The paired-type homeodomain transcription factor Uncx is involved in multiple processes of embryogenesis in vertebrates. Reasoning that zebrafish genes and are orthologs of mouse , we studied their genomic environment and developmental expression. Evolutionary analyses indicate the zebrafish genes as being paralogs deriving from teleost-specific whole-genome duplication. Whole-mount mRNA hybridization of transcripts in zebrafish embryos reveals novel expression domains, confirms those previously known, and suggests sub-functionalization of paralogs. Using genetic mutants and pharmacological inhibitors, we investigate the role of signaling pathways on the expression of zebrafish genes in developing somites. In identifying putative functional role(s) of zebrafish genes, we hypothesized that they encode transcription factors that coordinate growth and innervation of somitic muscles.
see on Pubmed