ZFIN ID: ZDB-PUB-200514-4
Multiple epithelia are required to develop teeth deep inside the pharynx
Oralová, V., Rosa, J.T., Larionova, D., Witten, P.E., Huysseune, A.
Date: 2020
Source: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America   117(21): 11503-11512 (Journal)
Registered Authors: Huysseune, Ann, Witten, P. Eckhard
Keywords: germ layers, pharyngeal teeth, tooth evolution, zebrafish
MeSH Terms:
  • Animals
  • Biological Evolution
  • Epithelium/physiology*
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Developmental/physiology
  • Germ Layers*/cytology
  • Germ Layers*/physiology
  • Odontogenesis/physiology*
  • Pharynx/physiology*
  • Signal Transduction/physiology
  • Tooth/growth & development*
  • Zebrafish
PubMed: 32398375 Full text @ Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA
To explain the evolutionary origin of vertebrate teeth from odontodes, it has been proposed that competent epithelium spread into the oropharyngeal cavity via the mouth and other possible channels such as the gill slits [Huysseune et al., 2009, J. Anat. 214, 465-476]. Whether tooth formation deep inside the pharynx in extant vertebrates continues to require external epithelia has not been addressed so far. Using zebrafish we have previously demonstrated that cells derived from the periderm penetrate the oropharyngeal cavity via the mouth and via the endodermal pouches and connect to periderm-like cells that subsequently cover the entire endoderm-derived pharyngeal epithelium [Rosa et al., 2019, Sci. Rep. 9, 10082]. We now provide conclusive evidence that the epithelial component of pharyngeal teeth in zebrafish (the enamel organ) is derived from medial endoderm, as hitherto assumed based on position deep in the pharynx. Yet, dental morphogenesis starts only after the corresponding endodermal pouch (pouch 6) has made contact with the skin ectoderm, and only after periderm-like cells have covered the prospective tooth-forming endodermal epithelium. Manipulation of signaling pathways shown to adversely affect tooth development indicates they act downstream of these events. We demonstrate that pouch-ectoderm contact and the presence of a periderm-like layer are both required, but not sufficient, for tooth initiation in the pharynx. We conclude that the earliest interactions to generate pharyngeal teeth encompass those between different epithelial populations (skin ectoderm, endoderm, and periderm-like cells in zebrafish), in addition to the epithelial-mesenchymal interactions that govern the formation of all vertebrate teeth.