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Mech Dev. 1999 Aug;86(1-2):147-50.

Maternal and embryonic expression of zebrafish lef1.

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HHMI and Department of Pharmacology, University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98195, USA.


Transcription factors of the TCF/LEF family interact with the Wnt signaling pathway to control transcription of downstream genes (Clevers, H., van de Wetering, M., 1997. TCF/LEF factor earn their wings. Trends Genet. 13, 485-489). We were interested in cloning family members which were expressed in zebrafish neural crest, because Wnt signaling modulates specification of neural crest fate (Dorsky, R.I., Moon, R.T., Raible, D.W., 1998. Control of neural crest cell fate by the Wnt signalling pathway. Nature 396, 370-373). We cloned a zebrafish homolog of lef1 and localized its chromosomal position by radiation hybrid mapping. lef1 is expressed in the neural crest as well as the tailbud and developing mesoderm, and is maternally expressed in zebrafish, unlike mouse and Xenopus homologs. In addition, we cloned two tcf3 genes and a homolog of tcf4, neither of which were strongly expressed in premigratory neural crest.

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