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Mech Dev. 1997 Jul;65(1-2):163-73.

Expression of contact, a new zebrafish DVR member, marks mesenchymal cell lineages in the developing pectoral fins and head and is regulated by retinoic acid.

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U368 INSERM, Ecole Normale Supérieure, Paris, France.


Contact, a new zebrafish transforming growth factor-beta (TGF-beta) member is most closely related to mouse GDF5 and to human CDMP-1 responsible, when mutated, for limb brachypodism phenotype and Hunter-Thompson syndrome, respectively. Contact exhibits a dynamic spatial expression pattern in the pharyngeal arches and the pectoral fin buds that much prefigures cartilage formation. Within the fin buds, contact expression is detected in the proximal mesenchyme from which the endoskeleton will develop. Exogeneously applied retinoic acid (RA) induces duplication of the pectoral fin rudiment in zebrafish embryos as well as contact expression along the proximal margin of the fin mesenchyme showing that both endoskeleton and exoskeleton can be duplicated.

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