The International Journal of Developmental Biology

Int. J. Dev. Biol. 39: 317 - 325 (1995)

Vol 39, Issue 2

Partially purified factor from embryonic chick brain can provoke neuralization of Rana temporaria and Triturus alpestris but not Xenopus laevis early gastrula ectoderm

Published: 30 November -0001

A T Mikhailov, N A Gorgolyuk, L Tacke, M M Mykhoyan and H Grunz

Laboratory of Organogenesis, Koltzov Institute of Developmental Biology, Russian Academy of Sciences, Moscow.


A high neuralizing activity has been determined in forebrain of 7.5-day old chick embryos using Rana temporaria early gastrula ectoderm as reacting tissue (Mikhailov and Gorgolyuk, Soviet Scientific Reviews, Section of Physiology and General Biology, Vol. 1: 267-306, 1987). The corresponding protease-sensitive agent was extracted, partially purified by chromatography on DEAE-Toyopearl and Heparin-Ultragel columns, and its neuralizing activity was tested in vitro on ectoderm isolated from early gastrulae of R. temporaria, Triturus alpestris, and Xenopus laevis at different concentrations and for different periods of time (animal cap assay). Induction of neural structures was found in R. temporaria and T. alpestris explants (up to 100 and 60%, respectively), but not in cultures of X. laevis ectoderm. Under our experimental conditions, so-called "autoneuralization" of the ectoderm explants can safely be excluded. The results are discussed in relation to the neural competence of amphibian ectoderm and the mechanisms of neuralizing actions of different factors which might be involved in neural induction and patterning.

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