Analysis of ciliary gene expression in sea urchin development.
Olander, Kira E.
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Cilia are important cellular organelles tied to many disease states due to their pivotal roll in important cellular processes, including early organism development. In this Honors Thesis, cilia were studied in developing Strongylocentrotus purpuratus embryos during the blastula stage of development. The blastula stage is when the sea urchin embryos develop motile cilia. The upstream DNA regions of 37 ciliary genes expressed during the blastula stage of development were analyzed using a motif discovery algorithm MEME and further analyzed with a motif comparison algorithm TOMTOM, in search of shared regulatory elements related to transcription factor binding proteins. This experiment resulted in three promising motifs aligned with known transcription factors Klf6, Klf11, Klf2, and Glis-3. Our data supports a model were Klf6, Klf11, and Klf2 may be transcriptional enhancers of the blastula cluster genes while Glis-3 may be a transcriptional repressor. These transcription factor proteins may play a roll in regulating the ciliary phenotype in S.p..
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