The genome of the sea urchin Strongylocentrotus purpuratus

Science. 2006 Nov 10;314(5801):941-52. doi: 10.1126/science.1133609.


We report the sequence and analysis of the 814-megabase genome of the sea urchin Strongylocentrotus purpuratus, a model for developmental and systems biology. The sequencing strategy combined whole-genome shotgun and bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) sequences. This use of BAC clones, aided by a pooling strategy, overcame difficulties associated with high heterozygosity of the genome. The genome encodes about 23,300 genes, including many previously thought to be vertebrate innovations or known only outside the deuterostomes. This echinoderm genome provides an evolutionary outgroup for the chordates and yields insights into the evolution of deuterostomes.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Calcification, Physiologic
  • Cell Adhesion Molecules / genetics
  • Cell Adhesion Molecules / physiology
  • Complement Activation / genetics
  • Computational Biology
  • Embryonic Development / genetics
  • Evolution, Molecular
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Developmental
  • Genes
  • Genome*
  • Immunity, Innate / genetics
  • Immunologic Factors / genetics
  • Immunologic Factors / physiology
  • Male
  • Nervous System Physiological Phenomena
  • Proteins / genetics
  • Proteins / physiology
  • Sequence Analysis, DNA*
  • Signal Transduction
  • Strongylocentrotus purpuratus / embryology
  • Strongylocentrotus purpuratus / genetics*
  • Strongylocentrotus purpuratus / immunology
  • Strongylocentrotus purpuratus / physiology
  • Transcription Factors / genetics


  • Cell Adhesion Molecules
  • Immunologic Factors
  • Proteins
  • Transcription Factors

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