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Sample records for axolotl

  1. Pseudotyped retroviruses for infecting axolotl.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuo, Tzu-Hsing; Whited, Jessica L

    2015-01-01

    The ability to introduce DNA elements into host cells and analyze the effects has revolutionized modern biology. Here we describe a protocol to generate Moloney murine leukemia virus (MMLV)-based, replication-incompetent pseudotyped retrovirus capable of infecting axolotls and incorporating genetic information into their genome. When pseudotyped with vesicular stomatitis virus (VSV)-G glycoprotein, the retroviruses can infect a broad range of proliferative axolotl cell types. However, if the retrovirus is pseudotyped with an avian sarcoma leukosis virus (ASLV)-A envelope protein, only axolotl cells experimentally manipulated to express the cognate tumor virus A (TVA) receptor can be targeted by infections. These strategies enable robust transgene expression over many cell divisions, cell lineage tracing, and cell subtype targeting for gene expression.

  2. The Mexican Axolotl in Schools

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas, R. M.

    1976-01-01

    Suggests and describes laboratory activities in which the Mexican axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum Shaw) is used, including experiments in embryology and early development, growth and regeneration, neoteny and metamorphosis, genetics and coloration, anatomy and physiology, and behavior. Discusses care and maintenance of animals. (CS)

  3. Generation of axolotl hematopoietic chimeras

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Lopez

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Wound repair is an extremely complex process that requires precise coordination between various cell types including immune cells.  Unfortunately, in mammals this usually results in scar formation instead of restoration of the original fully functional tissue, otherwise known as regeneration.  Various animal models like frogs and salamanders are currently being studied to determine the intracellular and intercellular pathways, controlled by gene expression, that elicit cell proliferation, differentiation, and migration of cells during regenerative healing.  Now, the necessary genetic tools to map regenerative pathways are becoming available for the axolotl salamander, thus allowing comparative studies between scarring and regeneration.  Here, we describe in detail three methods to produce axolotl hematopoietic cell-tagged chimeras for the study of hematopoiesis and regeneration.

  4. Transgenesis in axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khattak, Shahryar; Tanaka, Elly M

    2015-01-01

    Transgenic animals have been indispensable in elucidating and deciphering mechanisms underlying various biological phenomena. In regeneration, transgenic animals expressing fluorescent protein genes have been crucial for identifying the source cells for regeneration and the mechanism of blastema formation. Animals are usually generated by manipulating their genome using various techniques at/in one cell embryo/fertilized egg stage. Here, we describe the generation of germline transgenic axolotls (Ambystoma mexicanum) using the I-SceI meganuclease and Tol2 transposase. PMID:25740493

  5. Transgenesis in axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khattak, Shahryar; Tanaka, Elly M

    2015-01-01

    Transgenic animals have been indispensable in elucidating and deciphering mechanisms underlying various biological phenomena. In regeneration, transgenic animals expressing fluorescent protein genes have been crucial for identifying the source cells for regeneration and the mechanism of blastema formation. Animals are usually generated by manipulating their genome using various techniques at/in one cell embryo/fertilized egg stage. Here, we describe the generation of germline transgenic axolotls (Ambystoma mexicanum) using the I-SceI meganuclease and Tol2 transposase.

  6. Thyroxine-induced metamorphosis in the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coots, Peggy S; Seifert, Ashley W

    2015-01-01

    The axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) has remained an important model for regeneration and developmental biology for over a century. Although axolotls in captive-bred colonies usually exist in an aquatic form, they retain the ability to undergo metamorphosis following exposure to thyroid hormone. Here we present a robust method for inducing metamorphosis in adult axolotls that results in high survivability and produces terrestrial animals that can be maintained in long-term captivity. PMID:25740483

  7. Thyroxine-induced metamorphosis in the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coots, Peggy S; Seifert, Ashley W

    2015-01-01

    The axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) has remained an important model for regeneration and developmental biology for over a century. Although axolotls in captive-bred colonies usually exist in an aquatic form, they retain the ability to undergo metamorphosis following exposure to thyroid hormone. Here we present a robust method for inducing metamorphosis in adult axolotls that results in high survivability and produces terrestrial animals that can be maintained in long-term captivity.

  8. Limb Regeneration in Axolotl: Is It Superhealing?

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    Stéphane Roy

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available The ability of axolotls to regenerate their limbs is almost legendary. In fact, urodeles such as the axolotl are the only vertebrates that can regenerate multiple structures like their limbs, jaws, tail, spinal cord, and skin (the list goes on throughout their lives. It is therefore surprising to realize, although we have known of their regenerative potential for over 200 years, how little we understand the mechanisms behind this achievement of adult tissue morphogenesis. Many observations can be drawn between regeneration and other disciplines such as development and wound healing. In this review, we present new developments in functional analysis that will help to address the role of specific genes during the process of regeneration. We also present an analysis of the resemblance between wound healing and regeneration, and discuss whether axolotls are superhealers. A better understanding of these animals' regenerative capacity could lead to major benefits by providing regenerative medicine with directions on how to develop therapeutic approaches leading to regeneration in humans.

  9. Housing and maintenance of Ambystoma mexicanum, the Mexican axolotl.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farkas, Johanna E; Monaghan, James R

    2015-01-01

    The aim of this paper is to assemble a significant amount of information on Ambystoma mexicanum, the axolotl salamander, to assist in the basic knowledge needed to raise, breed, and study most aspects of axolotl biology. It is important to understand the basic biology of the axolotl in order to make informed decisions on their proper care and use in experiments. Therefore, we will provide necessary information to the non-herpetologist that will assist in their study of this unique and fascinating animal. We also aim to provide a resource on the general anatomy, behavior, and experimental tips specific to the Mexican axolotl that will be of use to most axolotl laboratories. Axolotls have been actively researched since the 1860s, giving testament to their relatively straightforward maintenance and their versatility as an animal model for development and regeneration. Interest in using the axolotl in laboratory research has grown tremendously over the past decade, so dedicated resources to support the study of this species are needed and encouraged. PMID:25740475

  10. Housing and maintenance of Ambystoma mexicanum, the Mexican axolotl.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farkas, Johanna E; Monaghan, James R

    2015-01-01

    The aim of this paper is to assemble a significant amount of information on Ambystoma mexicanum, the axolotl salamander, to assist in the basic knowledge needed to raise, breed, and study most aspects of axolotl biology. It is important to understand the basic biology of the axolotl in order to make informed decisions on their proper care and use in experiments. Therefore, we will provide necessary information to the non-herpetologist that will assist in their study of this unique and fascinating animal. We also aim to provide a resource on the general anatomy, behavior, and experimental tips specific to the Mexican axolotl that will be of use to most axolotl laboratories. Axolotls have been actively researched since the 1860s, giving testament to their relatively straightforward maintenance and their versatility as an animal model for development and regeneration. Interest in using the axolotl in laboratory research has grown tremendously over the past decade, so dedicated resources to support the study of this species are needed and encouraged.

  11. Culture and transfection of axolotl cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Denis, Jean-François; Sader, Fadi; Ferretti, Patrizia; Roy, Stéphane

    2015-01-01

    The use of cells grown in vitro has been instrumental for multiple aspects of biomedical research and especially molecular and cellular biology. The ability to grow cells from multicellular organisms like humans, squids, or salamanders is important to simplify the analyses and experimental designs to help understand the biology of these organisms. The advent of the first cell culture has allowed scientists to tease apart the cellular functions, and in many situations these experiments help understand what is happening in the whole organism. In this chapter, we describe techniques for the culture and genetic manipulation of an established cell line from axolotl, a species widely used for studying epimorphic regeneration.

  12. Structure and diversity of Mexican axolotl lambda light chains.

    Science.gov (United States)

    André, S; Guillet, F; Charlemagne, J; Fellah, J S

    2000-11-01

    We report here the structure of cDNA clones encoding axolotl light chains of the lambda type. A single IGLC gene and eight different potential IGLV genes belonging to four different families were detected. The axolotl Cgamma domain has several residues or stretches of residues that are typically conserved in mammalian, avian, and Xenopus Cgamma, but the KATLVCL stretch, which is well conserved in the Cgamma and T-cell receptor Cbeta domains of many vertebrate species, is not well conserved. All axolotl Vgamma sequences closely match several human and Xenopus Vgamma-like sequences and, although the axolotl Cgamma and Vgamma sequences are very like their tetrapod homologues, they are not closely related to nontetrapod L chains. Southern blot experiments suggested the presence of a single IGLC gene and of a limited number of IGLV genes, and analysis of IGLV-J junctions clearly indicated that at least three of the IGLJ segments can associate with IGLV1, IGLV2, or IGLV3 subgroup genes. The overall diversity of the axolotl Vgamma CDR3 junctions seems to be of the same order as that of mammalian Vgamma chains. However, a single IGLV4 segment was found among the 45 cDNAs analyzed. This suggests that the axolotl IGL locus may have a canonical tandem structure, like the mammalian IGK or IGH loci. Immunofluorescence, immunoblotting, and microsequencing experiments strongly suggested that most, if not all L chains are of the gamma type. This may explain in part the poor humoral response of the axolotl. PMID:11132150

  13. Lens regeneration in axolotl: new evidence of developmental plasticity

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    Suetsugu-Maki Rinako

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Among vertebrates lens regeneration is most pronounced in newts, which have the ability to regenerate the entire lens throughout their lives. Regeneration occurs from the dorsal iris by transdifferentiation of the pigment epithelial cells. Interestingly, the ventral iris never contributes to regeneration. Frogs have limited lens regeneration capacity elicited from the cornea during pre-metamorphic stages. The axolotl is another salamander which, like the newt, regenerates its limbs or its tail with the spinal cord, but up until now all reports have shown that it does not regenerate the lens. Results Here we present a detailed analysis during different stages of axolotl development, and we show that despite previous beliefs the axolotl does regenerate the lens, however, only during a limited time after hatching. We have found that starting at stage 44 (forelimb bud stage lens regeneration is possible for nearly two weeks. Regeneration occurs from the iris but, in contrast to the newt, regeneration can be elicited from either the dorsal or the ventral iris and, occasionally, even from both in the same eye. Similar studies in the zebra fish concluded that lens regeneration is not possible. Conclusions Regeneration of the lens is possible in the axolotl, but differs from both frogs and newts. Thus the axolotl iris provides a novel and more plastic strategy for lens regeneration.

  14. Mapping hematopoiesis in a fully regenerative vertebrate: the axolotl.

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    Lopez, David; Lin, Li; Monaghan, James R; Cogle, Christopher R; Bova, Frank J; Maden, Malcolm; Scott, Edward W

    2014-08-21

    Hematopoietic stem cell (HSC)-derived cells are involved in wound healing responses throughout the body. Unfortunately for mammals, wound repair typically results in scarring and nonfunctional reparation. Among vertebrates, none display such an extensive ability for adult regeneration as urodele amphibians, including 1 of the more popular models: the axolotl. However, a lack of knowledge of axolotl hematopoiesis hinders the use of this animal for the study of hematopoietic cells in scar-free wound healing and tissue regeneration. We used white and cytomegalovirus:green fluorescent protein(+) transgenic white axolotl strains to map sites of hematopoiesis and develop hematopoietic cell transplant methodology. We also established a fluorescence-activated cell sorter enrichment technique for major blood lineages and colony-forming unit assays for hematopoietic progenitors. The liver and spleen are both active sites of hematopoiesis in adult axolotls and contain transplantable HSCs capable of long-term multilineage blood reconstitution. As in zebrafish, use of the white axolotl mutant allows direct visualization of homing, engraftment, and hematopoiesis in real time. Donor-derived hematopoiesis occurred for >2 years in recipients generating stable hematopoietic chimeras. Organ segregation, made possible by embryonic microsurgeries wherein halves of 2 differently colored embryos were joined, indicate that the spleen is the definitive site of adult hematopoiesis.

  15. Resegmentation in the Mexican axolotl, Ambystoma mexicanum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piekarski, Nadine; Olsson, Lennart

    2014-02-01

    The segmental series of somites in the vertebrate embryo gives rise to the axial skeleton. In amniote models, single vertebrae are derived from the sclerotome of two adjacent somites. This process, known as resegmentation, is well-studied using the quail-chick chimeric system, but the presumed generality of resegmentation across vertebrates remains poorly evaluated. Resegmentation has been questioned in anamniotes, given that the sclerotome is much smaller and lacks obvious differentiation between cranial and caudal portions. Here, we provide the first experimental evidence that resegmentation does occur in a species of amphibian. Fate mapping of individual somites in the Mexican axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) revealed that individual vertebrae receive cells from two adjacent somites as in the chicken. These findings suggest that large size and segmentation of the sclerotome into distinct cranial and caudal portions are not requirements for resegmentation. Our results, in addition to those for zebrafish, indicate that resegmentation is a general process in building the vertebral column in vertebrates, although it may be achieved in different ways in different groups. PMID:24127283

  16. Resegmentation in the Mexican axolotl, Ambystoma mexicanum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piekarski, Nadine; Olsson, Lennart

    2014-02-01

    The segmental series of somites in the vertebrate embryo gives rise to the axial skeleton. In amniote models, single vertebrae are derived from the sclerotome of two adjacent somites. This process, known as resegmentation, is well-studied using the quail-chick chimeric system, but the presumed generality of resegmentation across vertebrates remains poorly evaluated. Resegmentation has been questioned in anamniotes, given that the sclerotome is much smaller and lacks obvious differentiation between cranial and caudal portions. Here, we provide the first experimental evidence that resegmentation does occur in a species of amphibian. Fate mapping of individual somites in the Mexican axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) revealed that individual vertebrae receive cells from two adjacent somites as in the chicken. These findings suggest that large size and segmentation of the sclerotome into distinct cranial and caudal portions are not requirements for resegmentation. Our results, in addition to those for zebrafish, indicate that resegmentation is a general process in building the vertebral column in vertebrates, although it may be achieved in different ways in different groups.

  17. Continuous growth of the motor system in the axolotl

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    Holder, N.; Clarke, J.D.; Stephens, N.; Wilson, S.W.; Orsi, C.; Bloomer, T.; Tonge, D.A. (King' s College, London (England))

    1991-01-22

    During growth of the axolotl, motor neurons, and muscle fibres are added to the motor system. By double labelling neurons with tritiated thymidine and retrogradely transported HRP, we show that some motor neurons are born at postembryonic stages. Further analysis of motor neurons with the aid of HRP reveals this population of newly born cells relatively frequently in small (5-7 cm long) axolotls, but only rarely in large (7-13 cm long) axolotls. Evidence is presented that suggests that these immature cells are in the process of migrating from close to the ependyma out to the ventral horn. HRP transport also reveals growth cones of advancing axons within spinal nerves in animals up to 6 cm in length. Cell counts by light and electron microscopic methods show that muscle fibres are generated throughout larval life in the iliotibialis, a typical limb muscle. This analysis provides data consistent with the notion that new muscle fibres are added from a localised growth zone situated at the superficial edge of the muscle. These results are discussed in terms of the correlation between continuous growth of the motor system and the ability of the axolotl to functionally repair lesions to the peripheral nervous system.

  18. Sal-Site: research resources for the Mexican axolotl.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baddar, Nour W Al Haj; Woodcock, M Ryan; Khatri, Shivam; Kump, D Kevin; Voss, S Randal

    2015-01-01

    Sal-Site serves axolotl research efforts by providing Web access to genomic data and information, and living stocks that are reared and made available by the Ambystoma Genetic Stock Center (AGSC). In this chapter, we detail how investigators can search for genes of interest among Sal-Site resources to identify orthologous nucleotide and protein-coding sequences, determine genome positions within the Ambystoma meiotic map, and obtain estimates of gene expression. In the near future, additional genomic resources will be made available for the axolotl, including a listing of genes that are partially or wholly contained within Bacterial Artificial Chromosome (BAC) vectors, a prioritized collection of deeply sequenced BAC clones, chromosome-specific assemblies of genomic DNA, and transgenic axolotls that are engineered using TALENs and CRISPRs. Also, services provided by the AGSC will be expanded to include microinjection of user constructs into single cell embryos and distribution of axolotl tissues, DNA, and RNA. In conclusion, Sal-Site is a useful resource that generates, shares, and evolves Ambystoma associated information and databases to serve research and education.

  19. Structure and developmental expression of Ikaros in the Mexican axolotl.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Durand, C; Charlemagne, J; Fellah, J S

    1999-12-01

    The Ikaros family of transcription factors plays an essential role in hematopoiesis. We report here the structure of cDNA clones encoding two Ikaros isoforms, Ikl and Ik2, in the Mexican axolotl. The Ik1 cDNA sequence is very similar to that of the rainbow trout, chicken, and mammalian Ik1 sequences. However, a 96 base pair region which encodes the first N-terminal zing finger (F1) is lacking from axolotl Ik1, both in clones from a cDNA library and clones isolated from direct polymerase chain reaction products. A region corresponding to exon 3 is completely absent from the axolotl Ik2 sequence and thus the Ik1 and Ik2 isoforms possess the same number of zinc finger motifs. The structure of these five CC-HH motifs is very well conserved in the axolotl, including the structural deviations from its amino acid consensus composition which are identical in all species analyzed to date. The axolotl Ik1 3' untranslated region sequence is very long (2538 bp) and contains two UA-rich motifs known as instability determinants and which could play a role in mRNA translational efficiency. Ikaros transcripts are first detected in the ventral blood island of stage 36 embryos, about 24 h before the first heartbeats (late tailbud stage), and then in the major lymphopoietic organs of the developing larvae. In situ hybridization demonstrates that Ikaros transcripts are abundant at the periphery of the thymus lobes, in the presumptive site of early thymocyte differentiation. PMID:10630298

  20. The history of the oldest self-sustaining laboratory animal: 150 years of axolotl research.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reiß, Christian; Olsson, Lennart; Hoßfeld, Uwe

    2015-07-01

    Today the Mexican axolotl is critically endangered in its natural habitat in lakes around Mexico City, but thrives in research laboratories around the world, where it is used for research on development, regeneration, and evolution. Here, we concentrate on the early history of the axolotl as a laboratory animal to celebrate that the first living axolotls arrived in Paris in 1864, 150 years ago. Maybe surprisingly, at first the axolotl was distributed across Europe without being tied to specific research questions, and amateurs engaged in acclimatization and aquarium movements played an important role for the rapid proliferation of the axolotl across the continent. But the aquarium also became an important part of the newly established laboratory, where more and more biological and medical research now took place. Early scientific interest focused on the anatomical peculiarities of the axolotl, its rare metamorphosis, and whether it was a larva or an adult. Later, axolotl data was used to argue both for (by August Weismann and others) and against (by e.g., Albert von Kölliker) Darwinism, and the axolotl even had a brief history as a laboratory animal used in a failed attempt to prove Lysenkoism in Jena, Germany. Nowadays, technical developments such as transgenic lines, and the very strong interest in stem cell and regeneration research has again catapulted the axolotl into becoming an important laboratory animal.

  1. Identification of reference genes and validation for gene expression studies in diverse axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) tissues.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guelke, Eileen; Bucan, Vesna; Liebsch, Christina; Lazaridis, Andrea; Radtke, Christine; Vogt, Peter M; Reimers, Kerstin

    2015-04-10

    For the precise quantitative RT-PCR normalization a set of valid reference genes is obligatory. Moreover have to be taken into concern the experimental conditions as they bias the regulation of reference genes. Up till now, no reference targets have been described for the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum). In a search in the public database SalSite for genetic information of the axolotl we identified fourteen presumptive reference genes, eleven of which were further tested for their gene expression stability. This study characterizes the expressional patterns of 11 putative endogenous control genes during axolotl limb regeneration and in an axolotl tissue panel. All 11 reference genes showed variable expression. Strikingly, ACTB was to be found most stable expressed in all comparative tissue groups, so we reason it to be suitable for all different kinds of axolotl tissue-type investigations. Moreover do we suggest GAPDH and RPLP0 as suitable for certain axolotl tissue analysis. When it comes to axolotl limb regeneration, a validated pair of reference genes is ODC and RPLP0. With these findings, new insights into axolotl gene expression profiling might be gained. PMID:25637570

  2. Identification of reference genes and validation for gene expression studies in diverse axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) tissues.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guelke, Eileen; Bucan, Vesna; Liebsch, Christina; Lazaridis, Andrea; Radtke, Christine; Vogt, Peter M; Reimers, Kerstin

    2015-04-10

    For the precise quantitative RT-PCR normalization a set of valid reference genes is obligatory. Moreover have to be taken into concern the experimental conditions as they bias the regulation of reference genes. Up till now, no reference targets have been described for the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum). In a search in the public database SalSite for genetic information of the axolotl we identified fourteen presumptive reference genes, eleven of which were further tested for their gene expression stability. This study characterizes the expressional patterns of 11 putative endogenous control genes during axolotl limb regeneration and in an axolotl tissue panel. All 11 reference genes showed variable expression. Strikingly, ACTB was to be found most stable expressed in all comparative tissue groups, so we reason it to be suitable for all different kinds of axolotl tissue-type investigations. Moreover do we suggest GAPDH and RPLP0 as suitable for certain axolotl tissue analysis. When it comes to axolotl limb regeneration, a validated pair of reference genes is ODC and RPLP0. With these findings, new insights into axolotl gene expression profiling might be gained.

  3. Experimentally induced metamorphosis in axolotls reduces regenerative rate and fidelity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Monaghan, James R; Stier, Adrian C; Michonneau, François; Smith, Matthew D; Pasch, Bret; Maden, Malcolm; Seifert, Ashley W

    2014-02-01

    While most tetrapods are unable to regenerate severed body parts, amphibians display a remarkable ability to regenerate an array of structures. Frogs can regenerate appendages as larva, but they lose this ability around metamorphosis. In contrast, salamanders regenerate appendages as larva, juveniles, and adults. However, the extent to which fundamental traits (e.g., metamorphosis, body size, aging, etc.) restrict regenerative ability remains contentious. Here we utilize the ability of normally paedomorphic adult axolotls (Ambystoma mexicanum) to undergo induced metamorphosis by thyroxine exposure to test how metamorphosis and body size affects regeneration in age-matched paedomorphic and metamorphic individuals. We show that body size does not affect regeneration in adult axolotls, but metamorphosis causes a twofold reduction in regeneration rate, and lead to carpal and digit malformations. Furthermore, we find evidence that metamorphic blastemal cells may take longer to traverse the cell cycle and display a lower proliferative rate. This study identifies the axolotl as a powerful system to study how metamorphosis restricts regeneration independently of developmental stage, body size, and age; and more broadly how metamorphosis affects tissue-specific changes. PMID:27499857

  4. Injection of an antibody against a p21 c-Ha-ras protein inhibits cleavage in axolotl eggs.

    OpenAIRE

    Baltus, E; Hanocq-Quertier, J; Hanocq, F.; Brachet, J.

    1988-01-01

    The presence of a ras protein was demonstrated in cleaving axolotl eggs by selective immunoprecipitation with a polyclonal antibody against a peptide encoded by the c-Ha-ras oncogene, cellular homolog of the v-Ha-ras oncogene of Harvey rat sarcoma virus. Injection of this antibody into axolotl oocytes subjected to progesterone treatment does not prevent meiotic maturation. Injection of the same antibody into a blastomere of axolotl eggs at the 2- or 4-cell stage causes cleavage arrest in the ...

  5. Misexpression experiment of Tbx5 in axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) hindlimb blastema.

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    Shimokawa, Takashi; Kominami, Rieko; Yasutaka, Satoru; Shinohara, Harumichi

    2013-01-01

    Axolotls (Ambystoma mexicanum) have the ability to regenerate amputated limbs throughout their life span. In the present study, we attempted to elucidate how axolotls can specify limb type correctly during the regeneration process. We misexpressed Tbx5 in regenerating hindlimb blastema, and consequently a forelimb-like hindlimb regenerated from the hindlimb blastema. On the other hand, no change was observed in Tbx5-overexpressing forelimb blastema, and thus we considered that Tbx5 plays a key role in the specification of forelimb during the regeneration process of axolotl limbs. However, axolotls' fore- and hindlimbs have very similar structures except for the number of fingers, and it was very difficult to judge whether the forelimb-like regenerate was a true forelimb or merely a forelimb-like hindlimb. Therefore, in order to confirm our conclusion, we have to investigate other genes that are expressed differentially between fore- and hindlimbs in future experiments.

  6. Regeneration of limb joints in the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum).

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    Lee, Jangwoo; Gardiner, David M

    2012-01-01

    In spite of numerous investigations of regenerating salamander limbs, little attention has been paid to the details of how joints are reformed. An understanding of the process and mechanisms of joint regeneration in this model system for tetrapod limb regeneration would provide insights into developing novel therapies for inducing joint regeneration in humans. To this end, we have used the axolotl (Mexican Salamander) model of limb regeneration to describe the morphology and the expression patterns of marker genes during joint regeneration in response to limb amputation. These data are consistent with the hypothesis that the mechanisms of joint formation whether it be development or regeneration are conserved. We also have determined that defects in the epiphyseal region of both forelimbs and hind limbs in the axolotl are regenerated only when the defect is small. As is the case with defects in the diaphysis, there is a critical size above which the endogenous regenerative response is not sufficient to regenerate the joint. This non-regenerative response in an animal that has the ability to regenerate perfectly provides the opportunity to screen for the signaling pathways to induce regeneration of articular cartilage and joints.

  7. Regeneration of limb joints in the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum.

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    Jangwoo Lee

    Full Text Available In spite of numerous investigations of regenerating salamander limbs, little attention has been paid to the details of how joints are reformed. An understanding of the process and mechanisms of joint regeneration in this model system for tetrapod limb regeneration would provide insights into developing novel therapies for inducing joint regeneration in humans. To this end, we have used the axolotl (Mexican Salamander model of limb regeneration to describe the morphology and the expression patterns of marker genes during joint regeneration in response to limb amputation. These data are consistent with the hypothesis that the mechanisms of joint formation whether it be development or regeneration are conserved. We also have determined that defects in the epiphyseal region of both forelimbs and hind limbs in the axolotl are regenerated only when the defect is small. As is the case with defects in the diaphysis, there is a critical size above which the endogenous regenerative response is not sufficient to regenerate the joint. This non-regenerative response in an animal that has the ability to regenerate perfectly provides the opportunity to screen for the signaling pathways to induce regeneration of articular cartilage and joints.

  8. Ambiguities in the relationship between gonadal steroids and reproduction in axolotls (Ambystoma mexicanum).

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    Eisthen, Heather L; Krause, Brianne Chung

    2012-05-01

    Axolotls (Ambystoma mexicanum) are aquatic salamanders that are widely used in research. Axolotls have been bred in laboratories for nearly 150 years, yet little is known about the basic biology of reproduction in these animals. We investigated the effects of changing day length, time of year, and food availability on levels of circulating estradiol and androgens in adult female and male axolotls, respectively. In addition, we examined the effects of these variables on the mass of ovaries, oviducts, and eggs in females and on mass of testes in males relative to each individual's body weight, to calculate a form of gonadosomatic index (GSI). In both sexes, GSI was not correlated with levels of circulating steroids. In female axolotls, estradiol levels were influenced by food availability, changes in day length, and season, even when animals were held at a constant temperature and day length was decorrelated with calendar date. In addition, the mass of ovaries, oviducts, and eggs varied seasonally, peaking in the winter months and declining during the summer months, even though our animals were not breeding and shedding eggs. In males, levels of androgens appeared to vary independently of external conditions, but GSI varied dramatically with changes in day length. These results suggest that reproduction in axolotls may vary seasonally, as it does in many other ambystomid species, although both male and female axolotls are capable of reproducing several times each year. The physiological basis of this ability remains enigmatic, given the indications of seasonality contained in our data.

  9. Network based transcription factor analysis of regenerating axolotl limbs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cameron Jo Ann

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Studies on amphibian limb regeneration began in the early 1700's but we still do not completely understand the cellular and molecular events of this unique process. Understanding a complex biological process such as limb regeneration is more complicated than the knowledge of the individual genes or proteins involved. Here we followed a systems biology approach in an effort to construct the networks and pathways of protein interactions involved in formation of the accumulation blastema in regenerating axolotl limbs. Results We used the human orthologs of proteins previously identified by our research team as bait to identify the transcription factor (TF pathways and networks that regulate blastema formation in amputated axolotl limbs. The five most connected factors, c-Myc, SP1, HNF4A, ESR1 and p53 regulate ~50% of the proteins in our data. Among these, c-Myc and SP1 regulate 36.2% of the proteins. c-Myc was the most highly connected TF (71 targets. Network analysis showed that TGF-β1 and fibronectin (FN lead to the activation of these TFs. We found that other TFs known to be involved in epigenetic reprogramming, such as Klf4, Oct4, and Lin28 are also connected to c-Myc and SP1. Conclusions Our study provides a systems biology approach to how different molecular entities inter-connect with each other during the formation of an accumulation blastema in regenerating axolotl limbs. This approach provides an in silico methodology to identify proteins that are not detected by experimental methods such as proteomics but are potentially important to blastema formation. We found that the TFs, c-Myc and SP1 and their target genes could potentially play a central role in limb regeneration. Systems biology has the potential to map out numerous other pathways that are crucial to blastema formation in regeneration-competent limbs, to compare these to the pathways that characterize regeneration-deficient limbs and finally, to identify stem

  10. Structure and diversity of the heavy chain VDJ junctions in the developing Mexican axolotl.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Golub, R; Fellah, J S; Charlemagne, J

    1997-01-01

    The immune capacity of young and adult axolotls (Ambystoma mexicanum) was evaluated by examining the combinatorial and junctional diversity of the VH chain. A large number of VDJ rearrangements isolated from 2.5-, 3.5-, 10-, and 24-month-old animals were sequenced. Six JH segments were identified with the canonical structure of all known vertebrate JHs, including the conserved Trp103-Gly104-X-Gly106 motif. Four core DH-like sequences were used by most (80%) of the VDJ junctions. These G-rich sequences had structures reminiscent of the TCRB DB sequences, and were equally used in their three reading frames. About 25% of the Igh, VDJ junctions from 3.5-month-old axolotls were out of frame, but most rearrangements were in frame at 10 and 24 months, suggesting that there is active selection of the productively rearranged Igh chains in the developing animals. There was no significant difference between the size of CDR3 in young (3.5 months) and subadult (10 months) axolotls (mean: 8.5 amino acids). However, the CDR3 loop was 1 amino acid longer in 2-year-old adult animals (mean: 9.5 residues). Several pairs of identical VDJ/CDR3 sequences were shared between 3.5-month-old individually analyzed axolotls, or between groups of axolotl of different ages. These identical rearrangements might be provided by the selection of some B-cell clones important for species survival, although the probability that different 3.5-month-old axolotl larvae would produce identical junctions seems very low, considering their limited number of B cells (less than 10(5)). The high frequency of tyrosine residues and the paucity of charged residues in the axolotl CDR3 loops may explain the polyreactivity of natural antibodies, and also clarify why it is so difficult to raise specific antibodies against soluble antigens. PMID:9271630

  11. Transforming growth factor: beta signaling is essential for limb regeneration in axolotls.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mathieu Lévesque

    Full Text Available Axolotls (urodele amphibians have the unique ability, among vertebrates, to perfectly regenerate many parts of their body including limbs, tail, jaw and spinal cord following injury or amputation. The axolotl limb is the most widely used structure as an experimental model to study tissue regeneration. The process is well characterized, requiring multiple cellular and molecular mechanisms. The preparation phase represents the first part of the regeneration process which includes wound healing, cellular migration, dedifferentiation and proliferation. The redevelopment phase represents the second part when dedifferentiated cells stop proliferating and redifferentiate to give rise to all missing structures. In the axolotl, when a limb is amputated, the missing or wounded part is regenerated perfectly without scar formation between the stump and the regenerated structure. Multiple authors have recently highlighted the similarities between the early phases of mammalian wound healing and urodele limb regeneration. In mammals, one very important family of growth factors implicated in the control of almost all aspects of wound healing is the transforming growth factor-beta family (TGF-beta. In the present study, the full length sequence of the axolotl TGF-beta1 cDNA was isolated. The spatio-temporal expression pattern of TGF-beta1 in regenerating limbs shows that this gene is up-regulated during the preparation phase of regeneration. Our results also demonstrate the presence of multiple components of the TGF-beta signaling machinery in axolotl cells. By using a specific pharmacological inhibitor of TGF-beta type I receptor, SB-431542, we show that TGF-beta signaling is required for axolotl limb regeneration. Treatment of regenerating limbs with SB-431542 reveals that cellular proliferation during limb regeneration as well as the expression of genes directly dependent on TGF-beta signaling are down-regulated. These data directly implicate TGF

  12. Pathological features of olfactory neuroblastoma in an axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shioda, Chieko; Uchida, Kazuyuki; Nakayama, Hiroyuki

    2011-08-01

    A one-year-old, female Mexican axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) had a rough-surfaced, polypoid, pink tumor mass of approximately 10 mm in diameter in the oral cavity. Histologically, the tumor extended from the ethmoturbinate region and into the oral cavity and had replaced some of the maxillary bone tissue. The tumor mass was composed of a lobular architecture of small round-shaped tumor cells with occasional Flexner-Wintersteiner-like rosette formation. There were no metastatic lesions in the other organs. Immunohistochemically, the tumor cells were partly positive for several neural markers (class III beta-tubulin, S-100 protein, and doublecortin) and intensely positive for an epithelial marker (cytokeratin AE1/AE3). These results suggest that the present tumor originated from neuroectodermal tissue. Considering the location and histological and immunohistochemical features of the tumor, a diagnosis of olfactory neuroblastoma was made.

  13. Luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone induces thyroxine release together with testosterone in the neotenic axolotl Ambystoma mexicanum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jacobs, G F; Kühn, E R

    1988-09-01

    In male neotenic axolotls Ambystoma mexicanum plasma concentrations of thyroxine (T4) and testosterone were increased following intravenous injection of 10 micrograms luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone. A dose of 50 micrograms influenced only plasma T4 levels. This observation suggests for the first time that a hypothalamic hormone is capable of stimulating the thyroidal axis in the neotenic axolotl.

  14. Expression of tropomyosin in relation to myofibrillogenesis in axolotl hearts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zajdel, Robert W; McLean, Matthew D; Dube, Syamalima; Dube, Dipak K

    2013-12-01

    The anatomy, function and embryonic development of the heart have been of interest to clinicians and researchers alike for centuries. A beating heart is one of the key criteria in defining life or death in humans. An understanding of the multitude of genetic and functional elements that interplay to form such a complex organ is slowly evolving with new genetic, molecular and experimental techniques. Despite the need for ever more complex molecular techniques some of our biggest leaps in knowledge come from nature itself through observations of mutations that create natural defects in function. Such a natural mutation is found in the Mexican axolotl, Ambystoma mexicanum. It is a facultative neotenous salamander well studied for its ability to regenerate severed limbs and tail. Interestingly it also well suited to studying segmental heart development and differential sarcomere protein expression due to a naturally occurring mendelian recessive mutation in cardiac mutant gene "c". The resultant mutants are identified by their failure to beat and can be studied for extended periods before they finally die due to lack of circulation. Studies have shown a differential expression of tropomyosin between the conus and the ventricle indicating two different cardiac segments. Tropomyosin protein, but not its transcript have been found to be deficient in mutant ventricles and sarcomere formation can be rescued by the addition of TM protein or cDNA. Although once thought to be due to endoderm induction our findings indicate a translational regulatory mechanism that may ultimately control the level of tropomyosin protein in axolotl hearts. PMID:25984327

  15. Optimized axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) husbandry, breeding, metamorphosis, transgenesis and tamoxifen-mediated recombination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khattak, Shahryar; Murawala, Prayag; Andreas, Heino; Kappert, Verena; Schuez, Maritta; Sandoval-Guzmán, Tatiana; Crawford, Karen; Tanaka, Elly M

    2014-03-01

    The axolotl (Mexican salamander, Ambystoma mexicanum) has become a very useful model organism for studying limb and spinal cord regeneration because of its high regenerative capacity. Here we present a protocol for successfully mating and breeding axolotls in the laboratory throughout the year, for metamorphosing axolotls by a single i.p. injection and for axolotl transgenesis using I-SceI meganuclease and the mini Tol2 transposon system. Tol2-mediated transgenesis provides different features and advantages compared with I-SceI-mediated transgenesis, and it can result in more than 30% of animals expressing the transgene throughout their bodies so that they can be directly used for experimentation. By using Tol2-mediated transgenesis, experiments can be performed within weeks (e.g., 5-6 weeks for obtaining 2-3-cm-long larvae) without the need to establish germline transgenic lines (which take 12-18 months). In addition, we describe here tamoxifen-induced Cre-mediated recombination in transgenic axolotls. PMID:24504478

  16. Proteinaceous Pheromone Homologs Identified from the Cloacal Gland Transcriptome of a Male Axolotl, Ambystoma mexicanum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hall, Kevin W; Eisthen, Heather L; Williams, Barry L

    2016-01-01

    Pheromones play an important role in modifying vertebrate behavior, especially during courtship and mating. Courtship behavior in urodele amphibians often includes female exposure to secretions from the cloacal gland, as well as other scent glands. The first vertebrate proteinaceous pheromone discovered, the decapeptide sodefrin, is a female attracting pheromone secreted by the cloacal gland of male Cynops pyrrhogaster. Other proteinaceous pheromones in salamanders have been shown to elicit responses from females towards conspecific males. The presence and levels of expression of proteinaceous pheromones have not been identified in the family Ambystomatidae, which includes several important research models. The objective of this research was therefore to identify putative proteinaceous pheromones from male axolotls, Ambystoma mexicanum, as well as their relative expression levels. The results indicate that axolotls possess two different forms of sodefrin precursor-like factor (alpha and beta), as well as a putative ortholog of plethodontid modulating factor. The beta form of sodefrin precursor-like factor was amongst the most highly expressed transcripts within the cloacal gland. The ortholog of plethodontid modulating factor was expressed at a level equivalent to the beta sodefrin precursor-like factor. The results are from a single male axolotl; therefore, we are unable to assess how representative our results may be. Nevertheless, the presence of these highly expressed proteinaceous pheromones suggests that male axolotls use multiple chemical cues to attract female conspecifics. Behavioral assays would indicate whether the putative protein pheromones elicit courtship activity from female axolotls. PMID:26885665

  17. Optimized axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) husbandry, breeding, metamorphosis, transgenesis and tamoxifen-mediated recombination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khattak, Shahryar; Murawala, Prayag; Andreas, Heino; Kappert, Verena; Schuez, Maritta; Sandoval-Guzmán, Tatiana; Crawford, Karen; Tanaka, Elly M

    2014-03-01

    The axolotl (Mexican salamander, Ambystoma mexicanum) has become a very useful model organism for studying limb and spinal cord regeneration because of its high regenerative capacity. Here we present a protocol for successfully mating and breeding axolotls in the laboratory throughout the year, for metamorphosing axolotls by a single i.p. injection and for axolotl transgenesis using I-SceI meganuclease and the mini Tol2 transposon system. Tol2-mediated transgenesis provides different features and advantages compared with I-SceI-mediated transgenesis, and it can result in more than 30% of animals expressing the transgene throughout their bodies so that they can be directly used for experimentation. By using Tol2-mediated transgenesis, experiments can be performed within weeks (e.g., 5-6 weeks for obtaining 2-3-cm-long larvae) without the need to establish germline transgenic lines (which take 12-18 months). In addition, we describe here tamoxifen-induced Cre-mediated recombination in transgenic axolotls.

