Technau Ulrich

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  • Preprint
    Current directions and future perspectives from the third Nematostella research conference
    ( 2014-06) Tarrant, Ann M. ; Gilmore, Thomas D. ; Reitzel, Adam M. ; Levy, Oren ; Technau, Ulrich ; Martindale, Mark Q.
    The third Nematostella vectensis Research Conference took place in December 2013 in Eilat, Israel, as a satellite to the 8th International Conference on Coelenterate Biology. The starlet sea anemone, Nematostella vectensis, has emerged as a powerful cnidarian model, in large part due to the extensive genomic and transcriptomic resources and molecular approaches that are becoming available for Nematostella, which were the focus of several presentations. In addition, research was presented highlighting the broader utility of this species for studies of development, circadian rhythms, signal transduction, and gene–environment interactions.
  • Article
    Convergent evolution of sodium ion selectivity in metazoan neuronal signaling
    (Cell Press, 2012-08-30) Barzilai, Maya Gur ; Reitzel, Adam M. ; Kraus, Johanna E. M. ; Gordon, Dalia ; Technau, Ulrich ; Gurevitz, Michael ; Moran, Yehu
    Ion selectivity of metazoan voltage-gated Na+ channels is critical for neuronal signaling and has long been attributed to a ring of four conserved amino acids that constitute the ion selectivity filter (SF) at the channel pore. Yet, in addition to channels with a preference for Ca2+ ions, the expression and characterization of Na+ channel homologs from the sea anemone Nematostella vectensis, a member of the early-branching metazoan phylum Cnidaria, revealed a sodium-selective channel bearing a noncanonical SF. Mutagenesis and physiological assays suggest that pore elements additional to the SF determine the preference for Na+ in this channel. Phylogenetic analysis assigns the Nematostella Na+-selective channel to a channel group unique to Cnidaria, which diverged >540 million years ago from Ca2+-conducting Na+ channel homologs. The identification of Cnidarian Na+-selective ion channels distinct from the channels of bilaterian animals indicates that selectivity for Na+ in neuronal signaling emerged independently in these two animal lineages.