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Ornithine decarboxylase (ODC) is involved in the biosynthesis of polyamines and hence has been found in almost all types of cells studied. Therefore it is frequently used as internal standard. We isolated a cDNA, XODC2, which is a paralogue to ubiquitousODC and expressed in a spatial and temporal manner during the early embryogenesis of Xenopus laevis. Expression of XODC2was first detected at the animal pole at stage 9. During neurula stages the signals were found both in the extreme anterior and posterior part of the dorsal body axis. In tailbud stages the expression is further shifted to both the tail and head areas and gradually restricted to distinct tissues: forebrain, inner layer of epidermis of the head area, stomodeal-hypophyseal anlage, frontal gland, ear vesicle, branchial arches, the front tip of neural tube and proctodeum. In addition, signals were also found in the inner layer of epidermis underneath the cement gland during early tailbud stages while in later tailbud stages signals were detected at the apical zone of the cement gland. Comparative studies indeed could confirm that XODC1 in contrast to XODC2 is expressed ubiquitously throughout the whole embryos during early development of Xenopus laevis.
Fig. 2. Expression patterns of XODC2 (A–K) and XODC1 (L–N) by whole mount in situ hybridization. (A–C) unfertilized egg and early embryos before stage 8 showing no significant signal for XODC2. (D,E) Late blastula and gastrula embryos showing strong signal. (F,G) During neurula and early tailbud stages the expression extends to both ends of the body axis and becomes gradually restricted. (H) Stage 33 embryo showing tissue-specific expression in anus, branchial arches, the surface of the lower part of cement gland, ear vesicle, forebrain, frontal gland, and inner- and outer-fin at tail tip. (I) a mid-transversal section through the head of a stage 26 embryo, showing the expression of XODC2 in stomodeal-hypophyseal anlage, and the inner layer of epidermis of the forehead area and underneath the cement gland. (J) A mid-transversal section through the head of a late tailbud (stage 30) embryo, conforming the expression in frontal gland, prosencephalon and lower surface of cement gland, as revealed in (H); moreover, it also confirms its expression in most anterior neural tube. (K) A transversal section through the tail of a stage 33 embryo confirming the expression of XODC2 in anus. (L–N) ubiquitous expression of XODC1 in early embryogenesis. In all the figures the animal pole or dorsal is up and the anterior is left. Embryo staging was according to Nieuwkoop and Faber (1956). Abbreviations: an, anus; ba, branchial arch; cg, cement gland; ev, ear vesicle; fb, forebrain; fin, fin; fg, frontal gland; ie, inner layer of epidermis; nt, neural tube; pc, prosencephalon; pr, proctodeum; sha: stomodeal-hypophyseal anlage.
odc1 ( ornithine decarboxylase 1 ) gene expression in Xenopus laevis embryo via in situ hybridization, NF stage 5, NF stage 17 dorsal view, and NF stage 33, lateral view, anterior left, dorsal up.