  18. Lmx-1b and Wnt-7a expression in axolotl limb during development and regeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shimokawa, Takashi; Yasutaka, Satoru; Kominami, Rieko; Shinohara, Harumichi

    2013-01-01

    Axolotls (Ambystoma mexicanum) have the ability to regenerate amputated limbs throughout their life span. During limb regeneration as well as development, undifferentiated cells in the blastema acquire positional information to reproduce the original pattern along three cardinal limb axes: anteroposterior, proximodistal and dorsoventral. In the present study, we attempted to understand the molecular mechanism involved in patterning of axolotl limb development and regeneration along the dorsoventral (DV) axis. We cloned axolotl Lmx-1b and Wnt-7a, and investigated the expression pattern of these genes in developing and regenerating limbs. In axolotl, unlike in amniotes, Wnt-7a was expressed in a diffuse manner throughout both developing limb bud and regenerating limb blastema. Lmx-1b expression was observed at the dorsal mesenchyme in the developing and regenerating limbs. On the basis of the expression patterns of Lmx-1b and Wnt-7a, it was difficult to identify the interaction between these two genes as reported in amniotes in previous studies. Possibly, with regard to Lmx-1b expression, a Wnt-7a-independent mechanism may exist in axolotl limb development and regeneration.

  19. Proteinaceous Pheromone Homologs Identified from the Cloacal Gland Transcriptome of a Male Axolotl, Ambystoma mexicanum.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kevin W Hall

    Full Text Available Pheromones play an important role in modifying vertebrate behavior, especially during courtship and mating. Courtship behavior in urodele amphibians often includes female exposure to secretions from the cloacal gland, as well as other scent glands. The first vertebrate proteinaceous pheromone discovered, the decapeptide sodefrin, is a female attracting pheromone secreted by the cloacal gland of male Cynops pyrrhogaster. Other proteinaceous pheromones in salamanders have been shown to elicit responses from females towards conspecific males. The presence and levels of expression of proteinaceous pheromones have not been identified in the family Ambystomatidae, which includes several important research models. The objective of this research was therefore to identify putative proteinaceous pheromones from male axolotls, Ambystoma mexicanum, as well as their relative expression levels. The results indicate that axolotls possess two different forms of sodefrin precursor-like factor (alpha and beta, as well as a putative ortholog of plethodontid modulating factor. The beta form of sodefrin precursor-like factor was amongst the most highly expressed transcripts within the cloacal gland. The ortholog of plethodontid modulating factor was expressed at a level equivalent to the beta sodefrin precursor-like factor. The results are from a single male axolotl; therefore, we are unable to assess how representative our results may be. Nevertheless, the presence of these highly expressed proteinaceous pheromones suggests that male axolotls use multiple chemical cues to attract female conspecifics. Behavioral assays would indicate whether the putative protein pheromones elicit courtship activity from female axolotls.

  20. Proteinaceous Pheromone Homologs Identified from the Cloacal Gland Transcriptome of a Male Axolotl, Ambystoma mexicanum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hall, Kevin W; Eisthen, Heather L; Williams, Barry L

    2016-01-01

    Pheromones play an important role in modifying vertebrate behavior, especially during courtship and mating. Courtship behavior in urodele amphibians often includes female exposure to secretions from the cloacal gland, as well as other scent glands. The first vertebrate proteinaceous pheromone discovered, the decapeptide sodefrin, is a female attracting pheromone secreted by the cloacal gland of male Cynops pyrrhogaster. Other proteinaceous pheromones in salamanders have been shown to elicit responses from females towards conspecific males. The presence and levels of expression of proteinaceous pheromones have not been identified in the family Ambystomatidae, which includes several important research models. The objective of this research was therefore to identify putative proteinaceous pheromones from male axolotls, Ambystoma mexicanum, as well as their relative expression levels. The results indicate that axolotls possess two different forms of sodefrin precursor-like factor (alpha and beta), as well as a putative ortholog of plethodontid modulating factor. The beta form of sodefrin precursor-like factor was amongst the most highly expressed transcripts within the cloacal gland. The ortholog of plethodontid modulating factor was expressed at a level equivalent to the beta sodefrin precursor-like factor. The results are from a single male axolotl; therefore, we are unable to assess how representative our results may be. Nevertheless, the presence of these highly expressed proteinaceous pheromones suggests that male axolotls use multiple chemical cues to attract female conspecifics. Behavioral assays would indicate whether the putative protein pheromones elicit courtship activity from female axolotls.

  1. MARCKS-like protein is an initiating molecule in axolotl appendage regeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sugiura, Takuji; Wang, Heng; Barsacchi, Rico; Simon, Andras; Tanaka, Elly M

    2016-03-10

    Identifying key molecules that launch regeneration has been a long-sought goal. Multiple regenerative animals show an initial wound-associated proliferative response that transits into sustained proliferation if a considerable portion of the body part has been removed. In the axolotl, appendage amputation initiates a round of wound-associated cell cycle induction followed by continued proliferation that is dependent on nerve-derived signals. A wound-associated molecule that triggers the initial proliferative response to launch regeneration has remained obscure. Here, using an expression cloning strategy followed by in vivo gain- and loss-of-function assays, we identified axolotl MARCKS-like protein (MLP) as an extracellularly released factor that induces the initial cell cycle response during axolotl appendage regeneration. The identification of a regeneration-initiating molecule opens the possibility of understanding how to elicit regeneration in other animals.

  2. RAG expression is restricted to the first year of life in the Mexican axolotl.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Durand, C; Charlemagne, J; Fellah, J S

    2000-07-01

    The developmental expression of the RAG1 gene in the Mexican axolotl hematopoietic organs was studied. RAG1 mRNAs were first detected in trunk extracts from 6-week-old larvae, and in head and trunk extracts of 8- and 9-week-old larvae. RAG1 is expressed in the thymus at all stages of development, until its natural involution after 12 months of age. In contrast, although RAG1 transcripts were present in the spleen and liver of the young larvae, they were not detected in the liver after 4.5 months and in the spleen after 8 months. No RAG1 mRNA expression was observed in the spleens or livers of 24-month-old hyperimmunized axolotls. The developmental expression of the RAG2 protein was also analyzed in axolotl thymus, spleen, and liver extracts using specific anti-RAG2 antibodies. RAG2 was readily detected at 7 months, but not in hematopoietic organs of 12- and 24-month-old axolotls. The presence of RAG1 transcripts was limited to the sub-capsular area of the thymus lobes, as detected by in situ hybridization. Discrete clusters of labeled cells were observed in the spleen sections, and a relatively large number of labeled cells were located in the hepatic peripheral hematopoietic layer of 3-month-old axolotls. The first appearance of RAG1 gene products in the axolotl hematopoietic organs is thus well correlated with the first production of rearranged T-cell and B-cell receptor mRNAs, 40-60 days after fertilization. PMID:10941839

  3. Evolution of T cell receptor genes. Extensive diversity of V beta families in the Mexican axolotl.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fellah, J S; Kerfourn, F; Charlemagne, J

    1994-11-15

    We have cloned 36 different rearranged variable regions (V beta) genes encoding the beta-chain of the T cell receptor in an amphibian species, Ambystoma mexicanum (the Mexican axolotl). Eleven different V beta segments were identified, which can be classified into 9 families on the basis of a minimum of 75% nucleotide identity. All the cloned V beta segments have the canonical features of known mammalian and avian V beta, including conserved residues Cys23, Trp34, Arg69, Tyr90, and Cys92. There seems to be a greater genetic distance between the axolotl V beta families than between the different V beta families of any mammalian species examined to date: most of the axolotl V beta s have fewer than 35% identical nucleotides and the less related families (V beta 4 and V beta 8) have no more than 23.2% identity (13.5% at the amino acid level). Despite their great mutual divergence, several axolotl V beta are sequence-related to some mammalian V beta genes, like the human V beta 13 and V beta 20 segments and their murine V beta 8 and V beta 14 homologues. However, the axolotl V beta 8 and V beta 9 families are not significantly related to any other V beta sequence at the nucleotide level and show limited amino acid similarity to mammalian V alpha, V kappa III, or VH sequences. The detection of nine V beta families among 35 randomly cloned V beta segments suggests that the V beta gene repertoire in the axolotl is probably larger than presently estimated. PMID:7963525

  4. Hyperbaric oxygen therapy in a true regenerative environment, the regenerating limb of the axolotl

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansen, Kasper; Lauridsen, Henrik; Pedersen, Michael

    2012-01-01

    vertebrates such as the urodele amphibians (salamanders and newts), are excellent animal models for regenerative studies. The iconic Mexican axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) is capable of regenerating whole limbs, tail, jaw, and many inner organs, by dedifferentiation of cells to form a blastema (collection......: This pilot study revealed no effect of 80 days constitutive HBOT in a regeneration-competent species, suggesting that HBOT has minor consequences on tissue regeneration in a non-necrotic environment. Keywords: whole limb regeneration, amphibian, Mexican axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum), HBOT...

  5. Esterases activity in the axolotl Ambystoma mexicanum exposed to chlorpyrifos and its implication to motor activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robles-Mendoza, Cecilia; Zúñiga-Lagunes, Sebastian R; Ponce de León-Hill, Claudia A; Hernández-Soto, Jesús; Vanegas-Pérez, Cecilia

    2011-10-01

    The axolotl Ambystoma mexicanum is a neotenic salamander considered a good biological model due to its ability to regenerate limbs, tail, brain and heart cells. Nevertheless, severe reduction of A. mexicanum wild populations in the lacustrine area of Xochimilco, the natural habitat of the axolotl, could be related to several environmental pressures as the presence of organophosphate pesticides (OPPs), intensively applied in agricultural activities in Xochimilco. Thus the aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of environmentally realistic chlorpyrifos (CPF) concentrations, a OPP commonly used in this zone, on esterases activity (acetylcholinesterase and carboxylesterase) and bioconcentration of CPF and to relate them with the motor activity of A. mexicanum juveniles. Axolotls were exposed 48 h to 0.05 and 0.1mg CPF/L, and the responses were evaluated at the end of the CPF exposure. Results suggest that CPF is bioconcentrated into axolotls and that the CPF internal concentrations are related with the observed inhibition activity of AChE (>50%) and CbE (≈ 50%). CPF concentration responsible of the inhibition of the 50% of AChE activity (IC50) was estimated in 0.04 mg CPF/L; however IC50 for CbE activity was not possible to calculate since inhibition levels were lower than 50%, results that suggest a higher resistance of CbE enzymatic activity to CPF. However, motor activity was a more sensitive endpoint to CPF poisoning since time that axolotls spent active and walking, frequency and speed of swimming, frequency of prey attack were reduced >90% of control groups. The motor activity alterations in the axolotl could be related with the registered esterases inhibition. Thus important alterations on axolotls were identified even at short time and low concentrations of CPF exposure. Also, it was possible to link biochemical responses as esterases activity with higher levels of biological organization as behavior. This study provides tools for the regulation of the

  6. Ultrastructure of the renal juxtaglomerular complex and peripolar cells in the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) and toad (Bufo marinus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hanner, R H; Ryan, G B

    1980-05-01

    Renal juxtaglomerular regions were examined in the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum and toad (Bufo marinus). Prominent granulated peripolar epithelial cells were found surrounding the origin of the glomerular tuft in the axolotl. These cells resembled the peripolar cells recently discovered in mammalian species. They contained multiple electron-dense cytoplasmic granules, some of which showed a paracrystalline substructure and signs of exocytoxic activity. Such cells were difficult to find and smaller in the toad. In contrast, granulated juxtaglomerular arteriolar myoephithelial cells were much more readily found and larger in the toad than in the axolotl. No consistent differences were noted in juxtaglomerular cells or their granules in response to changes in environmental chloride concentration.

  7. Axolotl/Bichos Raros Crónica

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Susana Chávez-Silverman

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available In this crónica, I pay homage (and talk back to! one of my favourite authors, Julio Cortázar, who I had the great privilege and pleasure of befriending in 1980, when he was a visiting professor at UC-Berkeley. I have been obsessed with time-travel, doubling, and interstitiality since I was very young; even the most casual Cortázar reader (if such a thing is possible will immediately recognise these as recurrent themes in his work. Here, faced with several actual axolotl in a Buenos Aires aquarium, I explore and comment on Cortázar’s strangely mesmerising meditation on identity and transformation. My personal connection is (as in much of my writing concerned with aspects of gender and sexuality suppressed or (more likely ignored in Cortázar’s version. I identify, too, with a poignant in-betweenness and ambiguity I read in the figure of the axolotl—and in the work of Cortázar and Alejandra Pizarnik.

  8. Genetic mapping in the Mexican axolotl, Ambystoma mexicanum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Armstrong, J B

    1984-02-01

    In the Mexican axolotl, Ambystoma mexicanum, gynogenetic diploids can be produced by suppressing the release of the second polar body in eggs activated with irradiated sperm. If the female is heterozygous for a particular mutation, some of the progeny will be homozygous for the mutation. The proportion depends on the distance from the centromere and can be used to determine the gene--centromere (or gene-kinetochore) distance. The mapping function is based on the Neurospora tetrad mapping function. Several variations on this function, based on considerations of how coincidence varies with map distance, are considered. Three genes have been mapped: c at 5.9, t at 24.3, and m at 59.1 map units from their respective centromeres. Four other genes (a, ax, p, and the sex locus) appear to be distant from their centromeres but precise map distances cannot be determined. Based on these data, the total length of the genome has been estimated as at least 2600 map units.

  9. Courtship Pheromone Use in a Model Urodele, the Mexican Axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maex, Margo; Van Bocxlaer, Ines; Mortier, Anneleen; Proost, Paul; Bossuyt, Franky

    2016-01-01

    Sex pheromones have been shown to constitute a crucial aspect of salamander reproduction. Until now, courtship pheromones of Salamandridae and Plethodontidae have been intensively studied, but information on chemical communication in other urodelan families is essentially lacking. The axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum, Ambystomatidae) has a courtship display that suggests a key role for chemical communication in the orchestration of its sexual behavior, but no sex pheromones have yet been characterized from this species. Here we combined whole transcriptome analyses of the male cloaca with proteomic analyses of water in which axolotls were allowed to court to show that male axolotls secrete multiple ca. 20 kDa glycosylated sodefrin precursor-like factor (SPF) proteins during courtship. In combination with phylogenetic analyses, our data show that the male cloaca essentially secretes a courtship-specific clade of SPF proteins that is orthologous to salamandrid courtship pheromones. In addition, we identified an SPF protein for which no orthologs have been described from other salamanders so far. Overall, our study advocates a central role for SPF proteins during the courtship display of axolotls and adds knowledge on pheromone use in a previously unexplored deep evolutionary branch of salamander evolution. PMID:26842386

  10. Highly efficient targeted mutagenesis in axolotl using Cas9 RNA-guided nuclease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flowers, G Parker; Timberlake, Andrew T; McLean, Kaitlin C; Monaghan, James R; Crews, Craig M

    2014-05-01

    Among tetrapods, only urodele salamanders, such as the axolotl Ambystoma mexicanum, can completely regenerate limbs as adults. The mystery of why salamanders, but not other animals, possess this ability has for generations captivated scientists seeking to induce this phenomenon in other vertebrates. Although many recent advances in molecular biology have allowed limb regeneration and tissue repair in the axolotl to be investigated in increasing detail, the molecular toolkit for the study of this process has been limited. Here, we report that the CRISPR-Cas9 RNA-guided nuclease system can efficiently create mutations at targeted sites within the axolotl genome. We identify individual animals treated with RNA-guided nucleases that have mutation frequencies close to 100% at targeted sites. We employ this technique to completely functionally ablate EGFP expression in transgenic animals and recapitulate developmental phenotypes produced by loss of the conserved gene brachyury. Thus, this advance allows a reverse genetic approach in the axolotl and will undoubtedly provide invaluable insight into the mechanisms of salamanders' unique regenerative ability. PMID:24764077

  11. Identification of Conserved and Novel MicroRNAs during Tail Regeneration in the Mexican Axolotl.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gearhart, Micah D; Erickson, Jami R; Walsh, Andrew; Echeverri, Karen

    2015-01-01

    The Mexican axolotl salamander (Ambystoma mexicanum) is one member of a select group of vertebrate animals that have retained the amazing ability to regenerate multiple body parts. In addition to being an important model system for regeneration, the axolotl has also contributed extensively to studies of basic development. While many genes known to play key roles during development have now been implicated in various forms of regeneration, much of the regulatory apparatus controlling the underlying molecular circuitry remains unknown. In recent years, microRNAs have been identified as key regulators of gene expression during development, in many diseases and also, increasingly, in regeneration. Here, we have used deep sequencing combined with qRT-PCR to undertake a comprehensive identification of microRNAs involved in regulating regeneration in the axolotl. Specifically, among the microRNAs that we have found to be expressed in axolotl tissues, we have identified 4564 microRNA families known to be widely conserved among vertebrates, as well as 59,811 reads of putative novel microRNAs. These findings support the hypothesis that microRNAs play key roles in managing the precise spatial and temporal patterns of gene expression that ensures the correct regeneration of missing tissues. PMID:26378530

  12. Multiple regeneration from axolotl limb stumps bearing cross-transplanted minced muscle regenerates : brief note

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Carlson, Bruce M.

    1975-01-01

    Flexor and extensor muscles in the upper arms of axolotls were minced and cross-transplanted. The limbs were amputated 5 and 30 days after mincing. In each experiment a high percentage of the regenerates consisted of multiple limbs. This demonstrates that the morphogenetic information which produces

  13. Identification of Conserved and Novel MicroRNAs during Tail Regeneration in the Mexican Axolotl.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gearhart, Micah D; Erickson, Jami R; Walsh, Andrew; Echeverri, Karen

    2015-01-01

    The Mexican axolotl salamander (Ambystoma mexicanum) is one member of a select group of vertebrate animals that have retained the amazing ability to regenerate multiple body parts. In addition to being an important model system for regeneration, the axolotl has also contributed extensively to studies of basic development. While many genes known to play key roles during development have now been implicated in various forms of regeneration, much of the regulatory apparatus controlling the underlying molecular circuitry remains unknown. In recent years, microRNAs have been identified as key regulators of gene expression during development, in many diseases and also, increasingly, in regeneration. Here, we have used deep sequencing combined with qRT-PCR to undertake a comprehensive identification of microRNAs involved in regulating regeneration in the axolotl. Specifically, among the microRNAs that we have found to be expressed in axolotl tissues, we have identified 4564 microRNA families known to be widely conserved among vertebrates, as well as 59,811 reads of putative novel microRNAs. These findings support the hypothesis that microRNAs play key roles in managing the precise spatial and temporal patterns of gene expression that ensures the correct regeneration of missing tissues.

  14. Courtship Pheromone Use in a Model Urodele, the Mexican Axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maex, Margo; Van Bocxlaer, Ines; Mortier, Anneleen; Proost, Paul; Bossuyt, Franky

    2016-01-01

    Sex pheromones have been shown to constitute a crucial aspect of salamander reproduction. Until now, courtship pheromones of Salamandridae and Plethodontidae have been intensively studied, but information on chemical communication in other urodelan families is essentially lacking. The axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum, Ambystomatidae) has a courtship display that suggests a key role for chemical communication in the orchestration of its sexual behavior, but no sex pheromones have yet been characterized from this species. Here we combined whole transcriptome analyses of the male cloaca with proteomic analyses of water in which axolotls were allowed to court to show that male axolotls secrete multiple ca. 20 kDa glycosylated sodefrin precursor-like factor (SPF) proteins during courtship. In combination with phylogenetic analyses, our data show that the male cloaca essentially secretes a courtship-specific clade of SPF proteins that is orthologous to salamandrid courtship pheromones. In addition, we identified an SPF protein for which no orthologs have been described from other salamanders so far. Overall, our study advocates a central role for SPF proteins during the courtship display of axolotls and adds knowledge on pheromone use in a previously unexplored deep evolutionary branch of salamander evolution.

  15. Highly efficient targeted mutagenesis in axolotl using Cas9 RNA-guided nuclease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flowers, G Parker; Timberlake, Andrew T; McLean, Kaitlin C; Monaghan, James R; Crews, Craig M

    2014-05-01

    Among tetrapods, only urodele salamanders, such as the axolotl Ambystoma mexicanum, can completely regenerate limbs as adults. The mystery of why salamanders, but not other animals, possess this ability has for generations captivated scientists seeking to induce this phenomenon in other vertebrates. Although many recent advances in molecular biology have allowed limb regeneration and tissue repair in the axolotl to be investigated in increasing detail, the molecular toolkit for the study of this process has been limited. Here, we report that the CRISPR-Cas9 RNA-guided nuclease system can efficiently create mutations at targeted sites within the axolotl genome. We identify individual animals treated with RNA-guided nucleases that have mutation frequencies close to 100% at targeted sites. We employ this technique to completely functionally ablate EGFP expression in transgenic animals and recapitulate developmental phenotypes produced by loss of the conserved gene brachyury. Thus, this advance allows a reverse genetic approach in the axolotl and will undoubtedly provide invaluable insight into the mechanisms of salamanders' unique regenerative ability.

  16. Identification of Conserved and Novel MicroRNAs during Tail Regeneration in the Mexican Axolotl

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Micah D. Gearhart

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available The Mexican axolotl salamander (Ambystoma mexicanum is one member of a select group of vertebrate animals that have retained the amazing ability to regenerate multiple body parts. In addition to being an important model system for regeneration, the axolotl has also contributed extensively to studies of basic development. While many genes known to play key roles during development have now been implicated in various forms of regeneration, much of the regulatory apparatus controlling the underlying molecular circuitry remains unknown. In recent years, microRNAs have been identified as key regulators of gene expression during development, in many diseases and also, increasingly, in regeneration. Here, we have used deep sequencing combined with qRT-PCR to undertake a comprehensive identification of microRNAs involved in regulating regeneration in the axolotl. Specifically, among the microRNAs that we have found to be expressed in axolotl tissues, we have identified 4564 microRNA families known to be widely conserved among vertebrates, as well as 59,811 reads of putative novel microRNAs. These findings support the hypothesis that microRNAs play key roles in managing the precise spatial and temporal patterns of gene expression that ensures the correct regeneration of missing tissues.

  17. Studies on heart development in normal and cardiac mutant axolotls, Ambystoma Mexicanum, using cellular and molecular biology

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2000-01-01

    @@ The Mexican axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) provides and excellent model for studying heart development since it carries a simple recessive cardiac lethal mutation that results in a failure of mutant embryonic myocardium to contract.

  18. Structure and diversity of the T-cell receptor alpha chain in the Mexican axolotl.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fellah, J S; Kerfourn, F; Dumay, A M; Aubet, G; Charlemagne, J

    1997-01-01

    Polymerase chain reaction was used to isolate cDNA clones encoding putative T-cell receptor (TCR) alpha chains in an amphibian, the Mexican axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum). Five TCRalpha-V chain-encoding segments were identified, each belonging to a separate family. The best identity scores for these axolotl TCRalpha-V segments were all provided by sequences belonging to the human TCRalpha-V1 family and the mouse TCRalpha-V3 and TCRalpha-V8 families. A total of 14 different TCRA-J segments were identified from 44 TCRA-V/TCRA-J regions sequenced, suggesting that a large repertoire of TCRA-J segments is a characteristic of most vertebrates. The structure of the axolotl CDR3 alpha chain loop is in good agreement with that of mammals, including a majority of small hydrophobic residues at position 92 and of charged, hydrophilic, or polar residues at positions 93 and 94, which are highly variable and correspond to the TCRA-V/J junction. This suggests that some positions of the axolotl CDR3 alpha chain loop are positively selected during T-cell differentiation, particularly around residue 93 that could be selected for its ability to makes contacts with major histocompatibility complex-associated antigenic peptides, as in mammals. The axolotl Calpha domain had the typical structure of mammalian and avian Calpha domains, including the charged residues in the TM segment that are thought to interact with other proteins in the membrane, as well as most of the residues forming the conserved antigen receptor transmembrane motif. PMID:9002443

  19. Expression of sarcomeric tropomyosin in striated muscles in axolotl treated with shz-1, a small cardiogenic molecule.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nan, Changlong; Dube, Syamalima; Matoq, Amr; Mikesell, Lauren; Abbott, Lynn; Alshiekh-Nasany, Ruham; Chionuma, Henry; Huang, Xupei; Poiesz, Bernard J; Dube, Dipak K

    2015-01-01

    We evaluated the effect of shz-1, a cardiogenic molecule, on the expression of various tropomyosin (TM) isoforms in the Mexican axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) hearts. qRT-PCR data show a ~1.5-fold increase in cardiac transcripts of the Nkx2.5 gene, which plays a crucial role in cardiogenesis in vertebrates. Shz-1 augments the expression of transcripts of the total sarcomeric TPM1 (both TPM1α & TPM1κ) and sarcomeric TPM4α. In order to understand the mechanism by which shz-1 augments the expression of sarcomeric TPM transcription in axolotl hearts, we transfected C2C12 cells with pGL3.axolotl. We transfected C2C12 cells with pGL3-axolotl TPM4 promoter constructs containing the firefly luciferase reporter gene. The transfected C2C12 cells were grown in the absence or presence of shz-1 (5 μM). Subsequently, we determined the firefly luciferase activity in the extracts of transfected cells. The results suggest that shz-1 activates the axolotl TPM4 promoter-driven ectopic expression in C2C12 cells. Also, we transfected C2C12 cells with a pGL3.1 vector containing the promoter of the mouse skeletal muscle troponin-I and observed a similar increase in the luciferase activity in shz-1-treated cells. We conclude that shz-1 activates the promoters of a variety of genes including axolotl TPM4. We have quantified the expression of the total sarcomeric TPM1 and observed a 1.5-fold increase in treated cells. Western blot analyses with CH1 monoclonal antibody specific for sarcomeric isoforms show that shz-1 does not increase the expression of TM protein in axolotl hearts, whereas it does in C2C12 cells. These findings support our hypothesis that cardiac TM expression in axolotl undergoes translational control. PMID:24958154

  20. Ultrastructure of the renal juxtaglomerular complex and peripolar cells in the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) and toad (Bufo marinus).

    OpenAIRE

    Hanner, R H; Ryan, G B

    1980-01-01

    Renal juxtaglomerular regions were examined in the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum and toad (Bufo marinus). Prominent granulated peripolar epithelial cells were found surrounding the origin of the glomerular tuft in the axolotl. These cells resembled the peripolar cells recently discovered in mammalian species. They contained multiple electron-dense cytoplasmic granules, some of which showed a paracrystalline substructure and signs of exocytoxic activity. Such cells were difficult to find and sm...

  1. Expression of sarcomeric tropomyosin in striated muscles in axolotl treated with shz-1, a small cardiogenic molecule.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nan, Changlong; Dube, Syamalima; Matoq, Amr; Mikesell, Lauren; Abbott, Lynn; Alshiekh-Nasany, Ruham; Chionuma, Henry; Huang, Xupei; Poiesz, Bernard J; Dube, Dipak K

    2015-01-01

    We evaluated the effect of shz-1, a cardiogenic molecule, on the expression of various tropomyosin (TM) isoforms in the Mexican axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) hearts. qRT-PCR data show a ~1.5-fold increase in cardiac transcripts of the Nkx2.5 gene, which plays a crucial role in cardiogenesis in vertebrates. Shz-1 augments the expression of transcripts of the total sarcomeric TPM1 (both TPM1α & TPM1κ) and sarcomeric TPM4α. In order to understand the mechanism by which shz-1 augments the expression of sarcomeric TPM transcription in axolotl hearts, we transfected C2C12 cells with pGL3.axolotl. We transfected C2C12 cells with pGL3-axolotl TPM4 promoter constructs containing the firefly luciferase reporter gene. The transfected C2C12 cells were grown in the absence or presence of shz-1 (5 μM). Subsequently, we determined the firefly luciferase activity in the extracts of transfected cells. The results suggest that shz-1 activates the axolotl TPM4 promoter-driven ectopic expression in C2C12 cells. Also, we transfected C2C12 cells with a pGL3.1 vector containing the promoter of the mouse skeletal muscle troponin-I and observed a similar increase in the luciferase activity in shz-1-treated cells. We conclude that shz-1 activates the promoters of a variety of genes including axolotl TPM4. We have quantified the expression of the total sarcomeric TPM1 and observed a 1.5-fold increase in treated cells. Western blot analyses with CH1 monoclonal antibody specific for sarcomeric isoforms show that shz-1 does not increase the expression of TM protein in axolotl hearts, whereas it does in C2C12 cells. These findings support our hypothesis that cardiac TM expression in axolotl undergoes translational control.

  2. Long-duration muscle dedifferentiation during limb regeneration in axolotls.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cheng-Han Wu

    Full Text Available Although still debated, limb regeneration in salamanders is thought to depend on the dedifferentiation of remnant tissue occurring early after amputation and generating the progenitor cells that initiate regeneration. This dedifferentiation has been demonstrated previously by showing the fragmentation of muscle fibers into mononucleated cells and by revealing the contribution of mature muscle fibers to the regenerates by using lineage-tracing studies. Here, we provide additional evidence of dedifferentiation by showing that Pax7 (paired-box protein-7 transcripts are expressed at the ends of remnant muscle fibers in axolotls by using in situ hybridization and by demonstrating the presence of Pax7+ muscle-fiber nuclei in the early bud and mid-bud stages by means of immunohistochemical staining. During the course of regeneration, the remnant muscles did not progress; instead, muscle progenitors migrated out from the remnants and proliferated and differentiated in the new tissues at an early stage of differentiation. The regenerating muscles and remnant muscles were largely disconnected, and this left a gap between them until extremely late in the late stage of differentiation, at which point the new and old muscles connected together. Notably, Pax7 transcripts were detected in the regions of muscles that faced these gaps; thus, Pax7 expression might indicate dedifferentiation in the remnant-muscle ends and partial differentiation in the regenerating muscles. The roles of this long-duration dedifferentiation in the remnants remain unknown. However, the results presented here could support the hypothesis that long-duration muscle dedifferentiation facilitates the connection and fusion between the new and old muscles that are both in an immature state; this is because immature Pax7+ myoblasts readily fuse during developmental myogenesis.

  3. Proteomic analysis of blastema formation in regenerating axolotl limbs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nye Holly LD

    2009-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Following amputation, urodele salamander limbs reprogram somatic cells to form a blastema that self-organizes into the missing limb parts to restore the structure and function of the limb. To help understand the molecular basis of blastema formation, we used quantitative label-free liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry/mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS-based methods to analyze changes in the proteome that occurred 1, 4 and 7 days post amputation (dpa through the mid-tibia/fibula of axolotl hind limbs. Results We identified 309 unique proteins with significant fold change relative to controls (0 dpa, representing 10 biological process categories: (1 signaling, (2 Ca2+ binding and translocation, (3 transcription, (4 translation, (5 cytoskeleton, (6 extracellular matrix (ECM, (7 metabolism, (8 cell protection, (9 degradation, and (10 cell cycle. In all, 43 proteins exhibited exceptionally high fold changes. Of these, the ecotropic viral integrative factor 5 (EVI5, a cell cycle-related oncoprotein that prevents cells from entering the mitotic phase of the cell cycle prematurely, was of special interest because its fold change was exceptionally high throughout blastema formation. Conclusion Our data were consistent with previous studies indicating the importance of inositol triphosphate and Ca2+ signaling in initiating the ECM and cytoskeletal remodeling characteristic of histolysis and cell dedifferentiation. In addition, the data suggested that blastema formation requires several mechanisms to avoid apoptosis, including reduced metabolism, differential regulation of proapoptotic and antiapoptotic proteins, and initiation of an unfolded protein response (UPR. Since there is virtually no mitosis during blastema formation, we propose that high levels of EVI5 function to arrest dedifferentiated cells somewhere in the G1/S/G2 phases of the cell cycle until they have accumulated under the wound epidermis and enter mitosis in response to

  4. Evaluation of the anesthetic effects of MS222 in the adult Mexican axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zullian C

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Chiara Zullian,1 Aurore Dodelet-Devillers,1 Stéphane Roy,2 Pascal Vachon1 1Département de Biomédecine Vétérinaire, Faculté de Médecine Vétérinaire, Université de Montréal, Saint-Hyacinthe, 2Département de Stomatologie, Faculté de Médecine Dentaire, Montréal, Québec, Canada Abstract: The Mexican axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum is a unique research model in several fields of medicine, where surgical and invasive procedures may be required. As yet, little is known about the efficacy of MS222 (tricaine methanesulfonate, which is the most commonly used anesthetic agent in amphibians. The main objectives of this study were to evaluate the anesthetic effects and physiological changes in adult axolotls following a 20-minute immersion bath, containing progressive MS222 concentrations starting at 0.1%. Depth of anesthesia and physiological changes were evaluated every 15 minutes post-MS222 exposure with the following parameters: righting behavior, withdrawal reflex, acetic acid test response, heart rate, and blood oxygen saturation, as well as cloacal and body surface temperatures. A 20-minute exposure in a 0.1% MS222 immersion bath (n=6 animals had no anesthetic effects on adult axolotls after 20 minutes of exposure. With a 0.2% MS222 solution, all axolotls (n=9 were deeply anesthetized at 15 minutes, and 80% were still unresponsive at 30 minutes postexposure. Blood oxygen saturation and heart rate were slightly, but significantly, increased when compared with the baseline value and remained stable up to recovery. There was no significant increase in surface and cloaca temperatures, compared with baseline. With the 0.4% MS222 solution, the duration of anesthesia lasted for 90 minutes to at least 120 minutes (n=3 animals and this concentration was deemed too high. In conclusion, a 20-minute immersion bath with 0.2% MS222 may be used for short procedures (15–30 minutes requiring anesthesia of adult axolotls. Keywords: Ambystoma mexicanum

  5. Comparative Analysis of Cartilage Marker Gene Expression Patterns during Axolotl and Xenopus Limb Regeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mitogawa, Kazumasa; Makanae, Aki; Satoh, Ayano; Satoh, Akira

    2015-01-01

    Axolotls (Ambystoma mexicanum) can completely regenerate lost limbs, whereas Xenopus laevis frogs cannot. During limb regeneration, a blastema is first formed at the amputation plane. It is thought that this regeneration blastema forms a limb by mechanisms similar to those of a developing embryonic limb bud. Furthermore, Xenopus laevis frogs can form a blastema after amputation; however, the blastema results in a terminal cone-shaped cartilaginous structure called a "spike." The causes of this patterning defect in Xenopus frog limb regeneration were explored. We hypothesized that differences in chondrogenesis may underlie the patterning defect. Thus, we focused on chondrogenesis. Chondrogenesis marker genes, type I and type II collagen, were compared in regenerative and nonregenerative environments. There were marked differences between axolotls and Xenopus in the expression pattern of these chondrogenesis-associated genes. The relative deficit in the chondrogenic capacity of Xenopus blastema cells may account for the absence of total limb regenerative capacity. PMID:26186213

  6. Germline transgenic methods for tracking cells and testing gene function during regeneration in the axolotl.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khattak, Shahryar; Schuez, Maritta; Richter, Tobias; Knapp, Dunja; Haigo, Saori L; Sandoval-Guzmán, Tatiana; Hradlikova, Kristyna; Duemmler, Annett; Kerney, Ryan; Tanaka, Elly M

    2013-01-01

    The salamander is the only tetrapod that regenerates complex body structures throughout life. Deciphering the underlying molecular processes of regeneration is fundamental for regenerative medicine and developmental biology, but the model organism had limited tools for molecular analysis. We describe a comprehensive set of germline transgenic strains in the laboratory-bred salamander Ambystoma mexicanum (axolotl) that open up the cellular and molecular genetic dissection of regeneration. We demonstrate tissue-dependent control of gene expression in nerve, Schwann cells, oligodendrocytes, muscle, epidermis, and cartilage. Furthermore, we demonstrate the use of tamoxifen-induced Cre/loxP-mediated recombination to indelibly mark different cell types. Finally, we inducibly overexpress the cell-cycle inhibitor p16 (INK4a) , which negatively regulates spinal cord regeneration. These tissue-specific germline axolotl lines and tightly inducible Cre drivers and LoxP reporter lines render this classical regeneration model molecularly accessible. PMID:24052945

  7. Comparative Analysis of Cartilage Marker Gene Expression Patterns during Axolotl and Xenopus Limb Regeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mitogawa, Kazumasa; Makanae, Aki; Satoh, Ayano; Satoh, Akira

    2015-01-01

    Axolotls (Ambystoma mexicanum) can completely regenerate lost limbs, whereas Xenopus laevis frogs cannot. During limb regeneration, a blastema is first formed at the amputation plane. It is thought that this regeneration blastema forms a limb by mechanisms similar to those of a developing embryonic limb bud. Furthermore, Xenopus laevis frogs can form a blastema after amputation; however, the blastema results in a terminal cone-shaped cartilaginous structure called a "spike." The causes of this patterning defect in Xenopus frog limb regeneration were explored. We hypothesized that differences in chondrogenesis may underlie the patterning defect. Thus, we focused on chondrogenesis. Chondrogenesis marker genes, type I and type II collagen, were compared in regenerative and nonregenerative environments. There were marked differences between axolotls and Xenopus in the expression pattern of these chondrogenesis-associated genes. The relative deficit in the chondrogenic capacity of Xenopus blastema cells may account for the absence of total limb regenerative capacity.

  8. Planar cell polarity-mediated induction of neural stem cell expansion during axolotl spinal cord regeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodrigo Albors, Aida; Tazaki, Akira; Rost, Fabian; Nowoshilow, Sergej; Chara, Osvaldo; Tanaka, Elly M

    2015-11-14

    Axolotls are uniquely able to mobilize neural stem cells to regenerate all missing regions of the spinal cord. How a neural stem cell under homeostasis converts after injury to a highly regenerative cell remains unknown. Here, we show that during regeneration, axolotl neural stem cells repress neurogenic genes and reactivate a transcriptional program similar to embryonic neuroepithelial cells. This dedifferentiation includes the acquisition of rapid cell cycles, the switch from neurogenic to proliferative divisions, and the re-expression of planar cell polarity (PCP) pathway components. We show that PCP induction is essential to reorient mitotic spindles along the anterior-posterior axis of elongation, and orthogonal to the cell apical-basal axis. Disruption of this property results in premature neurogenesis and halts regeneration. Our findings reveal a key role for PCP in coordinating the morphogenesis of spinal cord outgrowth with the switch from a homeostatic to a regenerative stem cell that restores missing tissue.

