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XB-ART-4839
Dev Biol August 15, 2003; 260 (2): 325-38.

A restrictive role for Hedgehog signalling during otic specification in Xenopus.



Abstract
Vertebrate inner ear development is initiated by the specification of the otic placode, an ectodermal structure induced by signals from neighboring tissue. Although several signaling molecules have been identified as candidate otic inducers, many details of the process of inner ear induction remain elusive. Here, we report that otic induction is responsive to the level of Hedgehog (Hh) signaling activity in Xenopus, making use of both gain- and loss-of-function approaches. Ectopic activation of Hedgehog signaling resulted in the development of ectopic vesicular structures expressing the otic marker genes XPax-2, Xdll-3, and Xwnt-3A, thus revealing otic identity. Induction of ectopic otic vesicles was also achieved by misexpression of two different inhibitors of Hh signaling: the putative Hh antagonist mHIP and XPtc1deltaLoop2, a dominant-negative form of the Hh receptor Patched. In addition, misexpression of XPtc1deltaLoop2 as well as treatment of Xenopus embryos with the specific Hh signaling antagonist cyclopamine resulted in the formation of enlarged otic vesicles. In summary, our observations suggest that a defined level of Hh signaling provides a restrictive environment for otic fate in Xenopus embryos.

PubMed ID: 12921735
Article link: Dev Biol

Genes referenced: dlx5 eya1 hhip neurod1 pax2 pax8 ptch1 rpe shh slc5a5 smo wnt3a


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