newly discovered set of phylogenetic markers that can resolve such taxonomic disputes. The acoel Childia sp. has recently been shown to possess a subset of the conserved core of miRNAs found across deuterostomes and protostomes, whereas a polyclad flatworm,in addition to this core subset,possesses miRNAs restricted to just protostomes. Here, we examine another acoel, Symsagittifera roscoffensis, and three other platyhelminths. Our results show that the distribution of miRNAs in S. roscoffensis parallels that of Childia. In addition, two of 13 new miRNAs cloned from a triclad flatworm are also found in other lophotrochozoan protostomes, but not in ecdysozoans, deuterostomes, or in basal metazoans including acoels. The limited set of miRNAs found in acoels, intermediate between the even more reduced set in cnidarians and the larger and expanding set in the rest of bilaterians, is compelling evidence for the basal position of acoel flatworms and the polyphyly of Platyhelminthes. [source]

The Hox gene complement of acoel flatworms, a basal bilaterian clade

Charles E. Cook
Summary Several molecular data sets suggest that acoelomorph flatworms are not members of the phylum Platyhelminthes but form a separate branch of the Metazoa that diverged from all other bilaterian animals before the separation of protostomes and deuterostomes. Here we examine the Hox gene complement of the acoel flatworms. In two distantly related acoel taxa, we identify only three distinct classes of Hox gene: an anterior gene, a posterior gene, and a central class gene most similar to genes of Hox classes 4 and 5 in other Bilateria. Phylogenetic analysis of these genes, together with the acoel caudal homologue, supports the basal position of the acoels. The similar gene sets found in two distantly related acoels suggest that this reduced gene complement may be ancestral in the acoels and that the acoels may have diverged from other bilaterians before elaboration of the 8- to 10-gene Hox cluster that characterizes most bilaterians. [source]

Resolution of phylogenetic relationships of the major subfamilies of the Delphacidae (Homoptera: Fulgoroidea) using the mitochondrial ribosomal DNA

INSECT SCIENCE, Issue 3 2006
Abstract Delphacid relationships from the genus level to the subfamily have been completely resolved (among those taxa examined) using sequence data from the 3'end of the 12S gene. Monophyly of the non-asiracine subfamilies was strongly supported and the asiracine Ugyops was placed in the most basal position of the tree. Support levels for monophyly of the Delphacini increased after weighting transversions more heavily than transitions and after removing the cixiid outgroup from the dataset. Among the Delphacini, Conomelus and Megamelus were more closely related to each other than either was to Chloriona. These results are in agreement with the tree based on morphological characters. However, in contrast to morphological data our results strongly supported a sister group relationship between the Stenocraninae and the Kelisiinae. Although the 12S gene fragment gave some information about the species relationships within Chloriona, neither this fragment nor the 5'end of the 16S gene appear to be very useful for this level. Molecular evolutionary patterns provided evidence that there has been a shift in base composition from T to A during the early evolution of the non-Asiracinae. The non-Asiracinae also had comparatively fast substitution rates and these two observations are possibly correlated. In the ,modern' delphacid Chloriona, the AT content was comparatively low in regions free of constraints but this was not the case for ,non-modern' delphacids. The tRNA for valine has been translocated elsewhere, probably before the Delphacidae and Cixiidae diverged from each other. [source]

Escape from microenvironmental control and progression of intraepithelial neoplasia

