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Nat Med. 1995 Nov;1(11):1143-7.

Gridlock, a localized heritable vascular patterning defect in the zebrafish.

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Cardiovascular Research Center, Massachusetts General Hospital, Charlestown 02129, USA.


We are using the zebrafish, Danio rerio, to identify genes that generate and pattern the vertebrate vasculature. We have isolated a recessive mutation, gridlockm145 (grlm145) in which blood flow to the tail is impeded by a localized vascular defect. Using a novel microangiographic method, we show that the blockade is in the anterior trunk, where the paired lateral dorsal aortae normally merge to form the single midline aorta. Arterial-venous shunts and collateral vessels develop in most mutant embryos, bypassing the lesion and reconstituting caudal blood flow. The grl defect resembles coarctation of the aorta, a human congenital cardiovascular malformation of unknown aetiology, in the location of the lesion and its consequences and in the mutants' dependence on collateral vessels for survival.

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