ZFIN ID: ZDB-PUB-201002-13
The Cdx transcription factors and retinoic acid play parallel roles in antero-posterior position of the pectoral fin field during gastrulation
Quintanilla, C.A., Ho, R.K.
Date: 2020
Source: Mechanisms of Development   164: 103644 (Journal)
Registered Authors: Ho, Robert K.
Keywords: Cdx, Pectoral fin, RA, Zebrafish
MeSH Terms:
  • Animal Fins/growth & development*
  • Animals
  • Embryo, Nonmammalian
  • Gastrulation*
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Developmental
  • Genes, Homeobox
  • Mesoderm
  • Transcription Factors/genetics*
  • Tretinoin/physiology*
  • Zebrafish/embryology*
  • Zebrafish/genetics
  • Zebrafish Proteins/genetics*
PubMed: 32911082 Full text @ Mech. Dev.
The molecular regulators that determine the precise position of the vertebrate limb along the anterio-posterior axis have not been identified. One model suggests that a combination of hox genes in the lateral plate mesoderm (LPM) promotes formation of the limb field, however redundancy among duplicated paralogs has made this model difficult to confirm. In this study, we identify an optimal window during mid-gastrulation stages when transient mis-regulation of retinoic acid signaling or the caudal related transcription factor, Cdx4, both known regulators of hox genes, can alter the position of the pectoral fin field. We show that increased levels of either RA or Cdx4 during mid-gastrulation are sufficient to rostrally shift the position of the pectoral fin field at the expense of surrounding gene expression in the anterior lateral plate mesoderm (aLPM). Alternatively, embryos deficient for both Cdx4 and Cdx1a (Cdx-deficient) form pectoral fins that are shifted towards the posterior and reveal an additional effect on size of the pectoral fin buds. Prior to formation of the pectoral fin buds, the fin field in Cdx-deficient embryos is visibly expanded into the posterior LPM (pLPM) region at the expense of surrounding gene expression. The effects on gene expression immediately post-gastrulation and during somitogenesis support a model where RA and Cdx4 act in parallel to regulate the position of the pectoral fin. Our transient method is a potentially useful model for studying the mechanisms of limb positioning along the AP axis.