Cellular morphogenesis in ascidians: how to shape a simple tadpole


  • Munro Edwin
  • Robin Francois
  • Lemaire Patrick

document type



Ascidians are invertebrate chordates that form tadpole larvae with a surprisingly small number of cells. Recently, the emergence of powerful molecular tools to study cell fate determination in ascidians has been complemented by studies, often at cellular resolution, of morphogenetic processes. These studies point to a complex interplay among mechanisms that control cell fate and polarity and those that govern cell shape change and morphogenesis. The relative simplicity and stereotypy of ascidian development suggests that it will be possible to understand, and possibly to mathematically model, this dynamic coupling between cell fate and shape change.

more information