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Development October 1, 2014; 141 (19): 3649-61.

EphA4-dependent Brachyury expression is required for dorsal mesoderm involution in the Xenopus gastrula.

Evren S , Wen JW , Luu O , Damm EW , Nagel M , Winklbauer R .

Xenopus provides a well-studied model of vertebrate gastrulation, but a central feature, the movement of the mesoderm to the interior of the embryo, has received little attention. Here, we analyze mesoderm involution at the Xenopus dorsal blastopore lip. We show that a phase of rapid involution - peak involution - is intimately linked to an early stage of convergent extension, which involves differential cell migration in the prechordal mesoderm and a new movement of the chordamesoderm, radial convergence. The latter process depends on Xenopus Brachyury, the expression of which at the time of peak involution is controlled by signaling through the ephrin receptor, EphA4, its ligand ephrinB2 and its downstream effector p21-activated kinase. Our findings support a conserved role for Brachyury in blastopore morphogenesis.

PubMed ID: 25209247
Article link: Development
Grant support: [+]

Species referenced: Xenopus
Genes referenced: bcr cdkn1a cer1 chrd.1 efnb2 epha4 gsc mapk1 nsg1 pak1 pik3ca sox2 tbxt
Morpholinos: efnb2 MO1 epha4 MO2

Article Images: [+] show captions