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Thyroid Hormones Accelerate Larval Skeletogenesis in Sea Urchins (Strongylocentrotus purpuratus) Through a Membrane Receptor-Mediated MAPK Signalling Cascade

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Title: Thyroid Hormones Accelerate Larval Skeletogenesis in Sea Urchins (Strongylocentrotus purpuratus) Through a Membrane Receptor-Mediated MAPK Signalling Cascade
Author: Taylor, Elias
Department: Department of Integrative Biology
Program: Integrative Biology
Advisor: Heyland, Andreas
Abstract: Thyroid hormones are critical regulators of development and metabolism in vertebrates. In indirect-developing sea urchins, there is strong evidence that thyroid hormones accelerate growth of the juvenile rudiment, a necessary structure for metamorphosis. The juvenile rudiment contains skeletal elements required for survival as an adult sea urchin. I investigated the effects of thyroid hormones on development and skeletogenesis (de novo generation of skeleton) in sea urchins. As well, I investigated a mechanism through which thyroid hormones act on skeletogenesis. Thyroid hormones accelerate initiation of skeletogenesis in several stages of Strongylocentrotus purpuratus larval development, including during gastrulation, formation of the posterodorsal arms, and development of the juvenile rudiment. Thyroid hormones bind to a membrane receptor in skeletogenic primary mesenchyme cells. Pharmacological inhibition suggests that this membrane receptor is an integrin and triggers a mitogen activated protein kinase cascade acting through ERK1/2 which phosphorylates transcription factors regulating skeletogenesis, including Ets1 and Alx1.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10214/12311
Date: 2018-01-16


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