A set of genes, including a lectin, two scavenger receptors and two actin regulators, were found to aid the early steps of coral–algal endosymbiosis, including algae recognition and uptake, in a Xenia soft coral species. The findings were made possible by using a combination of RNA interference-mediated gene knockdown, single-cell RNA sequencing (scRNA-seq), bioinformatics and cell biology approaches.
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This is a summary of: Hu, M. et al. Coral–algal endosymbiosis characterized using RNAi and single-cell RNA-seq. Nat. Microbiol. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41564-023-01397-9 (2023).
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Soluble lectin LePin mediates alga recognition to initiate coral–algal endosymbiosis. Nat Microbiol 8, 1197–1198 (2023). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41564-023-01404-z