Toro, S., Wegner, J., Muller, M., Westerfield, M., and Varga, Z.M. (2009) Identification of differentially expressed genes in the zebrafish hypothalamic-pituitary axis. Gene Expression Patterns. 9(4):200-208.
The vertebrate hypothalamic-pituitary axis (HP) is the main link between the central nervous system and endocrine system. Although several signal pathways and regulatory genes have been implicated in adenohypophysis ontogenesis, little is known about hypothalamic-neurohypophysial development or when the HP matures and becomes functional. To identify markers of the HP, we constructed subtractive cDNA libraries between adult zebrafish hypothalamus and pituitary. We identified previously published genes and ESTs and novel zebrafish genes, some of which were predicted by genomic database analysis. We also analyzed expression patterns of these genes and found that several are expressed in the embryonic and larval hypothalamus, neurohypophysis, and/or adenohypophysis. Expression at these stages makes these genes useful markers to study HP maturation and function.