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I'm broadly interested in the evolution and development of chelicerate appendages, using Opiliones and representative arachnopulmonates (spiders, scorpions, whipscorpions) as my primary systems. The impacts of specific genes on appendage development are assessed using predominantly RNAi-mediated knockdowns and fluorescent in situ hybridization (HCR).
The chelicerate body plan is distinguished from other arthropod groups by its division of segments into two tagmata: the anterior prosoma (cephalothorax) and the posterior opisthosoma (abdomen). Little is understood about the genetic mechanisms that establish the prosomal-opisthosomal (PO) boundary. To discover these mechanisms, we created high-qua...
Despite an abundance of gene expression surveys, comparatively little is known about Hox gene function in Chelicerata. Previous investigations of paralogs of labial (lab) and Deformed (Dfd) in a spider have shown that these play a role in tissue maintenance of the pedipalpal segment (lab-1) and in patterning the first walking leg identity (Dfd-1),...
Despite an abundance of gene expression surveys, comparatively little is known about Hox gene function in Chelicerata, with emphasis on the Hox logic of the anterior prosomal segments, which bear the mouthparts. Previous investigations of individual paralogs of labial ( lab ) and Deformed ( Dfd ) in the spider Parasteatoda tepidariorum have shown t...
Background The comparative embryology of Chelicerata has greatly advanced in recent years with the integration of classical studies and genetics, prominently spearheaded by developmental genetic works in spiders. Nonetheless, the understanding of the evolution of development and polarization of embryological characters in Chelicerata is presently l...