C2H2 zinc finger genes of the Gli, Zic, KLF, SP, Wilms' tumour, Huckebein, Snail, Ovo, Spalt, Odd, Blimp-1, Fez and related gene families from Branchiostoma floridae.
The C2H2 zinc finger is one of the most common domains encoded by animal genomes and has been implicated in DNA binding as well as protein-protein interactions and RNA binding. Genes encoding C2H2 zinc finger domains include not only well-studied conserved transcription factors such as Gli and Snail but also include a large diversity of more rapidly evolving genes. Here, I focus on the description of amphioxus members of families and super-families of C2H2 zinc finger genes that have been the subject of functional studies in other species, specifically the Gli, Zic, Glis, Snail, Scratch, Krox, Wilms' tumour, Huckebein, SP, KLF, Ovo, Spalt, Blimp-1, Odd and Fez genes. Surveys of the Branchiostoma floridae genome reveal members of all of these groups of genes. Genes are named according to molecular phylogenetic analyses, such that the nomenclature reflects pre-existing gene names in the context of gene families that have descended from a single common ancestral gene in the common ancestor of chordates and insects. In total, this comprises 28 B. floridae C2H2 zinc finger genes, representing at least 15 gene families. For 17 of these genes, expressed sequence tag clusters and associated clone identification codes relating to the B. floridae gene collection are given.