04 June, 2015
In this new publication we characterized plasma membrane-type HCO3− transporters in the scleractinian coral Stylophora pistillata. We found eight solute carrier (SLC) genes in the genome: five homologs of mammalian-type SLC4 family members and three of mammalian-type SLC26 family members. Our data suggest that the SLC4γ isoform is specific to scleractinian corals and responsible for supplying HCO3− to the site of calcification. Taken together, SLC4γ appears to be one of the key genes for skeleton building in corals, which bears profound implications for our understanding of coral biomineralization and the evolution of scleractinian corals within cnidarians.