Thursday, January 09, 2014

Is it an elephant or is it a shark?

I still remember when David first present elephant shark in a group meeting, I stopped him and asked naively: Excuse me, is it an elephant or is it a shark? :)

Of course, it's not an elephant. And now I know it's neither a shark.

Here is the today's Nature paper for the 'living fossil':

It says
"Our functional studies suggest that the lack of genes encoding secreted calcium-binding phosphoproteins in cartilaginous fishes explains the absence of bone in their endoskeleton. Furthermore, the adaptive immune system of cartilaginous fishes is unusual: it lacks the canonical CD4 co-receptor and most transcription factors, cytokines and cytokine receptors related to the CD4 lineage, despite the presence of polymorphic major histocompatibility complex classII molecules. It thus presents a new model for understanding the origin of adaptive immunity."

Here is the taxa from the paper:

And I could just find the one I made in my PhD thesis :)

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