Weitian Zhang
Abstract We previously reported that normal human keratinocytes controlled neoplastic progression of tumor cells at an early stage of transformation in stratified squamous epithelium. We now studied if cells at a more advanced stage of transformation were also subject to such microenvironmental control. To accomplish this, 3D human tissues that mimic intraepithelial neoplasia were fabricated by mixing genetically marked (,-gal), early-stage (II-4 cells) or advanced-stage (SCC13) transformed keratinocytes with normal keratinocytes, and tumor cell fate and phenotype were monitored in organotypic culture and after surface transplantation to nude mice. In vivo, SCC13 cells evaded local growth suppression to undergo connective tissue invasion at significantly lower tumor cell volumes (12:1, 50:1 normal:tumor cells) than II-4 cells. This behavior was explained by the growth suppression of II-4 cells, while advanced-stage tumor cells escaped this control and continued to undergo clonal expansion in mixed cultures to form large, intraepithelial tumor clusters. These communities of tumor cells underwent autonomous growth that was associated with altered expression of markers of differentiation (keratin 1) and cell,cell communication (connexin-43). Furthermore, significantly greater numbers of SCC13 cells expanded into a basal position after low-calcium stripping of suprabasal cells of mixed cultures compared to II-4 cells, suggesting that expansion of these cells enabled tumor cell invasion after transplantation. These findings demonstrated that early tumor development in human stratified squamous epithelium required escape from microenvironmental growth control that was dependent on the transformation stage of intraepithelial tumor cells during the premalignant stage of cancer progression. © 2005 Wiley-Liss, Inc. [source]

Morphology and ultrastructure of the swimming larvae of Crambe crambe (Demospongiae, Poecilosclerida)

María J. Uriz
Abstract. We describe the morphology and ultrastructure of the free-swimming larvae of the sponge Crambe crambe, one of the most abundant encrusting sponges on shallow rocky bottoms of the western Mediterranean. Larvae of C. crambe are released in July and August. The larva is uniformly flagellated except at the posterior zone. Flagellated cells are extraordinarily slender, elongate, and sinuous and form a pseudo-stratified layer. Their distal zone contains abundant mitochondria, some small vesicles, a Golgi complex, and the basal apparatus of the flagellum. Abundant lipid droplets are present throughout the cell. The nucleus is most often in a basal position. The flagellum projects from the bottom of an asymmetrical socket formed by cytoplasmic expansions. The basal body extends in a conical tuft and a laminar rootlet in close association with the Golgi system. The cells at the posterior pole are flat and polygonal on the surface, with long overlapping pseudopodia in the typical shape of a pinacoderm. Sparse collagen is present throughout the whole larva including the flagellated layer. Archeocytes and sclerocytes are abundant in the posterior region. Typical collencytes and spherulous cells seem to be absent. Intracellular and extracellular rod-like bacteria with conspicuous fimbria occur exclusively in the posterior region of the larva. The asymmetrical cytoplasmic prolongations, which surround the flagellum, and the basal apparatus of the flagellum are suggested as the sites of stimulus reception and triggering of locomotor responses, respectively. This ultrastructural study of the larva of C. crambe has shown features directly linked to its behavior and ecology. [source]

Ciliary ultrastructure of neomeniomorphs (Mollusca, Neomeniomorpha = Solenogastres)

Kennet Lundin
Abstract. The ultrastructure of the ciliary apparatus of multiciliated epidermal cells of the trochophore of Epimenia babai and the adult of Strophomenia scandens was studied. The trochal cirri of E. babai consists of long cilia with unspecialized tips. The surfaces between the trochs are sparsely covered with shorter cilia of similar structure except for length. In the adult of S. scandens, the foot is covered by a dense mat of cilia with blunt electron-dense tips. In both E. babai and S. scandens, all cilia have two perpendicularly orientated rootlets. This condition is similar to that of the Chaetodermomorpha (=Caudofoveata) and Polyplacophora. In other molluscs studied to date, the cilia of multiciliated epidermal cells have a single rootlet or a derivative thereof. The presence of two ciliary rootlets likely represents the basal plesiomorphic state for the Bilateria. The existence of this character in the Neomeniomorpha, Chaetodermomorpha, and Polyplacophora is congruent with the hypothesis of a basal position of these taxa within the Mollusca. [source]

Evidence from a protein-coding gene that acanthocephalans are rotifers

David B. Mark Welch
Abstract. Rotifera and Acanthocephala are generally regarded as separate phyla sharing a basal position among triploblast protostomes. This paper presents the first molecular phylogenetic examination of the relationship of Acanthocephala to all three rotifer classes, Seisonidea, Monogononta, and Bdelloidea. Inclusion of Acanthocephala within Rotifera, probably as a sister-taxon to a clade composed of Bdelloidea and Monogononta (the Eurotatoria), is strongly supported by both parsimony and distance methods, using a region of the nuclear coding gene hsp82. Previous molecular evidence for the inclusion of Acanthocephala in the Rotifera suggested that Acanthocephala is a sister-taxon of Bdelloidea, forming the clade Lemniscea. No support is found for this clade, and evidence is presented that the monogonont rotifer used in those analyses, Brachionus plicatilis, may be evolving in an anomalous manner. [source]

