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Work shines light on Hox genes responsible for firefly lantern development
Date:3/19/2014

ought. Another example of this is beetle horns, one of Moczek's primary areas of research: The horns of beetles are a novel trait that lack correspondence to other traits in beetles or insects. Work conducted by his former graduate student Bethany Wasik found that the positioning and growth of horns that come out of the thorax of beetles is regulated in part by the Hox gene Sex-combs-reduced.

And as novel traits are well-understood by Moczek, Hox genes are especially close to IU's Department of Biology: The homeobox (Hox is the abbreviation) DNA sequence was discovered in 1983 by students in the laboratory of IU Distinguished Professor of Biology Thom Kaufman.

"This study is the first of its kind on these organisms and this structure, and we hope more than anything opens the door for future work on these charismatic insects," Moczek said.


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Contact: Steve Chaplin
stjchap@iu.edu
812-856-1896
Indiana University
Source:Eurekalert  

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