  9. Regulation of antibody synthesis in the X-irradiated Mexican axolotl

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Charlemagne, J.

    1981-09-01

    The effects of X-irradiation were studied on the Mexican axolotl antibody synthesis. To reduce the anti-horse red blood cell (HRBC) antibody titers, 150 rd and smaller doses are ineffective, 200-450 rd are increasingly effective, and 700 rd are maximally effective (and lethal). A significant enhancement of the anti-HRBC titers was observed in low doses (50-150 rd X-irradiated animals). This enhancement was also observed when a low X-ray dose was applied only on the thymic areas. In whole body, but thymus area-shielded, 100 rd X-irradiated animals, the anti-HRBC titers were similar to those of the nonirradiated, HRBC-immunized control group. To explain these phenomena, it is suggested that a radiosensitive, adult thymectomy-sensitive and hydrocortisone-sensitive suppressor T cell subpopulation regulates the antibody synthesis in the axolotl.

  10. Comparative Analysis of Cartilage Marker Gene Expression Patterns during Axolotl and Xenopus Limb Regeneration.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kazumasa Mitogawa

    Full Text Available Axolotls (Ambystoma mexicanum can completely regenerate lost limbs, whereas Xenopus laevis frogs cannot. During limb regeneration, a blastema is first formed at the amputation plane. It is thought that this regeneration blastema forms a limb by mechanisms similar to those of a developing embryonic limb bud. Furthermore, Xenopus laevis frogs can form a blastema after amputation; however, the blastema results in a terminal cone-shaped cartilaginous structure called a "spike." The causes of this patterning defect in Xenopus frog limb regeneration were explored. We hypothesized that differences in chondrogenesis may underlie the patterning defect. Thus, we focused on chondrogenesis. Chondrogenesis marker genes, type I and type II collagen, were compared in regenerative and nonregenerative environments. There were marked differences between axolotls and Xenopus in the expression pattern of these chondrogenesis-associated genes. The relative deficit in the chondrogenic capacity of Xenopus blastema cells may account for the absence of total limb regenerative capacity.

  11. Changes in brain gangliosides of the neotene and metamorphic (thyroxine-induced) newt axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hilbig, R; Schmitt, M; Rahmann, H

    1987-01-01

    Qualitative and quantitative changes in the concentration of proteins, sialoglycoproteins and gangliosides and in the composition of gangliosides in the brains of the neotene and the thyroxine-induced metamorphic newt axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) were investigated. During metamorphosis two polar gangliosides (GT1b and GQ1b) decreased by about 5% each. On the contrary GD1a increased to 10%. Another developmental trend was a slight increase of two other disialogangliosides (GD1b, GD2). Additionally, incorporation profiles (2-8 days) of 14C-N-Ac-mannosamine, the specific precursor for gangliosides, in the brain of neotene and metamorphic axolotls were followed giving evidence of significant changes in the sialoglycoconjugate metabolism of the central nervous system during metamorphosis of this newt.

  12. Dominant lethal induction by ethyl methanesulfonate in the male axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Armstrong, J B; Gillespie, L L

    1980-06-01

    When male axolotls (Ambystoma mexicanum) were treated with ethyl methanesulfonate (EMS) and mated at regular intervals thereafter, the incidence of embryonic abnormalities among the F1 progeny increased until a time was reached when none survived to hatching. At 100 mg/1 EMS, this point was reached about 130 days after treatment. Thereafter, the frequency of abnormalities gradually decreased to control levels. At higher concentrations, abnormalities were seen in spawnings obtained sooner after treatment, and also at earlier development stages. The pattern is similar to that reported for the mouse, which has been attributed to differential sensitivity of the various germ-cell stages to the mutagenic agent. The time course, however, is greatly extended in the axolotl. In future experiments we will be looking for gene mutations, primarily before and after the period of peak mortality.

  13. Structure, diversity, and repertoire of VH families in the Mexican axolotl.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Golub, R; Charlemagne, J

    1998-02-01

    The Mexican axolotl V(H) segments associated with the Igh C mu and C nu isotypes were isolated from anchored PCR libraries prepared from spleen cell cDNA. The eight new V(H) segments found bring the number of V(H) families in the axolotl to 11. Each V(H) had the canonical structural features of vertebrate V(H) segments, including residues important for the correct folding of the Ig domain. The distribution of ser AGC/T (AGY) and TCN codons in axolotl V(H) genes was biased toward AGY in complementarity-determining region-1 (CDR1) and TCN in framework region-1 (FR1); there were no ser residues in the FR2 region. Thus, the axolotl CDR1 region is enriched in DNA sequences forming potential hypermutation hot spots and is flanked by DNA sequences more resistant to point mutation. There was no significant bias toward AGY in CDR2. Southern blotting using family-specific V(H) probes showed restriction fragments from 1 (V(H)9) to 11-19 (V(H)2), and the total number of V(H) genes was 44 to 70, depending on the restriction endonuclease used. The V(H) segments were not randomly used by the H mu and H nu chains; V(H)1, V(H)6, and V(H)11 were underutilized; and the majority of the V(H) segments belonged to the V(H)7, V(H)8, and V(H)9 families. Most of the nine J(H) segments seemed to be randomly used, except J(H)6 and J(H)9, which were found only once in 79 clones. PMID:9570539

  14. Structure, diversity and expression of the TCRdelta chains in the Mexican axolotl.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fellah, Julien S; André, Sébastien; Kerfourn, Fabienne; Guerci, Aline; Durand, Charles; Aubet, Geneviève; Charlemagne, Jacques

    2002-05-01

    Mammals and birds have two major populations of T cells, based on the molecular composition and biological properties of their antigen receptors (TCR). alpha beta T cells recognize antigenic peptides linked to major histocompatibility complex (MHC) molecules, and gamma delta T cells recognize native peptide or non-peptide antigens independently of MHC. Very little is known about gamma delta T cells in ectothermic vertebrates. We have cloned and characterized the TCRdelta chains of an urodele amphibian, the Mexican axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum). The Cdelta domain is structurally similar to its mammalian homologues and the transmembrane domain is very well conserved. Four of the six Valpha regions that can associate with Calpha (Valpha2, Valpha3, Valpha5 and Valpha6) can also associate with Cdelta, but no specific Vdelta regions were found. This suggests that the axolotl TRD locus is nested within the TRA locus, as in mammals, and that this organization has been present in all tetrapod vertebrates and in the common ancestor of Lissamphibians and mammals, for over 400 million years. Two Jdelta regions were identified, but no Ddelta segments were clearly recognized at the Vdelta-Jdelta junctions. This results in shorter and less variable CDR3 loops than in other vertebrates and the size range of the Vdelta-Jdelta junctions is similar to that of mammalian immunoglobulin light chains. Equivalent quantities of TRD mRNA were found in the lymphoid organs, and in the skin and the intestines of normal and thymectomized axolotls. The analysis of several Valpha/delta6-Cdelta and Vbeta7-Cbeta junctions showed that both the TCRdelta and the TCRbeta chains were limited in diversity in thymectomized axolotls. PMID:11981822

  15. Skin Regeneration in Adult Axolotls: A Blueprint for Scar-Free Healing in Vertebrates

    OpenAIRE

    Seifert, Ashley W.; Monaghan, James R; Voss, S. Randal; Maden, Malcolm

    2012-01-01

    While considerable progress has been made towards understanding the complex processes and pathways that regulate human wound healing, regenerative medicine has been unable to develop therapies that coax the natural wound environment to heal scar-free. The inability to induce perfect skin regeneration stems partly from our limited understanding of how scar-free healing occurs in a natural setting. Here we have investigated the wound repair process in adult axolotls and demonstrate that they ar...

  16. Eye enucleation and regeneration of neural retina in axolotl larvae (Ambystoma mexicanum).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yew, D T

    1985-01-01

    The eyes of Axolotl larvae were enucleated at stages 30 and 37. Animals with single dorsomedian eyes resulted in the first case (i.e. stage 30). When a piece of pigment epithelium was re-implanted into stage 37 animals at the site of the lesion, limited regeneration was observed when the implant formed a vesicle, but, when the pigment epithelium remained "open" regeneration of the neural retina was extensive. The possible resons for this difference was discussed.

  17. Pathological changes of Golgi complex in hemocytoblasts of spleen of young axolotls after x-irradiation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Turska, R.

    1975-01-01

    The data available up to now concerning the structure of Golgi complex in different types of normal and pathologically changed cells are very divergent. Results are reported from detailed studies on changes occurring within the Golgi complex in the spleen of three-month old axolotls after x-ray irradiation with a single dose of 1,200 R and killed by decapitation 15, 30, 60 minutes and 3, 6, and 12 hours after irradiation.

  18. MARCKS-Like Protein is an Initiating Molecule in Axolotl Appendage Regeneration

    OpenAIRE

    Sugiura, Takuji; Wang, Heng; Barsacchi, Rico; Simon, Andras; Tanaka, Elly M.

    2016-01-01

    Identifying key molecules that launch regeneration has been a long sought goal. Multiple regenerative animals show an initial wound-associated proliferative response that transits into sustained proliferation if a significant portion of the body part has been removed 1-3 . In the axolotl, appendage amputation initiates a round of wound-associated cell cycle induction followed by continued proliferation that is dependent on nerve-derived signals 4,5 . A wound-associated molecule that triggers ...

  19. Neural crest does not contribute to the neck and shoulder in the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hans-Henning Epperlein

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: A major step during the evolution of tetrapods was their transition from water to land. This process involved the reduction or complete loss of the dermal bones that made up connections to the skull and a concomitant enlargement of the endochondral shoulder girdle. In the mouse the latter is derived from three separate embryonic sources: lateral plate mesoderm, somites, and neural crest. The neural crest was suggested to sustain the muscle attachments. How this complex composition of the endochondral shoulder girdle arose during evolution and whether it is shared by all tetrapods is unknown. Salamanders that lack dermal bone within their shoulder girdle were of special interest for a possible contribution of the neural crest to the endochondral elements and muscle attachment sites, and we therefore studied them in this context. RESULTS: We grafted neural crest from GFP+ fluorescent transgenic axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum donor embryos into white (d/d axolotl hosts and followed the presence of neural crest cells within the cartilage of the shoulder girdle and the connective tissue of muscle attachment sites of the neck-shoulder region. Strikingly, neural crest cells did not contribute to any part of the endochondral shoulder girdle or to the connective tissue at muscle attachment sites in axolotl. CONCLUSIONS: Our results in axolotl suggest that neural crest does not serve a general function in vertebrate shoulder muscle attachment sites as predicted by the "muscle scaffold theory," and that it is not necessary to maintain connectivity of the endochondral shoulder girdle to the skull. Our data support the possibility that the contribution of the neural crest to the endochondral shoulder girdle, which is observed in the mouse, arose de novo in mammals as a developmental basis for their skeletal synapomorphies. This further supports the hypothesis of an increased neural crest diversification during vertebrate evolution.

  20. Neuregulin-1 signaling is essential for nerve-dependent axolotl limb regeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farkas, Johanna E; Freitas, Polina D; Bryant, Donald M; Whited, Jessica L; Monaghan, James R

    2016-08-01

    The Mexican axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) is capable of fully regenerating amputated limbs, but denervation of the limb inhibits the formation of the post-injury proliferative mass called the blastema. The molecular basis behind this phenomenon remains poorly understood, but previous studies have suggested that nerves support regeneration via the secretion of essential growth-promoting factors. An essential nerve-derived factor must be found in the blastema, capable of rescuing regeneration in denervated limbs, and its inhibition must prevent regeneration. Here, we show that the neuronally secreted protein Neuregulin-1 (NRG1) fulfills all these criteria in the axolotl. Immunohistochemistry and in situ hybridization of NRG1 and its active receptor ErbB2 revealed that they are expressed in regenerating blastemas but lost upon denervation. NRG1 was localized to the wound epithelium prior to blastema formation and was later strongly expressed in proliferating blastemal cells. Supplementation by implantation of NRG1-soaked beads rescued regeneration to digits in denervated limbs, and pharmacological inhibition of NRG1 signaling reduced cell proliferation, blocked blastema formation and induced aberrant collagen deposition in fully innervated limbs. Taken together, our results show that nerve-dependent NRG1/ErbB2 signaling promotes blastemal proliferation in the regenerating limb and may play an essential role in blastema formation, thus providing insight into the longstanding question of why nerves are required for axolotl limb regeneration. PMID:27317805

  1. Linking vertebral number to performance of aquatic escape responses in the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ackerly, Kerri L; Ward, Andrea B

    2015-12-01

    Environmental conditions during early development in ectothermic vertebrates can lead to variation in vertebral number among individuals of the same species. It is often seen that individuals of a species raised at cooler temperatures have more vertebrae than individuals raised at warmer temperatures, although the functional consequences of this variation in vertebral number on swimming performance are relatively unclear. To investigate this relationship, we tested how vertebral number in axolotls (Ambystoma mexicanum) affected performance of aquatic escape responses (C-starts). Axolotls were reared at four temperatures (12-24°C) encompassing their natural thermal range and then transitioned to a mean temperature (18°C) three months before C-starts were recorded. Our results showed variation in vertebral number, but that variation was not significantly affected by developmental temperature. C-start performance among axolotls was significantly correlated with caudal vertebral number, and individuals with more caudal vertebrae were able to achieve greater curvature more quickly during their responses than individuals with fewer vertebrae. However, our results show that these individuals did not achieve greater displacements or velocities, and that developmental temperature did not have any effect on C-start performance. We highlight that the most important aspects of escape swim performance (i.e., how far individuals get from a threat and how quickly they move the most important parts of the body away from that threat) are consistent across individuals regardless of developmental temperature and morphological variation. PMID:26489369

  2. Skin regeneration in adult axolotls: a blueprint for scar-free healing in vertebrates.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ashley W Seifert

    Full Text Available While considerable progress has been made towards understanding the complex processes and pathways that regulate human wound healing, regenerative medicine has been unable to develop therapies that coax the natural wound environment to heal scar-free. The inability to induce perfect skin regeneration stems partly from our limited understanding of how scar-free healing occurs in a natural setting. Here we have investigated the wound repair process in adult axolotls and demonstrate that they are capable of perfectly repairing full thickness excisional wounds made on the flank. In the context of mammalian wound repair, our findings reveal a substantial reduction in hemostasis, reduced neutrophil infiltration and a relatively long delay in production of new extracellular matrix (ECM during scar-free healing. Additionally, we test the hypothesis that metamorphosis leads to scarring and instead show that terrestrial axolotls also heal scar-free, albeit at a slower rate. Analysis of newly forming dermal ECM suggests that low levels of fibronectin and high levels of tenascin-C promote regeneration in lieu of scarring. Lastly, a genetic analysis during wound healing comparing epidermis between aquatic and terrestrial axolotls suggests that matrix metalloproteinases may regulate the fibrotic response. Our findings outline a blueprint to understand the cellular and molecular mechanisms coordinating scar-free healing that will be useful towards elucidating new regenerative therapies targeting fibrosis and wound repair.

  3. Neuregulin-1 signaling is essential for nerve-dependent axolotl limb regeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farkas, Johanna E; Freitas, Polina D; Bryant, Donald M; Whited, Jessica L; Monaghan, James R

    2016-08-01

    The Mexican axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) is capable of fully regenerating amputated limbs, but denervation of the limb inhibits the formation of the post-injury proliferative mass called the blastema. The molecular basis behind this phenomenon remains poorly understood, but previous studies have suggested that nerves support regeneration via the secretion of essential growth-promoting factors. An essential nerve-derived factor must be found in the blastema, capable of rescuing regeneration in denervated limbs, and its inhibition must prevent regeneration. Here, we show that the neuronally secreted protein Neuregulin-1 (NRG1) fulfills all these criteria in the axolotl. Immunohistochemistry and in situ hybridization of NRG1 and its active receptor ErbB2 revealed that they are expressed in regenerating blastemas but lost upon denervation. NRG1 was localized to the wound epithelium prior to blastema formation and was later strongly expressed in proliferating blastemal cells. Supplementation by implantation of NRG1-soaked beads rescued regeneration to digits in denervated limbs, and pharmacological inhibition of NRG1 signaling reduced cell proliferation, blocked blastema formation and induced aberrant collagen deposition in fully innervated limbs. Taken together, our results show that nerve-dependent NRG1/ErbB2 signaling promotes blastemal proliferation in the regenerating limb and may play an essential role in blastema formation, thus providing insight into the longstanding question of why nerves are required for axolotl limb regeneration.

  4. Adult axolotls can regenerate original neuronal diversity in response to brain injury

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amamoto, Ryoji; Huerta, Violeta Gisselle Lopez; Takahashi, Emi; Dai, Guangping; Grant, Aaron K; Fu, Zhanyan; Arlotta, Paola

    2016-01-01

    The axolotl can regenerate multiple organs, including the brain. It remains, however, unclear whether neuronal diversity, intricate tissue architecture, and axonal connectivity can be regenerated; yet, this is critical for recovery of function and a central aim of cell replacement strategies in the mammalian central nervous system. Here, we demonstrate that, upon mechanical injury to the adult pallium, axolotls can regenerate several of the populations of neurons present before injury. Notably, regenerated neurons acquire functional electrophysiological traits and respond appropriately to afferent inputs. Despite the ability to regenerate specific, molecularly-defined neuronal subtypes, we also uncovered previously unappreciated limitations by showing that newborn neurons organize within altered tissue architecture and fail to re-establish the long-distance axonal tracts and circuit physiology present before injury. The data provide a direct demonstration that diverse, electrophysiologically functional neurons can be regenerated in axolotls, but challenge prior assumptions of functional brain repair in regenerative species. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.13998.001 PMID:27156560

  5. Stochastic specification of primordial germ cells from mesoderm precursors in axolotl embryos.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chatfield, Jodie; O'Reilly, Marie-Anne; Bachvarova, Rosemary F; Ferjentsik, Zoltan; Redwood, Catherine; Walmsley, Maggie; Patient, Roger; Loose, Mathew; Johnson, Andrew D

    2014-06-01

    A common feature of development in most vertebrate models is the early segregation of the germ line from the soma. For example, in Xenopus and zebrafish embryos primordial germ cells (PGCs) are specified by germ plasm that is inherited from the egg; in mice, Blimp1 expression in the epiblast mediates the commitment of cells to the germ line. How these disparate mechanisms of PGC specification evolved is unknown. Here, in order to identify the ancestral mechanism of PGC specification in vertebrates, we studied PGC specification in embryos from the axolotl (Mexican salamander), a model for the tetrapod ancestor. In the axolotl, PGCs develop within mesoderm, and classic studies have reported their induction from primitive ectoderm (animal cap). We used an axolotl animal cap system to demonstrate that signalling through FGF and BMP4 induces PGCs. The role of FGF was then confirmed in vivo. We also showed PGC induction by Brachyury, in the presence of BMP4. These conditions induced pluripotent mesodermal precursors that give rise to a variety of somatic cell types, in addition to PGCs. Irreversible restriction of the germ line did not occur until the mid-tailbud stage, days after the somatic germ layers are established. Before this, germline potential was maintained by MAP kinase signalling. We propose that this stochastic mechanism of PGC specification, from mesodermal precursors, is conserved in vertebrates.

  6. Myofibril-Inducing RNA (MIR is essential for tropomyosin expression and myofibrillogenesis in axolotl hearts

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lemanski Sharon L

    2009-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract The Mexican axolotl, Ambystoma mexicanum, carries the naturally-occurring recessive mutant gene 'c' that results in a failure of homozygous (c/c embryos to form hearts that beat because of an absence of organized myofibrils. Our previous studies have shown that a noncoding RNA, Myofibril-Inducing RNA (MIR, is capable of promoting myofibrillogenesis and heart beating in the mutant (c/c axolotls. The present study demonstrates that the MIR gene is essential for tropomyosin (TM expression in axolotl hearts during development. Gene expression studies show that mRNA expression of various tropomyosin isoforms in untreated mutant hearts and in normal hearts knocked down with double-stranded MIR (dsMIR are similar to untreated normal. However, at the protein level, selected tropomyosin isoforms are significantly reduced in mutant and dsMIR treated normal hearts. These results suggest that MIR is involved in controlling the translation or post-translation of various TM isoforms and subsequently of regulating cardiac contractility.

  7. Linking vertebral number to performance of aquatic escape responses in the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ackerly, Kerri L; Ward, Andrea B

    2015-12-01

    Environmental conditions during early development in ectothermic vertebrates can lead to variation in vertebral number among individuals of the same species. It is often seen that individuals of a species raised at cooler temperatures have more vertebrae than individuals raised at warmer temperatures, although the functional consequences of this variation in vertebral number on swimming performance are relatively unclear. To investigate this relationship, we tested how vertebral number in axolotls (Ambystoma mexicanum) affected performance of aquatic escape responses (C-starts). Axolotls were reared at four temperatures (12-24°C) encompassing their natural thermal range and then transitioned to a mean temperature (18°C) three months before C-starts were recorded. Our results showed variation in vertebral number, but that variation was not significantly affected by developmental temperature. C-start performance among axolotls was significantly correlated with caudal vertebral number, and individuals with more caudal vertebrae were able to achieve greater curvature more quickly during their responses than individuals with fewer vertebrae. However, our results show that these individuals did not achieve greater displacements or velocities, and that developmental temperature did not have any effect on C-start performance. We highlight that the most important aspects of escape swim performance (i.e., how far individuals get from a threat and how quickly they move the most important parts of the body away from that threat) are consistent across individuals regardless of developmental temperature and morphological variation.

  8. Identification of cDNA clones encoding HMG 2, a major protein of the mexican axolotl hydrocortisone-sensitive thymocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Guerra, A; Guillet, F; Charlemagne, J; Fellah, J S

    1995-01-01

    We have identified and analyzed cDNA clones encoding a major 26 kDa protein of the HMG1-2 family which is abundant in the cytoplasm and nucleus of axolotl hydrocortisone-sensitive thymocytes. The axolotl HMG2 protein is very similar to proteins belonging to the HMG1-2 family, from teleost fish to mammals. All the molecular features of the HMG1-2 proteins are conserved, including the high proportion of basic and aromatic residues, and the characteristic acidic C-terminus tail. The 3'-untranslated region of the HMG2 axolotl cDNA is also similar to the avian and mammalian HMG2 3'-UT sequences, suggesting that some selective events have acted at the DNA level to conserve this region, which could be important in the differential expression of the HMG1 and HMG2 genes. The axolotl HMG2 protein contains the two well conserved HMG boxes which are thought to be the DNA-binding domains of the molecule. Axolotl thymocytes and spleen cells contain almost identical amounts of HMG2 mRNAs but HMG2 polypeptide is undetectable in spleen cells using anti-26 kDa antibodies. The reason for the accumulation of HMG1-2 molecules in vertebrate hydrocortisone-sensitive thymocytes is discussed, as well as their possible role in apoptosis. PMID:8654668

  9. Wide tissue distribution of axolotl class II molecules occurs independently of thyroxin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Völk, H; Charlemagne, J; Tournefier, A; Ferrone, S; Jost, R; Parisot, R; Kaufman, J

    1998-04-01

    Unlike most salamanders, the Mexican axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) fails to produce enough thyroxin to undergo anatomical metamorphosis, although a "cryptic metamorphosis" involving a change from fetal to adult hemoglobins has been described. To understand to what extent the development of the axolotl hemopoietic system is linked to anatomical metamorphosis, we examined the appearance and thyroxin dependence of class II molecules on thymus, blood, and spleen cells, using both flow cytometry and biosynthetic labeling followed by immunoprecipitation. Class II molecules are present on B cells as early as 7 weeks after hatching, the first time analyzed. At this time, most thymocytes, all T cells, and all erythrocytes lack class II molecules, but first thymocytes at 17 weeks, then T cells at 22 weeks, and finally erythrocytes at 26-27 weeks virtually all bear class II molecules. Class II molecules and adult hemoglobin appear at roughly the same time in erythrocytes. These data are most easily explained by populations of class II-negative cells being replaced by populations of class II-positive cells, and they show that the hemopoietic system matures at a variety of times unrelated to the increase of thyroxin that drives anatomical metamorphosis. We found that administration of thyroxin during axolotl ontogeny does not accelerate or otherwise affect the acquisition of class II molecules, nor does administration of drugs that inhibit thyroxin (sodium perchlorate, thiourea, methimazole, and 1-methyl imidazole) retard or abolish this acquisition, suggesting that the programs for anatomical metamorphosis and some aspects of hemopoietic development are entirely separate. PMID:9510551

  10. Microarray analysis of microRNA expression during axolotl limb regeneration.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Edna C Holman

    Full Text Available Among vertebrates, salamanders stand out for their remarkable capacity to quickly regrow a myriad of tissues and organs after injury or amputation. The limb regeneration process in axolotls (Ambystoma mexicanum has been well studied for decades at the cell-tissue level. While several developmental genes are known to be reactivated during this epimorphic process, less is known about the role of microRNAs in urodele amphibian limb regeneration. Given the compelling evidence that many microRNAs tightly regulate cell fate and morphogenetic processes through development and adulthood by modulating the expression (or re-expression of developmental genes, we investigated the possibility that microRNA levels change during limb regeneration. Using two different microarray platforms to compare the axolotl microRNA expression between mid-bud limb regenerating blastemas and non-regenerating stump tissues, we found that miR-21 was overexpressed in mid-bud blastemas compared to stump tissue. Mature A. mexicanum ("Amex" miR-21 was detected in axolotl RNA by Northern blot and differential expression of Amex-miR-21 in blastema versus stump was confirmed by quantitative RT-PCR. We identified the Amex Jagged1 as a putative target gene for miR-21 during salamander limb regeneration. We cloned the full length 3'UTR of Amex-Jag1, and our in vitro assays demonstrated that its single miR-21 target recognition site is functional and essential for the response of the Jagged1 gene to miR-21 levels. Our findings pave the road for advanced in vivo functional assays aimed to clarify how microRNAs such as miR-21, often linked to pathogenic cell growth, might be modulating the redeployment of developmental genes such as Jagged1 during regenerative processes.

  11. Excretory nitrogen metabolism in the juvenile axolotl Ambystoma mexicanum: differences in aquatic and terrestrial environments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loong, Ai M; Chew, Shit F; Ip, Yuen K

    2002-01-01

    The fully grown but nonmetamorphosed (juvenile) axolotl Ambystoma mexicanum was ureogenic and primarily ureotelic in water. A complete ornithine-urea cycle (OUC) was present in the liver. Aerial exposure impeded urea (but not ammonia) excretion, leading to a decrease in the percentage of nitrogen excreted as urea in the first 24 h. However, urea and not ammonia accumulated in the muscle, liver, and plasma during aerial exposure. By 48 h, the rate of urea excretion recovered fully, probably due to the greater urea concentration gradient in the kidney. It is generally accepted that an increase in carbamoyl phosphate synthetase activity is especially critical in the developmental transition from ammonotelism to ureotelism in the amphibian. Results from this study indicate that such a transition in A. mexicanum would have occurred before migration to land. Aerial exposure for 72 h exhibited no significant effect on carbamoyl phosphate synthetase-I activity or that of other OUC enzymes (with the exception of ornithine transcarbamoylase) from the liver of the juvenile A. mexicanum. This supports our hypothesis that the capacities of OUC enzymes present in the liver of the aquatic juvenile axolotl were adequate to prepare it for its invasion of the terrestrial environment. The high OUC capacity was further supported by the capability of the juvenile A. mexicanum to survive in 10 mM NH(4)Cl without accumulating amino acids in its body. The majority of the accumulating endogenous and exogenous ammonia was detoxified to urea, which led to a greater than twofold increase in urea levels in the muscle, liver, and plasma and a significant increase in urea excretion by hour 96. Hence, it can be concluded that the juvenile axolotl acquired ureotelism while submerged in water, and its hepatic capacity of urea synthesis was more than adequate to handle the toxicity of endogenous ammonia during migration to land.

  12. Characterization of a multimeric polypeptide complex on the surface of thymus-derived cells in the Mexican axolotl.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kerfourn, F; Guillet, F; Charlemagne, J; Tournefier, A

    1993-10-01

    We previously raised a rabbit antiserum (L12) against a 38 kD polypeptide which is expressed on the surface of thymocytes and peripheral T cells of an Urodele Amphibian, the Mexican axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum). Here we show that L12 antibodies immunoprecipitate several labelled molecules from surface iodinated axolotl spleen cells, including the 38 kD molecule, but also two polypeptides of 43 and 22 kD which are covalently linked to other elements. Another rabbit antiserum (L10) was raised against detergent-solubilized axolotl thymocyte membranes and shown to recognize the majority of thymocytes and about half of the splenocytes in immunofluorescence. In Western blotting, L10 antibodies recognized a limited number of surface polypeptides in thymocyte and splenocyte lysates, including 43, 38, and 22 kD elements. Immune complexes formed between L10 antibodies and solubilized splenocyte membranes were used to immunize BALB/c mice intrasplenically in the aim of raising MoAbs specific for axolotl T cells. Monoclonal antibody 87.16 was shown to stain in immunofluorescence 26.7% of thymocytes and 26.8% of spleen cells. This MoAb recognized a 43 kD polypeptide that can covalently associate on the T-cell surface with several other molecules to form a multimeric complex. PMID:8211000

  13. Functional characterization of the vertebrate primary ureter: Structure and ion transport mechanisms of the pronephric duct in axolotl larvae (Amphibia)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Haugan, Birgitte M; Halberg, Kenneth Agerlin; Jespersen, Åse;

    2010-01-01

    whether the duct is involved in urine modification using larvae of the freshwater amphibian Ambystoma mexicanum (axolotl) as model. Results We investigated structural as well as physiological properties of the pronephric duct. The key elements of our methodology were: using histology, light...

  14. Methods for axolotl blood collection, intravenous injection, and efficient leukocyte isolation from peripheral blood and the regenerating limb.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Debuque, Ryan J; Godwin, James W

    2015-01-01

    The vertebrate immune system comprises both adaptive and innate immune cells with distinct functions during the resolution of inflammation and wound healing after tissue injury. Recent evidence implicates a requirement for innate immune cells from the myeloid lineage during the early stages of limb regeneration in the Mexican axolotl. Understanding the functions of innate and adaptive immune cells in the axolotl has been hampered by a lack of approaches to isolate and analyze these cells. Here we describe a protocol to isolate myeloid cells from the regenerating axolotl limb that incorporates intravenous delivery of physiological labels. In addition we provide a protocol to enrich for leukocytes in the peripheral blood. These protocols produce single-cell suspensions that can be analyzed using flow cytometry or sorted into specific subsets using fluorescent-activated cell sorting (FACS). FACS is a routine approach to sort cells based on their physical characteristics as well as their cell surface antigen repertoire. Isolated cell populations can then be analyzed in a wide range of downstream assays to facilitate a greater understanding of leukocyte biology in the axolotl.

  15. Molecular and immunohistochemical analyses of cardiac troponin T during cardiac development in the Mexican axolotl, Ambystoma mexicanum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, C; Pietras, K M; Sferrazza, G F; Jia, P; Athauda, G; Rueda-de-Leon, E; Rveda-de-Leon, E; Maier, J A; Dube, D K; Lemanski, S L; Lemanski, L F

    2007-01-01

    The Mexican axolotl, Ambystoma mexicanum, is an excellent animal model for studying heart development because it carries a naturally occurring recessive genetic mutation, designated gene c, for cardiac nonfunction. The double recessive mutants (c/c) fail to form organized myofibrils in the cardiac myoblasts resulting in hearts that fail to beat. Tropomyosin expression patterns have been studied in detail and show dramatically decreased expression in the hearts of homozygous mutant embryos. Because of the direct interaction between tropomyosin and troponin T (TnT), and the crucial functions of TnT in the regulation of striated muscle contraction, we have expanded our studies on this animal model to characterize the expression of the TnT gene in cardiac muscle throughout normal axolotl development as well as in mutant axolotls. In addition, we have succeeded in cloning the full-length cardiac troponin T (cTnT) cDNA from axolotl hearts. Confocal microscopy has shown a substantial, but reduced, expression of TnT protein in the mutant hearts when compared to normal during embryonic development.

  16. The effects of rotation and positional change of stump tissues upon morphogenesis of the regenerating axolotl limb

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Carlson, Bruce M.

    1972-01-01

    Rotation of a skin cuff 180° around the proximodistal axis of the upper arm in the axolotl results in the formation of multiple regenerates in about 80° of cases after amputation of the limb through the rotated skin. Rotation of the dermis or the flexor and extensor muscles folowed by amputation pro

  17. Comparative RNA-seq analysis in the unsequenced axolotl: the oncogene burst highlights early gene expression in the blastema.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ron Stewart

    Full Text Available The salamander has the remarkable ability to regenerate its limb after amputation. Cells at the site of amputation form a blastema and then proliferate and differentiate to regrow the limb. To better understand this process, we performed deep RNA sequencing of the blastema over a time course in the axolotl, a species whose genome has not been sequenced. Using a novel comparative approach to analyzing RNA-seq data, we characterized the transcriptional dynamics of the regenerating axolotl limb with respect to the human gene set. This approach involved de novo assembly of axolotl transcripts, RNA-seq transcript quantification without a reference genome, and transformation of abundances from axolotl contigs to human genes. We found a prominent burst in oncogene expression during the first day and blastemal/limb bud genes peaking at 7 to 14 days. In addition, we found that limb patterning genes, SALL genes, and genes involved in angiogenesis, wound healing, defense/immunity, and bone development are enriched during blastema formation and development. Finally, we identified a category of genes with no prior literature support for limb regeneration that are candidates for further evaluation based on their expression pattern during the regenerative process.

  18. Identification and expression of Helios, a member of the Ikaros family, in the Mexican axolotl: implications for the embryonic origin of lymphocyte progenitors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Durand, Charles; Kerfourn, Fabienne; Charlemagne, Jacques; Fellah, Julien S

    2002-06-01

    Transcription factors of the Ikaros gene family are critical for the differentiation of T and B lymphocytes from pluripotent hematopoietic stem cells. To study the first steps of lymphopoiesis in the Mexican axolotl, we have cloned the Helios ortholog in this urodele amphibian species. We demonstrated that the axolotl Helios contains a 144-bp deletion at the 5' end of the activation domain. Helios is expressed in both the thymus and spleen but not in the liver of the pre-adult axolotl. During ontogeny, Helios transcripts are detected from neurula stage, before the apparition of the first Ikaros transcripts and the colonization of lymphoid tissues. Interestingly, Helios and Ikaros mRNA are found predominantly in the ventral blood islands of late tail-bud embryos. These results suggest that in contrast to the Xenopus and amniote embryos where two sites of hematopoiesis have been characterized, the ventral blood islands could be the major site of hematopoiesis in the axolotl. PMID:12115658

  19. Dual embryonic origin and patterning of the pharyngeal skeleton in the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sefton, Elizabeth M; Piekarski, Nadine; Hanken, James

    2015-01-01

    The impressive morphological diversification of vertebrates was achieved in part by innovation and modification of the pharyngeal skeleton. Extensive fate mapping in amniote models has revealed a primarily cranial neural crest derivation of the pharyngeal skeleton. Although comparable fate maps of amphibians produced over several decades have failed to document a neural crest derivation of ventromedial elements in these vertebrates, a recent report provides evidence of a mesodermal origin of one of these elements, basibranchial 2, in the axolotl. We used a transgenic labeling protocol and grafts of labeled cells between GFP+ and white embryos to derive a fate map that describes contributions of both cranial neural crest and mesoderm to the axolotl pharyngeal skeleton, and we conducted additional experiments that probe the mechanisms that underlie mesodermal patterning. Our fate map confirms a dual embryonic origin of the pharyngeal skeleton in urodeles, including derivation of basibranchial 2 from mesoderm closely associated with the second heart field. Additionally, heterotopic transplantation experiments reveal lineage restriction of mesodermal cells that contribute to pharyngeal cartilage. The mesoderm-derived component of the pharyngeal skeleton appears to be particularly sensitive to retinoic acid (RA): administration of exogenous RA leads to loss of the second basibranchial, but not the first. Neural crest was undoubtedly critical in the evolution of the vertebrate pharyngeal skeleton, but mesoderm may have played a central role in forming ventromedial elements, in particular. When and how many times during vertebrate phylogeny a mesodermal contribution to the pharyngeal skeleton evolved remain to be resolved. PMID:25963195

  20. T-cell-specific membrane antigens in the Mexican axolotl (urodele amphibian).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kerfourn, F; Guillet, F; Charlemagne, J; Tournefier, A

    1992-01-01

    Comparative analysis of SDS-PAGE patterns of axolotl spleen cells membrane detergent lysates showed important discrepancies between control and thymectomized animals. Among these, a 38-kD protein band, which appeared as a major protein in controls, was not or poorly expressed after thymectomy. A rabbit antiserum (L12) raised against the 38-kD eluted band labeled in indirect immunofluorescence 80-86% of thymocytes and 40-46% of mIg- lymphoid cells in the spleen. The anti-38-kD antibodies stained in Western blotting two antigenically related polypeptides of 38- and 36-kD on splenocyte membrane lysates. Two-dimensional NEPHGE-PAGE analysis indicated that the anti-38-kD antibodies reacted in the spleen with several gathered spots in the 7.8-8.2 pI range, corresponding to 38-36-kD microheterogeneous polypeptides. Most of these spots are not further expressed in thymectomized animals. These results support evidence that the 38-kD surface antigens can be considered as specific surface markers of the axolotl thymus-derived lymphocytes. PMID:1627952

  1. Evidence for an RNA polymerization activity in axolotl and Xenopus egg extracts.

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    Hélène Pelczar

    Full Text Available We have previously reported a post-transcriptional RNA amplification observed in vivo following injection of in vitro synthesized transcripts into axolotl oocytes, unfertilized (UFE or fertilized eggs. To further characterize this phenomenon, low speed extracts (LSE from axolotl and Xenopus UFE were prepared and tested in an RNA polymerization assay. The major conclusions are: i the amphibian extracts catalyze the incorporation of radioactive ribonucleotide in RNase but not DNase sensitive products showing that these products correspond to RNA; ii the phenomenon is resistant to α-amanitin, an inhibitor of RNA polymerases II and III and to cordycepin (3'dAMP, but sensitive to cordycepin 5'-triphosphate, an RNA elongation inhibitor, which supports the existence of an RNA polymerase activity different from polymerases II and III; the detection of radiolabelled RNA comigrating at the same length as the exogenous transcript added to the extracts allowed us to show that iii the RNA polymerization is not a 3' end labelling and that iv the radiolabelled RNA is single rather than double stranded. In vitro cell-free systems derived from amphibian UFE therefore validate our previous in vivo results hypothesizing the existence of an evolutionary conserved enzymatic activity with the properties of an RNA dependent RNA polymerase (RdRp.