Phylogeography of the introduced species Rattus rattus in the western Indian Ocean, with special emphasis on the colonization history of Madagascar

Charlotte Tollenaere
Abstract Aim, To describe the phylogeographic patterns of the black rat, Rattus rattus, from islands in the western Indian Ocean where the species has been introduced (Madagascar and the neighbouring islands of Réunion, Mayotte and Grande Comore), in comparison with the postulated source area (India). Location, Western Indian Ocean: India, Arabian Peninsula, East Africa and the islands of Madagascar, Réunion, Grande Comore and Mayotte. Methods, Mitochondrial DNA (cytochrome b, tRNA and D-loop, 1762 bp) was sequenced for 71 individuals from 11 countries in the western Indian Ocean. A partial D-loop (419 bp) was also sequenced for eight populations from Madagascar (97 individuals), which were analysed in addition to six previously published populations from southern Madagascar. Results, Haplotypes from India and the Arabian Peninsula occupied a basal position in the phylogenetic tree, whereas those from islands were distributed in different monophyletic clusters: Madagascar grouped with Mayotte, while Réunion and Grand Comore were present in two other separate groups. The only exception was one individual from Madagascar (out of 190) carrying a haplotype that clustered with those from Réunion and South Africa. ,Isolation with migration' simulations favoured a model with no recurrent migration between Oman and Madagascar. Mismatch distribution analyses dated the expansion of Malagasy populations on a time-scale compatible with human colonization history. Higher haplotype diversity and older expansion times were found on the east coast of Madagascar compared with the central highlands. Main conclusions, Phylogeographic patterns supported the hypothesis of human-mediated colonization of R. rattus from source populations in either the native area (India) or anciently colonized regions (the Arabian Peninsula) to islands of the western Indian Ocean. Despite their proximity, each island has a distinct colonization history. Independent colonization events may have occurred simultaneously in Madagascar and Grande Comore, whereas Mayotte would have been colonized from Madagascar. Réunion was colonized independently, presumably from Europe. Malagasy populations may have originated from a single successful colonization event, followed by rapid expansion, first in coastal zones and then in the central highlands. The congruence of the observed phylogeographic pattern with human colonization events and pathways supports the potential relevance of the black rat in tracing human history. [source]

Phylogeny and speciation of the eastern Asian cyprinid genus Sarcocheilichthys

L. Zhang
The genus Sarcocheilichthys is a group of small cyprinid fishes comprising 10 species/sub-species widely distributed in East Asia, which represents a valuable model for understanding the speciation of freshwater fishes in East Asia. In the present study, the molecular phylogenetic relationship of the genus Sarcocheilichthys was investigated using a 1140 bp section of the mitochondrial cytochrome b gene. Two different tree-building methods, maximum parsimony (MP) and Bayesian methods, yielded trees with almost the same topology, yielding high bootstrap values or posterior probabilities. The results showed that the genus Sarcocheilichthys consists of two large clades, clades I and II. Clade I contains Sarcocheilichthys lacustris, Sarcocheilichthys sinensis and Sarcocheilichthys parvus, with S. parvus at a basal position. In clade II, Sarcocheilichthys variegatus microoculus is at a basal position; samples of the widespread species, Sarcocheilichthys nigripinnis, form a large subclade containing another valid species Sarcocheilichthys czerskii. Sarcocheilichthys kiangsiensis is retained at an intermediate position. Since S. czerskii is a valid species in the S. nigripinnis clade, remaining samples of S. nigripinnis form a paraphyly. This speciation process is attributed to geographical isolation and special environmental conditions experienced by S. czerskii and stable environments experienced by the other S. nigripinnis populations. This type of speciation process was suggested to be very common. Samples of Sarcocheilichthys sinensis sinensis and Sarcocheilichthys sinensis fukiensis that did not form their own monophyletic groups suggest an early stage of speciation and support their sub-species status. Molecular clock analysis indicates that the two major lineages of the genus Sarcocheilichthys, clades I and II diverged c. 8·89 million years ago (mya). Sarcocheilichthys v. microoculus from Japan probably diverged 4·78 mya from the Chinese group. The northern,southern clades of S. nigripinnis began to diverge c. 2·12 mya, while one lineage of S. nigripinnis evolved into a new species, S. czerski, c. 0·34 mya. [source]

