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Mech Dev. 1999 Aug;86(1-2):203-7.

Two novel Xenopus frizzled genes expressed in developing heart and brain.

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Department of Anatomy and Physiology, Division of Cell and Developmental Biology, The Wellcome Trust Building, University of Dundee, Dundee DD1 5EH, UK.


A family of genes related to the Drosophila wingless receptor frizzled have been found in vertebrates. We have cloned full length cDNAs of two novel frizzled genes from embryonic Xenopus tissue. We are calling them Xfz7 and Xfz9 (for Xenopus frizzled) because their deduced peptide sequences show extensive similarity to other vertebrate frizzled molecules. Xfz7 is closely related to human, chick and mouse frz-7 and Xfz9 is most related to human FZD9 and mouse fzd9. Xfz7 is expressed in a broad, complex and dynamic pattern beginning at gastrulation. At later stages Xfz7 expression is found in neural crest, neural tube, eye, pronephric duct and the heart. Xfz9 expression in contrast is more restricted to the neuroectoderm and, at later stages of development, to the dorsal regions of the mid- and hindbrain.

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