  2. The Axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum: Factors That Limit its Production and Alternatives for its Conservation

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    J. Toca-Ramirez

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available Ambystoma mexicanum is an amphibian endemic to Xochimilco Lake in Mexico City. It has been declared in danger of extinction and is under special protection. Some chemical contaminants in the water are extremely high and could be the cause of its high mortality rate in certain areas of Xochimilco. In order to preserve this species it will not only be necessary and fundamental to prohibit fishing axolotls in their natural state, a market study and nutritional chemical analysis will also be necessary in order to establish the organoleptic properties and level of acceptance before a taste panel; that is to say, get to know more about the specie in order to give the product added value offering its meat as an unconventional delicacy. This way the creation of farms that will help its conservation will be justified. On the other hand it is important to mention that the axolotls are very important in scientific research. Since it serves as an amphibious model for many physiological and morphological processes that explain the regenerative process that this species possess. The objective of this study is to emphasize the advantages that the Ambystoma mexicanum has with the intention to rationally exploit these attributes in order to achieve its conservation.

  3. Cutaneous mastocytomas in the neotenic caudate amphibians Ambystoma mexicanum (axolotl) and Ambystoma tigrinum (tiger salamander).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harshbarger, J C; Chang, S C; DeLanney, L E; Rose, F L; Green, D E

    1999-01-01

    Spontaneous mastocytomas studied in 18 axolotls (Ambystoma mexicanum) and six tiger salamanders (Ambystoma tigrinum) were gray-white, uni- to multilobular cutaneous protrusions from 2 mm to 2 cm in diameter. Tumors were moderately cellular unencapsulated masses that usually infiltrated the dermis and hypodermis with the destruction of intervening tissues. Some tumors were invading superficial bundles of the underlying skeletal muscle. Tumors consisted of mitotically active cells derived from a single lineage but showing a range of differentiation. Immature cells had nearly smooth to lightly cleft or folded basophilic nuclei bordered by a band of cytoplasm with few cytoplasmic processes and containing a few small uniform eccentric granules. Mature cells had basophilic nuclei with deep clefts or folds and abundant eosinophilic cytoplasm with multiple long intertwining cytoplasmic extensions packed with metachromatic granules. The axolotls were old individuals from an inbred laboratory colony. The tiger salamanders were wild animals from a single polluted pond. They could have been old and inbred. Both groups were neotenic. These are the first mastocytomas discovered in cold-blooded animals.

  4. Cutaneous mastocytomas in the neotenic caudate amphibians Ambystoma mexicanum (axolotl) and Ambystoma tigrinun (tiger salamander)

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    Harshbarger, J.C.; Chang, S.C.; DeLanney, L.E.; Rose, F.L.; Green, D.E.

    1999-01-01

    Spontaneous mastocytomas studied in 18 axolotls (Ambystoma mexicanum) and six tiger salamanders (Ambystoma tigrinum) were gray-white, uni- to multilobular cutaneous protrusions from 2mm to 2cm in diameter. Tumors were moderately cellular unencapsulated masses that usually infiltrated the dermis and hypodermis with the destruction of intervening tissues. Some tumors were invading superficial bundles of the underlying skeletal muscle. Tumors consisted of mitotically active cells derived from a single lineage but showing a range of differentiation. Immature cells had nearly smooth to lightly cleft or folded basophilic nuclei bordered by a band of cytoplasm with few cytoplasmic processes and containing a few small uniform eccentric granules. Mature cells had basophilic nuclei with deep clefts or folds and abundant eosinophilic cytoplasm with multiple long intertwining cytoplasmic extensions packed with metachromatic granules. The axolotls were old individuals from an inbred laboratory colony. The tiger salamanders were wild animals from a single polluted pond. They could have been old and inbred. Both groups were neotenic. These are the first mastocytomas discovered in cold-blooded animals.

  5. High-efficiency electroporation of the spinal cord in larval axolotl.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodrigo Albors, Aida; Tanaka, Elly M

    2015-01-01

    Axolotls are well known for their remarkable ability to regenerate complex body parts and structures throughout life, including the entire limb and tail. Particularly fascinating is their ability to regenerate a fully functional spinal cord after losing the tail. Electroporation of DNA plasmids or morpholinos is a valuable tool to gain mechanistic insight into the cellular and molecular basis of regeneration. It provides among other advantages a simple and fast method to test gene function in a temporally and spatially controlled manner. Some classic drawbacks of the method, such as low transfection efficiency and damage to the tissue, had hindered our understanding of the contribution of different signaling pathways to regeneration. Here, we describe a comprehensive protocol for electroporation of the axolotl spinal cord that overcomes this limitations using a combination of high-voltage and short-length pulses followed by lower-voltage and longer-length pulses. Our approach yields highly efficient transfection of spinal cord cells with minimal tissue damage, which now allows the molecular dissection of spinal cord regeneration.

  6. Abdominal Distension Associated with Luminal Fungi in the Intestines of Axolotl Larvae

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    Chiara Zullian

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Axolotls show a remarkable regeneration capacity compared with higher vertebrates, regenerating missing appendages such as limbs and tail as well as other body parts (i.e., apex of the heart, forebrain, and jaw after amputations which makes this animal a very interesting research model for tissue regeneration mechanisms. Larvae are individually housed in a 20% Holtfreter’s solution within clear plastic containers. The photoperiod light : darkness cycle is 12 : 12 h. Larvae with a total body length of less than 5 cm are fed once a day with large brine shrimp and blood worm. Albino larvae appeared to have a tendency to exhibit abdominal distention. No clinical signs of illness seemed to be associated with the condition; however, these animals exhibit a relatively slower growth rate. To better characterize this condition, we performed histological sectioning for cross sectional slide preparation on wild type and albino axolotl larvae following euthanasia. The only lesion seen in the albino larvae was a thickened gut wall and the presence of fungi within the intestines. We hypothesize that this may be due to a lower efficacy of the albino larvae’s immune system.

  7. Dual embryonic origin and patterning of the pharyngeal skeleton in the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sefton, Elizabeth M; Piekarski, Nadine; Hanken, James

    2015-01-01

    The impressive morphological diversification of vertebrates was achieved in part by innovation and modification of the pharyngeal skeleton. Extensive fate mapping in amniote models has revealed a primarily cranial neural crest derivation of the pharyngeal skeleton. Although comparable fate maps of amphibians produced over several decades have failed to document a neural crest derivation of ventromedial elements in these vertebrates, a recent report provides evidence of a mesodermal origin of one of these elements, basibranchial 2, in the axolotl. We used a transgenic labeling protocol and grafts of labeled cells between GFP+ and white embryos to derive a fate map that describes contributions of both cranial neural crest and mesoderm to the axolotl pharyngeal skeleton, and we conducted additional experiments that probe the mechanisms that underlie mesodermal patterning. Our fate map confirms a dual embryonic origin of the pharyngeal skeleton in urodeles, including derivation of basibranchial 2 from mesoderm closely associated with the second heart field. Additionally, heterotopic transplantation experiments reveal lineage restriction of mesodermal cells that contribute to pharyngeal cartilage. The mesoderm-derived component of the pharyngeal skeleton appears to be particularly sensitive to retinoic acid (RA): administration of exogenous RA leads to loss of the second basibranchial, but not the first. Neural crest was undoubtedly critical in the evolution of the vertebrate pharyngeal skeleton, but mesoderm may have played a central role in forming ventromedial elements, in particular. When and how many times during vertebrate phylogeny a mesodermal contribution to the pharyngeal skeleton evolved remain to be resolved.

  8. Conservation of position-specific gene expression in axolotl limb skin.

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    Satoh, Akira; Makanae, Aki

    2014-01-01

    Urodele amphibians can regenerate their limbs after amputation. After amputation, undifferentiated cells appear on the amputation plane and form regeneration blastema. A limb blastema recreates a complete replica of the original limb. It is well known that disturbance of the location of limb tissues prior to amputation perturbs limb patterning, suggesting that different intact limb tissues carry different location information despite their identical appearance. The cause of such differences in intact tissues remains unknown. In this study, we found that Lmx1b, Tbx2, and Tbx3 genes, which are expressed in developing limb in a region specific manner, remained detectable in a mature axolotl limb. Furthermore, those position-specific gene expression patterns were conserved in mature limbs. Treatment with retinoic acid (RA), which is known to have ventralizing activity, changed Lmx1b expression in intact dorsal skin and dorsal character to ventral, indicating that conserved Lmx1b expression was due to the dorsal character and not leaky gene expression. Furthermore, we found that such conserved gene expression was rewritable in regeneration blastemas. These results suggest that axolotl limb cells can recognize their locations and maintain limbness via conserved expression profiles of developmental genes.

  9. Is salamander hindlimb regeneration similar to that of the forelimb? Anatomical and morphogenetic analysis of hindlimb muscle regeneration in GFP-transgenic axolotls as a basis for regenerative and developmental studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diogo, R; Murawala, P; Tanaka, E M

    2014-04-01

    The axolotl Ambystoma mexicanum is one of the most used model organisms in developmental and regenerative studies because it is commonly said that it can reconstitute a normal and fully functional forelimb/hindlimb after amputation. However, there is not a publication that has described in detail the regeneration of the axolotl hindlimb muscles. Here we describe and illustrate, for the first time, the regeneration of the thigh, leg and foot muscles in transgenic axolotls that express green fluorescent protein in muscle fibers and compare our results with data obtained by us and by other authors about axolotl forelimb regeneration and about fore- and hindlimb ontogeny in axolotls, frogs and other tetrapods. Our observations and comparisons point out that: (1) there are no muscle anomalies in any regenerated axolotl hindlimbs, in clear contrast to our previous study of axolotl forelimb regeneration, where we found muscle anomalies in 43% of the regenerated forelimbs; (2) during axolotl hindlimb regeneration there is a proximo-distal and a tibio-fibular morphogenetic gradient in the order of muscle regeneration and differentiation, but not a ventro-dorsal gradient, whereas our previous studies showed that in axolotl forelimb muscle regeneration there are proximo-distal, radio-ulnar and ventro-dorsal morphogenetic gradients. We discuss the broader implications of these observations for regenerative, evolutionary, developmental and morphogenetic studies. PMID:24325444

  10. Is salamander hindlimb regeneration similar to that of the forelimb? Anatomical and morphogenetic analysis of hindlimb muscle regeneration in GFP-transgenic axolotls as a basis for regenerative and developmental studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diogo, R; Murawala, P; Tanaka, E M

    2014-04-01

    The axolotl Ambystoma mexicanum is one of the most used model organisms in developmental and regenerative studies because it is commonly said that it can reconstitute a normal and fully functional forelimb/hindlimb after amputation. However, there is not a publication that has described in detail the regeneration of the axolotl hindlimb muscles. Here we describe and illustrate, for the first time, the regeneration of the thigh, leg and foot muscles in transgenic axolotls that express green fluorescent protein in muscle fibers and compare our results with data obtained by us and by other authors about axolotl forelimb regeneration and about fore- and hindlimb ontogeny in axolotls, frogs and other tetrapods. Our observations and comparisons point out that: (1) there are no muscle anomalies in any regenerated axolotl hindlimbs, in clear contrast to our previous study of axolotl forelimb regeneration, where we found muscle anomalies in 43% of the regenerated forelimbs; (2) during axolotl hindlimb regeneration there is a proximo-distal and a tibio-fibular morphogenetic gradient in the order of muscle regeneration and differentiation, but not a ventro-dorsal gradient, whereas our previous studies showed that in axolotl forelimb muscle regeneration there are proximo-distal, radio-ulnar and ventro-dorsal morphogenetic gradients. We discuss the broader implications of these observations for regenerative, evolutionary, developmental and morphogenetic studies.

  11. Positional information in axolotl and mouse limb extracellular matrix is mediated via heparan sulfate and fibroblast growth factor during limb regeneration in the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Phan, Anne Q; Lee, Jangwoo; Oei, Michelle; Flath, Craig; Hwe, Caitlyn; Mariano, Rachele; Vu, Tiffany; Shu, Cynthia; Dinh, Andrew; Simkin, Jennifer; Muneoka, Ken; Bryant, Susan V; Gardiner, David M

    2015-08-01

    Urodele amphibians are unique among adult vertebrates in their ability to regenerate complex body structures after traumatic injury. In salamander regeneration, the cells maintain a memory of their original position and use this positional information to recreate the missing pattern. We used an in vivo gain-of-function assay to determine whether components of the extracellular matrix (ECM) have positional information required to induce formation of new limb pattern during regeneration. We discovered that salamander limb ECM has a position-specific ability to either inhibit regeneration or induce de novo limb structure, and that this difference is dependent on heparan sulfates that are associated with differential expression of heparan sulfate sulfotransferases. We also discovered that an artificial ECM containing only heparan sulfate was sufficient to induce de novo limb pattern in salamander limb regeneration. Finally, ECM from mouse limbs is capable of inducing limb pattern in axolotl blastemas in a position-specific, developmental-stage-specific, and heparan sulfate-dependent manner. This study demonstrates a mechanism for positional information in regeneration and establishes a crucial functional link between salamander regeneration and mammals. PMID:27499874

  12. Positional information in axolotl and mouse limb extracellular matrix is mediated via heparan sulfate and fibroblast growth factor during limb regeneration in the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Phan, Anne Q; Lee, Jangwoo; Oei, Michelle; Flath, Craig; Hwe, Caitlyn; Mariano, Rachele; Vu, Tiffany; Shu, Cynthia; Dinh, Andrew; Simkin, Jennifer; Muneoka, Ken; Bryant, Susan V; Gardiner, David M

    2015-08-01

    Urodele amphibians are unique among adult vertebrates in their ability to regenerate complex body structures after traumatic injury. In salamander regeneration, the cells maintain a memory of their original position and use this positional information to recreate the missing pattern. We used an in vivo gain-of-function assay to determine whether components of the extracellular matrix (ECM) have positional information required to induce formation of new limb pattern during regeneration. We discovered that salamander limb ECM has a position-specific ability to either inhibit regeneration or induce de novo limb structure, and that this difference is dependent on heparan sulfates that are associated with differential expression of heparan sulfate sulfotransferases. We also discovered that an artificial ECM containing only heparan sulfate was sufficient to induce de novo limb pattern in salamander limb regeneration. Finally, ECM from mouse limbs is capable of inducing limb pattern in axolotl blastemas in a position-specific, developmental-stage-specific, and heparan sulfate-dependent manner. This study demonstrates a mechanism for positional information in regeneration and establishes a crucial functional link between salamander regeneration and mammals.

  13. Severe necrotizing myocarditis caused by serratia marcescens infection in an axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Del-Pozo, J; Girling, S; Pizzi, R; Mancinelli, E; Else, R W

    2011-05-01

    This report provides the first account of the pathological changes associated with infection by Serratia marcescens in an adult male axolotl. The infection resulted in septicaemia with severe multifocal necrotizing myocarditis. The latter lesion evolved to cardiac rupture, haemopericardium and death resulting from cardiac tamponade. This animal was exposed to higher than usual temperatures (24-25 °C) 2 weeks before the onset of disease and this may have resulted in immunocompromise and opportunistic bacterial infection. S. marcescens was isolated from the coelomic and pericardial cavity. Both isolates were identical and were resistant to β-lactam antibiotics, but not to aminoglycosides or fluoroquinolones. The production of red prodigiosin pigment by the bacterium suggested an environmental origin. Overall, the clinical and histopathological presentation suggests that S. marcescens should be included in the list of aetiological agents of the 'red-leg'/bacterial dermatosepticaemia syndrome of amphibians.

  14. Suppression of first cleavage in the Mexican axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) by heat shock or hydrostatic pressure

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gillespie, L.L.; Armstrong, J.B.

    1981-12-01

    Androgenetic diploid axolotls were produced by ultraviolet inactivation of the egg pronucleus shortly after fertilization, followed by suppression of the first cleavage division by hydrostatic pressure or heat shock. After treatment at 14,000 psi for 8 minutes, diploidy was restored in 74% of the embryos, but only 0.8% survived to hatching. A 36-37 degrees C heat shock of 10-minutes duration, applied 5.5 hours after the eggs were collected, yielded a slightly lower percentage of diploids. However, the proportion surviving to hatching was significantly greater (up to 4.6%). A second generation of androgenetic diploids was produced from one of the oldest of the first generation males with a similar degree of success. The lack of significant improvement suggests that the low survival is due to the heat shock per se and not to the uncovering of recessive lethal genes carried by the parent.

  15. Proliferation zones in the axolotl brain and regeneration of the telencephalon

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    Maden Malcolm

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Although the brains of lower vertebrates are known to exhibit somewhat limited regeneration after incisional or stab wounds, the Urodele brain exhibits extensive regeneration after massive tissue removal. Discovering whether and how neural progenitor cells that reside in the ventricular zones of Urodeles proliferate to mediate tissue repair in response to injury may produce novel leads for regenerative strategies. Here we show that endogenous neural progenitor cells resident to the ventricular zone of Urodeles spontaneously proliferate, producing progeny that migrate throughout the telencephalon before terminally differentiating into neurons. These progenitor cells appear to be responsible for telencephalon regeneration after tissue removal and their activity may be up-regulated by injury through an olfactory cue. Results There is extensive proliferation of endogenous neural progenitor cells throughout the ventricular zone of the adult axolotl brain. The highest levels are observed in the telencephalon, especially the dorsolateral aspect, and cerebellum. Lower levels are observed in the mesencephalon and rhombencephalon. New cells produced in the ventricular zone migrate laterally, dorsally and ventrally into the surrounding neuronal layer. After migrating from the ventricular zone, the new cells primarily express markers of neuronal differentiative fates. Large-scale telencephalic tissue removal stimulates progenitor cell proliferation in the ventricular zone of the damaged region, followed by proliferation in the tissue that surrounds the healing edges of the wound until the telencephalon has completed regeneration. The proliferative stimulus appears to reside in the olfactory system, because telencephalic regeneration does not occur in the brains of olfactory bulbectomized animals in which the damaged neural tissue simply heals over. Conclusion There is a continual generation of neuronal cells from neural progenitor cells

  16. Collection of gametes from live axolotl, Ambystoma mexicanum, and standardization of in vitro fertilization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mansour, N; Lahnsteiner, F; Patzner, R A

    2011-01-15

    This study established the first protocol for collection of gametes from live axolotl, Ambystoma mexicanum, by gentle abdominal massage and in vitro fertilization. To stimulate spermiation and ovulation, human chorionic gonadotrophin (hCG) and Ovopel pellets, which are commercially used to stimulate spawning in fish, were tested. The hCG was more effective than Ovopel pellets and yielded a higher semen volume in the injected males and a shorter response time in the females. Collected semen by this method was already motile and fertile. Fertile eggs could be collected in 3-4 successive collection times after the female has started the typical spawning behaviour. The fertilization condition that yielded the highest hatching rate was mixing semen with eggs before the addition of a fertilization saline solution (20 mmol/l NaCl, 1 mmol/l KCl, 1 mmol/l Mg(2)SO(4), 1 mmol Ca(2)Cl, 3 mmol NaHCO(3), 10 mmol/l Tris, pH 8.5 - Osmolality = 65 mosmol/kg). When the pH of the fertilization solution was increased to ≥ 10, the hatching rate was significantly increased. The use of fertilization solutions with osmolalities of ≥ 150 and ≥ 182 were accompanied with a significant decrease in hatching rates and the appearance of deformed larvae, respectively. In conclusion, a reliable protocol for gamete collection from live axolotl is established as a laboratory model of in vitro fertilization for urodele amphibians. This protocol may be transferable to endangered urodeles.

  17. Using Ambystoma mexicanum (Mexican axolotl) embryos, chemical genetics, and microarray analysis to identify signaling pathways associated with tissue regeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ponomareva, Larissa V; Athippozhy, Antony; Thorson, Jon S; Voss, S Randal

    2015-12-01

    Amphibian vertebrates are important models in regenerative biology because they present exceptional regenerative capabilities throughout life. However, it takes considerable effort to rear amphibians to juvenile and adult stages for regeneration studies, and the relatively large sizes that frogs and salamanders achieve during development make them difficult to use in chemical screens. Here, we introduce a new tail regeneration model using late stage Mexican axolotl embryos. We show that axolotl embryos completely regenerate amputated tails in 7days before they exhaust their yolk supply and begin to feed. Further, we show that axolotl embryos can be efficiently reared in microtiter plates to achieve moderate throughput screening of soluble chemicals to investigate toxicity and identify molecules that alter regenerative outcome. As proof of principle, we identified integration 1 / wingless (Wnt), transforming growth factor beta (Tgf-β), and fibroblast growth factor (Fgf) pathway antagonists that completely block tail regeneration and additional chemicals that significantly affected tail outgrowth. Furthermore, we used microarray analysis to show that inhibition of Wnt signaling broadly affects transcription of genes associated with Wnt, Fgf, Tgf-β, epidermal growth factor (Egf), Notch, nerve growth factor (Ngf), homeotic gene (Hox), rat sarcoma/mitogen-activated protein kinase (Ras/Mapk), myelocytomatosis viral oncogene (Myc), tumor protein 53 (p53), and retinoic acid (RA) pathways. Punctuated changes in the expression of genes known to regulate vertebrate development were observed; this suggests the tail regeneration transcriptional program is hierarchically structured and temporally ordered. Our study establishes the axolotl as a chemical screening model to investigate signaling pathways associated with tissue regeneration. PMID:26092703

  18. Using Ambystoma mexicanum (Mexican axolotl) embryos, chemical genetics, and microarray analysis to identify signaling pathways associated with tissue regeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ponomareva, Larissa V; Athippozhy, Antony; Thorson, Jon S; Voss, S Randal

    2015-12-01

    Amphibian vertebrates are important models in regenerative biology because they present exceptional regenerative capabilities throughout life. However, it takes considerable effort to rear amphibians to juvenile and adult stages for regeneration studies, and the relatively large sizes that frogs and salamanders achieve during development make them difficult to use in chemical screens. Here, we introduce a new tail regeneration model using late stage Mexican axolotl embryos. We show that axolotl embryos completely regenerate amputated tails in 7days before they exhaust their yolk supply and begin to feed. Further, we show that axolotl embryos can be efficiently reared in microtiter plates to achieve moderate throughput screening of soluble chemicals to investigate toxicity and identify molecules that alter regenerative outcome. As proof of principle, we identified integration 1 / wingless (Wnt), transforming growth factor beta (Tgf-β), and fibroblast growth factor (Fgf) pathway antagonists that completely block tail regeneration and additional chemicals that significantly affected tail outgrowth. Furthermore, we used microarray analysis to show that inhibition of Wnt signaling broadly affects transcription of genes associated with Wnt, Fgf, Tgf-β, epidermal growth factor (Egf), Notch, nerve growth factor (Ngf), homeotic gene (Hox), rat sarcoma/mitogen-activated protein kinase (Ras/Mapk), myelocytomatosis viral oncogene (Myc), tumor protein 53 (p53), and retinoic acid (RA) pathways. Punctuated changes in the expression of genes known to regulate vertebrate development were observed; this suggests the tail regeneration transcriptional program is hierarchically structured and temporally ordered. Our study establishes the axolotl as a chemical screening model to investigate signaling pathways associated with tissue regeneration.

  19. Thyroxine and triiodothyronine in plasma and thyroids of the neotenic and metamorphosed axolotl Ambystoma mexicanum: influence of TRH injections.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jacobs, G F; Michielsen, R P; Kühn, E R

    1988-04-01

    Circulating levels of T3 and T4, as well as T3 and T4 content of the thyroid glands were measured by radioimmunoassay in the neotenic and metamorphosed axolotl Ambystoma mexicanum. In the two experiments which were performed plasma T4 concentrations were more elevated in metamorphosed axolotls, especially in the first experiment (2.12 +/- 0.40 ng/ml vs. 369 +/- 30 pg/ml). T3 plasma values which were only estimated in the second experiment were about five times higher in metamorphosed animals (63.2 +/- 7.4 pg/ml vs. 12.5 +/- 0.8 pg/ml). Also the thyroid hormone content of the glands was higher after metamorphosis. Nevertheless the neotenic gland still contained considerable amounts of T3 (14.7 +/- 1.8 ng and 48.3 +/- 4.8 ng/thyroid, respectively, in the first and second experiment) and T4 (530 +/- 61 ng; 2173 +/- 291 ng/thyroid). Because of the higher T3/T4 ratio found in the plasma compared to the thyroid gland, it was suggested that circulating T3 may be derived partly from peripheral T4 conversion, mainly after metamorphosis. An intravenous injection of 10 micrograms synthetic TRH was able to induce a very significant increase of the plasma T4 concentration (which was maintained during 24 hr) in the metamorphosed axolotls of the first experiment, however, not in those of the second experiment nor in the neotenic animals. Following an injection of 10 mU bovine TSH (first experiment) circulating levels of T4 were raised in both groups. The opposing TRH results could be related with the different control levels of T4 in the two experiments. However, the results indicate that TRH is capable of functioning as a possible thyrotropin-releasing factor in the metamorphosed axolotl.

  20. Fine structure of the epidermal Leydig cells in the axolotl Ambystoma mexicanum in relation to their function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jarial, M S

    1989-12-01

    The fine structure of the Leydig cells in the epidermis of the strictly aquatic adult axolotl Ambystoma mexicanum resembles that of similar cells in larval salamanders. The major finding of this study is that the mucous secretion of the Leydig cells is released into the intercellular spaces from which it is discharged through pores onto the surface of the epidermis where it forms a mucous layer to protect the skin.

  1. Molecular cloning, sequence analysis and homology modeling of the first caudata amphibian antifreeze-like protein in axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Songyan; Gao, Jiuxiang; Lu, Yiling; Cai, Shasha; Qiao, Xue; Wang, Yipeng; Yu, Haining

    2013-08-01

    Antifreeze proteins (AFPs) refer to a class of polypeptides that are produced by certain vertebrates, plants, fungi, and bacteria and which permit their survival in subzero environments. In this study, we report the molecular cloning, sequence analysis and three-dimensional structure of the axolotl antifreeze-like protein (AFLP) by homology modeling of the first caudate amphibian AFLP. We constructed a full-length spleen cDNA library of axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum). An EST having highest similarity (∼42%) with freeze-responsive liver protein Li16 from Rana sylvatica was identified, and the full-length cDNA was subsequently obtained by RACE-PCR. The axolotl antifreeze-like protein sequence represents an open reading frame for a putative signal peptide and the mature protein composed of 93 amino acids. The calculated molecular mass and the theoretical isoelectric point (pl) of this mature protein were 10128.6 Da and 8.97, respectively. The molecular characterization of this gene and its deduced protein were further performed by detailed bioinformatics analysis. The three-dimensional structure of current AFLP was predicted by homology modeling, and the conserved residues required for functionality were identified. The homology model constructed could be of use for effective drug design. This is the first report of an antifreeze-like protein identified from a caudate amphibian. PMID:23915159

  2. Molecular cloning, sequence analysis and phylogeny of first caudata g-type lysozyme in axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Haining; Gao, Jiuxiang; Lu, Yiling; Guang, Huijuan; Cai, Shasha; Zhang, Songyan; Wang, Yipeng

    2013-11-01

    Lysozymes are key proteins that play important roles in innate immune defense in many animal phyla by breaking down the bacterial cell-walls. In this study, we report the molecular cloning, sequence analysis and phylogeny of the first caudate amphibian g-lysozyme: a full-length spleen cDNA library from axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum). A goose-type (g-lysozyme) EST was identified and the full-length cDNA was obtained using RACE-PCR. The axolotl g-lysozyme sequence represents an open reading frame for a putative signal peptide and the mature protein composed of 184 amino acids. The calculated molecular mass and the theoretical isoelectric point (pl) of this mature protein are 21523.0 Da and 4.37, respectively. Expression of g-lysozyme mRNA is predominantly found in skin, with lower levels in spleen, liver, muscle, and lung. Phylogenetic analysis revealed that caudate amphibian g-lysozyme had distinct evolution pattern for being juxtaposed with not only anura amphibian, but also with the fish, bird and mammal. Although the first complete cDNA sequence for caudate amphibian g-lysozyme is reported in the present study, clones encoding axolotl's other functional immune molecules in the full-length cDNA library will have to be further sequenced to gain insight into the fundamental aspects of antibacterial mechanisms in caudate. PMID:24199859

  3. Molecular cloning, sequence analysis and phylogeny of first caudata g-type lysozyme in axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Haining; Gao, Jiuxiang; Lu, Yiling; Guang, Huijuan; Cai, Shasha; Zhang, Songyan; Wang, Yipeng

    2013-11-01

    Lysozymes are key proteins that play important roles in innate immune defense in many animal phyla by breaking down the bacterial cell-walls. In this study, we report the molecular cloning, sequence analysis and phylogeny of the first caudate amphibian g-lysozyme: a full-length spleen cDNA library from axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum). A goose-type (g-lysozyme) EST was identified and the full-length cDNA was obtained using RACE-PCR. The axolotl g-lysozyme sequence represents an open reading frame for a putative signal peptide and the mature protein composed of 184 amino acids. The calculated molecular mass and the theoretical isoelectric point (pl) of this mature protein are 21523.0 Da and 4.37, respectively. Expression of g-lysozyme mRNA is predominantly found in skin, with lower levels in spleen, liver, muscle, and lung. Phylogenetic analysis revealed that caudate amphibian g-lysozyme had distinct evolution pattern for being juxtaposed with not only anura amphibian, but also with the fish, bird and mammal. Although the first complete cDNA sequence for caudate amphibian g-lysozyme is reported in the present study, clones encoding axolotl's other functional immune molecules in the full-length cDNA library will have to be further sequenced to gain insight into the fundamental aspects of antibacterial mechanisms in caudate.

  4. Dynamic membrane depolarization is an early regulator of ependymoglial cell response to spinal cord injury in axolotl.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sabin, Keith; Santos-Ferreira, Tiago; Essig, Jaclyn; Rudasill, Sarah; Echeverri, Karen

    2015-12-01

    Salamanders, such as the Mexican axolotl, are some of the few vertebrates fortunate in their ability to regenerate diverse structures after injury. Unlike mammals they are able to regenerate a fully functional spinal cord after injury. However, the molecular circuitry required to initiate a pro-regenerative response after spinal cord injury is not well understood. To address this question we developed a spinal cord injury model in axolotls and used in vivo imaging of labeled ependymoglial cells to characterize the response of these cells to injury. Using in vivo imaging of ion sensitive dyes we identified that spinal cord injury induces a rapid and dynamic change in the resting membrane potential of ependymoglial cells. Prolonged depolarization of ependymoglial cells after injury inhibits ependymoglial cell proliferation and subsequent axon regeneration. Using transcriptional profiling we identified c-Fos as a key voltage sensitive early response gene that is expressed specifically in the ependymoglial cells after injury. This data establishes that dynamic changes in the membrane potential after injury are essential for regulating the specific spatiotemporal expression of c-Fos that is critical for promoting faithful spinal cord regeneration in axolotl.

  5. Molecular cloning, sequence analysis and homology modeling of the first caudata amphibian antifreeze-like protein in axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Songyan; Gao, Jiuxiang; Lu, Yiling; Cai, Shasha; Qiao, Xue; Wang, Yipeng; Yu, Haining

    2013-08-01

    Antifreeze proteins (AFPs) refer to a class of polypeptides that are produced by certain vertebrates, plants, fungi, and bacteria and which permit their survival in subzero environments. In this study, we report the molecular cloning, sequence analysis and three-dimensional structure of the axolotl antifreeze-like protein (AFLP) by homology modeling of the first caudate amphibian AFLP. We constructed a full-length spleen cDNA library of axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum). An EST having highest similarity (∼42%) with freeze-responsive liver protein Li16 from Rana sylvatica was identified, and the full-length cDNA was subsequently obtained by RACE-PCR. The axolotl antifreeze-like protein sequence represents an open reading frame for a putative signal peptide and the mature protein composed of 93 amino acids. The calculated molecular mass and the theoretical isoelectric point (pl) of this mature protein were 10128.6 Da and 8.97, respectively. The molecular characterization of this gene and its deduced protein were further performed by detailed bioinformatics analysis. The three-dimensional structure of current AFLP was predicted by homology modeling, and the conserved residues required for functionality were identified. The homology model constructed could be of use for effective drug design. This is the first report of an antifreeze-like protein identified from a caudate amphibian.

  6. BMP-2 functions independently of SHH signaling and triggers cell condensation and apoptosis in regenerating axolotl limbs

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    Finnson Kenneth

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Axolotls have the unique ability, among vertebrates, to perfectly regenerate complex body parts, such as limbs, after amputation. In addition, axolotls pattern developing and regenerating autopods from the anterior to posterior axis instead of posterior to anterior like all tetrapods studied to date. Sonic hedgehog is important in establishing this anterior-posterior axis of limbs in all tetrapods including axolotls. Interestingly, its expression is conserved (to the posterior side of limb buds and blastemas in axolotl limbs as in other tetrapods. It has been suggested that BMP-2 may be the secondary mediator of sonic hedgehog, although there is mounting evidence to the contrary in mice. Since BMP-2 expression is on the anterior portion of developing and regenerating limbs prior to digit patterning, opposite to the expression of sonic hedgehog, we examined whether BMP-2 expression was dependent on sonic hedgehog signaling and whether it affects patterning of the autopod during regeneration. Results The expression of BMP-2 and SOX-9 in developing and regenerating axolotl limbs corresponded to the first digits forming in the anterior portion of the autopods. The inhibition of sonic hedgehog signaling with cyclopamine caused hypomorphic limbs (during development and regeneration but did not affect the expression of BMP-2 and SOX-9. Overexpression of BMP-2 in regenerating limbs caused a loss of digits. Overexpression of Noggin (BMP inhibitor in regenerating limbs also resulted in a loss of digits. Histological analysis indicated that the loss due to BMP-2 overexpression was the result of increased cell condensation and apoptosis while the loss caused by Noggin was due to a decrease in cell division. Conclusion The expression of BMP-2 and its target SOX-9 was independent of sonic hedgehog signaling in developing and regenerating limbs. Their expression correlated with chondrogenesis and the appearance of skeletal elements has

  7. Cooperative regulation of substrate stiffness and extracellular matrix proteins in skin wound healing of axolotls.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Ting-Yu; Wu, Cheng-Han; Wang, Mu-Hui; Chen, Bo-Sung; Chiou, Ling-Ling; Lee, Hsuan-Shu

    2015-01-01

    Urodele amphibians (Ambystoma mexicanum), unique among vertebrates, can regenerate appendages and other body parts entirely and functionally through a scar-free healing process. The wound epithelium covering the amputated or damaged site forms early and is essential for initiating the subsequent regenerative steps. However, the molecular mechanism through which the wound reepithelializes during regeneration remains unclear. In this study, we developed an in vitro culture system that mimics an in vivo wound healing process; the biomechanical properties in the system were precisely defined and manipulated. Skin explants that were cultured on 2 to 50 kPa collagen-coated substrates rapidly reepithelialized within 10 to 15 h; however, in harder (1 GPa) and other extracellular matrices (tenascin-, fibronectin-, and laminin-coated environments), the wound epithelium moved slowly. Furthermore, the reepithelialization rate of skin explants from metamorphic axolotls cultured on a polystyrene plate (1 GPa) increased substantially. These findings afford new insights and can facilitate investigating wound epithelium formation during early regeneration using biochemical and mechanical techniques. PMID:25839038

  8. Cooperative Regulation of Substrate Stiffness and Extracellular Matrix Proteins in Skin Wound Healing of Axolotls

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ting-Yu Huang

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Urodele amphibians (Ambystoma mexicanum, unique among vertebrates, can regenerate appendages and other body parts entirely and functionally through a scar-free healing process. The wound epithelium covering the amputated or damaged site forms early and is essential for initiating the subsequent regenerative steps. However, the molecular mechanism through which the wound reepithelializes during regeneration remains unclear. In this study, we developed an in vitro culture system that mimics an in vivo wound healing process; the biomechanical properties in the system were precisely defined and manipulated. Skin explants that were cultured on 2 to 50 kPa collagen-coated substrates rapidly reepithelialized within 10 to 15 h; however, in harder (1 GPa and other extracellular matrices (tenascin-, fibronectin-, and laminin-coated environments, the wound epithelium moved slowly. Furthermore, the reepithelialization rate of skin explants from metamorphic axolotls cultured on a polystyrene plate (1 GPa increased substantially. These findings afford new insights and can facilitate investigating wound epithelium formation during early regeneration using biochemical and mechanical techniques.

  9. Cooperative regulation of substrate stiffness and extracellular matrix proteins in skin wound healing of axolotls.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Ting-Yu; Wu, Cheng-Han; Wang, Mu-Hui; Chen, Bo-Sung; Chiou, Ling-Ling; Lee, Hsuan-Shu

    2015-01-01

    Urodele amphibians (Ambystoma mexicanum), unique among vertebrates, can regenerate appendages and other body parts entirely and functionally through a scar-free healing process. The wound epithelium covering the amputated or damaged site forms early and is essential for initiating the subsequent regenerative steps. However, the molecular mechanism through which the wound reepithelializes during regeneration remains unclear. In this study, we developed an in vitro culture system that mimics an in vivo wound healing process; the biomechanical properties in the system were precisely defined and manipulated. Skin explants that were cultured on 2 to 50 kPa collagen-coated substrates rapidly reepithelialized within 10 to 15 h; however, in harder (1 GPa) and other extracellular matrices (tenascin-, fibronectin-, and laminin-coated environments), the wound epithelium moved slowly. Furthermore, the reepithelialization rate of skin explants from metamorphic axolotls cultured on a polystyrene plate (1 GPa) increased substantially. These findings afford new insights and can facilitate investigating wound epithelium formation during early regeneration using biochemical and mechanical techniques.

  10. Comparative transcriptional profiling of the axolotl limb identifies a tripartite regeneration-specific gene program.

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    Dunja Knapp

    Full Text Available Understanding how the limb blastema is established after the initial wound healing response is an important aspect of regeneration research. Here we performed parallel expression profile time courses of healing lateral wounds versus amputated limbs in axolotl. This comparison between wound healing and regeneration allowed us to identify amputation-specific genes. By clustering the expression profiles of these samples, we could detect three distinguishable phases of gene expression - early wound healing followed by a transition-phase leading to establishment of the limb development program, which correspond to the three phases of limb regeneration that had been defined by morphological criteria. By focusing on the transition-phase, we identified 93 strictly amputation-associated genes many of which are implicated in oxidative-stress response, chromatin modification, epithelial development or limb development. We further classified the genes based on whether they were or were not significantly expressed in the developing limb bud. The specific localization of 53 selected candidates within the blastema was investigated by in situ hybridization. In summary, we identified a set of genes that are expressed specifically during regeneration and are therefore, likely candidates for the regulation of blastema formation.

