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You are here: HomeStaffList of PersonnelArnone Maria I.Arnone Maria I.

Maria Ina Arnone Research Director
Biology and Evolution of Marine Organisms Department

Tel. +39 081 5833203 - +39 081 5833255
Fax: +39 081 7641355
e-mail: ina.arnone(at)szn.it
Skype: miarnone
Arnone’s group website


Curriculum Vitae

Organismi modello

Partner of the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Innovative Training Network EvoCELL

Research interests

The Arnone group main focus is to elucidate how Gene Regulatory Networks evolved to guide diverse organogenetic processes. Of particular interest to us is to understand which are the elements controlling the differentiation of the embryonic archenteron into a complex tripartite larval digestive tract equipped with distinct cell types regulating its function.

To answer this question, we use Echinoderms that are phylogenetically, together with the sister group hemichordates, ancient lineages of living non-chordate deuterostomes. Therefore, they provide an invaluable outgroup for assessment of what is ancient in chordates, what is chordate-specific, what is protostome-specific and represent a key group for studying the origin of deuterostomes. In our comparative studies, we use two sea urchin species: the Pacific Ocean species Strongylocentrotus purpuratus and the Mediterranean species Paracentrotus lividus, as well as the Pacific Ocean starfish species Patiria miniata.

Using multidisciplinary approaches spanning from high throughput sequencing techniques (RNA-seq, ChIP-Seq, ATAC-seq, scRNA-seq) to confocal (FISH, IHC) and electron based microscopy strategies (SEM, TEM, SBEM) paired with the in vivo gene expression perturbation (MASOs, CRISPR/Cas9), we aim to characterize specific echinoderm cell types at molecular, morphological and behavioral levels.

Microinjection in sea urchin zygotes

Selected Publications

(for a full list use this link)

Paganos P, Voronov D, Musser J, Arendt D, Arnone MI*. Single cell RNA sequencing of the Strongylocentrotus purpuratus larva reveals the blueprint of major cell types and nervous system of a non-chordate deuterostome. BiorXiv (2021).

Rendell-Bhatti F, Paganos P, Pouch A, Mitchell C, D'Aniello S, Godley BJ, Pazdro K, Arnone MI, Jimenez-Guri E*. Developmental toxicity of plastic leachates on the sea urchin Paracentrotus lividus. Environ Pollut (2021) 269: 115744.

Annunziata R, Andrikou C, Perillo M, Cuomo C, Arnone MI*. Development and evolution of gut structures: from molecules to function. Cell Tissue Res (2019) 377:445–458.

Lowe EK, Cuomo C, Voronov D, Arnone MI*. Using ATAC-seq and RNA-seq to increase resolution in GRN connectivity. Methods Cell Biol (2019) 151, 115-126.

Lowe EK, Garm A, Ullrich-Luter E, Arnone MI*. The crowns have eyes: Multiple opsins found in the eyes of the Crown-of-Thorns Starfish Acanthaster planci. BMC Evol Biol (2018) 18: 168.

Perillo M, Paganos P, Mattiello T, Cocurullo M, Oliveri P, Arnone MI*. Novel neuronal subtypes with a pancreatic-like signature in the sea urchin Strongylocentrotus purpuratus. Front Endocrinol (2018) 9: 650.

Burguera D, Marquez Y, Racioppi C, Permanyer J, Torres-Méndez A, Esposito R, Albuixech-Crespo B, Fanlo L, D'Agostino Y, Gohr A, Navas-Perez E, Riesgo A, Cuomo C, Benvenuto G, Christiaen LA, Martí E, D'Aniello S, Spagnuolo A, Ristoratore F, Arnone MI*, Garcia-Fernàndez J*, Irimia M*. Evolutionary recruitment of flexible Esrp-dependent splicing programs into diverse embryonic morphogenetic processes. Nat Commun (2017) 8: 1799.

Lowe EK, Cuomo C, Arnone MI*. Omics approaches to study gene regulatory networks for development in echinoderms. Brief Funct Genomics (2017) 16, 299-308.

Arnone MI*, Andrikou C, Annunziata R. Echinoderm systems for gene regulatory studies in evolution and development. Curr Opin Gen Dev (2016) 39: 129-137.

Valero-Gracia A, Petrone L, Oliveri P, Nilsson DE, Arnone MI*. Non-directional Photoreceptors in the Pluteus of Strongylocentrotus purpuratus. Front Ecol Evol (2016) 4, 127.

Perillo M, Wang YJ, Leach, SD, Arnone MI*. A pancreatic exocrine-like cell regulatory circuit operating in the upper stomach of the sea urchin Strongylocentrotus purpuratus larva. BMC Evol Biol (2016) 16, 117.

Rizzo F, Coffman JA, Arnone MI*. An Elk transcription factor is required for Runx-dependent survival signaling in the sea urchin embryo. Dev Biol (2016) 416: 173-186.

Andrikou C, Pai CY, Su YH, Arnone MI*. Logics and properties of a genetic regulatory program that drives embryonic muscle development in an echinoderm. eLIFE (2015) 4, e07343.

D'Aniello S, Delroisse J, Valero-Gracia A, Lowe EK, Byrne M, Cannon JT, Halanych KM, Elphick MR, Mallefet J, Kaul-Strehlow S, Lowe CJ, Flammang P, Ullrich-Lüter E, Wanninger A, Arnone MI*. Opsin evolution in the Ambulacraria. Mar Genomics (2015) 24: 177-183.

Perillo M and Arnone MI*. Characterization of insulin-like peptides (ILPs) in the sea urchin Strongylocentrotus purpuratus: insights on the evolution of the insulin family. Gen Comp Endocrinol (2014) 205: 68-79.

Annunziata M and Arnone MI*. A dynamic network of regulatory interactions explains ParaHox gene control of gut patterning in the sea urchin embryo. Development (2014) 141: 2462-72.

Annunziata R, Perillo M, Andrikou C, Cole A, Martinez P & Arnone MI*. Pattern and Process During Sea Urchin Gut Morphogenesis: the Regulatory Landscape. Genesis (2014) 52: 251-68.

Andrikou C, Iovene E, Rizzo F, Oliveri P and Arnone MI*. Myogenesis in the sea urchin embryo: the molecular fingerprint of the myoblast precursors. EvoDevo (2013) 4:33.

Ullrich-Lüter E, D’Aniello S and Arnone MI*. C-opsin expressing photoreceptors in echinoderms. Integr Comp Biol (2013) 53: 27-38.

Annunziata R, Martinez P and Arnone MI*. Intact cluster and chordate-like expression of ParaHox genes in a sea star. BMC Biol (2013) 11:68.

Ullrich-Lüter E, Dupont S, Arboleda E, Hausen H and Arnone MI*. A Unique System of Photoreceptors in Sea Urchin Tube Feet. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A (2011) 108: 8367-72.

Cole, AG, Rizzo F, Fernandez-Serra M, Martinez P, and Arnone MI*. ParaHox genes coordinate to pattern the posterior endoderm. Development (2009) 136: 541-9.

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