Stepwise metamorphosis of the tubewormHydroides elegansis mediated by a bacterial inducer and MAPK signaling
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Shikuma, Nicholas J.
Medeiros, João M.
Newman, Dianne K.
- Journal Article
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Diverse animal taxa metamorphose between larval and juvenile phases in response to bacteria. Although bacteria-induced metamorphosis is widespread among metazoans, little is known about the molecular changes that occur in the animal upon stimulation by bacteria. Larvae of the tubeworm Hydroides elegans metamorphose in response to surface-bound Pseudoalteromonas luteoviolacea bacteria, producing ordered arrays of phage tail-like metamorphosis-associated contractile structures (MACs). Sequencing the Hydroides genome and transcripts during five developmental stages revealed that MACs induce the regulation of groups of genes important for tissue remodeling, innate immunity, and mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) signaling. Using two MAC mutations that block P. luteoviolacea from inducing settlement or metamorphosis and three MAPK inhibitors, we established a sequence of bacteria-induced metamorphic events: MACs induce larval settlement; then, particular properties of MACs encoded by a specific locus in P. luteoviolacea initiate cilia loss and activate metamorphosis-associated transcription; finally, signaling through p38 and c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) MAPK pathways alters gene expression and leads to morphological changes upon initiation of metamorphosis. Our results reveal that the intricate interaction between Hydroides and P. luteoviolacea can be dissected using genomic, genetic, and pharmacological tools. Hydroides' dependency on bacteria for metamorphosis highlights the importance of external stimuli to orchestrate animal development. The conservation of Hydroides genome content with distantly related deuterostomes (urchins, sea squirts, and humans) suggests that mechanisms of bacteria-induced metamorphosis in Hydroides may have conserved features in diverse animals. As a major biofouling agent, insight into the triggers of Hydroides metamorphosis might lead to practical strategies for fouling control Show more
Journal / seriesProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America: PNAS
Pages / Article No.
PublisherNational Academy of Sciences
SubjectBiofouling; Development; Genome; Phage; Symbiosis
Organisational unit09463 - Pilhofer, Martin / Pilhofer, Martin
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