Light-Responsive Cryptochromes From A Simple Multicellular Animal, The Coral Acropora Millepora

O. Levy, L Appelbaum, W Leggat, Y Gothlif, D. C Hayward, D. J Miller, O Hoegh-Guldberg

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review


Hundreds of species of reef-building corals spawn synchronously over a few nights each year, and moonlight regulates this spawning event. However, the molecular elements underpinning the detection of moonlight remain unknown. Here we report the presence of an ancient family of blue-light–sensing photoreceptors, cryptochromes, in the reef-building coral Acropora millepora. In addition to being cryptochrome genes from one of the earliest-diverging eumetazoan phyla, cry1 and cry2 were expressed preferentially in light. Consistent with potential roles in the synchronization of fundamentally important behaviors such as mass spawning, cry2 expression increased on full moon nights versus new moon nights. Our results demonstrate phylogenetically broad roles of these ancient circadian clock–related molecules in the animal kingdom.
Original languageAmerican English
StatePublished - 2008
Event11th International Coral Reef Symposium - Fort Lauderdale, United States
Duration: 7 Jul 200811 Jul 2008


Conference11th International Coral Reef Symposium
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityFort Lauderdale


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  • 11th International Coral Reef Symposium

    Levy, O. (Participation - Conference participant)

    7 Jul 200811 Jul 2008

    Activity: Participating in or organizing an eventOrganizing a conference, workshop, ...

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