Date of Award
Bachelor of Science
Dr. April Hill
Sponges can be viewed as a remnant branch of the earliest successful experiments in metazoan multi-cellularity. As such, these organisms hold many clues into the genetic elements fundamental to the formation of complex animalian life. Two of these elements are the transcription factor encoding genes PaxB and Six1/2. Homologs of these genes in animals more complex than sponges have been shown to be members of a gene regulatory network involved in organ development. This is of particular intrigue since sponges do not possess such organ systems. Here, I discuss the putative function of PaxB and Six1/2 in sponges, and whether the Pax-Six regulatory network is present in these ancestrally derived metazoans.
Winters, Ian P., "Characterizing the role of Pax and Six in an emerging model system, the freshwater sponge, E. muelleri" (2012). Honors Theses. 79.