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Nat Rev Genet. 2007 May;8(5):368-81. Epub 2007 Mar 27.

Gene function in mouse embryogenesis: get set for gastrulation.

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Embryology Unit, Children's Medical Research Institute and Faculty of Medicine, University of Sydney, Westmead, NSW 2145, Australia.


During early mouse embryogenesis, temporal and spatial regulation of gene expression and cell signalling influences lineage specification, embryonic polarity, the patterning of tissue progenitors and the morphogenetic movement of cells and tissues. Uniquely in mammals, the extraembryonic tissues are the source of signals for lineage specification and tissue patterning. Here we discuss recent discoveries about the lead up to gastrulation, including early manifestations of asymmetry, coordination of cell and tissue movements and the interactions of transcription factors and signalling activity for lineage allocation and germ-layer specification.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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