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Genomic and cDNA clones of an Msx class homeobox gene were isolated from amphioxus (Branchiostoma floridae). The gene, AmphiMsx, is expressed in the neural plate from late gastrulation; in later embryos it is expressed in dorsal cells of the neural tube, excluding anterior and posterior regions, in an irregular reiterated pattern. There is transient expression in dorsal cells within somites, reminiscent of migrating neural crest cells of vertebrates. In larvae, mRNA is detected in two patches of anterior ectoderm proposed to be placodes. Evolutionary analyses show there is little phylogenetic information in Msx protein sequences; however, it is likely that duplication of Msx genes occurred in the vertebrate lineage.

Type

Journal article

Journal

Dev Genes Evol

Publication Date

04/1999

Volume

209

Pages

260 - 263

Keywords

Amino Acid Sequence, Animals, Chordata, Nonvertebrate, DNA, Complementary, Embryo, Nonmammalian, Gene Expression Regulation, Developmental, Genes, Homeobox, In Situ Hybridization, Larva, Molecular Sequence Data, Nerve Tissue Proteins, Nervous System, Sequence Alignment, Sequence Analysis, DNA, Sequence Homology, Amino Acid