  11. Mitochondrial morphology in the spermatozoa of the Mexican axolotl, Ambystoma mexicanum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keyhani, E; Lemanski, L F

    1981-08-01

    Thin-section and freeze-fracture electron microscopy of immature and mature spermatozoa of the Mexican axolotl, Ambystoma mexicanum, revealed numerous small spherical mitochondria with diameters ranging from 0.15 to 0.22 micrometers. Both the spherical form and the small size of these mitochondria were confirmed by serial thin-section studies. In mature spermatozoa, the mitochondria are located in the midpiece region, in tight contact with each other, exhibiting an almost crystalline arrangement. They do not surround the midpiece, but form a semicircular sheet over the sustained filament. The portion of the midpiece on the side of the undulating membrane and the flagellum is devoid of mitochondria. The plasma membrane in the midpiece region is tightly apposed to the mitochondria, so that in freeze-fracture or scanning electron microscopy the mitochondria seem to protrude through the plasma membrane. We suggest that the unusual organization of mitochondria in axoloti sperm facilitates the oxidative processes and increases the efficiency of ATP production and/or distribution within the cell.

  12. Dual embryonic origin of the hyobranchial apparatus in the Mexican axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davidian, Asya; Malashichev, Yegor

    2013-01-01

    Traditionally, the cartilaginous viscerocranium of vertebrates is considered as neural crest (NC)-derived. Morphological work carried out on amphibian embryos in the first half of the XX century suggested potentially mesodermal origin for some hyobranchial elements. Since then, the embryonic sources of the hyobranchial apparatus in amphibians has not been investigated due to lack of an appropriate long-term labelling system. We performed homotopic transplantations of neural folds along with the majority of cells of the presumptive NC, and/or fragments of the head lateral plate mesoderm (LPM) from transgenic GFP+ into white embryos. In these experiments, the NC-derived GFP+ cells contributed to all hyobranchial elements, except for basibranchial 2, whereas the grafting of GFP+ head mesoderm led to a reverse labelling result. The grafting of only the most ventral part of the head LPM resulted in marking of the basibranchial 2 and the heart myocardium, implying their origin from a common mesodermal region. This is the first evidence of contribution of LPM of the head to cranial elements in any vertebrate. If compared to fish, birds, and mammals, in which all branchial skeletal elements are NC-derived, the axolotl (probably this is true for all amphibians) demonstrates an evolutionary deviation, in which the head LPM replaces NC cells in a hyobranchial element. This implies that cells of different embryonic origin may have the same developmental program, leading to the formation of identical (homologous) elements of the skeleton.

  13. The organization of the cardiac ganglion of the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Melinek, R; Mirolli, M

    1988-09-01

    The heart of the axolotl Ambystoma mexicanum was studied with histochemical methods to determine the distribution of neurons containing acetylcholine esterase, catecholamines and 5-hydroxytryptamine. The cardiac ganglion is made up of cholinergic nerve fibers and somata, and of catecholaminergic fibers. Small intensely fluorescent cells were found along blood vessels in the pericardial wall at the base of the heart, but not in the heart itself, except, in a few instances, in the region bordering the pericardial wall. Both the cholinergic and the catecholaminergic innervation of the heart were poorly developed at hatching and reached their mature state after a few months. Cholinesterase staining fibers appeared several weeks before catecholaminergic fibers. The number of postganglionic cholinergic neurons in the heart increased several-fold during the first month after hatching. Histofluorescence studies of organ cultures suggested that all the catecholamine present in the heart are of extrinsic origin. Liquid chromatography with electrochemical detection demonstrated that the dominant catecholamine in the heart is norepinephrine. No neurons containing 5-hydroxytryptamine were found.

  14. DNA Methylation Dynamics Regulate the Formation of a Regenerative Wound Epithelium during Axolotl Limb Regeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aguilar, Cristian; Gardiner, David M

    2015-01-01

    The formation of a blastema during regeneration of an axolotl limb involves important changes in the behavior and function of cells at the site of injury. One of the earliest events is the formation of the wound epithelium and subsequently the apical epidermal cap, which involves in vivo dedifferentiation that is controlled by signaling from the nerve. We have investigated the role of epigenetic modifications to the genome as a possible mechanism for regulating changes in gene expression patterns of keratinocytes of the wound and blastema epithelium that are involved in regeneration. We report a modulation of the expression DNMT3a, a de novo DNA methyltransferase, within the first 72 hours post injury that is dependent on nerve signaling. Treatment of skin wounds on the upper forelimb with decitabine, a DNA methyltransferase inhibitor, induced changes in gene expression and cellular behavior associated with a regenerative response. Furthermore, decitabine-treated wounds were able to participate in regeneration while untreated wounds inhibited a regenerative response. Elucidation of the specific epigenetic modifications that mediate cellular dedifferentiation likely will lead to insights for initiating a regenerative response in organisms that lack this ability.

  15. Ex vivo generation of a functional and regenerative wound epithelium from axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) skin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferris, Donald R; Satoh, Akira; Mandefro, Berhan; Cummings, Gillian M; Gardiner, David M; Rugg, Elizabeth L

    2010-10-01

    Urodele amphibians (salamanders) are unique among adult vertebrates in their ability to regenerate structurally complete and fully functional limbs. Regeneration is a stepwise process that requires interactions between keratinocytes, nerves and fibroblasts. The formation of a wound epithelium covering the amputation site is an early and necessary event in the process but the molecular mechanisms that underlie the role of the wound epithelium in regeneration remain unclear. We have developed an ex vivo model that recapitulates many features of in vivo wound healing. The model comprises a circular explant of axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) limb skin with a central circular, full thickness wound. Re-epithelialization of the wound area is rapid (typically <11 h) and is dependent on metalloproteinase activity. The ex vivo wound epithelium is viable, responds to neuronal signals and is able to participate in ectopic blastema formation and limb regeneration. This ex vivo model provides a reproducible and tractable system in which to study the cellular and molecular events that underlie wound healing and regeneration.

  16. GnRH Protein Levels in Atrazine-Treated Axolotls (Ambystoma mexicanum

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    Sarah Leupen

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available Atrazine is the most widely used agricultural herbicide in the United States and a known endocrine disruptor. In amphibians, it has been shown to cause gonadal malformations, feminization of males, behavioral changes, and immune suppression; however, its mechanism ofaction is unknown. We hypothesized that atrazine reduces the production of gonadotropin releasing hormone (GnRH in the hypothalamus. Axolotls (Ambystoma mexicanum were exposed to atrazine, 10-8 M ß-estradiol-3-benzoate, or no treatment and were sacrificed at 6, 8, and 10 months of age. GnRH neurons were labeled using immunocytochemistry, and labeled neurons were then counted using confocal microscopy. Although no significant difference wasfound in the total number of GnRH neurons, ectopic GnRH expression was seen in some brains. A significant negative correlation was found between presence of ectopic GnRH and number of normal GnRH neurons. Atrazine-treated animals were more likely than control or estrogentreated animals to have ectopic GnRH expression. The data implicate a central site of action of atrazine.

  17. DNA Methylation Dynamics Regulate the Formation of a Regenerative Wound Epithelium during Axolotl Limb Regeneration.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cristian Aguilar

    Full Text Available The formation of a blastema during regeneration of an axolotl limb involves important changes in the behavior and function of cells at the site of injury. One of the earliest events is the formation of the wound epithelium and subsequently the apical epidermal cap, which involves in vivo dedifferentiation that is controlled by signaling from the nerve. We have investigated the role of epigenetic modifications to the genome as a possible mechanism for regulating changes in gene expression patterns of keratinocytes of the wound and blastema epithelium that are involved in regeneration. We report a modulation of the expression DNMT3a, a de novo DNA methyltransferase, within the first 72 hours post injury that is dependent on nerve signaling. Treatment of skin wounds on the upper forelimb with decitabine, a DNA methyltransferase inhibitor, induced changes in gene expression and cellular behavior associated with a regenerative response. Furthermore, decitabine-treated wounds were able to participate in regeneration while untreated wounds inhibited a regenerative response. Elucidation of the specific epigenetic modifications that mediate cellular dedifferentiation likely will lead to insights for initiating a regenerative response in organisms that lack this ability.

  18. Effect of thyroid hormone concentration on the transcriptional response underlying induced metamorphosis in the Mexican axolotl (Ambystoma

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    Samuels Amy K

    2008-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Thyroid hormones (TH induce gene expression programs that orchestrate amphibian metamorphosis. In contrast to anurans, many salamanders do not undergo metamorphosis in nature. However, they can be induced to undergo metamorphosis via exposure to thyroxine (T4. We induced metamorphosis in juvenile Mexican axolotls (Ambystoma mexicanum using 5 and 50 nM T4, collected epidermal tissue from the head at four time points (Days 0, 2, 12, 28, and used microarray analysis to quantify mRNA abundances. Results Individuals reared in the higher T4 concentration initiated morphological and transcriptional changes earlier and completed metamorphosis by Day 28. In contrast, initiation of metamorphosis was delayed in the lower T4 concentration and none of the individuals completed metamorphosis by Day 28. We identified 402 genes that were statistically differentially expressed by ≥ two-fold between T4 treatments at one or more non-Day 0 sampling times. To complement this analysis, we used linear and quadratic regression to identify 542 and 709 genes that were differentially expressed by ≥ two-fold in the 5 and 50 nM T4 treatments, respectively. Conclusion We found that T4 concentration affected the timing of gene expression and the shape of temporal gene expression profiles. However, essentially all of the identified genes were similarly affected by 5 and 50 nM T4. We discuss genes and biological processes that appear to be common to salamander and anuran metamorphosis, and also highlight clear transcriptional differences. Our results show that gene expression in axolotls is diverse and precise, and that axolotls provide new insights about amphibian metamorphosis.

  19. Absence of mutation at the 5'-upstream promoter region of the TPM4 gene from cardiac mutant axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Denz, Christopher R; Zhang, Chi; Jia, Pingping; Du, Jianfeng; Huang, Xupei; Dube, Syamalima; Thomas, Anish; Poiesz, Bernard J; Dube, Dipak K

    2011-09-01

    Tropomyosins are a family of actin-binding proteins that show cell-specific diversity by a combination of multiple genes and alternative RNA splicing. Of the 4 different tropomyosin genes, TPM4 plays a pivotal role in myofibrillogenesis as well as cardiac contractility in amphibians. In this study, we amplified and sequenced the upstream regulatory region of the TPM4 gene from both normal and mutant axolotl hearts. To identify the cis-elements that are essential for the expression of the TPM4, we created various deletion mutants of the TPM4 promoter DNA, inserted the deleted segments into PGL3 vector, and performed promoter-reporter assay using luciferase as the reporter gene. Comparison of sequences of the promoter region of the TPM4 gene from normal and mutant axolotl revealed no mutations in the promoter sequence of the mutant TPM4 gene. CArG box elements that are generally involved in controlling the expression of several other muscle-specific gene promoters were not found in the upstream regulatory region of the TPM4 gene. In deletion experiments, loss of activity of the reporter gene was noted upon deletion which was then restored upon further deletion suggesting the presence of both positive and negative cis-elements in the upstream regulatory region of the TPM4 gene. We believe that this is the first axolotl promoter that has ever been cloned and studied with clear evidence that it functions in mammalian cell lines. Although striated muscle-specific cis-acting elements are absent from the promoter region of TPM4 gene, our results suggest the presence of positive and negative cis-elements in the promoter region, which in conjunction with positive and negative trans-elements may be involved in regulating the expression of TPM4 gene in a tissue-specific manner.

  20. MRI tracking of SPIO labelled stem cells in a true regenerative environment, the regenerating limb of the axolotl

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lauridsen, Henrik; Foldager, Casper Bindzus; Hagensen, Mette;

    are generally restricted by their limited regenerative potential. Conversely, excellent animal models for regenerative studies exist in lower vertebrates such as the urodele amphibians (salamanders and newts), exemplified in the iconic Mexican axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) capable of regenerating whole limbs...... effect on blastema cell viability in vitro. MRI revealed that labelled tissue was clearly visibly in vivo 49 days after amputation and a significant decline in signal intensity of labelled limbs versus sham-operated limbs was evident throughout the complete regeneration period of 84 days. SPIO labelling...

  1. [Autoradiographic investigations on postnatal proliferative activity of the telencephalic and diencephalic matrix-zones in the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum), with special references to the olfactory organ (author's transl)].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richter, W; Kranz, D

    1981-01-01

    The localization and proliferative activity of the matrix-zones has been investigated in the telencephalon and in the diencephalon of 21 axolotls (Ambystoma mexicanum) by means of autoradiographs, after injection of tritiated thymidine at different stages of the postnatal life. There are no previous detailed autoradiographical reports on postnatal brain development in the axolotl. Matrix-zones (i.e. ventricular and subventricular zone) exist in the dorsal part and in the ventral part of the telencephalon, we have found these also in the diencephalon in the wall of the preoptic recessus and ventrally of the habenula. The quantitative part of this study indicates high values of the labeling-index in the early postnatal stages. Then, the labeling-index decreases, but also in 3 years old specimens labeled cells were observed in the matrix-zones of the telencephalon; therefore a few of proliferative capacity remains in the central nervous system of adult axolotls. Labeled cells were also found in the olfactory organ of early postnatal and adult axolotls; these are neuroblasts which have relevance for the regeneration of the forebrain.

  2. Transient developmental expression of IgY and secretory component like protein in the gut of the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fellah, J S; Iscaki, S; Vaerman, J P; Charlemagne, J

    1992-01-01

    We previously reported that a primitive vertebrate, the Mexican axolotl (Amphibian, Urodela) synthesizes two classes of immunoglobulins. IgM are present in serum early in the development, and represent the bulk of specific antibody synthesis after an antigenic challenge. IgY occur in the serum later during the development, and are relatively insensitive to immunization. We demonstrate in the present work, using immunofluorescence with specific Mabs, that IgY are expressed in the gut epithelium, as secretory molecules. Secretory IgY are well expressed in the stomach and intestinal mucosae of young animals from 1 month after hatching to the seventh month. Thereafter, IgY progressively disappear from the gut and become readily detectable in the serum of 9-month-old preadult immunologically mature animals. Axolotl IgY are closely associated in the gut to secretory component-like (SC) molecules that are well-recognized by antisera to the SC of different mammalian species. This is the first description, in a primitive tetrapode, of an immunoglobulin class that could be the physiological counterpart of mammalian IgA. PMID:1627950

  3. Transcriptional response of Mexican axolotls to Ambystoma tigrinum virus (ATV infection

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    Beachy Christopher K

    2008-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Very little is known about the immunological responses of amphibians to pathogens that are causing global population declines. We used a custom microarray gene chip to characterize gene expression responses of axolotls (Ambystoma mexicanum to an emerging viral pathogen, Ambystoma tigrinum virus (ATV. Result At 0, 24, 72, and 144 hours post-infection, spleen and lung samples were removed for estimation of host mRNA abundance and viral load. A total of 158 up-regulated and 105 down-regulated genes were identified across all time points using statistical and fold level criteria. The presumptive functions of these genes suggest a robust innate immune and antiviral gene expression response is initiated by A. mexicanum as early as 24 hours after ATV infection. At 24 hours, we observed transcript abundance changes for genes that are associated with phagocytosis and cytokine signaling, complement, and other general immune and defense responses. By 144 hours, we observed gene expression changes indicating host-mediated cell death, inflammation, and cytotoxicity. Conclusion Although A. mexicanum appears to mount a robust innate immune response, we did not observe gene expression changes indicative of lymphocyte proliferation in the spleen, which is associated with clearance of Frog 3 iridovirus in adult Xenopus. We speculate that ATV may be especially lethal to A. mexicanum and related tiger salamanders because they lack proliferative lymphocyte responses that are needed to clear highly virulent iridoviruses. Genes identified from this study provide important new resources to investigate ATV disease pathology and host-pathogen dynamics in natural populations.

  4. Effect of water quality on the feeding ecology of axolotl Ambystoma mexicanum

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    Diego de Jesus Chaparro-Herrera

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Ambystoma mexicanum, a highly endangered species, is endemic to lake Xochimilco (Mexico City, Mexico which currently is being negatively affected by the introduction of Oreochromis niloticus (Tilapia and water pollution. During the first weeks of development, when mortality is the highest, Ambystoma mexicanumdepends on a diet of zooplankton. The aim of this study was to check whether contamination levels in lake Xochimilco influence zooplankton consumption by similar size classes of A. mexicanum and Oreochromis niloticus. In this study, we analysed changes in the functional responses and prey preference of A. mexicanum and larval Tilapia in two media, one with filtered lake Xochimilco water and another one with reconstituted water. As prey we used cladocerans (Moina macrocopa, Alona glabra, Macrothrix triserialis and Simocephalus vetulus and ostracods (Heterocypris incongruens. Zooplankton was offered in 5 different densities, 10, 20, 40, 80, 160 ind./mL. Prey consumption by A. mexicanum varied in relation to the species offered and age of the larvae. From the first week to the eighth week prey consumption by A. mexicanum increased by 57%. Our functional response tests showed that regardless of the prey type, prey consumption by A. mexicanum was lower in the contaminated water from lake Xochimilco. Among the zooplankton offered in the contaminated environment predators preferred smaller and slower moving microcrustaceans such as Alona glabra and Heterocypris incongruens. Furthermore, O. niloticus preferred prey such as Moina macrocopa and Macrothrix triserialis in the contaminated medium and was more voracious than the axolotl. Our results indicate that both water quality of the lake and the presence of the more resistant exotic fish adversely impact the survival of this endangered amphibian.

  5. Mathematical Model of the Cupula-Endolymph System with Morphological Parameters for the Axolotl (Ambystoma tigrinum) Semicircular Canals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vega, Rosario; Alexandrov, Vladimir V; Alexandrova, Tamara B; Soto, Enrique

    2008-08-26

    By combining mathematical methods with the morphological analysis of the semicircular canals of the axolotl (Ambystoma tigrinum), a system of differential equations describing the mechanical coupling in the semicircular canals was obtained. The coefficients of this system have an explicit physiological meaning that allows for the introduction of morphological and dynamical parameters directly into the differential equations. The cupula of the semicircular canals was modeled both as a piston and as a membrane (diaphragm like), and the duct canals as toroids with two main regions: i) the semicircular canal duct and, ii) a larger diameter region corresponding to the ampulla and the utricle. The endolymph motion was described by the Navier-Stokes equations. The analysis of the model demonstrated that cupular behavior dynamics under periodic stimulation is equivalent in both the piston and the membrane cupular models, thus a general model in which the detailed cupular structure is not relevant was derived.

  6. Developmental studies on an apparent cell-lethal mutant gene-ut-in the Mexican axolotl, Ambystoma mexicanum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Humphrey, R R; Malacinski, G M; Chung, H M

    1978-04-01

    The discovery of a new mutant gene in stocks of the Mexican axolotl derived from breeding stock of the Hubrecht Laboratory, the Netherlands, is described. The gene appears to be a simple recessive and displays complete penetrance. ut/ut larvae develop normally through hatching, but begin to lag in growth and display characteristics defects in gill and limb formation shortly thereafter. The results of parabiosis of normal and mutant embryos, as well as embryological transplants of mutant limb and branchial rudiments, support the conclusion that the gene ut is expressed as an 'autonomous-cell lethal'. Despite gross morphological defects in ut/ut larvae, comparisons between normal and mutant animals of the protein spectra of various tissues and organs revealed no substantial differences. A subtle change in the metabolism of ut/ut larvae apparently, therefore, leads to developmental arrest.

  7. Leucine-enkephalin-like immunoreactivity is localized in luteinizing hormone-producing cells in the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) pituitary.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suzuki, Hirohumi; Yamamoto, Toshiharu

    2014-02-01

    In this study, we used immunohistochemical techniques to determine the cell type of leucine-enkephalin (Leu-ENK)-immunoreactive cells in the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) pituitary. Immunoreactive cells were scattered throughout the pars distalis except for the dorso-caudal portion. These cells were immuno-positive for luteinizing hormone (LH), but they were immuno-negative for adrenocorticotrophic, growth, and thyroid-stimulating hormones, as well as prolactin. Immunoelectron microscopy demonstrated that Leu-ENK-like substance and LH co-localized within the same secretory granules. Leu-ENK secreted from gonadotrophs may participate in LH secretion in an autocrine fashion, and/or may participate in the release of sex steroids together with LH. PMID:24034715

  8. Analysis of the endocardium and cardiac jelly in truncal development in the cardiac lethal mutant axolotl Ambystoma mexicanum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lemanski, L F; Fitzharris, T P

    1989-05-01

    Recessive mutant gene c in axolotls results in a failure of the heart to function because of abnormal embryonic induction processes. The myocardium in this mutant lacks organized sarcomeric myofibrils. The present study was undertaken to determine if developmental abnormalities were evident in other areas of the heart besides the myocardium. A detailed comparative survey of the structure of developing normal and mutant hearts, including the endocardium, its cellular derivatives, and the extracellular matrix, known as cardiac jelly, showed that in the mutant there are fewer than the normal number of endocardial cells lining the heart lumen, the number of mesenchyme cells is reduced, and the cardiac jelly area is greatly enlarged in the posterior part of the truncus adjacent to the ventricle.

  9. Leucine-enkephalin-like immunoreactivity is localized in luteinizing hormone-producing cells in the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) pituitary.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suzuki, Hirohumi; Yamamoto, Toshiharu

    2014-02-01

    In this study, we used immunohistochemical techniques to determine the cell type of leucine-enkephalin (Leu-ENK)-immunoreactive cells in the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) pituitary. Immunoreactive cells were scattered throughout the pars distalis except for the dorso-caudal portion. These cells were immuno-positive for luteinizing hormone (LH), but they were immuno-negative for adrenocorticotrophic, growth, and thyroid-stimulating hormones, as well as prolactin. Immunoelectron microscopy demonstrated that Leu-ENK-like substance and LH co-localized within the same secretory granules. Leu-ENK secreted from gonadotrophs may participate in LH secretion in an autocrine fashion, and/or may participate in the release of sex steroids together with LH.

  10. The structure, rearrangement, and ontogenic expression of DB and JB gene segments of the Mexican axolotl T-cell antigen receptor beta chain (TCRB).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kerfourn, F; Charlemagne, J; Fellah, J S

    1996-01-01

    We sequenced a total of 189 independent rearrangements in which the VB7.1 element is associated with CB1 (99 clones) or CB2 (90 clones) isotypes of the T-cell receptor (TCR) beta chain in the Mexican axolotl. Three stages of development were analyzed: 2.5 months, 10 months, and 25 months. Three JB1 segments were associated with the VB-CB1 rearrangements and six JB2 segments with VB-CB2. As in other vertebrates, some amino acid positions were conserved in all Jbetas (e. g., Phe-108, Gly-109, Gly-111, Thr-112, and Val-116). Two 11 nucleotides DB-like sequences, differed by one (A or T) central residue and could be productively read in the three putative reading frames. Most of the DB1 and JB1 segments were in the VB-CB1 clones, and most of the DB2 and JB2 segments were in the VB-CB2 clones, suggesting that the TCRB locus is organized into independent DB-JB-CB clusters that used the same collection of VB segments. About 40% of the beta-chain VDJ junctions in 2.5-month-old larvae had N nucleotides, compared with about 73% in 10 - 25-month old animals. The beta-chain VDJ junctions had about 30% of defective rearrangements at all stages of development, which could be due to the slow rate of cell division in the axolotl lymphoid organs, and the large genome in this urodele. Many of the axolotl CDRbeta3 sequences deduced for in frame VDJ rearrangements are the same in animals of different origins. Such redundancy could be a statistical effect due to the small number of thymocytes in the developing axolotl, rather than to some bias due to junctional preferences.

  11. The structure, rearrangement, and ontogenic expression of DB and JB gene segments of the Mexican axolotl T-cell antigen receptor beta chain (TCRB).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kerfourn, F; Charlemagne, J; Fellah, J S

    1996-01-01

    We sequenced a total of 189 independent rearrangements in which the VB7.1 element is associated with CB1 (99 clones) or CB2 (90 clones) isotypes of the T-cell receptor (TCR) beta chain in the Mexican axolotl. Three stages of development were analyzed: 2.5 months, 10 months, and 25 months. Three JB1 segments were associated with the VB-CB1 rearrangements and six JB2 segments with VB-CB2. As in other vertebrates, some amino acid positions were conserved in all Jbetas (e. g., Phe-108, Gly-109, Gly-111, Thr-112, and Val-116). Two 11 nucleotides DB-like sequences, differed by one (A or T) central residue and could be productively read in the three putative reading frames. Most of the DB1 and JB1 segments were in the VB-CB1 clones, and most of the DB2 and JB2 segments were in the VB-CB2 clones, suggesting that the TCRB locus is organized into independent DB-JB-CB clusters that used the same collection of VB segments. About 40% of the beta-chain VDJ junctions in 2.5-month-old larvae had N nucleotides, compared with about 73% in 10 - 25-month old animals. The beta-chain VDJ junctions had about 30% of defective rearrangements at all stages of development, which could be due to the slow rate of cell division in the axolotl lymphoid organs, and the large genome in this urodele. Many of the axolotl CDRbeta3 sequences deduced for in frame VDJ rearrangements are the same in animals of different origins. Such redundancy could be a statistical effect due to the small number of thymocytes in the developing axolotl, rather than to some bias due to junctional preferences. PMID:8753858

  12. Regulation of Axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) Limb Blastema Cell Proliferation by Nerves and BMP2 in Organotypic Slice Culture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lehrberg, Jeffrey; Gardiner, David M

    2015-01-01

    We have modified and optimized the technique of organotypic slice culture in order to study the mechanisms regulating growth and pattern formation in regenerating axolotl limb blastemas. Blastema cells maintain many of the behaviors that are characteristic of blastemas in vivo when cultured as slices in vitro, including rates of proliferation that are comparable to what has been reported in vivo. Because the blastema slices can be cultured in basal medium without fetal bovine serum, it was possible to test the response of blastema cells to signaling molecules present in serum, as well as those produced by nerves. We also were able to investigate the response of blastema cells to experimentally regulated changes in BMP signaling. Blastema cells responded to all of these signals by increasing the rate of proliferation and the level of expression of the blastema marker gene, Prrx-1. The organotypic slice culture model provides the opportunity to identify and characterize the spatial and temporal co-regulation of pathways in order to induce and enhance a regenerative response. PMID:25923915

  13. Regulation of Axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) Limb Blastema Cell Proliferation by Nerves and BMP2 in Organotypic Slice Culture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lehrberg, Jeffrey; Gardiner, David M

    2015-01-01

    We have modified and optimized the technique of organotypic slice culture in order to study the mechanisms regulating growth and pattern formation in regenerating axolotl limb blastemas. Blastema cells maintain many of the behaviors that are characteristic of blastemas in vivo when cultured as slices in vitro, including rates of proliferation that are comparable to what has been reported in vivo. Because the blastema slices can be cultured in basal medium without fetal bovine serum, it was possible to test the response of blastema cells to signaling molecules present in serum, as well as those produced by nerves. We also were able to investigate the response of blastema cells to experimentally regulated changes in BMP signaling. Blastema cells responded to all of these signals by increasing the rate of proliferation and the level of expression of the blastema marker gene, Prrx-1. The organotypic slice culture model provides the opportunity to identify and characterize the spatial and temporal co-regulation of pathways in order to induce and enhance a regenerative response.

  14. Identification of differentially expressed thyroid hormone responsive genes from the brain of the Mexican Axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huggins, P; Johnson, C K; Schoergendorfer, A; Putta, S; Bathke, A C; Stromberg, A J; Voss, S R

    2012-01-01

    The Mexican axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) presents an excellent model to investigate mechanisms of brain development that are conserved among vertebrates. In particular, metamorphic changes of the brain can be induced in free-living aquatic juveniles and adults by simply adding thyroid hormone (T4) to rearing water. Whole brains were sampled from juvenile A. mexicanum that were exposed to 0, 8, and 18 days of 50 nM T4, and these were used to isolate RNA and make normalized cDNA libraries for 454 DNA sequencing. A total of 1,875,732 high quality cDNA reads were assembled with existing ESTs to obtain 5884 new contigs for human RefSeq protein models, and to develop a custom Affymetrix gene expression array (Amby_002) with approximately 20,000 probe sets. The Amby_002 array was used to identify 303 transcripts that differed statistically (p1.5) as a function of days of T4 treatment. Further statistical analyses showed that Amby_002 performed concordantly in comparison to an existing, small format expression array. This study introduces a new A. mexicanum microarray resource for the community and the first lists of T4-responsive genes from the brain of a salamander amphibian.

  15. Regulation of Axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum Limb Blastema Cell Proliferation by Nerves and BMP2 in Organotypic Slice Culture.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jeffrey Lehrberg

    Full Text Available We have modified and optimized the technique of organotypic slice culture in order to study the mechanisms regulating growth and pattern formation in regenerating axolotl limb blastemas. Blastema cells maintain many of the behaviors that are characteristic of blastemas in vivo when cultured as slices in vitro, including rates of proliferation that are comparable to what has been reported in vivo. Because the blastema slices can be cultured in basal medium without fetal bovine serum, it was possible to test the response of blastema cells to signaling molecules present in serum, as well as those produced by nerves. We also were able to investigate the response of blastema cells to experimentally regulated changes in BMP signaling. Blastema cells responded to all of these signals by increasing the rate of proliferation and the level of expression of the blastema marker gene, Prrx-1. The organotypic slice culture model provides the opportunity to identify and characterize the spatial and temporal co-regulation of pathways in order to induce and enhance a regenerative response.

  16. Regeneration of surgically created mixed-handed axolotl forelimbs: pattern formation in the dorsal-ventral axis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holder, N; Weekes, C

    1984-08-01

    The regeneration of surgically created mixed-handed limb stumps is examined in the axolotl. Operations were performed in the lower arm and upper arm regions and grafts were allowed to heal for approximately one month prior to amputation or were amputated immediately. In the lower arm group both anterior and posterior limb halves were inverted, whereas only posterior halves were inverted in the upper arm group. Almost all the limbs regenerated were normal in the anterior-posterior axis, whereas a range of limb types were found when the dorsal-ventral axis was analysed using the metacarpal muscle pattern and epidermal Leydig cell number as positional markers. The carpal and forearm muscle patterns were also analysed in order to assess whether the pattern determined from analysis at the metacarpal level reflected that seen at more proximal levels. The results are discussed in terms of the possible role of cell contribution from the stump to the blastema and the relevance of the study to models of pattern regulation.

  17. Is salamander limb regeneration really perfect? Anatomical and morphogenetic analysis of forelimb muscle regeneration in GFP-transgenic axolotls as a basis for regenerative, developmental, and evolutionary studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diogo, R; Nacu, E; Tanaka, E M

    2014-06-01

    The axolotl Ambystoma mexicanum is one of the most commonly used model organisms in developmental and regenerative studies because it can reconstitute what is believed to be a completely normal anatomical and functional forelimb/hindlimb after amputation. However, to date it has not been confirmed whether each regenerated forelimb muscle is really a "perfect" copy of the original muscle. This study describes the regeneration of the arm, forearm, hand, and some pectoral muscles (e.g., coracoradialis) in transgenic axolotls that express green fluorescent protein (GFP) in muscle fibers. The observations found that: (1) there were muscle anomalies in 43% of the regenerated forelimbs; (2) however, on average in each regenerated forelimb there are anomalies in only 2.5% of the total number of muscles examined, and there were no significant differences observed in the specific insertion and origin of the other muscles analyzed; (3) one of the most notable and common anomalies (seen in 35% of the regenerated forelimbs) was the presence of a fleshy coracoradialis at the level of the arm; this is a particularly outstanding configuration because in axolotls and in urodeles in general this muscle only has a thin tendon at the level of the arm, and the additional fleshy belly in the regenerated arms is strikingly similar to the fleshy biceps brachii of amniotes, suggesting a remarkable parallel between a regeneration defect and a major phenotypic change that occurred during tetrapod limb evolution; (4) during forelimb muscle regeneration there was a clear proximo-distal and radio-ulnar morphogenetic gradient, as seen in normal development, but also a ventro-dorsal gradient in the order of regeneration, which was not previously described in the literature. These results have broader implications for regenerative, evolutionary, developmental and morphogenetic studies. PMID:24692358

  18. Complexity of the T cell receptor Cbeta isotypes in the Mexican axolotl: structure and diversity of the VDJCbeta3 and VDJCbeta4 chains.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fellah, J S; Durand, C; Kerfourn, F; Charlemagne, J

    2001-02-01

    We have reported previously the presence of two T cell receptor beta-chain constant region (Cbeta) isotypes in the Mexican axolotl. Specific Dbeta and Jbeta segments were present at the Vbeta-Cbeta1 and Vbeta-Cbeta2 junctions and nine Vbeta families which associate with both isotypes were characterized. This report describes two new Cbeta isotypes, Cbeta3 and Cbeta4. About 70 % of the amino acids in Cbeta3 are identical to Cbeta1 and Cbeta2. A Dbeta3 and a single Jbeta3 were found at the Vbeta-Cbeta3 junctions. The Dbeta3 consensus core sequence (TACGTGGCTACGTGGG) differs to all the presently known Dbeta and the CDR3beta loops of the Vbeta-Cbeta3 junctions (mean: 11.1 amino acids) contain a majority of aromatic, small hydrophobic and basic residues. The CDR3beta loops of the other isotypes are shorter (mean: 8.5 amino acids), contain a majority of acidic residues and very few aromatic residues. The axolotl Cbeta4 sequence has about 46 % similarity to Cbeta1, Cbeta2 and Cbeta3. Dbeta4 is identical to Dbeta2 and six new Jbeta segments are used at the Vbeta-Cbeta4 junctions. Four new families of Vbeta segments (Vbeta10-Vbeta13) are preferentially associated to Cbeta4. A strong selective pressure must operate in most vertebrates to preserve the structural stability of the extracellular part of the Cbeta chain. The four axolotl Cbeta seem to have evolved more freely, perhaps to favor the early emergence of a large diversity of T cell receptors in an amphibian species which is not fully immunocompetent before the 5th month of development. PMID:11180104

  19. The Axolotl Fibula as a Model for the Induction of Regeneration across Large Segment Defects in Long Bones of the Extremities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Xiaoping; Song, Fengyu; Jhamb, Deepali; Li, Jiliang; Bottino, Marco C; Palakal, Mathew J; Stocum, David L

    2015-01-01

    We tested the ability of the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) fibula to regenerate across segment defects of different size in the absence of intervention or after implant of a unique 8-braid pig small intestine submucosa (SIS) scaffold, with or without incorporated growth factor combinations or tissue protein extract. Fractures and defects of 10% and 20% of the total limb length regenerated well without any intervention, but 40% and 50% defects failed to regenerate after either simple removal of bone or implanting SIS scaffold alone. By contrast, scaffold soaked in the growth factor combination BMP-4/HGF or in protein extract of intact limb tissue promoted partial or extensive induction of cartilage and bone across 50% segment defects in 30%-33% of cases. These results show that BMP-4/HGF and intact tissue protein extract can promote the events required to induce cartilage and bone formation across a segment defect larger than critical size and that the long bones of axolotl limbs are an inexpensive model to screen soluble factors and natural and synthetic scaffolds for their efficacy in stimulating this process. PMID:26098852

  20. CRISPR-Mediated Genomic Deletion of Sox2 in the Axolotl Shows a Requirement in Spinal Cord Neural Stem Cell Amplification during Tail Regeneration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ji-Feng Fei

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available The salamander is the only tetrapod that functionally regenerates all cell types of the limb and spinal cord (SC and thus represents an important regeneration model, but the lack of gene-knockout technology has limited molecular analysis. We compared transcriptional activator-like effector nucleases (TALENs and clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPRs in the knockout of three loci in the axolotl and find that CRISPRs show highly penetrant knockout with less toxic effects compared to TALENs. Deletion of Sox2 in up to 100% of cells yielded viable F0 larvae with normal SC organization and ependymoglial cell marker expression such as GFAP and ZO-1. However, upon tail amputation, neural stem cell proliferation was inhibited, resulting in spinal-cord-specific regeneration failure. In contrast, the mesodermal blastema formed normally. Sox3 expression during development, but not regeneration, most likely allowed embryonic survival and the regeneration-specific phenotype. This analysis represents the first tissue-specific regeneration phenotype from the genomic deletion of a gene in the axolotl.

  1. CRISPR-mediated genomic deletion of Sox2 in the axolotl shows a requirement in spinal cord neural stem cell amplification during tail regeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fei, Ji-Feng; Schuez, Maritta; Tazaki, Akira; Taniguchi, Yuka; Roensch, Kathleen; Tanaka, Elly M

    2014-09-01

    The salamander is the only tetrapod that functionally regenerates all cell types of the limb and spinal cord (SC) and thus represents an important regeneration model, but the lack of gene-knockout technology has limited molecular analysis. We compared transcriptional activator-like effector nucleases (TALENs) and clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPRs) in the knockout of three loci in the axolotl and find that CRISPRs show highly penetrant knockout with less toxic effects compared to TALENs. Deletion of Sox2 in up to 100% of cells yielded viable F0 larvae with normal SC organization and ependymoglial cell marker expression such as GFAP and ZO-1. However, upon tail amputation, neural stem cell proliferation was inhibited, resulting in spinal-cord-specific regeneration failure. In contrast, the mesodermal blastema formed normally. Sox3 expression during development, but not regeneration, most likely allowed embryonic survival and the regeneration-specific phenotype. This analysis represents the first tissue-specific regeneration phenotype from the genomic deletion of a gene in the axolotl.

  2. The Axolotl Fibula as a Model for the Induction of Regeneration across Large Segment Defects in Long Bones of the Extremities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Xiaoping; Song, Fengyu; Jhamb, Deepali; Li, Jiliang; Bottino, Marco C; Palakal, Mathew J; Stocum, David L

    2015-01-01

    We tested the ability of the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) fibula to regenerate across segment defects of different size in the absence of intervention or after implant of a unique 8-braid pig small intestine submucosa (SIS) scaffold, with or without incorporated growth factor combinations or tissue protein extract. Fractures and defects of 10% and 20% of the total limb length regenerated well without any intervention, but 40% and 50% defects failed to regenerate after either simple removal of bone or implanting SIS scaffold alone. By contrast, scaffold soaked in the growth factor combination BMP-4/HGF or in protein extract of intact limb tissue promoted partial or extensive induction of cartilage and bone across 50% segment defects in 30%-33% of cases. These results show that BMP-4/HGF and intact tissue protein extract can promote the events required to induce cartilage and bone formation across a segment defect larger than critical size and that the long bones of axolotl limbs are an inexpensive model to screen soluble factors and natural and synthetic scaffolds for their efficacy in stimulating this process.

