ZFIN ID: ZDB-PUB-070424-5
Coupling cellular oscillators: A mechanism that maintains synchrony against developmental noise in the segmentation clock
Ishimatsu, K., Horikawa, K., and Takeda, H.
Date: 2007
Source: Developmental dynamics : an official publication of the American Association of Anatomists   236(6): 1416-1421 (Journal)
Registered Authors: Takeda, Hiroyuki
Keywords: coupled oscillator, segmentation clock, zebrafish
MeSH Terms:
  • Animals
  • Biological Clocks/physiology*
  • Body Patterning/physiology*
  • Cell Proliferation
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Developmental
  • Mesoderm/enzymology
  • Mesoderm/metabolism
PubMed: 17420984 Full text @ Dev. Dyn.
A unique feature of vertebrate segmentation is its strict periodicity, which is governed by the segmentation clock consisting of numerous cellular oscillators. These cellular oscillators, driven by a negative-feedback loop of Hairy transcription factor, are linked through Notch-dependent intercellular coupling and display the synchronous expression of clock genes. Combining our transplantation experiments in zebrafish with mathematical simulations, we review how the cellular oscillators maintain synchrony and form a robust system that is resistant to the effects of developmental noise such as stochastic gene expression and active cell proliferation. The accumulated evidence indicates that the segmentation clock behaves as a "coupled oscillators," a mechanism that also underlies the synchronous flashing seen in fireflies.