Squid and Octopus Genome Studies Reveal How Their Elaborate Nervous Systems Evolved | Cosmos Magazine

Longfin Squid (Loligo pealei). Credit: Tom Kleindinst

Squid, octopus and cuttlefish are known as soft-bodied or coleoid cephalopods. They have the largest nervous system of any invertebrate, complex behaviours such as instantaneous camouflage, arms studded with dexterous suckers, and other evolutionarily unique traits.

Now, an international team of scientists have dug into the cephalopod genome and discovered it’s just as weird as the animals themselves. These genomes are large, have been scrambled and rearranged dramatically, and contain hundreds of unique genes and unusually expanded gene families.  

Their research has been reported in two new studies published in Nature Communications.

In the first study, the team analysed and compared the genomes of three cephalopod species – two squids (Doryteuthis pealeii and Euprymna scolopes) and an octopus (Octopus bimaculoides). The feat took several years and involved labs from all around the world. Read the full article at CosmosMagazine.com.

Source: Squid and Octopus Genome Studies Reveal How Their Elaborate Nervous Systems Evolved | Cosmos Magazine