  3. The yeast two hybrid system in a screen for proteins interacting with axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) Msx1 during early limb regeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abuqarn, Mehtap; Allmeling, Christina; Amshoff, Inga; Menger, Bjoern; Nasser, Inas; Vogt, Peter M; Reimers, Kerstin

    2011-07-01

    Urodele amphibians are exceptional in their ability to regenerate complex body structures such as limbs. Limb regeneration depends on a process called dedifferentiation. Under an inductive wound epidermis terminally differentiated cells transform to pluripotent progenitor cells that coordinately proliferate and eventually redifferentiate to form the new appendage. Recent studies have developed molecular models integrating a set of genes that might have important functions in the control of regenerative cellular plasticity. Among them is Msx1, which induced dedifferentiation in mammalian myotubes in vitro. Herein, we screened for interaction partners of axolotl Msx1 using a yeast two hybrid system. A two hybrid cDNA library of 5-day-old wound epidermis and underlying tissue containing more than 2×10⁶ cDNAs was constructed and used in the screen. 34 resulting cDNA clones were isolated and sequenced. We then compared sequences of the isolated clones to annotated EST contigs of the Salamander EST database (BLASTn) to identify presumptive orthologs. We subsequently searched all no-hit clone sequences against non redundant NCBI sequence databases using BLASTx. It is the first time, that the yeast two hybrid system was adapted to the axolotl animal model and successfully used in a screen for proteins interacting with Msx1 in the context of amphibian limb regeneration.

  4. The Axolotl Fibula as a Model for the Induction of Regeneration across Large Segment Defects in Long Bones of the Extremities.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiaoping Chen

    Full Text Available We tested the ability of the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum fibula to regenerate across segment defects of different size in the absence of intervention or after implant of a unique 8-braid pig small intestine submucosa (SIS scaffold, with or without incorporated growth factor combinations or tissue protein extract. Fractures and defects of 10% and 20% of the total limb length regenerated well without any intervention, but 40% and 50% defects failed to regenerate after either simple removal of bone or implanting SIS scaffold alone. By contrast, scaffold soaked in the growth factor combination BMP-4/HGF or in protein extract of intact limb tissue promoted partial or extensive induction of cartilage and bone across 50% segment defects in 30%-33% of cases. These results show that BMP-4/HGF and intact tissue protein extract can promote the events required to induce cartilage and bone formation across a segment defect larger than critical size and that the long bones of axolotl limbs are an inexpensive model to screen soluble factors and natural and synthetic scaffolds for their efficacy in stimulating this process.

  5. Functional characterization of the vertebrate primary ureter: Structure and ion transport mechanisms of the pronephric duct in axolotl larvae (Amphibia

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    Prehn Lea R

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Three kidney systems appear during vertebrate development: the pronephroi, mesonephroi and metanephroi. The pronephric duct is the first or primary ureter of these kidney systems. Its role as a key player in the induction of nephrogenic mesenchyme is well established. Here we investigate whether the duct is involved in urine modification using larvae of the freshwater amphibian Ambystoma mexicanum (axolotl as model. Results We investigated structural as well as physiological properties of the pronephric duct. The key elements of our methodology were: using histology, light and transmission electron microscopy as well as confocal laser scanning microscopy on fixed tissue and applying the microperfusion technique on isolated pronephric ducts in combination with single cell microelectrode impalements. Our data show that the fully differentiated pronephric duct is composed of a single layered epithelium consisting of one cell type comparable to the principal cell of the renal collecting duct system. The cells are characterized by a prominent basolateral labyrinth and a relatively smooth apical surface with one central cilium. Cellular impalements demonstrate the presence of apical Na+ and K+ conductances, as well as a large K+ conductance in the basolateral cell membrane. Immunolabeling experiments indicate heavy expression of Na+/K+-ATPase in the basolateral labyrinth. Conclusions We propose that the pronephric duct is important for the subsequent modification of urine produced by the pronephros. Our results indicate that it reabsorbs sodium and secretes potassium via channels present in the apical cell membrane with the driving force for ion movement provided by the Na+/K+ pump. This is to our knowledge the first characterization of the pronephric duct, the precursor of the collecting duct system, which provides a model of cell structure and basic mechanisms for ion transport. Such information may be important in understanding

  6. Maintenance media for the axolotl Ambystoma mexicanum juveniles (Amphibia: Caudata Soluciones de mantenimiento de juveniles del ajolote Ambystoma mexicanum (Amphibia: Caudata

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    Cecilia Robles Mendoza

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available Physiological condition and organisms' health which are grown in culture systems depends on several factors including water quality, feeding and density among others. In Mexico, the colonies of the axolotl Ambystoma mexicanum (Shaw, an indigenous amphibian under extinction risk, are maintained under different culture conditions according to the objectives of the colony and the available resources. Particularly, water electrolytic characteristic and ionic and osmotic conditions are the factors with greater variation in the axolotl culture systems. Therefore, it is necessary to standardize the best maintenance conditions to store the germoplasm of the axolotl and to ensure healthy organisms with researching purposes. Thus, the aim of the present study was to evaluate the development and growth of Ambystoma mexicanum larvae reared under different maintenance media, usually used in Mexico for the culture of the species: 1 dechlorinated tap water; 2 dechlorinated tap water enriched with sodium chloride and commercial colloidal solution and 3 Holtfreter's solution reconstructed with dechlorinated tap water. In each experimental condition, 15 larvae on stage 44 (immediately after hatching were maintained during 21 days and development and growth were weekly recorded. Ionic and osmotic conditions of the external media were routinely registered. The obtained results suggested a better physiological condition of the axolotls maintained on Holtfreter's solution, where the highest growth rate (13 g WW d-1 and the greatest condition factor (0.79 were registered. The use of this solution is recommended due it guarantees the suitable development of early stages of A. mexicanum on culture systems.La condición fisiológica y por lo tanto la salud de los organismos acuáticos depende de varios factores como la calidad del agua de mantenimiento, la alimentación, la densidad, entre otros. En México, las colonias del ajolote Ambystoma mexicanum (Shaw, anfibio end

  7. Binding of adrenergic ligands to liver plasma membrane preparations from the axolotl, Ambystoma mexicanum; the toad, Xenopus laevis; and the Australian lungfish, Neoceratodus forsteri.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Janssens, P A; Grigg, J A

    1988-09-01

    The beta-adrenergic ligand iodocyanopindolol (ICP) bound specifically to hepatic plasma membrane preparations from the axolotl, Ambystoma mexicanum (Bmax, 40 fmol/mg protein (P) at free concentration above 140 pM; KD, 42 pM); the toad, Xenopus laevis (Bmax, 200 fmol/mg P at 1 nM; KD, 300 pM); and the Australian lungfish, Neoceratodus forsteri (Bmax, 100 fmol/mg P at 5 nM). For the lungfish, the Scatchard plot was curved showing two classes of binding site with KD's of 20 and 500 pM. Neither the alpha 1-adrenergic ligand prazosin nor the alpha 2-adrenergic ligand yohimbine bound specifically to hepatic membrane preparations from any of the three species. Several adrenergic ligands displaced ICP from hepatic membrane preparations of all three species with KD's of Axolotl--propranolol, 50 nM; isoprenaline, 600 nM; adrenaline, 10 microM; phenylephrine, 20 microM; noradrenaline, 40 microM; and phentolamine, greater than 100 microM; X. laevis--propranolol, 30 nM; isoprenaline, 100 microM; adrenaline, 200 microM; noradrenaline, 300 microM; phenylephrine, 1 mM; and phentolamine, greater than 1 mM; N. forsteri,--propranolol, 25 nM; isoprenaline, 1 microM; adrenaline, 20 microM; phenylephrine, 35 microM; noradrenaline, 600 microM; and phentolamine, 400 microM. These findings suggest that alpha-adrenergic receptors are not present in hepatic plasma membrane preparations from these three species and that the hepatic actions of catecholamines are mediated via beta-adrenergic receptors. The order of binding of the beta-adrenergic ligands suggests that the receptors are of the beta 2 type.

  8. Transcriptomics using axolotls.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Voss, S Randal; Athippozhy, Antony; Woodcock, M Ryan

    2015-01-01

    Microarray and RNA-sequencing technology now exists for the characterization of the Ambystoma mexicanum transcriptome. With sufficient replication, these tools give the opportunity to truly investigate gene expression in a variety of experimental paradigms. Analysis of data from the Amby002 array and RNA-sequencing technology can identify genes that change expression levels in concert with each other, which in turn may reveal mechanisms associated with biological processes and molecular functions. PMID:25740496

  9. Genome‐wide analysis reveals conserved transcriptional responses downstream of resting potential change in Xenopus embryos, axolotl regeneration, and human mesenchymal cell differentiation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pai, Vaibhav P.; Martyniuk, Christopher J.; Echeverri, Karen; Sundelacruz, Sarah; Kaplan, David L.

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Endogenous bioelectric signaling via changes in cellular resting potential (V mem) is a key regulator of patterning during regeneration and embryogenesis in numerous model systems. Depolarization of V mem has been functionally implicated in dedifferentiation, tumorigenesis, anatomical re‐specification, and appendage regeneration. However, no unbiased analyses have been performed to understand genome‐wide transcriptional responses to V mem change in vivo. Moreover, it is unknown which genes or gene networks represent conserved targets of bioelectrical signaling across different patterning contexts and species. Here, we use microarray analysis to comparatively analyze transcriptional responses to V mem depolarization. We compare the response of the transcriptome during embryogenesis (Xenopus development), regeneration (axolotl regeneration), and stem cell differentiation (human mesenchymal stem cells in culture) to identify common networks across model species that are associated with depolarization. Both subnetwork enrichment and PANTHER analyses identified a number of key genetic modules as targets of V mem change, and also revealed important (well‐conserved) commonalities in bioelectric signal transduction, despite highly diverse experimental contexts and species. Depolarization regulates specific transcriptional networks across all three germ layers (ectoderm, mesoderm, and endoderm) such as cell differentiation and apoptosis, and this information will be used for developing mechanistic models of bioelectric regulation of patterning. Moreover, our analysis reveals that V mem change regulates transcripts related to important disease pathways such as cancer and neurodegeneration, which may represent novel targets for emerging electroceutical therapies. PMID:27499876

  10. Difference of the in vivo responsiveness to thyrotropin stimulation between the neotenic and metamorphosed axolotl, Ambystoma mexicanum: failure of prolactin to block the thyrotropin-induced thyroxine release.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Darras, V M; Kühn, E R

    1984-11-01

    Basal and TSH-induced plasma concentrations of T4 have been measured by radioimmunoassay in the neotenic and metamorphosed male axolotl Ambystoma mexicanum both before and after an ovine prolactin pretreatment. All injections are made into the vena abdominalis. Basal levels of T4 are low in neotenes (85 +/- 19 pg/ml) and somewhat higher in metamorphosed Ambystoma (171 +/- 39 pg/ml), but are increased during metamorphosis (1094 +/- 138 pg/ml). Following injection of 5 mU bovine TSH circulating levels of T4 are raised about 4 times in neotenes, but more than 50 times in metamorphose animals. Three intravenous injections, each of 640 mU prolactin and given, respectively, 24 and 13 hr before and simultaneously with 5 mU TSH, do not inhibit the TSH-induced release in both experimental groups. In the metamorphosed Ambystoma again a more than 50-fold T4 increase is present, whereas in neotenes a 10-fold TSH-induced T4 release is seen, which is more pronounced than before the prolactin treatment. It is concluded that in A. mexicanum ovine prolactin does not block a TSH-induced T4 release and that any antagonistic action with thyroid hormones is not mediated through the thyroid gland.

  11. Visualisation of axolotl blastema cells and pig endothelial progenitor cells using very small super paramagnetic iron oxide particles in MRI: A technique with applications for non invasive visualisation of regenerative processes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lauridsen, Henrik; Kjær, N.B.; Bek, Maria;

    Objectives: Regenerative studies on model animals often require invasive techniques such as tissue sampling and histology for visualisation of regenerative processes. These interactions are avoided using non invasive imaging techniques. The internalisation of very small super paramagnetic iron...... oxide particles (VSOP) in animal cells enable non invasive cell tracking using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and can prove useful, when visualising regenerative processes. This study examines the possibility of labelling limited numbers of axolotl blastema cells (aBC) and pig endothelial progenitor...... labelling concentration and signal decrease (F-ratio = 36.52, p spin-echo sequence on samples of 10˄6 cells yielded a significant...

  12. Localization of amylin-like immunoreactivity in melanocyte-stimulating hormone-containing cells of the pars intermedia but not those of the pars distalis in the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) pituitary.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suzuki, Hirohumi; Yamamoto, Toshiharu

    2016-04-01

    Immunohistochemical techniques were employed to investigate the distribution of amylin-like immunoreactivity in the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) pituitary. Amylin-immunoreactive cells were observed in the pars intermedia, and these cells were found to be immunoreactive for α-melanocyte-stimulating hormone (αMSH) as well. In contrast, αMSH-immunoreactive cells in the pars distalis were immuno-negaitive for amylin. These light microscopic findings were confirmed by immunoelectron microscopy. Amylin-immunoreactive signals were located on the haloes of presumable secretory granules in association with αMSH-immunoreactive signals in the amylin-positive cells. However, in the pars distalis, the αMSH-positive cells did not contain amylin-immunoreactive secretory granules. Western blot analysis of axolotl pituitary extracts revealed the labeling of a protein band at approximately 10.5-kDa by the anti-rat amylin serum, which was not labeled by the anti-αMSH antibody. These findings indicate that amylin secreted from MSH-producing cells in the pars intermedia may modulate MSH secretion in an autocrine fashion and may participate in MSH functions such as fatty homeostasis together with MSH. PMID:26797189

  13. Localization of amylin-like immunoreactivity in melanocyte-stimulating hormone-containing cells of the pars intermedia but not those of the pars distalis in the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) pituitary.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suzuki, Hirohumi; Yamamoto, Toshiharu

    2016-04-01

    Immunohistochemical techniques were employed to investigate the distribution of amylin-like immunoreactivity in the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) pituitary. Amylin-immunoreactive cells were observed in the pars intermedia, and these cells were found to be immunoreactive for α-melanocyte-stimulating hormone (αMSH) as well. In contrast, αMSH-immunoreactive cells in the pars distalis were immuno-negaitive for amylin. These light microscopic findings were confirmed by immunoelectron microscopy. Amylin-immunoreactive signals were located on the haloes of presumable secretory granules in association with αMSH-immunoreactive signals in the amylin-positive cells. However, in the pars distalis, the αMSH-positive cells did not contain amylin-immunoreactive secretory granules. Western blot analysis of axolotl pituitary extracts revealed the labeling of a protein band at approximately 10.5-kDa by the anti-rat amylin serum, which was not labeled by the anti-αMSH antibody. These findings indicate that amylin secreted from MSH-producing cells in the pars intermedia may modulate MSH secretion in an autocrine fashion and may participate in MSH functions such as fatty homeostasis together with MSH.

  14. Positional information is reprogrammed in blastema cells of the regenerating limb of the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum).

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCusker, Catherine D; Gardiner, David M

    2013-01-01

    The regenerating region of an amputated salamander limb, known as the blastema, has the amazing capacity to replace exactly the missing structures. By grafting cells from different stages and regions of blastemas induced to form on donor animals expressing Green Fluorescent Protein (GFP), to non-GFP host animals, we have determined that the cells from early stage blastemas, as well as cells at the tip of late stage blastemas are developmentally labile such that their positional identity is reprogrammed by interactions with more proximal cells with stable positional information. In contrast, cells from the adjacent, more proximal stump tissues as well as the basal region of late bud blastemas are positionally stable, and thus form ectopic limb structures when grafted. Finally, we have found that a nerve is required to maintain the blastema cells in a positionally labile state, thus indicating a role for reprogramming cues in the blastema microenvironment. PMID:24086768

  15. In vivo modulation and quantification of microRNAs during axolotl tail regeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erickson, Jami R; Echeverri, Karen

    2015-01-01

    The ability to regenerate diseased, injured, or missing complex tissue is widespread throughout lower vertebrates and invertebrates; however, our knowledge of the molecular mechanisms that regulate this amazing ability is still in its infancy. Many recent papers have shown important roles for microRNAs in regulating regeneration in a number of species. The ability to detect and quantify miRNA expression fluctuations at a single cell level in vivo in different cell types during processes like regeneration is very informative. In this chapter, we describe how to use a dual-fluorescent green fluorescent protein (GFP)-reporter/monomeric red fluorescent protein (mRFP)-sensor (DFRS) plasmid to quantitate the dynamics of specific miRNAs over time following miRNA mimic injection as well as during regeneration. In this bicistronic vector, the mRFP allows for verification of miRNA expression, while the GFP functions as an internal control to normalize miRNA expression and thus obtain quantitative results. In addition, we demonstrate how this technique revealed dynamic miR-23a expression and function during tail regeneration.

  16. Gene expression patterns specific to the regenerating limb of the Mexican axolotl

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    James R. Monaghan

    2012-07-01

    Salamander limb regeneration is dependent upon tissue interactions that are local to the amputation site. Communication among limb epidermis, peripheral nerves, and mesenchyme coordinate cell migration, cell proliferation, and tissue patterning to generate a blastema, which will form missing limb structures. An outstanding question is how cross-talk between these tissues gives rise to the regeneration blastema. To identify genes associated with epidermis-nerve-mesenchymal interactions during limb regeneration, we examined histological and transcriptional changes during the first week following injury in the wound epidermis and subjacent cells between three injury types; 1 a flank wound on the side of the animal that will not regenerate a limb, 2 a denervated limb that will not regenerate a limb, and 3 an innervated limb that will regenerate a limb. Early, histological and transcriptional changes were similar between the injury types, presumably because a common wound-healing program is employed across anatomical locations. However, some transcripts were enriched in limbs compared to the flank and are associated with vertebrate limb development. Many of these genes were activated before blastema outgrowth and expressed in specific tissue types including the epidermis, peripheral nerve, and mesenchyme. We also identified a relatively small group of transcripts that were more highly expressed in innervated limbs versus denervated limbs. These transcripts encode for proteins involved in myelination of peripheral nerves, epidermal cell function, and proliferation of mesenchymal cells. Overall, our study identifies limb-specific and nerve-dependent genes that are upstream of regenerative growth, and thus promising candidates for the regulation of blastema formation.

  17. Positional information is reprogrammed in blastema cells of the regenerating limb of the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Catherine D McCusker

    Full Text Available The regenerating region of an amputated salamander limb, known as the blastema, has the amazing capacity to replace exactly the missing structures. By grafting cells from different stages and regions of blastemas induced to form on donor animals expressing Green Fluorescent Protein (GFP, to non-GFP host animals, we have determined that the cells from early stage blastemas, as well as cells at the tip of late stage blastemas are developmentally labile such that their positional identity is reprogrammed by interactions with more proximal cells with stable positional information. In contrast, cells from the adjacent, more proximal stump tissues as well as the basal region of late bud blastemas are positionally stable, and thus form ectopic limb structures when grafted. Finally, we have found that a nerve is required to maintain the blastema cells in a positionally labile state, thus indicating a role for reprogramming cues in the blastema microenvironment.

  18. Positional information is reprogrammed in blastema cells of the regenerating limb of the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum).

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCusker, Catherine D; Gardiner, David M

    2013-01-01

    The regenerating region of an amputated salamander limb, known as the blastema, has the amazing capacity to replace exactly the missing structures. By grafting cells from different stages and regions of blastemas induced to form on donor animals expressing Green Fluorescent Protein (GFP), to non-GFP host animals, we have determined that the cells from early stage blastemas, as well as cells at the tip of late stage blastemas are developmentally labile such that their positional identity is reprogrammed by interactions with more proximal cells with stable positional information. In contrast, cells from the adjacent, more proximal stump tissues as well as the basal region of late bud blastemas are positionally stable, and thus form ectopic limb structures when grafted. Finally, we have found that a nerve is required to maintain the blastema cells in a positionally labile state, thus indicating a role for reprogramming cues in the blastema microenvironment.

  19. Regulation of proximal-distal intercalation during limb regeneration in the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Satoh, Akira; Cummings, Gillian M C; Bryant, Susan V; Gardiner, David M

    2010-12-01

    Intercalation is the process whereby cells located at the boundary of a wound interact to stimulate proliferation and the restoration of the structures between the boundaries that were lost during wounding. Thus, intercalation is widely considered to be the mechanism of regeneration. When a salamander limb is amputated, the entire cascade of regeneration events is activated, and the missing limb segments and their boundaries (joints) as well as the structures within each segment are regenerated. Therefore, in an amputated limb it is not possible to distinguish between intersegmental regeneration (formation of new segments/joints) and intrasegmental regeneration (formation of structures within a given segment), and it is not possible to study the differential regulation of these two processes. We have used two models for regeneration that allow us to study these two processes independently, and report that inter- and intrasegmental regeneration are different processes regulated by different signaling pathways. New limb segments/joints can be regenerated from cells that dedifferentiate to form blastema cells in response to signaling that is mediated in part by fibroblast growth factor.

  20. Electrogenic glutamate uptake is a major current carrier in the membrane of axolotl retinal glial cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brew, Helen; Attwell, David

    1987-06-01

    Glutamate is taken up avidly by glial cells in the central nervous system1. Glutamate uptake may terminate the transmitter action of glutamate released from neurons1, and keep extracellular glutamate at concentrations below those which are neurotoxic. We report here that glutamate evokes a large inward current in retinal glial cells which have their membrane potential and intracellular ion concentrations controlled by the whole-cell patch-clamp technique2. This current seems to be due to an electrogenic glutamate uptake carrier, which transports at least two sodium ions with every glutamate anion carried into the cell. Glutamate uptake is strongly voltage-dependent, decreasing at depolarized potentials: when fully activated, it contributes almost half of the conductance in the part of the glial cell membrane facing the retinal neurons. The spatial localization, glutamate affinity and magnitude of the uptake are appropriate for terminating the synaptic action of glutamate released from photoreceptors and bipolar cells. These data challenge present explanations of how the b-wave of the electroretinogram is generated, and suggest a mechanism for non-vesicular voltage-dependent release of glutamate from neurons.

  1. Functional and structural regeneration in the axolotl heart (Ambystoma mexicanum) after partial ventricular amputation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cano-Martínez, Agustina; Vargas-González, Alvaro; Guarner-Lans, Verónica; Prado-Zayago, Esteban; León-Oleda, Martha; Nieto-Lima, Betzabé

    2010-01-01

    "In the present study we evaluated the effect of partial ventricular amputation (PVA) in the heart of the adult urodele amphibian (Ambystoma mexicanum) in vivo on spontaneous heart contractile activity recorded in vitro in association to the structural recovery at one, five, 30 and 90 days after injury. One day after PVA, ventricular-tension (VT) (16 ± 3%), atrium-tension (AT) (46 ± 4%) and heart rate (HR) (58+10%) resulted lower in comparison to control hearts. On days five, 30 and 90 after damage, values achieved a 61 ± 5, 93 ± 3, and 98 ± 5% (VT), 60 ± 4, 96 ± 3 and 99 ± 5% (AT) and 74 ± 5, 84 ± 10 and 95 ± 10% (HR) of the control values, respectively. Associated to contractile activity recovery we corroborated a gradual tissue restoration by cardiomyocyte proliferation. Our results represent the first quantitative evidence about the recovery of heart of A. mexicanum restores its functional capacity concomitantly to the structural recovery of the myocardium by proliferation of cardiomyocytes after PVA. These properties make the heart of A. mexicanum a potential model to study the mechanisms underlying heart regeneration in adult vertebrates in vivo.

  2. ISOLATION AND CHARACTERIZATION OF AXOLOTL NPDC-1 AND ITS EFFECTS ON RETINOIC ACID RECEPTOR SIGNALING

    OpenAIRE

    Theodosiou, Maria; Monaghan, James R; Spencer, Michael L; Voss, S. Randal; Daniel J. Noonan

    2007-01-01

    Retinoic acid, a key morphogen in early vertebrate development and tissue regeneration, mediates its effects through the binding of receptors that act as ligand-induced transcription factors. These binding events function to recruit an array of transcription co-regulatory proteins to specific gene promoters. One such co-regulatory protein, neuronal proliferation and differentiation control-1 (NPDC-1), is broadly expressed during mammalian development and functions as an in vitro repressor of ...

  3. Gain-of-function assays in the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) to identify signaling pathways that induce and regulate limb regeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Jangwoo; Aguilar, Cristian; Gardiner, David

    2013-01-01

    The adult salamander has been studied as a model for regeneration of complex tissues for many decades. Only recently with the development of gain-of-function assays for regeneration, has it been possible to screen for and assay the function of the multitude of signaling factors that have been identified in studies of embryonic development and tumorigenesis. Given the conservation of function of these regulatory pathways controlling growth and pattern formation, it is now possible to use the functional assays in the salamander to test the ability of endogenous as well as small-molecule signaling factors to induce a regenerative response. PMID:24029949

  4. Nerve signaling regulates basal keratinocyte proliferation in the blastema apical epithelial cap in the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Satoh, Akira; Bryant, Susan V; Gardiner, David M

    2012-06-15

    The ability of adult vertebrates to repair tissue damage is widespread and impressive; however, the ability to regenerate structurally complex organs such as the limb is limited largely to the salamanders. The fact that most of the tissues of the limb can regenerate has led investigators to question and identify the barriers to organ regeneration. From studies in the salamander, it is known that one of the earliest steps required for successful regeneration involves signaling between nerves and the wound epithelium/apical epithelial cap (AEC). In this study we confirm an earlier report that the keratinocytes of the AEC acquire their function coincident with exiting the cell cycle. We have discovered that this unique, coordinated behavior is regulated by nerve signaling and is associated with the presence of gap junctions between the basal keratinocytes of the AEC. Disruption of nerve signaling results in a loss of gap junction protein, the reentry of the cells into the cell cycle, and regenerative failure. Finally, coordinated exit from the cell cycle appears to be a conserved behavior of populations of cells that function as signaling centers during both development and regeneration.

  5. Evidence that the premature death mutation (p) in the Mexican axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) is not an autonomous cell lethal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mes-Hartree, M; Armstrong, J B

    1980-12-01

    Cell-lethal developmental mutations, which are presumed to affect the viability of all cells in a mutant embryo, have been distinguished from other development lethals on the basis of the results of parabiosis and transplant experiments. Premature death (p), previously classified as a cell lethal, does not survive parabiosis. However, transplants involving mutant eye, flank epidermis and primordial limb tissue all survived on a normal recipient. The mutant, therefore, cannot be considered a true cell lethal, though it suffers from serious and widespread abnormalities that cannot be corrected by parabiosis. In addition, transplants of mutant branchial mound tissue did not develop into normal gills on a normal recipient. These transplants were the only ones involving mutant endoderm, and their failure supports our hypothesis that the mutation leads to a specific endoderm defect.

  6. Gain-of-function assays in the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) to identify signaling pathways that induce and regulate limb regeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Jangwoo; Aguilar, Cristian; Gardiner, David

    2013-01-01

    The adult salamander has been studied as a model for regeneration of complex tissues for many decades. Only recently with the development of gain-of-function assays for regeneration, has it been possible to screen for and assay the function of the multitude of signaling factors that have been identified in studies of embryonic development and tumorigenesis. Given the conservation of function of these regulatory pathways controlling growth and pattern formation, it is now possible to use the functional assays in the salamander to test the ability of endogenous as well as small-molecule signaling factors to induce a regenerative response.

  7. Inhibition of the Processes of Growth and Differentiation in the Embryonic Development of the Axolotl (Ambystma mexicanum)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Stolk, Anth.

    1954-01-01

    The problem of the retardation of the processes of growth and differentiation is certainly as important as the processes of growth and differentiation themselves. It is striking, therefore, that whereas the analysis of growth has been carried out for a considerable period of time already, the analys

  8. 美西螈胚胎鳃神经发育的形态学%Morphological Characteristics of the Branchial Nerve in Axolotl Embryos at Different Stages

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    黄明玉; 下川隆; 木南利栄子; 安高悟; 篠原治道

    2008-01-01

    在约25℃温度下孵化并选用第30~44期的美西螈(Ambystoma mexicanum)胚胎标本,用4%多聚甲醛溶液固定,进行整体标本免疫染色,体视显微镜观察.结果显示,胚胎30期,可观察到鳃神经节短小的鳃神经本干;胚胎35期,已能观察到较明显的部分分支和交通支;胚胎37期,形成上颌神经及下颌神经;胚胎38期,可观察到舌咽神经的背支、咽头支;胚胎40期,可观察到舌咽神经的鳃裂前支.因而,美西螈鳃神经在胚胎早期遵循祖先型排列的特点,之后随胚胎的发育,出现随鳃器官演化而重新分布的趋势;其舌咽神经基本保持了鳃神经的原始形态特点.

  9. Connective tissue cells, but not muscle cells, are involved in establishing the proximo-distal outcome of limb regeneration in the axolotl.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nacu, Eugen; Glausch, Mareen; Le, Huy Quang; Damanik, Febriyani Fiain Rochel; Schuez, Maritta; Knapp, Dunja; Khattak, Shahryar; Richter, Tobias; Tanaka, Elly M

    2013-02-01

    During salamander limb regeneration, only the structures distal to the amputation plane are regenerated, a property known as the rule of distal transformation. Multiple cell types are involved in limb regeneration; therefore, determining which cell types participate in distal transformation is important for understanding how the proximo-distal outcome of regeneration is achieved. We show that connective tissue-derived blastema cells obey the rule of distal transformation. They also have nuclear MEIS, which can act as an upper arm identity regulator, only upon upper arm amputation. By contrast, myogenic cells do not obey the rule of distal transformation and display nuclear MEIS upon amputation at any proximo-distal level. These results indicate that connective tissue cells, but not myogenic cells, are involved in establishing the proximo-distal outcome of regeneration and are likely to guide muscle patterning. Moreover, we show that, similarly to limb development, muscle patterning in regeneration is influenced by β-catenin signalling.

  10. Dicty_cDB: Contig-U11847-1 [Dicty_cDB

    Lifescience Database Archive (English)

    Full Text Available 00512_699( AE000512 |pid:none) Thermotoga maritima MSB8, comple... 42 0.065 JC2551( JC2551 ) tropomyosin alpha chain - axolotl...AltName: Full=Myosin heavy chai... 42 0.11 JC6199( JC6199 ) alpha-tropomyosin S-1 - axolotl &U33450_1(U33450

  11. Genic regions of a large salamander genome contain long introns and novel genes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bryant Susan V

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The basis of genome size variation remains an outstanding question because DNA sequence data are lacking for organisms with large genomes. Sixteen BAC clones from the Mexican axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum: c-value = 32 × 109 bp were isolated and sequenced to characterize the structure of genic regions. Results Annotation of genes within BACs showed that axolotl introns are on average 10× longer than orthologous vertebrate introns and they are predicted to contain more functional elements, including miRNAs and snoRNAs. Loci were discovered within BACs for two novel EST transcripts that are differentially expressed during spinal cord regeneration and skin metamorphosis. Unexpectedly, a third novel gene was also discovered while manually annotating BACs. Analysis of human-axolotl protein-coding sequences suggests there are 2% more lineage specific genes in the axolotl genome than the human genome, but the great majority (86% of genes between axolotl and human are predicted to be 1:1 orthologs. Considering that axolotl genes are on average 5× larger than human genes, the genic component of the salamander genome is estimated to be incredibly large, approximately 2.8 gigabases! Conclusion This study shows that a large salamander genome has a correspondingly large genic component, primarily because genes have incredibly long introns. These intronic sequences may harbor novel coding and non-coding sequences that regulate biological processes that are unique to salamanders.

  12. Profiling neurotransmitter receptor expression in the Ambystoma mexicanum brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reyes-Ruiz, Jorge Mauricio; Limon, Agenor; Korn, Matthew J; Nakamura, Paul A; Shirkey, Nicole J; Wong, Jamie K; Miledi, Ricardo

    2013-03-22

    Ability to regenerate limbs and central nervous system (CNS) is unique to few vertebrates, most notably the axolotl (Ambystoma sp.). However, despite the fact the neurotransmitter receptors are involved in axonal regeneration, little is known regarding its expression profile. In this project, RT-PCR and qPCR were performed to gain insight into the neurotransmitter receptors present in Ambystoma. Its functional ability was studied by expressing axolotl receptors in Xenopus laevis oocytes by either injection of mRNA or by direct microtransplantation of brain membranes. Oocytes injected with axolotl mRNA expressed ionotropic receptors activated by GABA, aspartate+glycine and kainate, as well as metabotropic receptors activated by acetylcholine and glutamate. Interestingly, we did not see responses following the application of serotonin. Membranes from the axolotl brain were efficiently microtransplanted into Xenopus oocytes and two types of native GABA receptors that differed in the temporal course of their responses and affinities to GABA were observed. Results of this study are necessary for further characterization of axolotl neurotransmitter receptors and may be useful for guiding experiments aimed at understanding activity-dependant limb and CNS regeneration.

  13. Fundamental differences in dedifferentiation and stem cell recruitment during skeletal muscle regeneration in two salamander species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sandoval-Guzmán, Tatiana; Wang, Heng; Khattak, Shahryar; Schuez, Maritta; Roensch, Kathleen; Nacu, Eugeniu; Tazaki, Akira; Joven, Alberto; Tanaka, Elly M; Simon, András

    2014-02-01

    Salamanders regenerate appendages via a progenitor pool called the blastema. The cellular mechanisms underlying regeneration of muscle have been much debated but have remained unclear. Here we applied Cre-loxP genetic fate mapping to skeletal muscle during limb regeneration in two salamander species, Notophthalmus viridescens (newt) and Ambystoma mexicanum (axolotl). Remarkably, we found that myofiber dedifferentiation is an integral part of limb regeneration in the newt, but not in axolotl. In the newt, myofiber fragmentation results in proliferating, PAX7(-) mononuclear cells in the blastema that give rise to the skeletal muscle in the new limb. In contrast, myofibers in axolotl do not generate proliferating cells, and do not contribute to newly regenerated muscle; instead, resident PAX7(+) cells provide the regeneration activity. Our results therefore show significant diversity in limb muscle regeneration mechanisms among salamanders and suggest that multiple strategies may be feasible for inducing regeneration in other species, including mammals. PMID:24268695

  14. Revisiting the relationship between regenerative ability and aging

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Seifert Ashley W

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Contrary to the longstanding view that newts (Notophthalamus viridescens, but not axolotls (Ambystoma mexicanum, can regenerate a lens, a recent report in BMC Biology by Panagiotis Tsonis and colleagues shows axolotls indeed possess this ability during early larval stages. In contrast, they show that zebrafish never posses this ability, even as embryos. This underscores the importance of comparing regenerative ability across species and reinforces the need to consider organ regeneration in the context of evolution, development, and aging. See research article: http://www.biomedcentral.com/1741-7007/10/103

  15. Ion transport by the amphibian primary ureter

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Møbjerg, Nadja

    2008-01-01

    and it is furthermore a key player in the induction of these kidney generations. Whether the ureter participates in urine modification, remains to be elucidated. In amphibians the pronephros is a large organ, which is functional for a considerable time before it degenerates. The aim of this study was to investigate...... putative ion transport mechanisms in the primary ureter of the freshwater amphibian Ambystoma mexicanum (axolotl). Primary ureters isolated from axolotl larvae were perfused in vitro and single cells were impaled across the basal cell membrane with glass microelectrodes. In 42 cells the membrane potential...

  16. Microarray analysis of a salamander hopeful monster reveals transcriptional signatures of paedomorphic brain development

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Putta Srikrishna

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The Mexican axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum is considered a hopeful monster because it exhibits an adaptive and derived mode of development - paedomorphosis - that has evolved rapidly and independently among tiger salamanders. Unlike related tiger salamanders that undergo metamorphosis, axolotls retain larval morphological traits into adulthood and thus present an adult body plan that differs dramatically from the ancestral (metamorphic form. The basis of paedomorphic development was investigated by comparing temporal patterns of gene transcription between axolotl and tiger salamander larvae (Ambystoma tigrinum tigrinum that typically undergo a metamorphosis. Results Transcript abundances from whole brain and pituitary were estimated via microarray analysis on four different days post hatching (42, 56, 70, 84 dph and regression modeling was used to independently identify genes that were differentially expressed as a function of time in both species. Collectively, more differentially expressed genes (DEGs were identified as unique to the axolotl (n = 76 and tiger salamander (n = 292 than were identified as shared (n = 108. All but two of the shared DEGs exhibited the same temporal pattern of expression and the unique genes tended to show greater changes later in the larval period when tiger salamander larvae were undergoing anatomical metamorphosis. A second, complementary analysis that directly compared the expression of 1320 genes between the species identified 409 genes that differed as a function of species or the interaction between time and species. Of these 409 DEGs, 84% exhibited higher abundances in tiger salamander larvae at all sampling times. Conclusions Many of the unique tiger salamander transcriptional responses are probably associated with metamorphic biological processes. However, the axolotl also showed unique patterns of transcription early in development. In particular, the axolotl showed a genome

  17. Urodele p53 tolerates amino acid changes found in p53 variants linked to human cancer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Villiard Éric

    2007-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Urodele amphibians like the axolotl are unique among vertebrates in their ability to regenerate and their resistance to develop cancers. It is unknown whether these traits are linked at the molecular level. Results Blocking p53 signaling in axolotls using the p53 inhibitor, pifithrin-α, inhibited limb regeneration and the expression of p53 target genes such as Mdm2 and Gadd45, suggesting a link between tumor suppression and regeneration. To understand this relationship we cloned the p53 gene from axolotl. When comparing its sequence with p53 from other organisms, and more specifically human we observed multiple amino acids changes found in human tumors. Phylogenetic analysis of p53 protein sequences from various species is in general agreement with standard vertebrate phylogeny; however, both mice-like rodents and teleost fishes are fast evolving. This leads to long branch attraction resulting in an artefactual basal emergence of these groups in the phylogenetic tree. It is tempting to assume a correlation between certain life style traits (e.g. lifespan and the evolutionary rate of the corresponding p53 sequences. Functional assays of the axolotl p53 in human or axolotl cells using p53 promoter reporters demonstrated a temperature sensitivity (ts, which was further confirmed by performing colony assays at 37°C. In addition, axolotl p53 was capable of efficient transactivation at the Hmd2 promoter but has moderate activity at the p21 promoter. Endogenous axolotl p53 was activated following UV irradiation (100 j/m2 or treatment with an alkylating agent as measured using serine 15 phosphorylation and the expression of the endogenous p53 target Gadd45. Conclusion Urodele p53 may play a role in regeneration and has evolved to contain multiple amino acid changes predicted to render the human protein defective in tumor suppression. Some of these mutations were probably selected to maintain p53 activity at low temperature. However

  18. An Aryl Hydrocarbon Receptor from the Salamander Ambystoma mexicanum Exhibits Low Sensitivity to 2,3,7,8-Tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shoots, Jenny; Fraccalvieri, Domenico; Franks, Diana G; Denison, Michael S; Hahn, Mark E; Bonati, Laura; Powell, Wade H

    2015-06-01

    Structural features of the aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AHR) can underlie species- and population-specific differences in its affinity for 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (TCDD). These differences often explain variations in TCDD toxicity. Frogs are relatively insensitive to dioxin, and Xenopus AHRs bind TCDD with low affinity. Weak TCDD binding results from the combination of three residues in the ligand-binding domain: A354 and A370, and N325. Here we sought to determine whether this mechanism of weak TCDD binding is shared by other amphibian AHRs. We isolated an AHR cDNA from the Mexican axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum). The encoded polypeptide contains identical residues at positions that confer low TCDD affinity to X. laevis AHRs (A364, A380, and N335), and homology modeling predicts they protrude into the binding cavity. Axolotl AHR bound one-tenth the TCDD of mouse AHR in velocity sedimentation analysis, and in transactivation assays, the EC50 for TCDD was 23 nM, similar to X. laevis AHR1β (27 nM) and greater than AHR containing the mouse ligand-binding domain (0.08 nM). Sequence, modeled structure, and function indicate that axolotl AHR binds TCDD weakly, predicting that A. mexicanum lacks sensitivity toTCDD toxicity. We hypothesize that this characteristic of axolotl and Xenopus AHRs arose in a common ancestor of the Caudata and Anura. PMID:25941739

  19. Conserved structure of amphibian T-cell antigen receptor beta chain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fellah, J S; Kerfourn, F; Guillet, F; Charlemagne, J

    1993-07-15

    All jawed vertebrates possess well-differentiated thymuses and elicit T-cell-like cell-mediated responses; however, no surface T-cell receptor (TCR) molecules or TCR genes have been identified in ectothermic vertebrate species. Here we describe cDNA clones from an amphibian species, Ambystoma mexicanum (the Mexican axolotl), that have sequences highly homologous to the avian and mammalian TCR beta chains. The cloned amphibian beta chain variable region (V beta) shares most of the structural characteristics with the more evolved vertebrate V beta and presents approximately 56% amino acid identities with the murine V beta 14 and human V beta 18 families. The two different cloned axolotl beta chain joining regions (J beta) were found to have conserved all the invariant mammalian J beta residues, and in addition, the presence of a conserved glycine at the V beta-J beta junction suggests the existence of diversity elements. The extracellular domains of the two axolotl beta chain constant region isotypes C beta 1 and C beta 2 show an impressively high degree of identity, thus suggesting that a very efficient mechanism of gene correction has been in operation to preserve this structure at least from the early tetrapod evolution. The transmembrane axolotl C beta domains have been less well conserved when compared to the mammalian C beta but they do maintain the lysine residue that is thought to be involved in the charged interaction between the TCR alpha beta heterodimer and the CD3 complex. PMID:8341702

  20. Immunocytochemical localization and immunochemical characterization of an insulin-related peptide in the pancreas of the urodele amphibian, Ambystoma mexicanum

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansen, G N; Hansen, B L; Jørgensen, P N;

    1989-01-01

    The pancreas of the axolotl, Ambystoma mexicanum, was investigated by immunocytochemical methods for the presence of immunoreactivity to a number of antisera raised against mammalian insulins. All anti-insulin antisera tested revealed substantial amounts of reaction products confined solely to th...