Pigmented eyes, photoreceptor-like sense organs and central nervous system in the polychaete Scoloplos armiger (Orbiniidae, Annelida) and their phylogenetic importance

Verena Wilkens
Abstract The phylogenetic position of Orbiniidae within Annelida is unresolved. Conflicting hypotheses place them either in a basal taxon Scolecida, close to Spionida, or in a basal position in Aciculata. Because Aciculata have a specific type of eye, the photoreceptive organs in the orbiniid Scoloplos armiger were investigated to test these phylogenetic hypotheses. Two different types of prostomial photoreceptor-like sense organs were found in juveniles and one additional in subadults. In juveniles there are four ciliary photoreceptor-like phaosomes with unbranched cilia and two pigmented eyes. The paired pigmented eyes lie beside the brain above the circumoesophageal connectives. Each consists of one pigmented cell, one unpigmented supportive cell and three everse rhabdomeric sensory cells with vestigial cilia. During development the number of phaosomes increases considerably and numerous unpigmented sense organs appear consisting of one rhabdomeric photoreceptor cell and one supportive cell. The development and morphology of the pigmented eyes of S. armiger suggest that they represent miniaturized eyes of the phyllodocidan type of adult eye rather than persisting larval eyes resulting in small inverse eyes typical of Scolecida. Moreover, the structure of the brain indicates a loss of the palps. Hence, a closer relationship of Orbiniidae to Phyllodocida is indicated. Due to a still extensive lack of ultrastructural data among polychaetes this conclusion cannot be corroborated by considering the structure of the unpigmented ciliary and rhabdomeric photoreceptor-like sense organs. J. Morphol., 2009. © 2009 Wiley-Liss, Inc. [source]

Ultrastructure of the protonephridial system in Neodasys chaetonotoideus (Gastrotricha: Chaetonotida) and in the ground pattern of Gastrotricha,

Alexander Kieneke
Abstract The taxon Neodasys has a basal position within Gastrotricha. This makes it very interesting for phylogenetic considerations in this group. To complete the reconstruction of the nephridial system in the stem species of Gastrotricha started earlier, we have studied the whole protonephridial system of Neodasys chaetonotoideus by means of complete sets of ultrathin sections and TEM. In many characters, protonephridia of N. chaetonotoideus resemble those of macrodasyidan gastrotrich species. For example, each of the six protonephridia, arranged in three pairs, consists of three distinct cells that constitute the continuous protonephridial lumen. Especially, the terminal cell of the protonephridia of N. chaetonotoideus shows a striking pattern: The perforation of the filter region is a meandering cleft that is continuous with the seam of the enfolded lumen of that cell. With the results presented here and that of former TEM studies, we give a comprehensive idea of the excretory organs in the ground pattern of Gastrotricha. Moreover, we can elaborate on the hypothesized protonephridial system in the stem species of Bilateria. We suggest that a meandering filtration cleft is a feature of the ground pattern of the Bilateria. J. Morphol., 2007. © 2007 Wiley-Liss, Inc. [source]


Abstract:, A new Lower Devonian sea spider (Arthropoda: Pycnogonida) from the Hunsrück Slate, Germany, is described as Flagellopantopus blocki gen. et sp. nov. This is only the sixth fossil pycnogonid species to be described. Its most remarkable and unique aspect is the long, flagelliform telson. Although our fossil apparently lacks chelifores (an apomorphy), the retained telson and the segmented trunk end behind the last pair of legs resolve F. blocki to a fairly basal position in the pycnogonid stem lineage. It probably lies between Palaeoisopus problematicus Broili, which has a lanceolate telson and the most trunk segments of any sea spider, and all other Silurian,Recent Pycnogonida. Our new material shows that at least two fossil pycnogonids retained a telson, albeit with very different morphologies, and further supports the idea that a greater diversity of body plans existed among the Palaeozoic pycnogonid taxa. [source]

