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Title: Loss of olfaction in sea snakes provides new perspectives on the aquatic adaptation of amniotes
Authors: Kishida, Takushi
Go, Yasuhiro
Tatsumoto, Shoji
Tatsumi, Kaori
Kuraku, Shigehiro
Toda, Mamoru
Author's alias: 岸田, 拓士
郷, 康広
辰本, 将司
辰見, 香織
工樂, 樹洋
戸田, 守
Keywords: OR
fully aquatic
Issue Date: 4-Sep-2019
Publisher: Royal Society
Journal title: Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences
Volume: 286
Issue: 1910
Thesis number: 20191828
Abstract: Marine amniotes, a polyphyletic group, provide an excellent opportunity for studying convergent evolution. Their sense of smell tends to degenerate, but this process has not been explored by comparing fully aquatic species with their amphibious relatives in an evolutionary context. Here, we sequenced the genomes of fully aquatic and amphibious sea snakes and identified repertoires of chemosensory receptor genes involved in olfaction. Snakes possess large numbers of the olfactory receptor (OR) genes and the type-2 vomeronasal receptor (V2R) genes, and expression profiling in the olfactory tissues suggests that snakes use the ORs in the main olfactory system (MOS) and the V2Rs in the vomeronasal system (VNS). The number of OR genes has decreased in sea snakes, and fully aquatic species lost MOS which is responsible for detecting airborne odours. By contrast, sea snakes including fully aquatic species retain a number of V2R genes and a well-developed VNS for smelling underwater. This study suggests that the sense of smell also degenerated in sea snakes, particularly in fully aquatic species, but their residual olfactory capability is distinct from that of other fully aquatic amniotes. Amphibious species show an intermediate status between terrestrial and fully aquatic snakes, implying their importance in understanding the process of aquatic adaptation.
Description: ウミヘビ類のゲノム解読に成功 --海洋環境への適応進化の分子的基盤を探る--. 京都大学プレスリリース. 2019-09-11.
Rights: This is the accepted manuscript of the article, which has been published in final form at
This is not the published version. Please cite only the published version. この論文は出版社版でありません。引用の際には出版社版をご確認ご利用ください。
DOI(Published Version): 10.1098/rspb.2019.1828
PubMed ID: 31506057
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