  1. An Aryl Hydrocarbon Receptor from the Salamander Ambystoma mexicanum Exhibits Low Sensitivity to 2,3,7,8-Tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shoots, Jenny; Fraccalvieri, Domenico; Franks, Diana G; Denison, Michael S; Hahn, Mark E; Bonati, Laura; Powell, Wade H

    2015-06-01

    Structural features of the aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AHR) can underlie species- and population-specific differences in its affinity for 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (TCDD). These differences often explain variations in TCDD toxicity. Frogs are relatively insensitive to dioxin, and Xenopus AHRs bind TCDD with low affinity. Weak TCDD binding results from the combination of three residues in the ligand-binding domain: A354 and A370, and N325. Here we sought to determine whether this mechanism of weak TCDD binding is shared by other amphibian AHRs. We isolated an AHR cDNA from the Mexican axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum). The encoded polypeptide contains identical residues at positions that confer low TCDD affinity to X. laevis AHRs (A364, A380, and N335), and homology modeling predicts they protrude into the binding cavity. Axolotl AHR bound one-tenth the TCDD of mouse AHR in velocity sedimentation analysis, and in transactivation assays, the EC50 for TCDD was 23 nM, similar to X. laevis AHR1β (27 nM) and greater than AHR containing the mouse ligand-binding domain (0.08 nM). Sequence, modeled structure, and function indicate that axolotl AHR binds TCDD weakly, predicting that A. mexicanum lacks sensitivity toTCDD toxicity. We hypothesize that this characteristic of axolotl and Xenopus AHRs arose in a common ancestor of the Caudata and Anura.

  2. Development and regulation of response properties in spinal cord motoneurons

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Perrier, J F; Hounsgaard, J

    2000-01-01

    vertebrates in terms of both phylogeny and ontogeny. Spinal motoneurons in adults are remarkably similar in many respects ranging from the resting membrane potential to pacemaker properties. Apart from the axolotls, spinal motoneurons from all species investigated have latent intrinsic response properties...

  3. Cloning and modeling of CD8 beta in the amphibian ambystoma Mexicanum. Evolutionary conserved structures for interactions with major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class I molecules.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fellah, Julien S; Tuffèry, Pierre; Etchebest, Catherine; Guillet, Françoise; Bleux, Christian; Charlemagne, Jacques

    2002-04-17

    Mammalian and avian T-cells exhibit a large number of well characterized surface molecules associated with their maturation degree. Very little is known in comparison with T-cell differentiation in ectothermic vertebrates. This is mainly due to the lack of probes to identify T-cell subsets. We cloned and sequenced the first ectothermic CD8 beta DNA complementary to RNA from an amphibian species, the Mexican axolotl. The CD8 beta chain was 30-36% identical with its avian and mammalian homologues. The extracellular V-like domain contained the two typically conserved cysteines and was followed by a J-like sequence containing the canonical Phe-Gly-X-Gly stretch. The connecting peptide was much longer than in other species and contained potential O-glycosylation sites. The axolotl CD8 beta and major histocompatibility complex class I molecules were modeled using human HLA-A2/CD8 alphaalpha complex as template. The backbone conformation of axolotl CD8 beta matched well with the CD8 alpha-2 subunit of the human complex but significant structural differences were located in the CDR1, CDR2 and DE loops. Both axolotl and human class I showed large negative surface potential. The interacting area of the human CD8 alpha chain and of the corresponding region of axolotl CD8 beta had positive electrostatic potential compatible with complexation with the corresponding class I molecules. The presence of a CD8 beta homologue in an amphibian species implies that it was already present in the Devonian ancestor of amphibians and mammals, i.e. more than 400 million years ago. PMID:12034498

  4. Cartilage and bone cells do not participate in skeletal regeneration in Ambystoma mexicanum limbs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCusker, Catherine D; Diaz-Castillo, Carlos; Sosnik, Julian; Q Phan, Anne; Gardiner, David M

    2016-08-01

    The Mexican Axolotl is one of the few tetrapod species that is capable of regenerating complete skeletal elements in injured adult limbs. Whether the skeleton (bone and cartilage) plays a role in the patterning and contribution to the skeletal regenerate is currently unresolved. We tested the induction of pattern formation, the effect on cell proliferation, and contributions of skeletal tissues (cartilage, bone, and periosteum) to the regenerating axolotl limb. We found that bone tissue grafts from transgenic donors expressing GFP fail to induce pattern formation and do not contribute to the newly regenerated skeleton. Periosteum tissue grafts, on the other hand, have both of these activities. These observations reveal that skeletal tissue does not contribute to the regeneration of skeletal elements; rather, these structures are patterned by and derived from cells of non-skeletal connective tissue origin. PMID:27316294

  5. Evolution of the head-trunk interface in tetrapod vertebrates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sefton, Elizabeth M; Bhullar, Bhart-Anjan S; Mohaddes, Zahra; Hanken, James

    2016-01-01

    Vertebrate neck musculature spans the transition zone between head and trunk. The extent to which the cucullaris muscle is a cranial muscle allied with the gill levators of anamniotes or is instead a trunk muscle is an ongoing debate. Novel computed tomography datasets reveal broad conservation of the cucullaris in gnathostomes, including coelacanth and caecilian, two sarcopterygians previously thought to lack it. In chicken, lateral plate mesoderm (LPM) adjacent to occipital somites is a recently identified embryonic source of cervical musculature. We fate-map this mesoderm in the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum), which retains external gills, and demonstrate its contribution to posterior gill-levator muscles and the cucullaris. Accordingly, LPM adjacent to the occipital somites should be regarded as posterior cranial mesoderm. The axial position of the head-trunk border in axolotl is congruent between LPM and somitic mesoderm, unlike in chicken and possibly other amniotes. PMID:27090084

  6. Evolution of the head-trunk interface in tetrapod vertebrates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sefton, Elizabeth M; Bhullar, Bhart-Anjan S; Mohaddes, Zahra; Hanken, James

    2016-04-19

    Vertebrate neck musculature spans the transition zone between head and trunk. The extent to which the cucullaris muscle is a cranial muscle allied with the gill levators of anamniotes or is instead a trunk muscle is an ongoing debate. Novel computed tomography datasets reveal broad conservation of the cucullaris in gnathostomes, including coelacanth and caecilian, two sarcopterygians previously thought to lack it. In chicken, lateral plate mesoderm (LPM) adjacent to occipital somites is a recently identified embryonic source of cervical musculature. We fate-map this mesoderm in the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum), which retains external gills, and demonstrate its contribution to posterior gill-levator muscles and the cucullaris. Accordingly, LPM adjacent to the occipital somites should be regarded as posterior cranial mesoderm. The axial position of the head-trunk border in axolotl is congruent between LPM and somitic mesoderm, unlike in chicken and possibly other amniotes.

  7. Cartilage and bone cells do not participate in skeletal regeneration in Ambystoma mexicanum limbs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCusker, Catherine D; Diaz-Castillo, Carlos; Sosnik, Julian; Q Phan, Anne; Gardiner, David M

    2016-08-01

    The Mexican Axolotl is one of the few tetrapod species that is capable of regenerating complete skeletal elements in injured adult limbs. Whether the skeleton (bone and cartilage) plays a role in the patterning and contribution to the skeletal regenerate is currently unresolved. We tested the induction of pattern formation, the effect on cell proliferation, and contributions of skeletal tissues (cartilage, bone, and periosteum) to the regenerating axolotl limb. We found that bone tissue grafts from transgenic donors expressing GFP fail to induce pattern formation and do not contribute to the newly regenerated skeleton. Periosteum tissue grafts, on the other hand, have both of these activities. These observations reveal that skeletal tissue does not contribute to the regeneration of skeletal elements; rather, these structures are patterned by and derived from cells of non-skeletal connective tissue origin.

  8. Two different network topologies yield bistability in models of mesoderm and anterior mesendoderm specification in amphibians.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, L E; King, J R; Loose, M

    2014-07-21

    Understanding the Gene Regulatory Networks (GRNs) that underlie development is a major question for systems biology. The establishment of the germ layers is amongst the earliest events of development and has been characterised in numerous model systems. The establishment of the mesoderm is best characterised in the frog Xenopus laevis and has been well studied both experimentally and mathematically. However, the Xenopus network has significant differences from that in mouse and humans, including the presence of multiple copies of two key genes in the network, Mix and Nodal. The axolotl, a urodele amphibian, provides a model with all the benefits of amphibian embryology but crucially only a single Mix and Nodal gene required for the specification of the mesoderm. Remarkably, the number of genes within the network is not the only difference. The interaction between Mix and Brachyury, two transcription factors involved in the establishment of the endoderm and mesoderm respectively, is not conserved. While Mix represses Brachyury in Xenopus, it activates Brachyury in axolotl. Thus, whilst the topology of the networks in the two species differs, both are able to form mesoderm and endoderm in vivo. Based on current knowledge of the structure of the mesendoderm GRN we develop deterministic models that describe the time evolution of transcription factors in a single axolotl cell and compare numerical simulations with previous results from Xenopus. The models are shown to have stable steady states corresponding to mesoderm and anterior mesendoderm, with the in vitro model showing how the concentration of Activin can determine cell fate, while the in vivo model shows that β-catenin concentration can determine cell fate. Moreover, our analysis suggests that additional components must be important in the axolotl network in the specification of the full range of tissues.

  9. Primordial germ cells: the first cell lineage or the last cells standing?

    OpenAIRE

    Johnson, Andrew D.; Alberio, Ramiro

    2015-01-01

    Embryos of many animal models express germ line determinants that suppress transcription and mediate early germ line commitment, which occurs before the somatic cell lineages are established. However, not all animals segregate their germ line in this manner. The ‘last cell standing’ model describes primordial germ cell (PGC) development in axolotls, in which PGCs are maintained by an extracellular signalling niche, and germ line commitment occurs after gastrulation. Here, we propose that this...

  10. Phylogeny of immunoglobulin heavy chain isotypes: structure of the constant region of Ambystoma mexicanum upsilon chain deduced from cDNA sequence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fellah, J S; Kerfourn, F; Wiles, M V; Schwager, J; Charlemagne, J

    1993-01-01

    An RNA polymerase chain reaction strategy was used to amplify and clone a cDNA segment encoding for the complete constant part of the axolotl IgY heavy (C upsilon) chain. C upsilon is 433 amino acids long and organized into four domains (C upsilon 1-C upsilon 4); each has the typical internal disulfide bond and invariant tryptophane residues. Axolotl C upsilon is most closely related to Xenopus C upsilon (40% identical amino acid residues) and C upsilon 1 shares 46.4% amino acid residues among these species. The presence of additional cysteines in C upsilon 1 and C upsilon 2 domains is consistent with an additional intradomain S-S bond similar to that suggested for Xenopus C upsilon and C chi, and for the avian C upsilon and the human C epsilon. C upsilon 4 ends with the Gly-Lys dipeptide characteristic of secreted mammalian C gamma 3, human C epsilon 4, and avian and anuran C upsilon 4, and contains the consensus [G/GT(AA)] nucleotide splice signal sequence for joining C upsilon 4 to the transmembrane region. These results are consistent with the hypothesis of an ancestral structural relationship between amphibian, avian upsilon chains, and mammalian epsilon chains. However, these molecules have different biological properties: axolotl IgY is secretory Ig, anuran and avian IgY behave like mammalian IgG, and mammalian IgE is implicated in anaphylactic reactions. PMID:8344718

  11. Radioautographic investigation of retinal growth in mature amphibians

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Svistunov, S.A.; Mitashov, V.I.

    1986-07-01

    Growth of the retina was studied in mature intact amphibians, tritons, axolotls, ambystomas and clawed frogs, for six months using multiple injection of /sup 3/H-thymidine. It was established that the source of replenishment of the retina by new cells is its terminal zone in all animals investigated. This is attested to by the gradual migration of labeled cells from the growth zone into differentiated layers of the retina. The most intensely labeled cells occupy a distal position relative to other labeled cells, therefore marking the boundary between the initial part of the retina, not containing labeled nuclei, and the part being augmented. For each species studied, a level of proliferative activity is characteristic for cells of the terminal zone, which decreases in the order axolotl-clawed frog-triton -ambystoma. In the axolotl and additional growth zone is noted in the retina, in addition to the terminal, which is located in the area of the unclosed section of the embryonic fissure. Results obtained serve as a basis for the regenerative potentials of eye tissues revealed previously in these amphibian species.

  12. Cranial muscle development in the model organism ambystoma mexicanum: implications for tetrapod and vertebrate comparative and evolutionary morphology and notes on ontogeny and phylogeny.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ziermann, Janine M; Diogo, Rui

    2013-07-01

    There is still confusion about the homology of several cranial muscles in salamanders with those of other vertebrates. This is true, in part, because of the fact that many muscles present in early ontogeny of amphibians disappear during development and specifically during metamorphosis. Resolving this confusion is important for the understanding of the comparative and evolutionary morphology of vertebrates and tetrapods because amphibians are the phylogenetically most plesiomorphic tetrapods, concerning for example their myology, and include two often used model organisms, Xenopus laevis (anuran) and Ambystoma mexicanum (urodele). Here we provide the first detailed report of the cranial muscle development in axolotl from early ontogenetic stages to the adult stage. We describe different and complementary types of general muscle morphogenetic gradients in the head: from anterior to posterior, from lateral to medial, and from origin to insertion. Furthermore, even during the development of neotenic salamanders such as axolotls, various larval muscles become indistinct, contradicting the commonly accepted view that during ontogeny the tendency is mostly toward the differentiation of muscles. We provide an updated comparison between these muscles and the muscles of other vertebrates, a discussion of the homologies and evolution, and show that the order in which the muscles appear during axolotl ontogeny is in general similar to their appearance in phylogeny (e.g. differentiation of adductor mandibulae muscles from one anlage to four muscles), with only a few remarkable exceptions, as for example the dilatator laryngis that appears evolutionary later but in the development before the intermandibularis.

  13. Spatial distribution of prominin-1 (CD133-positive cells within germinative zones of the vertebrate brain.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    József Jászai

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: In mammals, embryonic neural progenitors as well as adult neural stem cells can be prospectively isolated based on the cell surface expression of prominin-1 (CD133, a plasma membrane glycoprotein. In contrast, characterization of neural progenitors in non-mammalian vertebrates endowed with significant constitutive neurogenesis and inherent self-repair ability is hampered by the lack of suitable cell surface markers. Here, we have investigated whether prominin-1-orthologues of the major non-mammalian vertebrate model organisms show any degree of conservation as for their association with neurogenic geminative zones within the central nervous system (CNS as they do in mammals or associated with activated neural progenitors during provoked neurogenesis in the regenerating CNS. METHODS: We have recently identified prominin-1 orthologues from zebrafish, axolotl and chicken. The spatial distribution of prominin-1-positive cells--in comparison to those of mice--was mapped in the intact brain in these organisms by non-radioactive in situ hybridization combined with detection of proliferating neural progenitors, marked either by proliferating cell nuclear antigen or 5-bromo-deoxyuridine. Furthermore, distribution of prominin-1 transcripts was investigated in the regenerating spinal cord of injured axolotl. RESULTS: Remarkably, a conserved association of prominin-1 with germinative zones of the CNS was uncovered as manifested in a significant co-localization with cell proliferation markers during normal constitutive neurogenesis in all species investigated. Moreover, an enhanced expression of prominin-1 became evident associated with provoked, compensatory neurogenesis during the epimorphic regeneration of the axolotl spinal cord. Interestingly, significant prominin-1-expressing cell populations were also detected at distinct extraventricular (parenchymal locations in the CNS of all vertebrate species being suggestive of further, non

  14. Identification of a human mitochondrial RNA that promotes tropomyosin synthesis and myocardial differentiation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moses-Arms, Ashley; Kochegarov, Andrei; Arms, Jedidiah; Burlbaw, Shane; Lian, Will; Meyer, Jessica; Lemanski, Larry F

    2015-03-01

    Heart disease is the number one killer in the USA, making cardiogenesis and its related pathways a relevant area of study for improving health and life expectancy. The Mexican salamander (axolotl), Ambystoma mexicanum, provides an excellent vertebrate animal model for studying myofibrillogenesis due to its naturally occurring cardiac nonfunction mutation. Homozygous recessive embryos do not develop normal hearts due to a lack of myofibril formation. In previous studies, myofibril-inducing ribonucleic acid (MIR) from the normal wild-type axolotl genome was found to rescue mutant nonfunctioning hearts through restoration of tropomyosin levels followed by normal myofibril formation. Our purpose in this study is to identify and characterize functional homologs for the MIR from human fetal heart ribonucleic acid (RNA). After randomized cloning of human fetal heart RNA, 396 clones were analyzed for rescuing ability by using mutant heart rescue bioassays and confocal microscopy. By these analyses, we discovered a functional homolog of MIR from human fetal heart RNA, which is associated with the mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase subunit II gene. This RNA came from our clone #30 and induces tropomyosin synthesis and myofibrillogenesis in mutant axolotl hearts which ordinarily do not synthesize tropomyosin or form organized myofibrils. Clone #30, a mitochondrial RNA molecule associated with human cytochrome c oxidase, serves as a functional homolog of MIR, leading to tropomyosin production, organized myofibrils, and beating cardiac tissue in mutant hearts. These findings hold great potential for the treatment and repair of damaged hearts in patients who have suffered from myocardial infarctions and other heart diseases. PMID:25408381

  15. Evolution of vertebrate IgM: complete amino acid sequence of the constant region of Ambystoma mexicanum mu chain deduced from cDNA sequence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fellah, J S; Wiles, M V; Charlemagne, J; Schwager, J

    1992-10-01

    cDNA clones coding for the constant region of the Mexican axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) mu heavy immunoglobulin chain were selected from total spleen RNA, using a cDNA polymerase chain reaction technique. The specific 5'-end primer was an oligonucleotide homologous to the JH segment of Xenopus laevis mu chain. One of the clones, JHA/3, corresponded to the complete constant region of the axolotl mu chain, consisting of a 1362-nucleotide sequence coding for a polypeptide of 454 amino acids followed in 3' direction by a 179-nucleotide untranslated region and a polyA+ tail. The axolotl C mu is divided into four typical domains (C mu 1-C mu 4) and can be aligned with the Xenopus C mu with an overall identity of 56% at the nucleotide level. Percent identities were particularly high between C mu 1 (59%) and C mu 4 (71%). The C-terminal 20-amino acid segment which constitutes the secretory part of the mu chain is strongly homologous to the equivalent sequences of chondrichthyans and of other tetrapods, including a conserved N-linked oligosaccharide, the penultimate cysteine and the C-terminal lysine. The four C mu domains of 13 vertebrate species ranging from chondrichthyans to mammals were aligned and compared at the amino acid level. The significant number of mu-specific residues which are conserved into each of the four C mu domains argues for a continuous line of evolution of the vertebrate mu chain. This notion was confirmed by the ability to reconstitute a consistent vertebrate evolution tree based on the phylogenic parsimony analysis of the C mu 4 sequences. PMID:1382992

  16. Cardiovascular physiology and diseases of amphibians.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heinz-Taheny, Kathleen M

    2009-01-01

    The class Amphibia includes three orders of amphibians: the anurans (frogs and toads), urodeles (salamanders, axolotls, and newts), and caecilians. The diversity of lifestyles across these three orders has accompanying differences in the cardiovascular anatomy and physiology allowing for adaptations to aquatic or terrestrial habitats, pulmonic or gill respiration, hibernation, and body elongation (in the caecilian). This article provides a review of amphibian cardiovascular anatomy and physiology with discussion of unique species adaptations. In addition, amphibians as cardiovascular animal models and commonly encountered natural diseases are covered.

  17. TRACKING STEM CELLS IN AN INHERENTLY REGENRATIVE ENVIRONMENT

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lauridsen, Henrik; Foldager, Casper Bindzus; Hagensen, Mette;

    2012-01-01

    Introduction: Regenerative potential in humans is very limited. Like other mammals we rely heavily on fibrosis and scar formation in response to injury. On the contrary, urodele amphibians (salamanders and newts) such as the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) are champions of tissue regeneration among....... Results: SPIO labelling with neither VSOP-C200, Resovist nor Resovist/PLL had any significant effect on blastema cell viability in vitro. Labelled tissue was clearly detectable in vivo 49 days after amputation using MRI (Fig. 1) and a significant decline in signal intensity of labelled limbs versus sham...

  18. Could we also be regenerative superheroes, like salamanders?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dall'Agnese, Alessandra; Puri, Pier Lorenzo

    2016-09-01

    Development of methods to reawaken the semi-dormant regenerative potential that lies within adult human tissues would hold promise for the restoration of diseased or damaged organs and tissues. While most of the regeneration potential is suppressed in many vertebrates, including humans, during adult life, urodele amphibians (salamanders) retain their regenerative ability throughout adulthood. Studies in newts and axolotls, two salamander models, have provided significant knowledge about adult limb regeneration. In this review, we present a comparative analysis of salamander and mammalian regeneration and discuss how evolutionarily altered properties of the regenerative environment can be exploited to restore full regenerative potential in the human body. PMID:27338874

  19. Irradiation inhibits the regeneration of aneurogenic limbs. [X radiation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wallace, H.; Maden, M.

    1976-03-01

    The developing arms of axolotl larvae from the 2-digit stage onward and the aneurogenic arms of surgically denervated larvae maintained in parabiosis are able to regenerate after amputation. Such regeneration is uniformly inhibited by local irradiation of the arm, whether innervated or not. This demonstration refutes a recent hypothesis that x-rays interfere with a special activity of nerves required for regeneration, and supports the earlier concept that x-rays act directly on those cells which must proliferate to form the regenerated tissues.

  20. FGF and BMP derived from dorsal root ganglia regulate blastema induction in limb regeneration in Ambystoma mexicanum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Satoh, Akira; Makanae, Aki; Nishimoto, Yurie; Mitogawa, Kazumasa

    2016-09-01

    Urodele amphibians have a remarkable organ regeneration ability that is regulated by neural inputs. The identification of these neural inputs has been a challenge. Recently, Fibroblast growth factor (Fgf) and Bone morphogenic protein (Bmp) were shown to substitute for nerve functions in limb and tail regeneration in urodele amphibians. However, direct evidence of Fgf and Bmp being secreted from nerve endings and regulating regeneration has not yet been shown. Thus, it remained uncertain whether they were the nerve factors responsible for successful limb regeneration. To gather experimental evidence, the technical difficulties involved in the usage of axolotls had to be overcome. We achieved this by modifying the electroporation method. When Fgf8-AcGFP or Bmp7-AcGFP was electroporated into the axolotl dorsal root ganglia (DRG), GFP signals were detectable in the regenerating limb region. This suggested that Fgf8 and Bmp7 synthesized in neural cells in the DRG were delivered to the limbs through the long axons. Further knockdown experiments with double-stranded RNA interference resulted in impaired limb regeneration ability. These results strongly suggest that Fgf and Bmp are the major neural inputs that control the organ regeneration ability. PMID:27432514

  1. FGF8 and SHH substitute for anterior-posterior tissue interactions to induce limb regeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nacu, Eugeniu; Gromberg, Elena; Oliveira, Catarina R; Drechsel, David; Tanaka, Elly M

    2016-04-27

    In salamanders, grafting of a left limb blastema onto a right limb stump yields regeneration of three limbs, the normal limb and two 'supernumerary' limbs. This experiment and other research have shown that the juxtaposition of anterior and posterior limb tissue plus innervation are necessary and sufficient to induce complete limb regeneration in salamanders. However, the cellular and molecular basis of the requirement for anterior-posterior tissue interactions were unknown. Here we have clarified the molecular basis of the requirement for both anterior and posterior tissue during limb regeneration and supernumerary limb formation in axolotls (Ambystoma mexicanum). We show that the two tissues provide complementary cross-inductive signals that are required for limb outgrowth. A blastema composed solely of anterior tissue normally regresses rather than forming a limb, but activation of hedgehog (HH) signalling was sufficient to drive regeneration of an anterior blastema to completion owing to its ability to maintain fibroblast growth factor (FGF) expression, the key signalling activity responsible for blastema outgrowth. In blastemas composed solely of posterior tissue, HH signalling was not sufficient to drive regeneration; however, ectopic expression of FGF8 together with endogenous HH signalling was sufficient. In axolotls, FGF8 is expressed only in the anterior mesenchyme and maintenance of its expression depends on sonic hedgehog (SHH) signalling from posterior tissue. Together, our findings identify key anteriorly and posteriorly localized signals that promote limb regeneration and show that these single factors are sufficient to drive non-regenerating blastemas to complete regeneration with full elaboration of skeletal elements.

  2. A conserved mechanism for vertebrate mesoderm specification in urodele amphibians and mammals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Swiers, Gemma; Chen, Yi-Hsien; Johnson, Andrew D; Loose, Matthew

    2010-07-01

    Understanding how mesoderm is specified during development is a fundamental issue in biology, and it has been studied intensively in embryos from Xenopus. The gene regulatory network (GRN) for Xenopus is surprisingly complex and is not conserved in vertebrates, including mammals, which have single copies of the key genes Nodal and Mix. Why the Xenopus GRN should express multiple copies of Nodal and Mix genes is not known. To understand how these expanded gene families evolved, we investigated mesoderm specification in embryos from axolotls, representing urodele amphibians, since urodele embryology is basal to amphibians and was conserved during the evolution of amniotes, including mammals. We show that single copies of Nodal and Mix are required for mesoderm specification in axolotl embryos, suggesting the ancestral vertebrate state. Furthermore, we uncovered a novel genetic interaction in which Mix induces Brachyury expression, standing in contrast to the relationship of these molecules in Xenopus. However, we demonstrate that this functional relationship is conserved in mammals by showing that it is involved in the production of mesoderm from mouse embryonic stem cells. From our results, we produced an ancestral mesoderm (m)GRN, which we suggest is conserved in vertebrates. The results are discussed within the context of a theory in which the evolution of mechanisms governing early somatic development is constrained by the ancestral germ line-soma relationship, in which germ cells are produced by epigenesis.

  3. Amphioxus and lamprey AP-2 genes: implications for neural crest evolution and migration patterns

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meulemans, Daniel; Bronner-Fraser, Marianne

    2002-01-01

    The neural crest is a uniquely vertebrate cell type present in the most basal vertebrates, but not in cephalochordates. We have studied differences in regulation of the neural crest marker AP-2 across two evolutionary transitions: invertebrate to vertebrate, and agnathan to gnathostome. Isolation and comparison of amphioxus, lamprey and axolotl AP-2 reveals its extensive expansion in the vertebrate dorsal neural tube and pharyngeal arches, implying co-option of AP-2 genes by neural crest cells early in vertebrate evolution. Expression in non-neural ectoderm is a conserved feature in amphioxus and vertebrates, suggesting an ancient role for AP-2 genes in this tissue. There is also common expression in subsets of ventrolateral neurons in the anterior neural tube, consistent with a primitive role in brain development. Comparison of AP-2 expression in axolotl and lamprey suggests an elaboration of cranial neural crest patterning in gnathostomes. However, migration of AP-2-expressing neural crest cells medial to the pharyngeal arch mesoderm appears to be a primitive feature retained in all vertebrates. Because AP-2 has essential roles in cranial neural crest differentiation and proliferation, the co-option of AP-2 by neural crest cells in the vertebrate lineage was a potentially crucial event in vertebrate evolution.

  4. Evolution of the head-trunk interface in tetrapod vertebrates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sefton, Elizabeth M; Bhullar, Bhart-Anjan S; Mohaddes, Zahra; Hanken, James

    2016-01-01

    Vertebrate neck musculature spans the transition zone between head and trunk. The extent to which the cucullaris muscle is a cranial muscle allied with the gill levators of anamniotes or is instead a trunk muscle is an ongoing debate. Novel computed tomography datasets reveal broad conservation of the cucullaris in gnathostomes, including coelacanth and caecilian, two sarcopterygians previously thought to lack it. In chicken, lateral plate mesoderm (LPM) adjacent to occipital somites is a recently identified embryonic source of cervical musculature. We fate-map this mesoderm in the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum), which retains external gills, and demonstrate its contribution to posterior gill-levator muscles and the cucullaris. Accordingly, LPM adjacent to the occipital somites should be regarded as posterior cranial mesoderm. The axial position of the head-trunk border in axolotl is congruent between LPM and somitic mesoderm, unlike in chicken and possibly other amniotes. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.09972.001 PMID:27090084

  5. FGF and BMP derived from dorsal root ganglia regulate blastema induction in limb regeneration in Ambystoma mexicanum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Satoh, Akira; Makanae, Aki; Nishimoto, Yurie; Mitogawa, Kazumasa

    2016-09-01

    Urodele amphibians have a remarkable organ regeneration ability that is regulated by neural inputs. The identification of these neural inputs has been a challenge. Recently, Fibroblast growth factor (Fgf) and Bone morphogenic protein (Bmp) were shown to substitute for nerve functions in limb and tail regeneration in urodele amphibians. However, direct evidence of Fgf and Bmp being secreted from nerve endings and regulating regeneration has not yet been shown. Thus, it remained uncertain whether they were the nerve factors responsible for successful limb regeneration. To gather experimental evidence, the technical difficulties involved in the usage of axolotls had to be overcome. We achieved this by modifying the electroporation method. When Fgf8-AcGFP or Bmp7-AcGFP was electroporated into the axolotl dorsal root ganglia (DRG), GFP signals were detectable in the regenerating limb region. This suggested that Fgf8 and Bmp7 synthesized in neural cells in the DRG were delivered to the limbs through the long axons. Further knockdown experiments with double-stranded RNA interference resulted in impaired limb regeneration ability. These results strongly suggest that Fgf and Bmp are the major neural inputs that control the organ regeneration ability.

  6. Homodimeric anoctamin-1, but not homodimeric anoctamin-6, is activated by calcium increases mediated by the P2Y1 and P2X7 receptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stolz, Michaela; Klapperstück, Manuela; Kendzierski, Thomas; Detro-Dassen, Silvia; Panning, Anna; Schmalzing, Günther; Markwardt, Fritz

    2015-10-01

    The P2X7 receptor (P2X7R) is a ligand-gated ion channel that conducts Na(+), K(+), and Ca(2+) when activated by extracellular ATP. In various cell types, such as secretory epithelia, the P2X7R is co-expressed with Ca(2+)-dependent Cl(-) channels of the TMEM16/anoctamin family. Here, we studied whether the P2X7R and TMEM16A/anoctamin-1 (Ano1) or TMEM16F/anoctamin-6 (Ano6) interact functionally and physically, using oocytes of Xenopus laevis and Ambystoma mexicanum (Axolotl) for heterologous expression. As a control, we co-expressed anoctamin-1 with the P2Y1 receptor (P2Y1R), which induces the release of Ca(2+) from intracellular stores via activating phospholipase C through coupling to Gαq. We found that co-expression of anoctamin-1 with the P2Y1R resulted in a small transient increase in Cl(-) conductance in response to ATP. Co-expression of anoctamin-1 with the P2X7R resulted in a large sustained increase in Cl(-) conductance via Ca(2+) influx through the ATP-opened P2X7R in Xenopus and in Axolotl oocytes, which lack endogenous Ca(2+)-dependent Cl(-) channels. P2Y1R- or P2X7R-mediated stimulation of Ano1 was primarily functional, as demonstrated by the absence of a physically stable interaction between Ano1 and the P2X7R. In the pancreatic cell line AsPC-1, we found the same functional Ca(2+)-dependent interaction of P2X7R and Ano1. The P2X7R-mediated sustained activation of Ano1 may be physiologically relevant to the time course of stimulus-secretion coupling in secretory epithelia. No such increase in Cl(-) conductance could be elicited by activating the P2X7 receptor in either Xenopus oocytes or Axolotl oocytes co-expressing Ano6. The lack of function of Ano6 can, at least in part, be explained by its poor cell-surface expression, resulting from a relatively inefficient exit of the homodimeric Ano6 from the endoplasmic reticulum. PMID:25592660

  7. Homodimeric anoctamin-1, but not homodimeric anoctamin-6, is activated by calcium increases mediated by the P2Y1 and P2X7 receptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stolz, Michaela; Klapperstück, Manuela; Kendzierski, Thomas; Detro-Dassen, Silvia; Panning, Anna; Schmalzing, Günther; Markwardt, Fritz

    2015-10-01

    The P2X7 receptor (P2X7R) is a ligand-gated ion channel that conducts Na(+), K(+), and Ca(2+) when activated by extracellular ATP. In various cell types, such as secretory epithelia, the P2X7R is co-expressed with Ca(2+)-dependent Cl(-) channels of the TMEM16/anoctamin family. Here, we studied whether the P2X7R and TMEM16A/anoctamin-1 (Ano1) or TMEM16F/anoctamin-6 (Ano6) interact functionally and physically, using oocytes of Xenopus laevis and Ambystoma mexicanum (Axolotl) for heterologous expression. As a control, we co-expressed anoctamin-1 with the P2Y1 receptor (P2Y1R), which induces the release of Ca(2+) from intracellular stores via activating phospholipase C through coupling to Gαq. We found that co-expression of anoctamin-1 with the P2Y1R resulted in a small transient increase in Cl(-) conductance in response to ATP. Co-expression of anoctamin-1 with the P2X7R resulted in a large sustained increase in Cl(-) conductance via Ca(2+) influx through the ATP-opened P2X7R in Xenopus and in Axolotl oocytes, which lack endogenous Ca(2+)-dependent Cl(-) channels. P2Y1R- or P2X7R-mediated stimulation of Ano1 was primarily functional, as demonstrated by the absence of a physically stable interaction between Ano1 and the P2X7R. In the pancreatic cell line AsPC-1, we found the same functional Ca(2+)-dependent interaction of P2X7R and Ano1. The P2X7R-mediated sustained activation of Ano1 may be physiologically relevant to the time course of stimulus-secretion coupling in secretory epithelia. No such increase in Cl(-) conductance could be elicited by activating the P2X7 receptor in either Xenopus oocytes or Axolotl oocytes co-expressing Ano6. The lack of function of Ano6 can, at least in part, be explained by its poor cell-surface expression, resulting from a relatively inefficient exit of the homodimeric Ano6 from the endoplasmic reticulum.

  8. Primordial germ cells: the first cell lineage or the last cells standing?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Andrew D; Alberio, Ramiro

    2015-08-15

    Embryos of many animal models express germ line determinants that suppress transcription and mediate early germ line commitment, which occurs before the somatic cell lineages are established. However, not all animals segregate their germ line in this manner. The 'last cell standing' model describes primordial germ cell (PGC) development in axolotls, in which PGCs are maintained by an extracellular signalling niche, and germ line commitment occurs after gastrulation. Here, we propose that this 'stochastic' mode of PGC specification is conserved in vertebrates, including non-rodent mammals. We postulate that early germ line segregation liberates genetic regulatory networks for somatic development to evolve, and that it therefore emerged repeatedly in the animal kingdom in response to natural selection. PMID:26286941

  9. The urodelean Mauthner cell. Morphology of the afferent synapses to the M-cell of larval Salamandra salamandra

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cioni, C.; De Palma, F.; De Vito, L.; Stefanelli, A. [Rome, Univ. (Italy). Dipt. di Biologia Animale e dell`Uomo

    1997-12-31

    In the present work the fine morphology and the distribution of the afferent synapses to the Mauthner cell of larval Salamandra salamandra are described. The aim of the study is to characterize the synaptic bed in the larvae of this terrestrial salamander in order to compare it with that of larval axolotl and larval anurans. Four main types of afferent endings have been identified: myelinated club endings, round-vesicle end bulbs, flattened-vesicle end bulbs and spiral fibers endings. The M-cell afferent synaptology of larval stages of terrestrial amphibians is quite similar to that previously observed in larval stages of aquatic species. This fact can be related to the fundamental similarities between the larval lifestyles.

  10. How x rays inhibit amphibian limb regeneration

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Maden, M.; Wallace, H.

