Molecular developmental mechanism in polypterid fish provides insight into the origin of vertebrate lungs

Scientific Reports
Norifumi TatsumiMasataka Okabe

Abstract

The lung is an important organ for air breathing in tetrapods and originated well before the terrestrialization of vertebrates. Therefore, to better understand lung evolution, we investigated lung development in the extant basal actinopterygian fish Senegal bichir (Polypterus senegalus). First, we histologically confirmed that lung development in this species is very similar to that of tetrapods. We also found that the mesenchymal expression patterns of three genes that are known to play important roles in early lung development in tetrapods (Fgf10, Tbx4, and Tbx5) were quite similar to those of tetrapods. Moreover, we found a Tbx4 core lung mesenchyme-specific enhancer (C-LME) in the genomes of bichir and coelacanth (Latimeria chalumnae) and experimentally confirmed that these were functional in tetrapods. These findings provide the first molecular evidence that the developmental program for lung was already established in the common ancestor of actinopterygians and sarcopterygians.

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Citations

Oct 26, 2018·Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America·Jeffrey D SteimleIvan P Moskowitz
Jan 25, 2019·PloS One·Taku YamadaMasataka Okabe
Oct 21, 2019·Acta Physiologica·Christian DamsgaardPatricia A Wright
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Oct 11, 2020·The Journal of Experimental Biology·Laura Cadiz, Michael G Jonz

Datasets Mentioned

BETA
LC031503

Methods Mentioned

BETA
PCR

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