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Keywords:

  • phosphorylation;
  • Xenopus;
  • embryo;
  • proteomics;
  • mass spectrometry

Abstract

Phosphorylation is universally used for controlling protein function, but knowledge of the phosphoproteome in vertebrate embryos has been limited. However, recent technical advances make it possible to define an organism's phosphoproteome at a more comprehensive level. Xenopus laevis offers established advantages for analyzing the regulation of protein function by phosphorylation. Functionally unbiased, comprehensive information about the Xenopus phosphoproteome would provide a powerful guide for future studies of phosphorylation in a developmental context. To this end, we performed a phosphoproteomic analysis of Xenopus oocytes, eggs, and embryos using recently developed mass spectrometry methods. We identified 1,441 phosphorylation sites present on 654 different Xenopus proteins, including hundreds of previously unknown phosphorylation sites. This approach identified several phosphorylation sites described in the literature and/or evolutionarily conserved in other organisms, validating the data's quality. These data will serve as a powerful resource for the exploration of phosphorylation and protein function within a developmental context. Developmental Dynamics 238:1433–1443, 2009. © 2009 Wiley-Liss, Inc.