Advertisement
Research Article

Insights from Amphioxus into the Evolution of Vertebrate Cartilage

  • Daniel Meulemans mail,

    To whom correspondence should be addressed. E-mail: dm@caltech.edu

    Affiliation: Division of Biology, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, California, United States of America

    X
  • Marianne Bronner-Fraser

    Affiliation: Division of Biology, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, California, United States of America

    X
  • Published: August 29, 2007
  • DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0000787
  • Published in PLOS ONE

Reader Comments (3)

Post a new comment on this article

Referee Comments: Referee 1 (Christoph Winkler)

Posted by PLoS_ONE_Group on 03 Sep 2007 at 01:04 GMT

Reviewer 1's Review (Christoph Winkler)

“In their manuscript, Meulemans and Bronner-Fraser investigate the important question of how cranial neural crest cells have adopted their genetic make-up for cartilage formation during vertebrate evolution. Using the chordate Amphioxus as invertebrate model having no cranial neural crest, they describe the expression of eleven orthologs with important roles during head cartilage formation in vertebrates.
Noteworthy, these genes, required for cartilage formation in vertebrates, are expressed in different tissues of amphioxus. Based on their expression data, the authors are able to controvert the hypothesis that vertebrate neural crest have co-opted a complete genetic network from another tissue-type capable of cartilage production. Instead they suggest that 1.) the cranial neural crest cartilage program is a vertebrate novelty, 2.) that neural crest co-opted genetically interacting components from different cell types and 3.) that some of the respective orthologs in Amphioxus might be implicated in processes other than cartilage formation.
As the authors point out, pure expression data are of only limited relevance in the absence of any functional data. Future functional studies are certainly necessary to make the point and to give more detailed insight into the functional relations of the described factors.
Nevertheless, I think that the author's findings are novel and important and their statements are carefully expressed and supported by the data shown.”

N.B. These are the general comments made by the reviewer when reviewing the originally submitted version of this paper. The manuscript was revised before publication. Specific minor points addressed during revision of the paper are not shown.