• We are sorry, but NCBI web applications do not support your browser and may not function properly. More information
Logo of pnasPNASInfo for AuthorsSubscriptionsAboutThis Article
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. Jul 19, 1994; 91(15): 7286–7290.

Retinoic acid is necessary for development of the ventral retina in zebrafish.


In the embryonic zebrafish retina, as in other vertebrates, retinoic acid is synthesized from retinaldehyde by two different dehydrogenases, one localized dorsally, the other primarily ventrally. Early in eye development only the ventral enzyme is present. Citral competitively inhibits the ventral enzyme in vitro and decreases the production of retinoic acid in the ventral retina in vivo. Treatment of neurula-stage zebrafish embryos with citral during the formation of the eye primordia results in eyes lacking a ventral retina. This defect can be partially rescued by retinoic acid. The results demonstrate that synthesis of retinoic acid can be selectively inhibited in vivo and suggest that retinoic acid is necessary for the proper development of the ventral retina.

Full text

Full text is available as a scanned copy of the original print version. Get a printable copy (PDF file) of the complete article (1.5M), or click on a page image below to browse page by page. Links to PubMed are also available for Selected References.

Images in this article

Click on the image to see a larger version.

Selected References

These references are in PubMed. This may not be the complete list of references from this article.
  • Thaller C, Eichele G. Identification and spatial distribution of retinoids in the developing chick limb bud. Nature. 1987 Jun 18;327(6123):625–628. [PubMed]
  • Tickle C, Alberts B, Wolpert L, Lee J. Local application of retinoic acid to the limb bond mimics the action of the polarizing region. Nature. 1982 Apr 8;296(5857):564–566. [PubMed]
  • Riddle RD, Johnson RL, Laufer E, Tabin C. Sonic hedgehog mediates the polarizing activity of the ZPA. Cell. 1993 Dec 31;75(7):1401–1416. [PubMed]
  • Echelard Y, Epstein DJ, St-Jacques B, Shen L, Mohler J, McMahon JA, McMahon AP. Sonic hedgehog, a member of a family of putative signaling molecules, is implicated in the regulation of CNS polarity. Cell. 1993 Dec 31;75(7):1417–1430. [PubMed]
  • Krauss S, Concordet JP, Ingham PW. A functionally conserved homolog of the Drosophila segment polarity gene hh is expressed in tissues with polarizing activity in zebrafish embryos. Cell. 1993 Dec 31;75(7):1431–1444. [PubMed]
  • Izpisúa-Belmonte JC, Tickle C, Dollé P, Wolpert L, Duboule D. Expression of the homeobox Hox-4 genes and the specification of position in chick wing development. Nature. 1991 Apr 18;350(6319):585–589. [PubMed]
  • Nohno T, Noji S, Koyama E, Ohyama K, Myokai F, Kuroiwa A, Saito T, Taniguchi S. Involvement of the Chox-4 chicken homeobox genes in determination of anteroposterior axial polarity during limb development. Cell. 1991 Mar 22;64(6):1197–1205. [PubMed]
  • Morgan BA, Izpisúa-Belmonte JC, Duboule D, Tabin CJ. Targeted misexpression of Hox-4.6 in the avian limb bud causes apparent homeotic transformations. Nature. 1992 Jul 16;358(6383):236–239. [PubMed]
  • Durston AJ, Timmermans JP, Hage WJ, Hendriks HF, de Vries NJ, Heideveld M, Nieuwkoop PD. Retinoic acid causes an anteroposterior transformation in the developing central nervous system. Nature. 1989 Jul 13;340(6229):140–144. [PubMed]
  • Sive HL, Draper BW, Harland RM, Weintraub H. Identification of a retinoic acid-sensitive period during primary axis formation in Xenopus laevis. Genes Dev. 1990 Jun;4(6):932–942. [PubMed]
  • Ruiz i Altaba A, Jessell T. Retinoic acid modifies mesodermal patterning in early Xenopus embryos. Genes Dev. 1991 Feb;5(2):175–187. [PubMed]
  • Holder N, Hill J. Retinoic acid modifies development of the midbrain-hindbrain border and affects cranial ganglion formation in zebrafish embryos. Development. 1991 Dec;113(4):1159–1170. [PubMed]
  • McCaffery P, Lee MO, Wagner MA, Sladek NE, Dräger UC. Asymmetrical retinoic acid synthesis in the dorsoventral axis of the retina. Development. 1992 Jun;115(2):371–382. [PubMed]
  • McCaffrery P, Posch KC, Napoli JL, Gudas L, Dräger UC. Changing patterns of the retinoic acid system in the developing retina. Dev Biol. 1993 Aug;158(2):390–399. [PubMed]
  • Hyatt GA, Schmitt EA, Marsh-Armstrong NR, Dowling JE. Retinoic acid-induced duplication of the zebrafish retina. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1992 Sep 1;89(17):8293–8297. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Wagner M, Han B, Jessell TM. Regional differences in retinoid release from embryonic neural tissue detected by an in vitro reporter assay. Development. 1992 Sep;116(1):55–66. [PubMed]
  • Connor MJ. Oxidation of retinol to retinoic acid as a requirement for biological activity in mouse epidermis. Cancer Res. 1988 Dec 15;48(24 Pt 1):7038–7040. [PubMed]
  • Connor MJ, Smit MH. Terminal-group oxidation of retinol by mouse epidermis. Inhibition in vitro and in vivo. Biochem J. 1987 Jun 1;244(2):489–492. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Schuh TJ, Hall BL, Kraft JC, Privalsky ML, Kimelman D. v-erbA and citral reduce the teratogenic effects of all-trans retinoic acid and retinol, respectively, in Xenopus embryogenesis. Development. 1993 Nov;119(3):785–798. [PubMed]
  • Sharma SC, Hollyfield JG. Specification of retinotectal connexions during development of the toad Xenopus laevis. J Embryol Exp Morphol. 1980 Feb;55:77–92. [PubMed]
  • Constantine-Paton M, Blum AS, Mendez-Otero R, Barnstable CJ. A cell surface molecule distributed in a dorsoventral gradient in the perinatal rat retina. Nature. 1986 Dec 4;324(6096):459–462. [PubMed]
  • McCaffery P, Neve RL, Dräger UC. A dorso-ventral asymmetry in the embryonic retina defined by protein conformation. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1990 Nov;87(21):8570–8574. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Trisler D. Cell recognition and pattern formation in the developing nervous system. J Exp Biol. 1990 Oct;153:11–27. [PubMed]
  • Raymond PA. Movement of retinal terminals in goldfish optic tectum predicted by analysis of neuronal proliferation. J Neurosci. 1986 Sep;6(9):2479–2488. [PubMed]
  • Oro AE, McKeown M, Evans RM. The Drosophila retinoid X receptor homolog ultraspiracle functions in both female reproduction and eye morphogenesis. Development. 1992 Jun;115(2):449–462. [PubMed]
  • McGinnis N, Kuziora MA, McGinnis W. Human Hox-4.2 and Drosophila deformed encode similar regulatory specificities in Drosophila embryos and larvae. Cell. 1990 Nov 30;63(5):969–976. [PubMed]

Articles from Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America are provided here courtesy of National Academy of Sciences


Related citations in PubMed

See reviews...See all...

Cited by other articles in PMC

See all...


  • Cited in Books
    Cited in Books
    PubMed Central articles cited in books
  • Compound
    PubChem Compound links
  • MedGen
    Related information in MedGen
  • PubMed
    PubMed citations for these articles
  • Substance
    PubChem Substance links

Recent Activity

Your browsing activity is empty.

Activity recording is turned off.

Turn recording back on

See more...