Snap ChAT: A Flatworm Creates a New Profile

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Samuel A. LoCascio, Kutay Deniz Atabay

This image shows the head, brain and eyes of a planarian flatworm.

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Samuel A. LoCascio, Kutay Deniz Atabay, Peter Reddien
Whitehead Institute

The planarian flatworm shown here possesses a remarkable ability to regenerate complex tissue structures lost to injury, including a brain and eyes. Each color represents a different layer of neurons in the head, revealed by expression of the choline acetyltransferase (ChAT) gene. Not shown in this image are the abundant stem cells that give rise to a new central nervous system as the flatworm regenerates. The Reddien Lab studies planarians to illuminate the cellular and molecular basis of regeneration.

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