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Dev Biol. 2014 Feb 15;386(2):473-83. doi: 10.1016/j.ydbio.2013.12.011. Epub 2013 Dec 17.

Identification of Pax3 and Zic1 targets in the developing neural crest.

Author information

1
Department of Basic Science & Craniofacial Biology, College of Dentistry, New York University, New York, USA.
2
Department of Anatomy, College of Veterinary Medicine, Chonbuk National University, Jeonju, Republic of Korea.
3
Department of Oral Anatomy, School of Dentistry & Institute of Oral Biosciences, Chonbuk National University, Jeonju, Republic of Korea.
4
Bioinformatics Group, Molecular Profiling Facility, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, USA.
5
Department of Basic Science & Craniofacial Biology, College of Dentistry, New York University, New York, USA; Department of Biological Sciences, College of Natural Sciences, Daegu University, Gyeongsan, Republic of Korea. Electronic address: cshong@daegu.ac.kr.
6
Department of Basic Science & Craniofacial Biology, College of Dentistry, New York University, New York, USA; Department of Animal Biology, University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine, Philadelphia, PA, USA. Electronic address: jsj4@nyu.edu.

Abstract

The neural crest (NC) is a multipotent population of migratory cells unique to the vertebrate embryo, contributing to the development of multiple organ systems. Transcription factors pax3 and zic1 are among the earliest genes activated in NC progenitors, and they are both necessary and sufficient to promote NC fate. In order to further characterize the function of these transcription factors during NC development we have used hormone inducible fusion proteins in a Xenopus animal cap assay, and DNA microarray to identify downstream targets of Pax3 and Zic1. Here we present the results of this screen and the initial validation of these targets using quantitative RT-PCR, in situ hybridization and morpholinos-mediated knockdown. Among the targets identified we found several well-characterized NC-specific genes, including snail2, foxd3, gbx2, twist, sox8 and sox9, which validate our approach. We also obtained several factors with no known function in Xenopus NC, which represent novel regulators of NC fate. The comprehensive characterization of Pax3 and Zic1 targets function in the NC gene regulatory network, are essential to understanding the mechanisms regulating the emergence of this important cell population.

KEYWORDS:

Gene regulatory network; Microarray; Neural crest; Pax3; Xenopus; Zic1

PMID:
24360908
PMCID:
PMC3933997
DOI:
10.1016/j.ydbio.2013.12.011
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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