Hierarchical modeling of genome-wide Short Tandem Repeat (STR) markers infers native American prehistory

Cecil M. Lewis Jr.
Abstract This study examines a genome-wide dataset of 678 Short Tandem Repeat loci characterized in 444 individuals representing 29 Native American populations as well as the Tundra Netsi and Yakut populations from Siberia. Using these data, the study tests four current hypotheses regarding the hierarchical distribution of neutral genetic variation in native South American populations: (1) the western region of South America harbors more variation than the eastern region of South America, (2) Central American and western South American populations cluster exclusively, (3) populations speaking the Chibchan-Paezan and Equatorial-Tucanoan language stock emerge as a group within an otherwise South American clade, (4) Chibchan-Paezan populations in Central America emerge together at the tips of the Chibchan-Paezan cluster. This study finds that hierarchical models with the best fit place Central American populations, and populations speaking the Chibchan-Paezan language stock, at a basal position or separated from the South American group, which is more consistent with a serial founder effect into South America than that previously described. Western (Andean) South America is found to harbor similar levels of variation as eastern (Equatorial-Tucanoan and Ge-Pano-Carib) South America, which is inconsistent with an initial west coast migration into South America. Moreover, in all relevant models, the estimates of genetic diversity within geographic regions suggest a major bottleneck or founder effect occurring within the North American subcontinent, before the peopling of Central and South America. Am J Phys Anthropol 2010. © 2009 Wiley-Liss, Inc. [source]

Alternative Oxidase (AOX) Genes of African Trypanosomes: Phylogeny and Evolution of AOX and Plastid Terminal Oxidase Families

Abstract. To clarify evolution and phylogenetic relationships of trypanosome alternative oxidase (AOX) molecules, AOX genes (cDNAs) of the African trypanosomes, Trypanosoma congolense and Trypanosoma evansi, were cloned by PCR. Both AOXs possess conserved consensus motifs (-E-, -EXXH-). The putative amino acid sequence of the AOX of T. evansi was exactly the same as that of T. brucei. A protein phylogeny of trypanosome AOXs revealed that three genetically and pathogenically distinct strains of T. congolense are closely related to each other. When all known AOX sequences collected from current databases were analyzed, the common ancestor of these three Trypanosoma species shared a sister-group position to T. brucei/T. evansi. Monophyly of Trypanosoma spp. was clearly supported (100% bootstrap value) with Trypanosoma vivax placed at the most basal position of the Trypanosoma clade. Monophyly of other eukaryotic lineages, terrestrial plants + red algae, Metazoa, diatoms, Alveolata, oomycetes, green algae, and Fungi, was reconstructed in the best AOX tree obtained from maximum likelihood analysis, although some of these clades were not strongly supported. The terrestrial plants + red algae clade showed the closest affinity with an ,-proteobacterium, Novosphingobium aromaticivorans, and the common ancestor of these lineages, was separated from other eukaryotes. Although the root of the AOX subtree was not clearly determined, subsequent phylogenetic analysis of the composite tree for AOX and plastid terminal oxidase (PTOX) demonstrated that PTOX and related cyanobacterial sequences are of a monophyletic origin and their common ancestor is linked to AOX sequences. [source]

My favorite animal, Trichoplax adhaerens

BIOESSAYS, Issue 12 2005
Bernd Schierwater
Trichoplax adhaerens is more simply organized than any other living metazoan. This tiny marine animal looks like a irregular "hairy plate" ("tricho plax") with a simple upper and lower epithelium and some loose cells in between. After its original description by F.E. Schulze 1883, it attracted particular attention as a potential candidate representing the basic and ancestral state of metazoan organization. The lack of any kind of symmetry, organs, nerve cells, muscle cells, basal lamina and extracellular matrix originally left little doubt about the basal position of T. adhaerens. Nevertheless, the interest of zoologists and evolutionary biologists suddenly vanished for more than half a century when Trichoplax was claimed to be an aberrant hydrozoan planula larva. Recently, Trichoplax has been rediscovered as a key species for unraveling early metazoan evolution. For example, research on regulatory genes and whole genome sequencing promise insights into the genetics underlying the origin and development of basal metazoan phyla. Trichoplax offers unique potential for understanding the minimal requirements of metazoan animal organization. BioEssays 27:1294,1302, 2005. © 2005 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. [source]

