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Title: Evolution of mesoderm specification and myogenesis in the sea urchin embryo
Author: Andrikou , Carmen
Awarding Body: Open University
Current Institution: Open University
Date of Award: 2012
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Several genetic analyses in standard model animal organisms have identified some key transcriptional regulators and revealed hierarchical gene networks that can direct mesoderm specification and muscle differentiation. Although a lot of data exist concerning the high level of conservation of the role of these factors, little information is reported about the similarity of the different gene regulatory network architecture that these factors are fonning. This thesis concerns the study of the molecular process of generating muscle, myogenesis, in the sea urchin embryo Strongylocentrotus purpuratus. The sea urchin embryo is an interesting model system for investigating myogenesis since this animal is placed at a key phylogenetic position with respect to vertebrates, filling an important gap between evolutionary distant model systems where myogenesis has already been well characterized. Moreover, the sea urchin embryo offers a very powerful instrument to perfonn functional analysis studies with the aim to construct GRNs acting in development. After cloning and characterizing the spatial and temporal expression of genes known to have a myogenic role in other phyla, such as MyoD, Mej2, Myocardin, Sixll2, Eya, FoxF, MyoR, Twist, FGFR and Delta by a detailed lineage analysis approach, I proceeded in investigating the role of some of these genes by functional analysis experiments.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available