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Phenotypic and evolutionary implications of modulating the ERK-MAPK cascade using the dentition as a model

Abstract : The question of phenotypic convergence across a signalling pathway has important implications for both developmental and evolutionary biology. The ERK-MAPK cascade is known to play a central role in dental development, but the relative roles of its components remain unknown. Here we investigate the diversity of dental phenotypes in Spry2(-/-), Spry4(-/-), and Rsk2(-/Y) mice, including the incidence of extra teeth, which were lost in the mouse lineage 45 million years ago (Ma). In addition, Sprouty-specific anomalies mimic a phenotype that is absent in extant mice but present in mouse ancestors prior to 9 Ma. Although the mutant lines studied display convergent phenotypes, each gene has a specific role in tooth number determination and crown patterning. The similarities found between teeth in fossils and mutants highlight the pivotal role of the ERK-MAPK cascade during the evolution of the dentition in rodents
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Pauline Marangoni, Cyril Charles, Paul Tafforeau, Virginie Laugel-Haushalter, Adriane Joo, et al.. Phenotypic and evolutionary implications of modulating the ERK-MAPK cascade using the dentition as a model. Scientific Reports, Nature Publishing Group, 2015, 5, 12 p. ⟨10.1038/srep11658⟩. ⟨hal-01572830⟩

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