Present address: Laboratory for Vertebrate Body Plan, Center for Developmental Biology, RIKEN Kobe, 2-2-3 Minatojima Minamimachi, Chuo-ku, Kobe 650-0047, Japan.
Anterior shift in gene expression precedes anteriormost digit formation in amniote limbs
Article first published online: 20 JAN 2010
© 2010 The Authors. Journal compilation © 2010 Japanese Society of Developmental Biologists
Development, Growth & Differentiation
Volume 52, Issue 2, pages 223–234, February 2010
How to Cite
Uejima, A., Amano, T., Nomura, N., Noro, M., Yasue, T., Shiroishi, T., Ohta, K., Yokoyama, H. and Tamura, K. (2010), Anterior shift in gene expression precedes anteriormost digit formation in amniote limbs. Development, Growth & Differentiation, 52: 223–234. doi: 10.1111/j.1440-169X.2009.01161.x
Present address: Graduate School of Biological Sciences, Nara Institute of Science and Technology, 8916-5, Takayama, Ikoma, Nara 630-0192, Japan.
- Issue published online: 8 FEB 2010
- Article first published online: 20 JAN 2010
- Received 3 August 2009; revised 24 November 2009; accepted 24 November 2009.
In tetrapod limbs, an anteriormost digit has common traits of small, short and less-phalange morphology. In this study, we focused on three genes, Mkp3, Sef and Tsukushi (TSK), which have anterior-specific or anterior-prominent expression patterns in the developing limb bud at the autopod-forming stage. The anterior expression is not fixed in the period of limb development, but the expression domains of Mkp3, Sef and TSK change considerably from the distal domain to the anterior domain. This change in expression domains, anterior shift, of these genes involves maintenance of gene expression in the anterior side and downregulation in the posterior side. Manipulated overdose of fibroblast growth factor (FGF) in the presumptive digit 2 region of chick forelimb bud results in elongation of cartilage elements of digit 2, suggesting that attenuated FGF signaling, which Mkp3, Sef, and TSK negatively regulate, provides digit 2-specific traits of morphology. The anterior expression of Mkp3 and Sef but not TSK is conserved also in limb buds of the mouse and gecko, and the anterior shift of these genes, accumulation of their transcripts in the anterior side and appropriate regulation of strength of FGF signaling may control species-specific morphology of the anteriormost digit.