Branchiostoma lanceolatum

Overview
Full NameBranchiostoma lanceolatum
GenusBranchiostoma
Specieslanceolatum
Common NameAmphioxus
AbbreviationB. lanceolatum
Interest

The phylogenetic position of amphioxus, together with its relatively simple and evolutionarily conserved morphology and genome structure, has led to its use as a model for studies of vertebrate evolution. In particular, recent development of technical approaches, as well as access to the complete amphioxus genome sequence, for the Mediterranean amphioxus, Branchiostoma lanceolatum has provided the community with tools with which to study the invertebrate-chordate to vertebrate transition (Bertrand & Escriva, 2011).

Location:

Mediterranean Sea and North-East Atlantic

Attractive features
  • Controlled spawning induction
  • Transparent embryos
  • Micromanipulation techniques available allowing functional approaches in classical embryology and developmental biology
Contributions

Studies with different amphioxus species have helped answer questions about the evolution of the chordate genome, and particularly the evolution of the Hox cluster structure and cis-regulatory elements, the evolution of the control of axial patterning in chordates, and the appearance of vertebrate-specific structures such as the head.

Tools
  • Assembled and annotated genome sequence (550 MB) and many transcriptome resources soon publically available
  • Epigenomic resources including Chip-seq, ATAC-seq, Methylome, CAGE-seq, and 4C for a panel of transcription factors are available for several developmental stages
Drawbacks

Due to a short spawning period (May-July), in vivo experiments are restricted to a short period only. Their life cycle is also relatively long, about 2 years to reach adulthood, and no knockdown techniques are available (no morpholinos, RNAi or siRNA).

Selected references
  • Bertrand S. & Escriva H. (2011) Evolutionary crossroads in developmental biology: amphioxus. Development 138: 4819-30
Transcript Browser
The following browser provides a quick view for new visitors. Use the searching mechanism to find specific features.
NameUnique NameType
BlTCONS00000126BlTCONS00000126transcript
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BlTCONS00000133BlTCONS00000133transcript
BlTCONS00000134BlTCONS00000134mRNA
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BlTCONS00000139BlTCONS00000139transcript
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BlTCONS00000143BlTCONS00000143transcript
BlTCONS00000144BlTCONS00000144mRNA
BlTCONS00000145BlTCONS00000145mRNA
BlTCONS00000146BlTCONS00000146mRNA
BlTCONS00000147BlTCONS00000147mRNA
BlTCONS00000148BlTCONS00000148mRNA
BlTCONS00000149BlTCONS00000149mRNA
BlTCONS00000150BlTCONS00000150mRNA

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