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R11: a cis-regulatory node of the sea urchin embryo gene network that controls early expression of SpDelta in micromeres

Revilla-i-Domingo, Roger and Minokawa, Takuya and Davidson, Eric H. (2004) R11: a cis-regulatory node of the sea urchin embryo gene network that controls early expression of SpDelta in micromeres. Developmental Biology, 274 (2). pp. 438-451. ISSN 0012-1606.

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A gene regulatory network (GRN) controls the process by which the endomesoderm of the sea urchin embryo is specified. In this GRN, the program of gene expression unique to the skeletogenic micromere lineage is set in train by activation of the pmar1 gene. Through a double repression system, this gene is responsible for localization of expression of downstream regulatory and signaling genes to cells of this lineage. One of these genes, delta, encodes a Notch ligand, and its expression in the right place and time is crucial to the specification of the endomesoderm. Here we report a cis-regulatory element R11 that is responsible for localizing the expression of delta by means of its response to the pmar1 repression system. R11 was identified as an evolutionarily conserved genomic sequence located about 13 kb downstream of the last exon of the delta gene. We demonstrate here that this cis-regulatory element is able to drive the expression of a reporter gene in the same cells and at the same time that the endogenous delta gene is expressed, and that temporally, spatially, and quantitatively it responds to the pmar1 repression system just as predicted for the delta gene in the endomesoderm GRN. This work illustrates the application of cis-regulatory analysis to the validation of predictions of the GRN model. In addition, we introduce new methodological tools for quantitative measurement of the output of expression constructs that promise to be of general value for cis-regulatory analysis in sea urchin embryos.

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Additional Information:© 2004 Elsevier Inc. Received for publication 24 June 2004, accepted 9 July 2004. Available online 3 September 2004. We are very grateful to Dr. Ellen Rothenberg and Dr. Paola Oliveri for very useful criticism and fruitful discussions. We also thank Pat Leahy for taking care of the sea urchins used for this work, and Jane Wyllie and Dr. Veronica Hinman for technical guidance. The first author also thanks Dr. Albert Erives for his instruction on molecular biology, and he would like to apologize to the sea urchins sacrificed for this work. This research was supported by NIH Grants HD37105 and GM61005 and by NASA/Ames Grant NAG2-1587.
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Subject Keywords:cis-Regulatory element; Gene regulatory network; delta; Endomesoderm specification; Sea urchin
Issue or Number:2
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20160121-103518043
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Official Citation:Roger Revilla-i-Domingo, Takuya Minokawa, Eric H. Davidson, R11: a cis-regulatory node of the sea urchin embryo gene network that controls early expression of SpDelta in micromeres, Developmental Biology, Volume 274, Issue 2, 15 October 2004, Pages 438-451, ISSN 0012-1606, (
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:63831
Deposited By: Ruth Sustaita
Deposited On:21 Jan 2016 20:29
Last Modified:03 Oct 2019 09:32

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