Haenisch, C., Diekmann, H., Klinger, M., Gennarini, G., Kuwada, J.Y., and Stuermer, C.A. (2005) The neuronal growth and regeneration associated Cntn1 (F3/F11/Contactin) gene is duplicated in fish: expression during development and retinal axon regeneration. Molecular and cellular neurosciences. 28(2):361-374.
The Cntn1 (Contactin/F3/F11) cell adhesion molecule is involved in axon growth and guidance, fasciculation, synapse formation, and myelination in birds and mammals. We identified Cntn1 genes in goldfish, zebrafish, and fugu, and provide evidence for a fish-specific duplication leading to Cntn1a and Cntn1b. Our analyses suggest a subfunctionalization for the Cntn1 paralogs in zebrafish compared to other vertebrates which have a single Cntn1 gene. Similar to Cntn1a, Cntn1b transcripts are found in subsets of sensory and motor neurons. However, Cntn1b is detected later and more restricted than Cntn1a. This spatio-temporal expression pattern of the two zebrafish Cntn1 paralogs suggests functions related to those of mammalian Cntn1. In adult goldfish, Cntn1b is expressed in oligodendrocytes and is upregulated in retinal ganglion cells after optic nerve transection, which is consistent with an additional role during regeneration.