|COOKIES: By using this website you agree that we can place Google Analytics Cookies on your device for performance monitoring.|
Cracking the code of crocodile skin
If you have a question about this talk, please contact Jeremy Solly.
Various lineages of amniotes display keratinised skin appendages (feathers, hairs, and scales) that differentiate in the embryo from genetically-controlled developmental units whose spatial organisation is patterned by reaction-diffusion mechanisms (RDMs). Using customised robotic high-resolution 3D geometry and texture reconstruction hardware and software, as well as developmental biology techniques, we recently showed that face and jaws scales of crocodiles are random polygonal domains of highly keratinised skin, rather than genetically controlled elements, and emerge from a physical self-organising stochastic process distinct from RDMs: cracking of the developing skin in a stress field. In addition, using molecular and electrophysiological analyses, we demonstrated that the small integumentary sensory organs (ISOs) distributed on postcranial and/or cranial scales of crocodylians, are not only exquisite mechanosensors, but constitute multi-sensorial micro-organs innervated by multiple pools of sensory neurons with mechano-, thermo-, and chemosensory functions. Hence, the ancestral vertebrate diffused sensory system of the skin was transformed in the crocodylian lineage into an array of discrete multi-sensory micro-organs with no equivalent in other vertebrates. These two profoundly modified developmental processes (cracking of the skin and discretisation of sensory expression sites) allowed crocodylians to develop a highly-armoured, yet very sensitive, skin.
This talk is part of the Evolution and Development Seminar Series series.
This talk is included in these lists:
Note that ex-directory lists are not shown.
Other listsTheory Workshop humanitas Druggability and the Genome (EBI, Hinxton, 4th February 2008)
Other talksVariability in visual processing between and within individuals TBC (systems biology analysis of heart development) Biomimicry - Development of Sustainable Design Dragonfly Wings: A model evolutionary system. Chemical Adventures Using the Unified Principles of Homogeneous and Heterogeneous Catalysis The EU and migration: A call to action