Nomura, R., Kamei, E., Hotta, Y., Konishi, M., Miyake, A., and Itoh, N. (2006) Fgf16 is essential for pectoral fin bud formation in zebrafish. Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications. 347(1):340-346.
Zebrafish pectoral fin bud formation is an excellent model for studying morphogenesis. Fibroblast growth factors (Fgfs) and sonic hedgehog (shh) are essential for pectoral fin bud formation. We found that Fgf16 was expressed in the apical ectodermal ridge (AER) of fin buds. A knockdown of Fgf16 function resulted in no fin bud outgrowth. Fgf16 is required for cell proliferation and differentiation in the mesenchyme and the AER of the fin buds, respectively. Fgf16 functions downstream of Fgf10, a mesenchymal factor, signaling to induce the expression of Fgf4 and Fgf8 in the AER. Fgf16 in the AER and shh in the zone of polarizing activity (ZPA) interact to induce and/or maintain each other's expression. These findings have revealed that Fgf16, a newly identified AER factor, plays a crucial role in pectoral fin bud outgrowth by mediating the interactions of AER-mesenchyme and AER-ZPA.