The Lophotrochozoa, one of the three main branches of Bilateria, includes very diverse animals such as annelids, molluscs and flatworms. Despite their divergent adult forms, they have striking developmental similarities and a distinctive larva (the trochophore). Discovering the molecular genetic blueprint behind the lophotrochozoan larvae may help us to understand their homology and ultimately the origin of all larval forms.
Project name: The evolutionary and cellular origins of the Lophotrochozoan larva
What do snails and flatworms really have in common?