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Curr Biol. 2000 Apr 20;10(8):463-6.

Proviral insertions in the zebrafish hagoromo gene, encoding an F-box/WD40-repeat protein, cause stripe pattern anomalies.

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Department of Tumor Biology, The Institute of Medical Science, The University of Tokyo, Minato-ku, 108-8639, Japan.


The zebrafish, Danio rerio, has three types of pigment cells (melanophores, xanthophores and iridophores) and, in adult fish, these cells are organized into a stripe pattern. The mechanisms underlying formation of the stripe pattern are largely unknown. We report here the identification and characterization of a novel dominant zebrafish mutation, hagoromo (hag), which was generated by insertional mutagenesis using a pseudotyped retrovirus. The hag mutation caused disorganized stripe patterns. Two hag mutant alleles were isolated independently and proviruses were located within the fifth intron of a novel gene, which we named hag, encoding an F-box/WD40-repeat protein. The hag gene was mapped to linkage group (LG)13, close to fgf8 and pax2.1. Amino acid sequence similarity, conserved exon-intron boundaries and conserved synteny indicated that zebrafish hag is an ortholog of mouse Dactylin, the gene mutated in the Dactylaplasia (Dac) mouse [1]. The Dac mutation is dominant and causes defects in digit formation in fore- and hindlimbs. This study revealed that the hag locus is important for pattern formation in fish but is involved in distinct morphogenetic events in different vertebrates.

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