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Two papers unraveled the mystery of sex determination and benthic adaptation of the flatfish
Date:2/3/2014

responsible for scotopic vision and long-wavelength-sensitivity, respectively, were significantly up-regulated in benthic stages, whereas the expression of the middle-wavelength-sensitive pigment gene (rh2) was significantly up-regulated in pelagic stages. Moreover, they also found that several crystallin genes were lost or became pseudogenes. They speculate that these changes reveal the adaptation of the tongue sole visual system after shifting to the benthic environment with weak light conditions. As compensation, tongue sole have developed a strong lateral line sense organ and especially, the papillae-a specific mechanoreceptorsense organ during evolution.

Dr. Guojie Zhang, who is the leading author of both papers from China National Genebank of BGI, said: "The evolution of sex is one of the major transitions in evolution, that has significantly enhanced the adaptation ability of the species. However, our knowledge of sex determination mechanisms is still very limited. Vertebrates have various sex-determination mechanisms. The sex determination process of many vertebrate species is regulated by environmental cues, like temperature. Investigation of the molecular mechanisms underlying this process will shed new lights on the understanding of the interaction between functional gene networks and their regulations by environmental factors, and increase our knowledge on how genome evolution drives species diversification and diversity."


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Contact: Jia Liu
liujia@genomics.cn
BGI Shenzhen
Source:Eurekalert

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