Expression patterns of engrailed and dpp in the gastropod Lymnaea stagnalis
We isolated the full-length cDNAs of engrailed and dpp-BMP2/4 orthologues from the pond snail Lymnaea stagnalis and examined their expression patterns during development by the whole mount in situ hybridization. At the gastrula and trochophore stages, engrailed is expressed in the peripheral ectoderm of the presumptive and invaginating shell gland, corroborating its role in the shell formation that is widely conserved among molluscs. At the same stages, dpp-BMP2/4 is expressed in the right-hand side ectoderm of the shell gland and in the invaginating stomodaeum. Unlike in the gastropod Patella vulgata, our results suggested that dpp-BMP2/4 has a role in the shell formation, rather than in the regional specification and that it could be involved in the specification pathway of the left–right asymmetry of the developing shell in L. stagnalis.