ZFIN ID: ZDB-PUB-050607-4
Changes in gravitational force affect gene expression in developing organ systems at different developmental times
Shimada, N., Sokunbi, G., and Moorman, S.J.
Date: 2005
Source: BMC Developmental Biology   5(1): 10 (Journal)
Registered Authors: Moorman, Stephen J.
Keywords: none
MeSH Terms:
  • Animals
  • Animals, Genetically Modified
  • Embryonic Development/genetics*
  • Eye/chemistry
  • Eye/embryology
  • Female
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Developmental*
  • Green Fluorescent Proteins/analysis
  • Heart/embryology
  • Male
  • Microscopy, Fluorescence
  • Myocardium/chemistry
  • Neurons/chemistry
  • Notochord/chemistry
  • Notochord/embryology
  • Organogenesis/genetics*
  • Somites/chemistry
  • Time Factors
  • Weightlessness*
  • Zebrafish/embryology
  • Zebrafish/genetics
  • Zebrafish Proteins/analysis
  • Zebrafish Proteins/genetics
  • Zebrafish Proteins/physiology
PubMed: 15927051 Full text @ BMC Dev. Biol.
BACKGROUND: Little is known about the affect of microgravity on gene expression, particularly in vivo during embryonic development. Using transgenic zebrafish that express the gfp gene under the influence of a beta-actin promoter, we examined the affect of simulated-microgravity on GFP expression in the heart, notochord, eye, somites, and rohon beard neurons. We exposed transgenic zebrafish to simulated-microgravity for different durations at a variety of developmental times in an attempt to determine windows of susceptibility for the different developing organ systems. RESULTS: The developing heart had a period of maximum susceptibility between 32 and 56 hours after fertilization when there was an approximately 30% increase in gene expression. The notochord, eye, somites, and rohon beard neurons all showed periods of susceptibility occurring between 24 and 72 hours after fertilization. In addition, the notochord showed a second period of susceptibility between 8 and 32 hours after fertilization. Interestingly, all organs appeared to be recovering by 80 hours after fertilization despite continued exposure to simulated-microgravity. CONCLUSIONS: These results support the idea that exposure to microgravity can cause changes in gene expression in a variety of developing organ systems in live embryos and that there are periods of maximum susceptibility to the effects.