Dynamic expression of the basic helix-loop-helix transcription factor neuroD in the rod and cone photoreceptor lineages in the retina of the embryonic and larval zebrafish
Article first published online: 5 JAN 2007
Copyright © 2007 Wiley-Liss, Inc.
Journal of Comparative Neurology
Volume 501, Issue 1, pages 1–12, 1 March 2007
How to Cite
Ochocinska, M. J. and Hitchcock, P. F. (2007), Dynamic expression of the basic helix-loop-helix transcription factor neuroD in the rod and cone photoreceptor lineages in the retina of the embryonic and larval zebrafish. J. Comp. Neurol., 501: 1–12. doi: 10.1002/cne.21150
- Issue published online: 5 JAN 2007
- Article first published online: 5 JAN 2007
- Manuscript Accepted: 28 JUL 2006
- Manuscript Revised: 19 JUN 2006
- Manuscript Received: 9 MAR 2006
- National Institutes of Health. Grant Numbers: T32 EY013934 (Vision Science Training Grant), RO1 EY07060, P30 EY07003 (Core Grant for Vision Research to the University of Michigan)
- gene expression;
NeuroD is a basic helix-loop-helix (bHLH) transcription factor critical for determining neuronal cell fate and regulating withdrawal from the cell cycle. We showed previously that, in goldfish, neuroD is expressed in the rod photoreceptor lineage, and we inferred that neuroD is also expressed in a subset of amacrine cells and nascent cone photoreceptors. Here we extended that study by examining the temporal and spatial expression pattern of neuroD in the embryonic and larval zebrafish and by identifying the cell types that express this gene. NeuroD expression in the developing zebrafish retina is dynamic, spanning early retinogenesis and the maturation of cone photoreceptors. In early retinogenesis neuroD expression expands from a small patch in the ventronasal retina, through the remaining retinal neuroepithelium. As retinogenesis progresses, neuroD expression becomes restricted to amacrine cells, immature cones, and cells of rod and cone lineages. This expression achieves an adult pattern by 96 hours postfertilization (hpf), whereupon the temporal pattern of neuroD expression in central retina is spatially recapitulated at the germinative margin. The cellular pattern of expression suggests that neuroD regulates aspects of rod and cone genesis, but through separate cellular lineages. Furthermore, neuroD is coexpressed with the cone-rod-homeobox transcription factor (Crx) in putative cone progenitors and nascent cone photoreceptors, suggesting that, in the zebrafish retina, as in other vertebrate retinas, similar genetic cascades regulate photoreceptor genesis and maturation. J. Comp. Neurol. 501:1–12, 2007. © 2007 Wiley-Liss, Inc.