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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Homeobox genes in the Australian lungfish, Neoceratodus forsteri.

The aim of the present study was to determine whether the postulated gnathostome duplication from four to eight Hox clusters occurred before or after the split between the actinopterygian and sarcopterygian fish by characterizing Hox genes from the sarcopterygian lungfish, Neoceratodus forsteri. Since lungfish have extremely large genomes, we took the approach of extracting pure high molecular weight (MW) genomic DNA to act as a template for polymerase chain reaction (PCR) of the conserved homeobox domain of the highly conserved Hox genes. The 21 clones thus obtained were sequenced and translated in a BLASTX protein database search to designate Hox gene identity. Fourteen of the clones were from Hox genes, two were Hox pseudogenes, four were Gbx genes, and one most closely resembled the homeobox gene, insulin upstream factor 1. The Hox genes identified were from all four tetrapod clusters A, B, C, and D, confirming their presence in lungfish, and there is no evidence to suggest more than these four functional Hox clusters, as is the case in teleosts. A comparison of Hox group 13 amino acid sequences of lungfish, zebrafish, and mouse provides firm evidence that the expansion of Hox clusters, as seen in zebrafish, occurred after separation of the actinopterygian and sarcopterygian lineages. J. Exp. Zool. (Mol. Dev. Evol.) 285:140-145, 1999.[1]


  1. Homeobox genes in the Australian lungfish, Neoceratodus forsteri. Longhurst, T.J., Joss, J.M. J. Exp. Zool. (1999) [Pubmed]
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