This site is not maintained. Click here for the new website of Richard Dawkins.

Paddlefish's Doubled Genome May Question Theories On Limb Evolution

Thanks to rod-the-farmer for the link


The American paddlefish -- known for its bizarre, protruding snout and eggs harvested for caviar -- duplicated its entire genome about 42 million years ago, according to a new study published in the journal Genome Biology and Evolution. This finding may add a new twist to the way scientists study how fins evolved into limbs since the paddlefish is often used as a proxy for a more representative ancestor shared by humans and fishes.

"We found that paddlefish have had their own genome duplication," said Karen Crow, assistant professor of biology at San Francisco State University. "This creates extra genetic material that adds complexity to comparative studies. It may change the way we interpret studies on limb development."

In order to study how human limbs develop, scientists compare the limb-building genes found in mice with fin-building genes found in fishes. Previous research on paddlefish has suggested that fishes possessed the genetic toolkit required to grow limbs long before the evolution of the four-limbed creatures (tetrapods) that developed into reptiles, birds, amphibians and mammals.

In the last decade, paddlefish have become a useful benchmark in evolutionary studies because their position on the evolutionary tree makes them a reasonably good proxy for the ancestor of the bony fishes that evolved into tetrapods such as humans. However, the fact that paddlefish underwent a genome duplication could complicate what its genes tell us about the fin-to-limb transition, says Crow.

Read more

TAGGED: BIOLOGY, EVOLUTION


RELATED CONTENT

Bonobo makes stone tools like early...

Hannah Krakauer - New Scientist Comments

Kanzi the bonobo is able to create and use stone tools

Scientists Discover Previously Unknown...

- - URMC Comments

Newer Imaging Technique Brings ‘Glymphatic System’ to Light

Grey parrots use reasoning where...

- - The Royal Society Comments

Research suggesting that grey parrots can reason about cause and effect from audio cues alone- a skill that monkeys and dogs lack- is presented in Proceedings of the Royal Society B today.

Why do organisms build tissues they...

- - Science Blog Comments

Why, after millions of years of evolution, do organisms build structures that seemingly serve no purpose?

New flat-faced human species possibly...

Charles Choi - CBS News Comments

Four decades ago, in 1972, the Koobi Fora Research Project discovered the enigmatic fossilized skull known as KNM-ER 1470 which ignited a now long-standing debate about how many different species of early Homos existed.

A New Species Discovered ... On Flickr

Adam Cole - NPR Comments

One day in May of 2011, Shaun Winterton was looking at pictures of bugs on the Internet when something unusual caught his eye. It was a close shot of a green lacewing — an insect he knew well — but on its wing was an unfamiliar network of black lines and a few flecks of blue.

MORE

MORE BY --

Superfast evolution in sea stars

-- - UC Davis News Comments

How quickly can new species arise? In as little as 6,000 years, according to a study of Australian sea stars.

Vicar condemns hotel after it replaces...

-- - The Telegraph Comments

Hotel boss Wayne Bartholomew in unrepentant about his new choice of bedside reading for his guests despite an outcry from church authorities.

Sally Ride, first American woman in...

-- - CNN Comments

Sally Ride, the first American woman to fly in space, died Monday after a 17-month battle with pancreatic cancer, her company said. She was 61.

Monkey Lip Smacks Provide New Insights...

-- - Science Daily 7 Comments

New research supports the idea that human speech evolved less from vocalizations than from communicative facial gestures.

Earliest music instruments found

-- - BBC News 11 Comments

Researchers have identified what they say are the oldest-known musical instruments in the world.

Debate: Can Atheists and Believers work...

-- - Rationalist Society of Australia 73 Comments

A debate between Chris Stedman, PZ Myers, and Leslie Cannold from April 15, 2012.

MORE

Comments

Please Login to RDFRS to Comment

Sign in to RDF

blog comments powered by Disqus