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Regeneration Research Finds a Rich Model in a Marine Worm

Scientists at Harvard University have generated a toolkit to enable in-depth study of cellular and molecular mechanisms in a species of marine worms called Hofstenia miamia (also called the three-banded panther worm) that are capable of extensive whole-body regeneration. The new transgenically-enabled model system will facilitate understanding of a major animal lineage that is largely unstudied. Using stable transgenic lines, the authors revealed a high-resolution 3D view of cell morphology. This showed that muscle cells and their extensions provide an underlying scaffolding system for tissues in the worm.