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Keywords:

  • ascidian;
  • chordate;
  • embryo;
  • fluorescent protein;
  • imaging

Decades of studies on ascidian embryogenesis have culminated in deciphering the first gene regulatory “blueprint” for the generation of all major larval tissue types in chordates. However, the current gene regulatory network (GRN) is not well integrated with the morphogenetic and cellular processes that are also taking place during embryogenesis. Describing these processes represents a major on-going challenge, aided by recent advances in imaging and fluorescent protein (FP) technologies. In this report, we describe the application of these technologies to the developmental biology of ascidians and provide a detailed practical guide on the preparation of ascidian embryos for imaging.