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Mech Dev. 2003 Apr;120(4):467-76.

The role of Ppt/Wnt5 in regulating cell shape and movement during zebrafish gastrulation.

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Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics, Pfotenhauerasse 108, 01307 Dresden, Germany.


Wnt genes play important roles in regulating patterning and morphogenesis during vertebrate gastrulation. In zebrafish, slb/wnt11 is required for convergence and extension movements, but not cell fate specification during gastrulation. To determine if other Wnt genes functionally interact with slb/wnt11, we analysed the role of ppt/wnt5 during zebrafish gastrulation. ppt/wnt5 is maternally provided and zygotically expressed at all stages during gastrulation. The analysis of ppt mutant embryos reveals that Ppt/Wnt5 regulates cell elongation and convergent extension movements in posterior regions of the gastrula, while its function in more anterior regions is largely redundant to that of Slb/Wnt11. Frizzled-2 functions downstream of ppt/wnt5, indicating that it might act as a receptor for Ppt/Wnt5 in this process. The characterisation of the role of Ppt/Wnt5 provides insight into the functional diversity of Wnt genes in regulating vertebrate gastrulation movements.

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