Insects Diversify One Molecule to Serve Two Systems

Science  16 Sep 2005:
Vol. 309, Issue 5742, pp. 1826-1827
DOI: 10.1126/science.1118828

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In his Perspective, Du Pasquier discusses findings of Watson et al. that alternate splicing of the locus encoding the insect homolog of the Down syndrome cell adhesion molecule generates a vast diversity of immunoglobulin superfamily receptors used in the nervous system and in the immune system. Du Pasquier discusses the implications of this situation for the regulation and the evolution of this locus.