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The effect of tunicamycin, an inhibitor of protein glycosylation, on starfish development was investigated. Specific developmental events such as 1) bulging of the archenteron tip, 2) migration of mesenchyme cells, 3) formation of coelomic pouches and 4) mouth formation, are inhibited in the presence of this drug. These events are discussed in connection with differentiation, migration and function of mesenchyme cells. The possibility is discussed that tunicamycin exerts its effect by interfering with de novo synthesis of a cell surface factor(s) supporting dynamic cell surface activities.