An unexpectedly sophisticated, V-shaped spermatozoon in Demospongiae (Porifera): reproductive and evolutionary implications

The demosponge Crambe crambe shows a peculiar spermatogenesis, hard to be reconciled with the basal position of sponges in the animal phylogeny. Early spermatogenesis stages showed most of the simple features expected in sponges. However, spermiogenesis departed from the anticipated process. Spermatids lengthened remarkably, forming a deep cytoplasmic pit around the cilium insertion, with the proximal axoneme bending to produce a V-shaped spermatozoon surprisingly similar to that known in the phylum Phoronida. The cytology was unexpectedly complex, with a needle-like nucleus of helically condensed chromatin, a conical acrosome with a subacrosomal rod, and a mitochondrion connected to the basal body by striated rootlets. These findings establish that the spermatozoon of broad-casting demosponges occurs in two structural categories (,primitive' and ,modified' type). This dualistic condition must necessarily have pre-dated the evolutionary apparition of higher metazoans, if we are to keep regarding sponges as the most primitive animals. We hypothesize that internal fertilization in C. crambe, and incidentally other demosponges , may depart from the general model assumed for spermcasting sponges. The V-shape of this spermatozoon suggests a design to favour autonomous penetration through the dense mesohyl to reach the oocytes, rather than engulfment and transportation by carrier cells towards the oocyte. © 2009 The Linnean Society of London, Biological Journal of the Linnean Society, 2009, 97, 413,426. [source]

Phylogeny and biogeographical history of Trogoniformes, a pantropical bird order

With highly conserved morphology throughout the family, a tropical distribution, and no close living relatives, the trogons (Aves: Trogonidae) pose a difficult problem for systematists. Disjunct tropical distributions are often attributed to Gondwanan vicariance, but the fossil record for trogons is mostly from the Tertiary of Europe. This study examined support for the basal relationships among trogons using a combination of nuclear (RAG-1) and mitochondrial (ND2) DNA sequence data. Although some nodes could not be resolved with significant support, there is strong support for the basal position of three New World genera (Pharomachrus, Euptilotis, and Priotelus). This phylogenetic hypothesis differs markedly from previous studies of trogon relationships and taxonomic treatments. Biogeographically, it implies an origin and early vicariance events for the crown clade in the New World. Molecular divergence estimates place all of the basal nodes of the trogon phylogeny in the Oligocene, precluding a Gondwanan origin for modern trogons. © 2005 The Linnean Society of London, Biological Journal of the Linnean Society, 2005, 84, 725,738. [source]

The nematode,arthropod clade revisited: phylogenomic analyses from ribosomal protein genes misled by shared evolutionary biases

CLADISTICS, Issue 2 2007
Stuart J. Longhorn
Phylogenetic analysis of major groups of Metazoa using genomic data tends to recover the sister relationships of arthropods and chordates, contradicting the proposed Ecdysozoa (the molting animals), which group the arthropods together with nematodes and relatives. Ribosomal protein genes have been a major data source in phylogenomic studies because they are readily detected as Expressed Sequence Tags (ESTs) due to their high transcription rates. Here we address the debate about the recovery of Ecdysozoa in genomic data by building a new matrix of carefully curated EST and genome sequences for 25 ribosomal protein genes of the small subunit, with focus on new insect sequences in addition to the Diptera sequences generally used to represent the arthropods. Individually, each ribosomal protein gene showed low phylogenetic signal, but in simultaneous analysis strong support emerged for many expected groups, with support increasing linearly with increased gene number. In agreement with most studies of metazoan relationships from genomic data, our analyses contradicted the Ecdysozoa (the putative sister relationship of arthropods and nematodes), and instead supported the affinity of arthropods with chordates. In addition, relationships among holometabolan insects resulted in an unlikely basal position for Diptera. To test for biases in the data that might produce an erroneous arthropod,chordate affinity we simulated sequence data on tree topologies with the alternative arthropod,nematode sister relationships, applying a model of amino acid sequence evolution estimated from the real data. Tree searches on these simulated data still revealed an arthropod,chordate grouping, i.e., the topologies used to simulate the data were not recovered correctly. This suggests that the arthropod,chordate relationships may be obtained erroneously also from the real data even if the alternative topology (Ecdysozoa) represents the true phylogeny. Whereas denser taxon sampling in the future may recover the Ecdysozoa, our analyses demonstrate that recent phylogenomic studies may be affected by as yet unspecified biases in amino acid sequence composition in the model organisms with available genomic data. © The Willi Hennig Society 2007. [source]

