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Curr Opin Genet Dev. 2004 Aug;14(4):351-60.

Gene regulatory network controlling embryonic specification in the sea urchin.

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Division of Biology 156-29, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, California 91125, USA.


The current state of the gene regulatory network for endomesoderm specification in sea urchin embryos is reviewed. The network was experimentally defined, and is presented as a predictive map of cis-regulatory inputs and functional regulatory gene interconnections (updated versions of the network and most of the underlying data are at ). The network illuminates the 'whys' of many aspects of zygotic control in early sea urchin development, both spatial and temporal. The network includes almost 50 genes, and these are organized in subcircuits, each of which executes a particular regulatory function.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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