Pilot morpholino screen in Xenopus tropicalis identifies a novel gene involved in head development
Version of Record online: 24 DEC 2003
Copyright © 2003 Wiley-Liss, Inc.
Volume 229, Issue 2, pages 289–299, February 2004
How to Cite
Kenwrick, S., Amaya, E. and Papalopulu, N. (2004), Pilot morpholino screen in Xenopus tropicalis identifies a novel gene involved in head development. Dev. Dyn., 229: 289–299. doi: 10.1002/dvdy.10440
- Issue online: 20 JAN 2004
- Version of Record online: 24 DEC 2003
- Manuscript Revised: 8 SEP 2003
- Manuscript Accepted: 8 SEP 2003
- Manuscript Received: 1 JUL 2003
- Wellcome Trust. Grant Number: RG33387
- Xenopus tropicalis;
- head development;
The diploid frog X. tropicalis has recently been adopted as a model genetic system, but loss-of-function screens in Xenopus have not yet been performed. We have undertaken a pilot functional knockdown screen in X. tropicalis for genes involved in nervous system development by injecting antisense morpholino (MO) oligos directed against X. tropicalis mRNAs. Twenty-six genes with primary expression in the nervous system were selected as targets based on an expression screen previously conducted in X. laevis. Reproducible phenotypes were observed for six and for four of these, a second MO gave a similar result. One of these genes encodes a novel protein with previously unknown function. Knocking down this gene, designated pinhead, results in severe microcephaly, whereas, overexpression results in macrocephaly. Together with the early embryonic expression in the anterior neural plate, these data indicate that pinhead is a novel gene involved in controlling head development. Developmental Dynamics 289–299, 2004. © 2003 Wiley-Liss, Inc.