The dynamic genome of Hydra

Jarrod A. Chapman, Ewen F. Kirkness, Oleg Simakov, Steven E. Hampson, Therese Mitros, Thomas Weinmaier, Thomas Rattei, Prakash G. Balasubramanian, Jon Borman, Dana Busam, Kathryn Disbennett, Cynthia Pfannkoch, Nadezhda Sumin, Granger G. Sutton, Lakshmi Devi Viswanathan, Brian Walenz, David M. Goodstein, Uffe Hellsten, Takeshi Kawashima, Simon E. ProchnikNicholas H. Putnam, Shengquiang Shu, Bruce Blumberg, Catherine E. Dana, Lydia Gee, Dennis F. Kibler, Lee Law, Dirk Lindgens, Daniel E. Martinez, Jisong Peng, Philip A. Wigge, Bianca Bertulat, Corina Guder, Yukio Nakamura, Suat Ozbek, Hiroshi Watanabe, Konstantin Khalturin, Georg Hemmrich, André Franke, René Augustin, Sebastian Fraune, Eisuke Hayakawa, Shiho Hayakawa, Mamiko Hirose, Jung Shan Hwang, Kazuho Ikeo, Chiemi Nishimiya-Fujisawa, Atshushi Ogura, Toshio Takahashi, Patrick R.H. Steinmetz, Xiaoming Zhang, Roland Aufschnaiter, Marie Kristin Eder, Anne Kathrin Gorny, Willi Salvenmoser, Alysha M. Heimberg, Benjamin M. Wheeler, Kevin J. Peterson, Angelika Böttger, Patrick Tischler, Alexander Wolf, Takashi Gojobori, Karin A. Remington, Robert L. Strausberg, J. Craig Venter, Ulrich Technau, Bert Hobmayer, Thomas C.G. Bosch, Thomas W. Holstein, Toshitaka Fujisawa, Hans R. Bode, Charles N. David, Daniel S. Rokhsar, Robert E. Steele

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

628 Citations (Scopus)


The freshwater cnidarian Hydra was first described in 1702 and has been the object of study for 300 years. Experimental studies of Hydra between 1736 and 1744 culminated in the discovery of asexual reproduction of an animal by budding, the first description of regeneration in an animal, and successful transplantation of tissue between animals. Today, Hydra is an important model for studies of axial patterning, stem cell biology and regeneration. Here we report the genome of Hydra magnipapillata and compare it to the genomes of the anthozoan Nematostella vectensis and other animals. The Hydra genome has been shaped by bursts of transposable element expansion, horizontal gene transfer, trans-splicing, and simplification of gene structure and gene content that parallel simplification of the Hydra life cycle. We also report the sequence of the genome of a novel bacterium stably associated with H. magnipapillata. Comparisons of the Hydra genome to the genomes of other animals shed light on the evolution of epithelia, contractile tissues, developmentally regulated transcription factors, the Spemann-Mangold organizer, pluripotency genes and the neuromuscular junction.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)592-596
Number of pages5
Issue number7288
Publication statusPublished - 2010 Mar 25

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General


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