Project 3784: J. Stundl, A. Pospisilova, T. Matějková, M. Psenicka, M. E. Bronner, R. Cerny. 2020. Migratory patterns and evolutionary plasticity of cranial neural crest cells in ray-finned fishes. Developmental Biology. 467:14-29.
Specimen: Atractosteus tropicus (unvouchered)
View: CT scan of Atractosteus tropicus at stage 22


The cranial neural crest (CNC) arises within the developing central nervous system, but then migrates away from the neural tube in three consecutive streams termed mandibular, hyoid and branchial, respectively, according to the order along the anteroposterior axis. While the process of neural crest emigration generally follows a conserved anterior to posterior sequence across vertebrates, we find that ray-finned fishes (bichir, sterlet, gar, and pike) exhibit several heterochronies in the timing and order of CNC emergence that influences their subsequent migratory patterns. First, emigration of the cranial neural crest in these fishes occurs prematurely compared to other vertebrates, already initiating during early neurulation and well before neural tube closure. Second, delamination of the hyoid stream occurs prior to the more anterior mandibular stream; this is associated with early morphogenesis of key hyoid structures like external gills (bichir), a large opercular flap (gar) or first forming cartilage (pike). In sterlet, the hyoid and branchial CNC cells form a single hyobranchial sheet, which later segregates in concert with second pharyngeal pouch morphogenesis. Taken together, the results show that despite generally conserved migratory patterns, heterochronic alterations in the timing of emigration and pattern of migration of CNC cells accompanies morphological diversity of ray-finned fishes.

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Article DOI: 10.1016/j.ydbio.2020.08.007

Project DOI: 10.7934/P3784,
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MorphoBank Project 3784
  • Creation Date:
    13 August 2020
  • Publication Date:
    06 September 2020
  • Project views: 4225

    This research
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    Authors' Institutions

    • California Institute of Technology (Caltech)

    • Charles University in Prague

    • University Of South Bohemia


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    Jan Stundl
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