Dynamics of heterorhizic root systems: protoxylem groups within the fine-root system of Chamaecyparis obtusa

Takuo Hishi
Summary ,,To understand the physiology of fine-root functions in relation to soil organic sources, the heterogeneity of individual root functions within a fine-root system requires investigation. Here the heterogeneous dynamics within fine-root systems are reported. ,,The fine roots of Chamaecyparis obtusa were sampled using a sequential ingrowth core method over 2 yr. After color categorization, roots were classified into protoxylem groups from anatomical observations. ,,The root lengths with diarch and triarch groups fluctuated seasonally, whereas the tetrarch root length increased. The percentage of secondary root mortality to total mortality increased with increasing amounts of protoxylem. The carbon : nitrogen ratio indicated that the decomposability of primary roots might be greater than that of secondary roots. The position of diarch roots was mostly apical, whereas tetrarch roots tended to be distributed in basal positions within the root architecture. ,,We demonstrate the heterogeneous dynamics within a fine-root system of C. obtusa. Fine-root heterogeneity should affect soil C dynamics. This heterogeneity is determined by the branching position within the root architecture. [source]

The chiral helical structure of a copper(II) complex with a tridentate Schiff base ligand

Wen-Juan Shi
In the title salt, catena -poly[[[aquacopper(II)]-,-3-(2-pyridylmethyleneamino)propanoato-,4N,N,,O:O,] perchlorate], {[Cu(C9H9N2O2)(H2O)]ClO4}n, the monomeric unit contains a square-based pyramidal CuII centre. The four basal positions are occupied by a tridentate anionic Schiff base ligand which furnishes an NNO-donor set, with the fourth basal position being occupied by an O-donor atom from the carboxylate group of an adjacent Schiff base ligand. The coordination sphere is completed by a water molecule at the apical position. Interestingly, each carboxylate group in the ligand forms a syn,anti -configured bridge between two CuII centres, leading to left-handed chiral helicity. The framework also exhibits O,H...O hydrogen bonds involving the water molecules and an O atom of the perchlorate anion. [source]

catena -Poly­[[bis­[,-1,2-bis(1-methyl­tetrazol-5-yl)­ethane-,2N4:N4,]bis[chloro­copper(II)]]-di-,-chloro]

Dmitry O. Ivashkevich
In the title compound, [Cu2Cl4(C6H10N8)2]n, the ligand has C2 symmetry, and the Cu and Cl atoms lie on a mirror plane. The coordination polyhedron of the Cu atom is a distorted square pyramid, with the basal positions occupied by two N atoms from two different ligands [Cu,N,=,2.0407,(18),Å] and by the two Cl atoms [Cu,Cl,=,2.2705,(8) and 2.2499,(9),Å], and the apical position occupied by a Cl atom [Cu,Cl,=,2.8154,(9),Å] that belongs to the basal plane of a neighbouring Cu atom. The [CuCl2(C6H10N8)]2 units form infinite chains extending along the a axis via the Cl atoms. Intermolecular C,H,Cl contacts [C,Cl,=,3.484,(2),Å] are also present in the chains. The chains are linked together by intermolecular C,H,N interactions [C,N,=,3.314,(3),Å]. [source]