Komoike, Y., Kawamura, A., Shindo, N., Sato, C., Satoh, J., Shiurba, R., and Higashinakagawa, T. (2005) Zebrafish Polycomb group gene ph2alpha is required for epiboly and tailbud formation acting downstream of FGF signaling. Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications. 328(4):858-866.
We analyzed Polycomb group gene ph2alpha functionally in zebrafish embryos by a gene knock-down procedure using morpholino antisense oligos. Inhibition of ph2alpha message translation resulted in abnormal epibolic movements as well as a thick tailbud or incomplete covering of the yolk plug. At the 24hpf stage, morphants had short trunks and tails, phenotypes similar to those with disturbances in FGF signaling. Accordingly, we looked at the effects of ph2alpha expression upstream and downstream of the FGF pathway. Treatment with SU5402, an inhibitor of Fgfrs, or injection of dominant-negative Fgfr1 DNA markedly reduced ph2alpha expression in the tailbud. In addition, cells expressing mRNAs for no tail, spadetail, myoD, and papc, which are involved in FGF-related development of posterior mesoderm, were distributed abnormally. Collectively, the data argue that ph2alpha is required for epiboly and tailbud formation, acting downstream of the FGF signaling pathway.