Salas-Vidal, E., Meijer, A.H., Cheng, X., and Spaink, H.P. (2005) Genomic annotation and expression analysis of the zebrafish Rho small GTPase family during development and bacterial infection. Genomics. 86(1):25-37.
The zebrafish genomic sequence database was analyzed for the presence of genes encoding members of the Rho small GTPases. The analysis shows the presence of 32 zebrafish Rho genes representing one or more homologs of the human RHOA, RND3, RHOF, RHOG, RHOH, RHOJ, RHOU, RHOV, CDC42, RAC1, RAC2, RAC3, RND1, RHOBTB1, RHOBTB2, RHOBTB3, and RHOT1 genes. By expression analysis using reverse transcriptase-PCR we show that at least 20 of the predicted zebrafish small GTPase genes are expressed in the adult stage. Interestingly, only 5 of these were found to be expressed at early embryonic stages, including rhoab, rhoad, cdc42a, cdc42c, and rac1a. We observed a strong upregulation of zebrafish rhogb expression after Mycobacterium marinum infection of adult fish. This complete annotation study provides a firm basis for the use of zebrafish as a model for analysis of Rho GTPase function in vertebrate development and the innate immune system.