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Mech Dev. 2004 Jul;121(7-8):647-58.

A systematic genome-wide screen for mutations affecting organogenesis in Medaka, Oryzias latipes.

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  • 1Japan Science and Technology Corporation, Kondoh Differentiation Signaling Project, Kawaaracho 14, Yoshida, Sakyoku, Kyoto 606-8305, Japan. furutaniseiki@dsp.jst.go.jp


A large-scale mutagenesis screen was performed in Medaka to identify genes acting in diverse developmental processes. Mutations were identified in homozygous F3 progeny derived from ENU-treated founder males. In addition to the morphological inspection of live embryos, other approaches were used to detect abnormalities in organogenesis and in specific cellular processes, including germ cell migration, nerve tract formation, sensory organ differentiation and DNA repair. Among 2031 embryonic lethal mutations identified, 312 causing defects in organogenesis were selected for further analyses. From these, 126 mutations were characterized genetically and assigned to 105 genes. The similarity of the development of Medaka and zebrafish facilitated the comparison of mutant phenotypes, which indicated that many mutations in Medaka cause unique phenotypes so far unrecorded in zebrafish. Even when mutations of the two fish species cause a similar phenotype such as one-eyed-pinhead or parachute, more genes were found in Medaka than in zebrafish that produced the same phenotype when mutated. These observations suggest that many Medaka mutants represent new genes and, therefore, are important complements to the collection of zebrafish mutants that have proven so valuable for exploring genomic function in development.

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