The separated shell plates with the rearranged musculature (adductor muscle) is a novelty for bivalves. Despite its importance in the bivalve bodyplan, the development of the anterior adductor muscle remains unresolved. In this study, we investigate the myogenesis of the bivalve species Septifer virgatus to reveal the developmental origin of the larval muscles in bivalves, focusing on the anterior adductor muscle. We observed that larval retractor muscles are differentiated from the ectomesoderm in bivalves, and that the anterior adductor muscles are derived from primordial larval retractor muscles via segregation of the myoblast during the veliger larval stage. Through the comparative study of myogenesis in bivalves and its related taxa, gastropods, we found that both species possess myoblasts that emerge bilaterally and later meet dorsally. We hypothesize that these myoblasts, which are a major component of the main larval retractor in limpets, are homologous to the anterior adductor muscle in bivalves. These observations imply that the anterior adductor muscle of bivalves evolved as a novel muscle by modifying the attachment sites of an existing muscle.
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