The Spemann organizer meets the anterior-most neuroectoderm at the equator of early gastrulae in amphibian species

Authors

  • Takanori Yanagi,

    1. JT Biohistory Research Hall, Takatsuki, Osaka, Japan
    2. Department of Biological Sciences, Graduate School of Science, Osaka University, Toyonaka, Osaka, 560-0043, Japan
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    • These authors contributed equally to this work.
  • Kenta Ito,

    1. JT Biohistory Research Hall, Takatsuki, Osaka, Japan
    2. Department of Biological Sciences, Graduate School of Science, Osaka University, Toyonaka, Osaka, 560-0043, Japan
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    • These authors contributed equally to this work.
  • Akiha Nishihara,

    1. JT Biohistory Research Hall, Takatsuki, Osaka, Japan
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    • These authors contributed equally to this work.
  • Reika Minamino,

    1. JT Biohistory Research Hall, Takatsuki, Osaka, Japan
    2. Department of Biological Sciences, Graduate School of Science, Osaka University, Toyonaka, Osaka, 560-0043, Japan
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  • Shoko Mori,

    1. JT Biohistory Research Hall, Takatsuki, Osaka, Japan
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  • Masayuki Sumida,

    1. Institute for Amphibian Biology, Hiroshima University, Kagamiyama, Higashi-Hiroshima, Hiroshima, Japan
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  • Chikara Hashimoto

    Corresponding author
    1. JT Biohistory Research Hall, Takatsuki, Osaka, Japan
    2. Department of Biological Sciences, Graduate School of Science, Osaka University, Toyonaka, Osaka, 560-0043, Japan
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Abstract

The dorsal blastopore lip (known as the Spemann organizer) is important for making the body plan in amphibian gastrulation. The organizer is believed to involute inward and migrate animally to make physical contact with the prospective head neuroectoderm at the blastocoel roof of mid- to late-gastrula. However, we found that this physical contact was already established at the equatorial region of very early gastrula in a wide variety of amphibian species. Here we propose a unified model of amphibian gastrulation movement. In the model, the organizer is present at the blastocoel roof of blastulae, moves vegetally to locate at the region that lies from the blastocoel floor to the dorsal lip at the onset of gastrulation. The organizer located at the blastocoel floor contributes to the anterior axial mesoderm including the prechordal plate, and the organizer at the dorsal lip ends up as the posterior axial mesoderm. During the early step of gastrulation, the anterior organizer moves to establish the physical contact with the prospective neuroectoderm through the “subduction and zippering” movements. Subduction makes a trench between the anterior organizer and the prospective neuroectoderm, and the tissues face each other via the trench. Zippering movement, with forming Brachet's cleft, gradually closes the gap to establish the contact between them. The contact is completed at the equator of early gastrulae and it continues throughout the gastrulation. After the contact is established, the dorsal axis is formed posteriorly, but not anteriorly. The model also implies the possibility of constructing a common model of gastrulation among chordate species.

Ancillary