    1976-07-01

    The effects of an inhibiting dose of 2,000 rad of x-rays on the regenerating limbs of axolotl larvae have been examined in a histological and cytological study. Particular attention was paid to the mitotic indices of normal and irradiated epidermal and blastemal cells. Both the characteristic pattern of epidermal mitotic stimulation which normally follows amputation and the later increase in blastemal mitoses are suppressed by irradiation. In most cells the effects are permanent, but in a small proportion a mitotic delay is induced and upon subsequent division chromosome damage in the form of micronuclei is revealed. Thus irradiated cells which do divide almost certainly die. These results are discussed in relation to other theories of x-ray inhibition of regeneration with particular reference to the view that irradiated cells can be reactivated.

  11. Collagen reconstitution is inversely correlated with induction of limb regeneration in Ambystoma mexicanum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Satoh, Akira; Hirata, Ayako; Makanae, Aki

    2012-03-01

    Amphibians can regenerate missing body parts, including limbs. The regulation of collagen has been considered to be important in limb regeneration. Collagen deposition is suppressed during limb regeneration, so we investigated collagen deposition and apical epithelial cap (AEC) formation during axolotl limb regeneration. The accessory limb model (ALM) has been developed as an alternative model for studying limb regeneration. Using this model, we investigated the relationship between nerves, epidermis, and collagen deposition. We found that Sp-9, an AEC marker gene, was upregulated by direct interaction between nerves and epidermis. However, collagen deposition hindered this interaction, and resulted in the failure of limb regeneration. During wound healing, an increase in deposition of collagen caused a decrease in the blastema induction rate in ALM. Wound healing and limb regeneration are alternate processes.

  12. Precise control of miR-125b levels is required to create a regeneration-permissive environment after spinal cord injury: a cross-species comparison between salamander and rat.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diaz Quiroz, Juan Felipe; Tsai, Eve; Coyle, Matthew; Sehm, Tina; Echeverri, Karen

    2014-06-01

    Most spinal cord injuries lead to permanent paralysis in mammals. By contrast, the remarkable regenerative abilities of salamanders enable full functional recovery even from complete spinal cord transections. The molecular differences underlying this evolutionary divergence between mammals and amphibians are poorly understood. We focused on upstream regulators of gene expression as primary entry points into this question. We identified a group of microRNAs (miRNAs) that are conserved between the Mexican axolotl salamander (Ambystoma mexicanum) and mammals but show marked cross-species differences in regulation patterns following spinal cord injury. We found that precise post-injury levels of one of these miRNAs (miR-125b) is essential for functional recovery, and guides correct regeneration of axons through the lesion site in a process involving the direct downstream target Sema4D in axolotls. Translating these results to a mammalian model, we increased miR-125b levels in the rat through mimic treatments following spinal cord transection. These treatments downregulated Sema4D and other glial-scar-related genes, and enhanced the animal's functional recovery. Our study identifies a key regulatory molecule conserved between salamander and mammal, and shows that the expression of miR-125b and Sema4D must be carefully controlled in the right cells at the correct level to promote regeneration. We also show that these molecular components of the salamander's regeneration-permissive environment can be experimentally harnessed to improve treatment outcomes for mammalian spinal cord injuries. PMID:24719025

  13. FGF8 and SHH substitute for anterior-posterior tissue interactions to induce limb regeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nacu, Eugeniu; Gromberg, Elena; Oliveira, Catarina R; Drechsel, David; Tanaka, Elly M

    2016-05-19

    In salamanders, grafting of a left limb blastema onto a right limb stump yields regeneration of three limbs, the normal limb and two 'supernumerary' limbs. This experiment and other research have shown that the juxtaposition of anterior and posterior limb tissue plus innervation are necessary and sufficient to induce complete limb regeneration in salamanders. However, the cellular and molecular basis of the requirement for anterior-posterior tissue interactions were unknown. Here we have clarified the molecular basis of the requirement for both anterior and posterior tissue during limb regeneration and supernumerary limb formation in axolotls (Ambystoma mexicanum). We show that the two tissues provide complementary cross-inductive signals that are required for limb outgrowth. A blastema composed solely of anterior tissue normally regresses rather than forming a limb, but activation of hedgehog (HH) signalling was sufficient to drive regeneration of an anterior blastema to completion owing to its ability to maintain fibroblast growth factor (FGF) expression, the key signalling activity responsible for blastema outgrowth. In blastemas composed solely of posterior tissue, HH signalling was not sufficient to drive regeneration; however, ectopic expression of FGF8 together with endogenous HH signalling was sufficient. In axolotls, FGF8 is expressed only in the anterior mesenchyme and maintenance of its expression depends on sonic hedgehog (SHH) signalling from posterior tissue. Together, our findings identify key anteriorly and posteriorly localized signals that promote limb regeneration and show that these single factors are sufficient to drive non-regenerating blastemas to complete regeneration with full elaboration of skeletal elements. PMID:27120163

  14. Distinct and conserved prominin-1/CD133-positive retinal cell populations identified across species.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    József Jászai

    Full Text Available Besides being a marker of various somatic stem cells in mammals, prominin-1 (CD133 plays a role in maintaining the photoreceptor integrity since mutations in the PROM1 gene are linked with retinal degeneration. In spite of that, little information is available regarding its distribution in eyes of non-mammalian vertebrates endowed with high regenerative abilities. To address this subject, prominin-1 cognates were isolated from axolotl, zebrafish and chicken, and their retinal compartmentalization was investigated and compared to that of their mammalian orthologue. Interestingly, prominin-1 transcripts--except for the axolotl--were not strictly restricted to the outer nuclear layer (i.e., photoreceptor cells, but they also marked distinct subdivisions of the inner nuclear layer (INL. In zebrafish, where the prominin-1 gene is duplicated (i.e., prominin-1a and prominin-1b, a differential expression was noted for both paralogues within the INL being localized either to its vitreal or scleral subdivision, respectively. Interestingly, expression of prominin-1a within the former domain coincided with Pax-6-positive cells that are known to act as progenitors upon injury-induced retino-neurogenesis. A similar, but minute population of prominin-1-positive cells located at the vitreal side of the INL was also detected in developing and adult mice. In chicken, however, prominin-1-positive cells appeared to be aligned along the scleral side of the INL reminiscent of zebrafish prominin-1b. Taken together our data indicate that in addition to conserved expression of prominin-1 in photoreceptors, significant prominin-1-expressing non-photoreceptor retinal cell populations are present in the vertebrate eye that might represent potential sources of stem/progenitor cells for regenerative therapies.

  15. Homology of the cranial vault in birds: new insights based on embryonic fate-mapping and character analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maddin, Hillary C.; Piekarski, Nadine; Sefton, Elizabeth M.; Hanken, James

    2016-08-01

    Bones of the cranial vault appear to be highly conserved among tetrapod vertebrates. Moreover, bones identified with the same name are assumed to be evolutionarily homologous. However, recent developmental studies reveal a key difference in the embryonic origin of cranial vault bones between representatives of two amniote lineages, mammals and birds, thereby challenging this view. In the mouse, the frontal is derived from cranial neural crest (CNC) but the parietal is derived from mesoderm, placing the CNC-mesoderm boundary at the suture between these bones. In the chicken, this boundary is located within the frontal. This difference and related data have led several recent authors to suggest that bones of the avian cranial vault are misidentified and should be renamed. To elucidate this apparent conflict, we fate-mapped CNC and mesoderm in axolotl to reveal the contributions of these two embryonic cell populations to the cranial vault in a urodele amphibian. The CNC-mesoderm boundary in axolotl is located between the frontal and parietal bones, as in the mouse but unlike the chicken. If, however, the avian frontal is regarded instead as a fused frontal and parietal (i.e. frontoparietal) and the parietal as a postparietal, then the cranial vault of birds becomes developmentally and topologically congruent with those of urodeles and mammals. This alternative hypothesis of cranial vault homology is also phylogenetically consistent with data from the tetrapod fossil record, where frontal, parietal and postparietal bones are present in stem lineages of all extant taxa, including birds. It further implies that a postparietal may be present in most non-avian archosaurs, but fused to the parietal or supraoccipital as in many extant mammals.

  16. Microarray and cDNA sequence analysis of transcription during nerve-dependent limb regeneration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bryant Susan V

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Microarray analysis and 454 cDNA sequencing were used to investigate a centuries-old problem in regenerative biology: the basis of nerve-dependent limb regeneration in salamanders. Innervated (NR and denervated (DL forelimbs of Mexican axolotls were amputated and transcripts were sampled after 0, 5, and 14 days of regeneration. Results Considerable similarity was observed between NR and DL transcriptional programs at 5 and 14 days post amputation (dpa. Genes with extracellular functions that are critical to wound healing were upregulated while muscle-specific genes were downregulated. Thus, many processes that are regulated during early limb regeneration do not depend upon nerve-derived factors. The majority of the transcriptional differences between NR and DL limbs were correlated with blastema formation; cell numbers increased in NR limbs after 5 dpa and this yielded distinct transcriptional signatures of cell proliferation in NR limbs at 14 dpa. These transcriptional signatures were not observed in DL limbs. Instead, gene expression changes within DL limbs suggest more diverse and protracted wound-healing responses. 454 cDNA sequencing complemented the microarray analysis by providing deeper sampling of transcriptional programs and associated biological processes. Assembly of new 454 cDNA sequences with existing expressed sequence tag (EST contigs from the Ambystoma EST database more than doubled (3935 to 9411 the number of non-redundant human-A. mexicanum orthologous sequences. Conclusion Many new candidate gene sequences were discovered for the first time and these will greatly enable future studies of wound healing, epigenetics, genome stability, and nerve-dependent blastema formation and outgrowth using the axolotl model.

  17. Precise control of miR-125b levels is required to create a regeneration-permissive environment after spinal cord injury: a cross-species comparison between salamander and rat

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juan Felipe Diaz Quiroz

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Most spinal cord injuries lead to permanent paralysis in mammals. By contrast, the remarkable regenerative abilities of salamanders enable full functional recovery even from complete spinal cord transections. The molecular differences underlying this evolutionary divergence between mammals and amphibians are poorly understood. We focused on upstream regulators of gene expression as primary entry points into this question. We identified a group of microRNAs (miRNAs that are conserved between the Mexican axolotl salamander (Ambystoma mexicanum and mammals but show marked cross-species differences in regulation patterns following spinal cord injury. We found that precise post-injury levels of one of these miRNAs (miR-125b is essential for functional recovery, and guides correct regeneration of axons through the lesion site in a process involving the direct downstream target Sema4D in axolotls. Translating these results to a mammalian model, we increased miR-125b levels in the rat through mimic treatments following spinal cord transection. These treatments downregulated Sema4D and other glial-scar-related genes, and enhanced the animal’s functional recovery. Our study identifies a key regulatory molecule conserved between salamander and mammal, and shows that the expression of miR-125b and Sema4D must be carefully controlled in the right cells at the correct level to promote regeneration. We also show that these molecular components of the salamander’s regeneration-permissive environment can be experimentally harnessed to improve treatment outcomes for mammalian spinal cord injuries.

  18. Mesodermal origin of median fin mesenchyme and tail muscle in amphibian larvae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taniguchi, Yuka; Kurth, Thomas; Medeiros, Daniel Meulemans; Tazaki, Akira; Ramm, Robert; Epperlein, Hans-Henning

    2015-01-01

    Mesenchyme is an embryonic precursor tissue that generates a range of structures in vertebrates including cartilage, bone, muscle, kidney, and the erythropoietic system. Mesenchyme originates from both mesoderm and the neural crest, an ectodermal cell population, via an epithelial to mesenchymal transition (EMT). Because ectodermal and mesodermal mesenchyme can form in close proximity and give rise to similar derivatives, the embryonic origin of many mesenchyme-derived tissues is still unclear. Recent work using genetic lineage tracing methods have upended classical ideas about the contributions of mesodermal mesenchyme and neural crest to particular structures. Using similar strategies in the Mexican axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum), and the South African clawed toad (Xenopus laevis), we traced the origins of fin mesenchyme and tail muscle in amphibians. Here we present evidence that fin mesenchyme and striated tail muscle in both animals are derived solely from mesoderm and not from neural crest. In the context of recent work in zebrafish, our experiments suggest that trunk neural crest cells in the last common ancestor of tetrapods and ray-finned fish lacked the ability to form ectomesenchyme and its derivatives. PMID:26086331

  19. Co-operative Bmp- and Fgf-signaling inputs convert skin wound healing to limb formation in urodele amphibians.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Makanae, Aki; Mitogawa, Kazumasa; Satoh, Akira

    2014-12-01

    Urodele amphibians have remarkable organ regeneration capability, and their limb regeneration capability has been investigated as a representative phenomenon. In the early 19th century, nerves were reported to be an essential tissue for the successful induction of limb regeneration. Nerve substances that function in the induction of limb regeneration responses have long been sought. A new experimental system called the accessory limb model (ALM) has been established to identify the nerve factors. Skin wounding in urodele amphibians results in skin wound healing but never in limb induction. However, nerve deviation to the wounded skin induces limb formation in ALM. Thus, nerves can be considered to have the ability to transform skin wound healing to limb formation. In the present study, co-operative Bmp and Fgf application, instead of nerve deviation, to wounded skin transformed skin wound healing to limb formation in two urodele amphibians, axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) and newt (Pleurodeles waltl). Our findings demonstrate that defined factors can induce homeotic transformation in postembryonic bodies of urodele amphibians. The combination of Bmp and Fgf(s) may contribute to the development of novel treatments for organ regeneration. PMID:25286122

  20. Initial characterization of the large genome of the salamander Ambystoma mexicanum using shotgun and laser capture chromosome sequencing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keinath, Melissa C; Timoshevskiy, Vladimir A; Timoshevskaya, Nataliya Y; Tsonis, Panagiotis A; Voss, S Randal; Smith, Jeramiah J

    2015-01-01

    Vertebrates exhibit substantial diversity in genome size, and some of the largest genomes exist in species that uniquely inform diverse areas of basic and biomedical research. For example, the salamander Ambystoma mexicanum (the Mexican axolotl) is a model organism for studies of regeneration, development and genome evolution, yet its genome is ~10× larger than the human genome. As part of a hierarchical approach toward improving genome resources for the species, we generated 600 Gb of shotgun sequence data and developed methods for sequencing individual laser-captured chromosomes. Based on these data, we estimate that the A. mexicanum genome is ~32 Gb. Notably, as much as 19 Gb of the A. mexicanum genome can potentially be considered single copy, which presumably reflects the evolutionary diversification of mobile elements that accumulated during an ancient episode of genome expansion. Chromosome-targeted sequencing permitted the development of assemblies within the constraints of modern computational platforms, allowed us to place 2062 genes on the two smallest A. mexicanum chromosomes and resolves key events in the history of vertebrate genome evolution. Our analyses show that the capture and sequencing of individual chromosomes is likely to provide valuable information for the systematic sequencing, assembly and scaffolding of large genomes. PMID:26553646

  1. Genomics of a metamorphic timing QTL: met1 maps to a unique genomic position and regulates morph and species-specific patterns of brain transcription.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Page, Robert B; Boley, Meredith A; Kump, David K; Voss, Stephen R

    2013-01-01

    Very little is known about genetic factors that regulate life history transitions during ontogeny. Closely related tiger salamanders (Ambystoma species complex) show extreme variation in metamorphic timing, with some species foregoing metamorphosis altogether, an adaptive trait called paedomorphosis. Previous studies identified a major effect quantitative trait locus (met1) for metamorphic timing and expression of paedomorphosis in hybrid crosses between the biphasic Eastern tiger salamander (Ambystoma tigrinum tigrinum) and the paedomorphic Mexican axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum). We used existing hybrid mapping panels and a newly created hybrid cross to map the met1 genomic region and determine the effect of met1 on larval growth, metamorphic timing, and gene expression in the brain. We show that met1 maps to the position of a urodele-specific chromosome rearrangement on linkage group 2 that uniquely brought functionally associated genes into linkage. Furthermore, we found that more than 200 genes were differentially expressed during larval development as a function of met1 genotype. This list of differentially expressed genes is enriched for proteins that function in the mitochondria, providing evidence of a link between met1, thyroid hormone signaling, and mitochondrial energetics associated with metamorphosis. Finally, we found that met1 significantly affected metamorphic timing in hybrids, but not early larval growth rate. Collectively, our results show that met1 regulates species and morph-specific patterns of brain transcription and life history variation. PMID:23946331

  2. [Characterization of cDNA of T-cell receptor beta chain in rainbow trout].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Partula, S; Fellah, J S; de Guerra, A; Charlemagne, J

    1994-08-01

    Using a two-step PCR strategy, we have cloned several cDNA segments encoding the T-cell receptor beta chain in a Teleost fish, the rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss). The nine clones analyzed encode identical N-terminal-truncated V beta regions which present limited sequence similarities with several mammalian TcR V beta chains, from residue Tyr-35 to residue Ser-95. These V beta regions are followed by V beta-D beta-J beta-like regions which are different in all the sequenced clones, and by identical C beta regions. The trout C beta domain (156 amino acids) is most related to the chicken and to amphibian (axolotl) C beta domains but no cysteine residue appears in the hinge region. Like in other vertebrate C beta s, the TM region carries a positively charged lysine residue (Lys-271). The intracytoplasmic domain is virtually absent. The possibility to analyze the structure, expression and diversity of a T-cell receptor chain in a Teleost fish model will be important for our future understanding of the evolution of specific immune recognition in vertebrates. PMID:7882160

  3. Mesodermal origin of median fin mesenchyme and tail muscle in amphibian larvae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taniguchi, Yuka; Kurth, Thomas; Medeiros, Daniel Meulemans; Tazaki, Akira; Ramm, Robert; Epperlein, Hans-Henning

    2015-01-01

    Mesenchyme is an embryonic precursor tissue that generates a range of structures in vertebrates including cartilage, bone, muscle, kidney, and the erythropoietic system. Mesenchyme originates from both mesoderm and the neural crest, an ectodermal cell population, via an epithelial to mesenchymal transition (EMT). Because ectodermal and mesodermal mesenchyme can form in close proximity and give rise to similar derivatives, the embryonic origin of many mesenchyme-derived tissues is still unclear. Recent work using genetic lineage tracing methods have upended classical ideas about the contributions of mesodermal mesenchyme and neural crest to particular structures. Using similar strategies in the Mexican axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum), and the South African clawed toad (Xenopus laevis), we traced the origins of fin mesenchyme and tail muscle in amphibians. Here we present evidence that fin mesenchyme and striated tail muscle in both animals are derived solely from mesoderm and not from neural crest. In the context of recent work in zebrafish, our experiments suggest that trunk neural crest cells in the last common ancestor of tetrapods and ray-finned fish lacked the ability to form ectomesenchyme and its derivatives.

  4. Regeneration of soft tissues is promoted by MMP1 treatment after digit amputation in mice.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiaodong Mu

    Full Text Available The ratio of matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs to the tissue inhibitors of metalloproteinases (TIMPs in wounded tissues strictly control the protease activity of MMPs, and therefore regulate the progress of wound closure, tissue regeneration and scar formation. Some amphibians (i.e. axolotl/newt demonstrate complete regeneration of missing or wounded digits and even limbs; MMPs play a critical role during amphibian regeneration. Conversely, mammalian wound healing re-establishes tissue integrity, but at the expense of scar tissue formation. The differences between amphibian regeneration and mammalian wound healing can be attributed to the greater ratio of MMPs to TIMPs in amphibian tissue. Previous studies have demonstrated the ability of MMP1 to effectively promote skeletal muscle regeneration by favoring extracellular matrix (ECM remodeling to enhance cell proliferation and migration. In this study, MMP1 was administered to the digits amputated at the mid-second phalanx of adult mice to observe its effect on digit regeneration. Results indicated that the regeneration of soft tissue and the rate of wound closure were significantly improved by MMP1 administration, but the elongation of the skeletal tissue was insignificantly affected. During digit regeneration, more mutipotent progenitor cells, capillary vasculature and neuromuscular-related tissues were observed in MMP1 treated tissues; moreover, there was less fibrotic tissue formed in treated digits. In summary, MMP1 was found to be effective in promoting wound healing in amputated digits of adult mice.

  5. Multi-scale finite element modeling allows the mechanics of amphibian neurulation to be elucidated

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Xiaoguang; Brodland, G. Wayne

    2008-03-01

    The novel multi-scale computational approach introduced here makes possible a new means for testing hypotheses about the forces that drive specific morphogenetic movements. A 3D model based on this approach is used to investigate neurulation in the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum), a type of amphibian. The model is based on geometric data from 3D surface reconstructions of live embryos and from serial sections. Tissue properties are described by a system of cell-based constitutive equations, and parameters in the equations are determined from physical tests. The model includes the effects of Shroom-activated neural ridge reshaping and lamellipodium-driven convergent extension. A typical whole-embryo model consists of 10 239 elements and to run its 100 incremental time steps requires 2 days. The model shows that a normal phenotype does not result if lamellipodium forces are uniform across the width of the neural plate; but it can result if the lamellipodium forces decrease from a maximum value at the mid-sagittal plane to zero at the plate edge. Even the seemingly simple motions of neurulation are found to contain important features that would remain hidden, they were not studied using an advanced computational model. The present model operates in a setting where data are extremely sparse and an important outcome of the study is a better understanding of the role of computational models in such environments.

  6. Endogenous electric fields in embryos during development, regeneration and wound healing

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nuccitelli, R

    2003-07-01

    All embryos that have been investigated drive ionic currents through themselves and these currents will generate internal electric fields. Here, those examples in which such fields have been measured directly are discussed. The first such measurements were made in chick embryos and about 20 mV mm-1 was measured near the posterier intestinal portal in 2-4-day-old embryos. This electric field is important for the development of tail structures because reducing its magnitude results in abnormal tail development. The second embryonic electric field measured directly was in the axolotl, where a rostral-caudal field of about the same magnitude was detected. Modification of this field during neurulation but not gastrulation caused developmental abnormalities. Most recently, the development of left-right asymmetry in frog and chick embryos was found to require a voltage difference between blastomeres at a very early developmental stage. This field was measured in the chick embryo to be 10-20 mV mm-1 across the primitive streak. Mammalian skin wounds generate 150 mV mm-1 fields lateral to the wound and corneal epidermal wounds exhibit lateral fields of 40 mV mm-1. The presence of these endogenous fields would suggest that exposures to external electric fields should be limited to magnitudes of less than 0.1 V m-1. (author)

  7. Genomics of a metamorphic timing QTL: met1 maps to a unique genomic position and regulates morph and species-specific patterns of brain transcription.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Page, Robert B; Boley, Meredith A; Kump, David K; Voss, Stephen R

    2013-01-01

    Very little is known about genetic factors that regulate life history transitions during ontogeny. Closely related tiger salamanders (Ambystoma species complex) show extreme variation in metamorphic timing, with some species foregoing metamorphosis altogether, an adaptive trait called paedomorphosis. Previous studies identified a major effect quantitative trait locus (met1) for metamorphic timing and expression of paedomorphosis in hybrid crosses between the biphasic Eastern tiger salamander (Ambystoma tigrinum tigrinum) and the paedomorphic Mexican axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum). We used existing hybrid mapping panels and a newly created hybrid cross to map the met1 genomic region and determine the effect of met1 on larval growth, metamorphic timing, and gene expression in the brain. We show that met1 maps to the position of a urodele-specific chromosome rearrangement on linkage group 2 that uniquely brought functionally associated genes into linkage. Furthermore, we found that more than 200 genes were differentially expressed during larval development as a function of met1 genotype. This list of differentially expressed genes is enriched for proteins that function in the mitochondria, providing evidence of a link between met1, thyroid hormone signaling, and mitochondrial energetics associated with metamorphosis. Finally, we found that met1 significantly affected metamorphic timing in hybrids, but not early larval growth rate. Collectively, our results show that met1 regulates species and morph-specific patterns of brain transcription and life history variation.

  8. Vesicular stomatitis virus enables gene transfer and transsynaptic tracing in a wide range of organisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mundell, Nathan A; Beier, Kevin T; Pan, Y Albert; Lapan, Sylvain W; Göz Aytürk, Didem; Berezovskii, Vladimir K; Wark, Abigail R; Drokhlyansky, Eugene; Bielecki, Jan; Born, Richard T; Schier, Alexander F; Cepko, Constance L

    2015-08-01

    Current limitations in technology have prevented an extensive analysis of the connections among neurons, particularly within nonmammalian organisms. We developed a transsynaptic viral tracer originally for use in mice, and then tested its utility in a broader range of organisms. By engineering the vesicular stomatitis virus (VSV) to encode a fluorophore and either the rabies virus glycoprotein (RABV-G) or its own glycoprotein (VSV-G), we created viruses that can transsynaptically label neuronal circuits in either the retrograde or anterograde direction, respectively. The vectors were investigated for their utility as polysynaptic tracers of chicken and zebrafish visual pathways. They showed patterns of connectivity consistent with previously characterized visual system connections, and revealed several potentially novel connections. Further, these vectors were shown to infect neurons in several other vertebrates, including Old and New World monkeys, seahorses, axolotls, and Xenopus. They were also shown to infect two invertebrates, Drosophila melanogaster, and the box jellyfish, Tripedalia cystophora, a species previously intractable for gene transfer, although no clear evidence of transsynaptic spread was observed in these species. These vectors provide a starting point for transsynaptic tracing in most vertebrates, and are also excellent candidates for gene transfer in organisms that have been refractory to other methods. PMID:25688551

  9. Initial characterization of the large genome of the salamander Ambystoma mexicanum using shotgun and laser capture chromosome sequencing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keinath, Melissa C; Timoshevskiy, Vladimir A; Timoshevskaya, Nataliya Y; Tsonis, Panagiotis A; Voss, S Randal; Smith, Jeramiah J

    2015-11-10

    Vertebrates exhibit substantial diversity in genome size, and some of the largest genomes exist in species that uniquely inform diverse areas of basic and biomedical research. For example, the salamander Ambystoma mexicanum (the Mexican axolotl) is a model organism for studies of regeneration, development and genome evolution, yet its genome is ~10× larger than the human genome. As part of a hierarchical approach toward improving genome resources for the species, we generated 600 Gb of shotgun sequence data and developed methods for sequencing individual laser-captured chromosomes. Based on these data, we estimate that the A. mexicanum genome is ~32 Gb. Notably, as much as 19 Gb of the A. mexicanum genome can potentially be considered single copy, which presumably reflects the evolutionary diversification of mobile elements that accumulated during an ancient episode of genome expansion. Chromosome-targeted sequencing permitted the development of assemblies within the constraints of modern computational platforms, allowed us to place 2062 genes on the two smallest A. mexicanum chromosomes and resolves key events in the history of vertebrate genome evolution. Our analyses show that the capture and sequencing of individual chromosomes is likely to provide valuable information for the systematic sequencing, assembly and scaffolding of large genomes.

  10. Analysis of signal processing in vestibular circuits with a novel light-emitting diodes-based fluorescence microscope.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Direnberger, Stephan; Banchi, Roberto; Brosel, Sonja; Seebacher, Christian; Laimgruber, Stefan; Uhl, Rainer; Felmy, Felix; Straka, Hans; Kunz, Lars

    2015-05-01

    Optical visualization of neural network activity is limited by imaging system-dependent technical tradeoffs. To overcome these constraints, we have developed a powerful low-cost and flexible imaging system with high spectral variability and unique spatio-temporal precision for simultaneous optical recording and manipulation of neural activity of large cell groups. The system comprises eight high-power light-emitting diodes, a camera with a large metal-oxide-semiconductor sensor and a high numerical aperture water-dipping objective. It allows fast and precise control of excitation and simultaneous low noise imaging at high resolution. Adjustable apertures generated two independent areas of variable size and position for simultaneous optical activation and image capture. The experimental applicability of this system was explored in semi-isolated preparations of larval axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) with intact inner ear organs and central nervous circuits. Cyclic galvanic stimulation of semicircular canals together with glutamate- and γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA)-uncaging caused a corresponding modulation of Ca(2+) transients in central vestibular neurons. These experiments revealed specific cellular properties as well as synaptic interactions between excitatory and inhibitory inputs, responsible for spatio-temporal-specific sensory signal processing. Location-specific GABA-uncaging revealed a potent inhibitory shunt of vestibular nerve afferent input in the predominating population of tonic vestibular neurons, indicating a considerable impact of local and commissural inhibitory circuits on the processing of head/body motion-related signals. The discovery of these previously unknown properties of vestibular computations demonstrates the merits of our novel microscope system for experimental applications in the field of neurobiology. PMID:25847143

  11. Preparation of primary myogenic precursor cell/myoblast cultures from basal vertebrate lineages.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Froehlich, Jacob Michael; Seiliez, Iban; Gabillard, Jean-Charles; Biga, Peggy R

    2014-01-01

    Due to the inherent difficulty and time involved with studying the myogenic program in vivo, primary culture systems derived from the resident adult stem cells of skeletal muscle, the myogenic precursor cells (MPCs), have proven indispensible to our understanding of mammalian skeletal muscle development and growth. Particularly among the basal taxa of Vertebrata, however, data are limited describing the molecular mechanisms controlling the self-renewal, proliferation, and differentiation of MPCs. Of particular interest are potential mechanisms that underlie the ability of basal vertebrates to undergo considerable postlarval skeletal myofiber hyperplasia (i.e. teleost fish) and full regeneration following appendage loss (i.e. urodele amphibians). Additionally, the use of cultured myoblasts could aid in the understanding of regeneration and the recapitulation of the myogenic program and the differences between them. To this end, we describe in detail a robust and efficient protocol (and variations therein) for isolating and maintaining MPCs and their progeny, myoblasts and immature myotubes, in cell culture as a platform for understanding the evolution of the myogenic program, beginning with the more basal vertebrates. Capitalizing on the model organism status of the zebrafish (Danio rerio), we report on the application of this protocol to small fishes of the cyprinid clade Danioninae. In tandem, this protocol can be utilized to realize a broader comparative approach by isolating MPCs from the Mexican axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) and even laboratory rodents. This protocol is now widely used in studying myogenesis in several fish species, including rainbow trout, salmon, and sea bream(1-4). PMID:24835774

  12. From biomedicine to natural history research: EST resources for ambystomatid salamanders

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bryant Susan V

    2004-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Establishing genomic resources for closely related species will provide comparative insights that are crucial for understanding diversity and variability at multiple levels of biological organization. We developed ESTs for Mexican axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum and Eastern tiger salamander (A. tigrinum tigrinum, species with deep and diverse research histories. Results Approximately 40,000 quality cDNA sequences were isolated for these species from various tissues, including regenerating limb and tail. These sequences and an existing set of 16,030 cDNA sequences for A. mexicanum were processed to yield 35,413 and 20,599 high quality ESTs for A. mexicanum and A. t. tigrinum, respectively. Because the A. t. tigrinum ESTs were obtained primarily from a normalized library, an approximately equal number of contigs were obtained for each species, with 21,091 unique contigs identified overall. The 10,592 contigs that showed significant similarity to sequences from the human RefSeq database reflected a diverse array of molecular functions and biological processes, with many corresponding to genes expressed during spinal cord injury in rat and fin regeneration in zebrafish. To demonstrate the utility of these EST resources, we searched databases to identify probes for regeneration research, characterized intra- and interspecific nucleotide polymorphism, saturated a human – Ambystoma synteny group with marker loci, and extended PCR primer sets designed for A. mexicanum / A. t. tigrinum orthologues to a related tiger salamander species. Conclusions Our study highlights the value of developing resources in traditional model systems where the likelihood of information transfer to multiple, closely related taxa is high, thus simultaneously enabling both laboratory and natural history research.

  13. Neural crest contributions to the lamprey head

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCauley, David W.; Bronner-Fraser, Marianne

    2003-01-01

    The neural crest is a vertebrate-specific cell population that contributes to the facial skeleton and other derivatives. We have performed focal DiI injection into the cranial neural tube of the developing lamprey in order to follow the migratory pathways of discrete groups of cells from origin to destination and to compare neural crest migratory pathways in a basal vertebrate to those of gnathostomes. The results show that the general pathways of cranial neural crest migration are conserved throughout the vertebrates, with cells migrating in streams analogous to the mandibular and hyoid streams. Caudal branchial neural crest cells migrate ventrally as a sheet of cells from the hindbrain and super-pharyngeal region of the neural tube and form a cylinder surrounding a core of mesoderm in each pharyngeal arch, similar to that seen in zebrafish and axolotl. In addition to these similarities, we also uncovered important differences. Migration into the presumptive caudal branchial arches of the lamprey involves both rostral and caudal movements of neural crest cells that have not been described in gnathostomes, suggesting that barriers that constrain rostrocaudal movement of cranial neural crest cells may have arisen after the agnathan/gnathostome split. Accordingly, neural crest cells from a single axial level contributed to multiple arches and there was extensive mixing between populations. There was no apparent filling of neural crest derivatives in a ventral-to-dorsal order, as has been observed in higher vertebrates, nor did we find evidence of a neural crest contribution to cranial sensory ganglia. These results suggest that migratory constraints and additional neural crest derivatives arose later in gnathostome evolution.

  14. Epigenetic reprogramming of breast cancer cells with oocyte extracts

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kumari Rajendra

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Breast cancer is a disease characterised by both genetic and epigenetic alterations. Epigenetic silencing of tumour suppressor genes is an early event in breast carcinogenesis and reversion of gene silencing by epigenetic reprogramming can provide clues to the mechanisms responsible for tumour initiation and progression. In this study we apply the reprogramming capacity of oocytes to cancer cells in order to study breast oncogenesis. Results We show that breast cancer cells can be directly reprogrammed by amphibian oocyte extracts. The reprogramming effect, after six hours of treatment, in the absence of DNA replication, includes DNA demethylation and removal of repressive histone marks at the promoters of tumour suppressor genes; also, expression of the silenced genes is re-activated in response to treatment. This activity is specific to oocytes as it is not elicited by extracts from ovulated eggs, and is present at very limited levels in extracts from mouse embryonic stem cells. Epigenetic reprogramming in oocyte extracts results in reduction of cancer cell growth under anchorage independent conditions and a reduction in tumour growth in mouse xenografts. Conclusions This study presents a new method to investigate tumour reversion by epigenetic reprogramming. After testing extracts from different sources, we found that axolotl oocyte extracts possess superior reprogramming ability, which reverses epigenetic silencing of tumour suppressor genes and tumorigenicity of breast cancer cells in a mouse xenograft model. Therefore this system can be extremely valuable for dissecting the mechanisms involved in tumour suppressor gene silencing and identifying molecular activities capable of arresting tumour growth. These applications can ultimately shed light on the contribution of epigenetic alterations in breast cancer and advance the development of epigenetic therapies.

  15. Analysis of signal processing in vestibular circuits with a novel light-emitting diodes-based fluorescence microscope.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Direnberger, Stephan; Banchi, Roberto; Brosel, Sonja; Seebacher, Christian; Laimgruber, Stefan; Uhl, Rainer; Felmy, Felix; Straka, Hans; Kunz, Lars

    2015-05-01

    Optical visualization of neural network activity is limited by imaging system-dependent technical tradeoffs. To overcome these constraints, we have developed a powerful low-cost and flexible imaging system with high spectral variability and unique spatio-temporal precision for simultaneous optical recording and manipulation of neural activity of large cell groups. The system comprises eight high-power light-emitting diodes, a camera with a large metal-oxide-semiconductor sensor and a high numerical aperture water-dipping objective. It allows fast and precise control of excitation and simultaneous low noise imaging at high resolution. Adjustable apertures generated two independent areas of variable size and position for simultaneous optical activation and image capture. The experimental applicability of this system was explored in semi-isolated preparations of larval axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) with intact inner ear organs and central nervous circuits. Cyclic galvanic stimulation of semicircular canals together with glutamate- and γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA)-uncaging caused a corresponding modulation of Ca(2+) transients in central vestibular neurons. These experiments revealed specific cellular properties as well as synaptic interactions between excitatory and inhibitory inputs, responsible for spatio-temporal-specific sensory signal processing. Location-specific GABA-uncaging revealed a potent inhibitory shunt of vestibular nerve afferent input in the predominating population of tonic vestibular neurons, indicating a considerable impact of local and commissural inhibitory circuits on the processing of head/body motion-related signals. The discovery of these previously unknown properties of vestibular computations demonstrates the merits of our novel microscope system for experimental applications in the field of neurobiology.

  16. A Conserved MicroRNA Regulatory Circuit Is Differentially Controlled during Limb/Appendage Regeneration

    Science.gov (United States)

    King, Benjamin L.; Yin, Viravuth P.

    2016-01-01

    Background Although regenerative capacity is evident throughout the animal kingdom, it is not equally distributed throughout evolution. For instance, complex limb/appendage regeneration is muted in mammals but enhanced in amphibians and teleosts. The defining characteristic of limb/appendage regenerative systems is the formation of a dedifferentiated tissue, termed blastema, which serves as the progenitor reservoir for regenerating tissues. In order to identify a genetic signature that accompanies blastema formation, we employ next-generation sequencing to identify shared, differentially regulated mRNAs and noncoding RNAs in three different, highly regenerative animal systems: zebrafish caudal fins, bichir pectoral fins and axolotl forelimbs. Results These studies identified a core group of 5 microRNAs (miRNAs) that were commonly upregulated and 5 miRNAs that were commonly downregulated, as well as 4 novel tRNAs fragments with sequences conserved with humans. To understand the potential function of these miRNAs, we built a network of 1,550 commonly differentially expressed mRNAs that had functional relationships to 11 orthologous blastema-associated genes. As miR-21 was the most highly upregulated and most highly expressed miRNA in all three models, we validated the expression of known target genes, including the tumor suppressor, pdcd4, and TGFβ receptor subunit, tgfbr2 and novel putative target genes such as the anti-apoptotic factor, bcl2l13, Choline kinase alpha, chka and the regulator of G-protein signaling, rgs5. Conclusions Our extensive analysis of RNA-seq transcriptome profiling studies in three regenerative animal models, that diverged in evolution ~420 million years ago, reveals a common miRNA-regulated genetic network of blastema genes. These comparative studies extend our current understanding of limb/appendage regeneration by identifying previously unassociated blastema genes and the extensive regulation by miRNAs, which could serve as a foundation

  17. A Conserved MicroRNA Regulatory Circuit Is Differentially Controlled during Limb/Appendage Regeneration.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Benjamin L King

    Full Text Available Although regenerative capacity is evident throughout the animal kingdom, it is not equally distributed throughout evolution. For instance, complex limb/appendage regeneration is muted in mammals but enhanced in amphibians and teleosts. The defining characteristic of limb/appendage regenerative systems is the formation of a dedifferentiated tissue, termed blastema, which serves as the progenitor reservoir for regenerating tissues. In order to identify a genetic signature that accompanies blastema formation, we employ next-generation sequencing to identify shared, differentially regulated mRNAs and noncoding RNAs in three different, highly regenerative animal systems: zebrafish caudal fins, bichir pectoral fins and axolotl forelimbs.These studies identified a core group of 5 microRNAs (miRNAs that were commonly upregulated and 5 miRNAs that were commonly downregulated, as well as 4 novel tRNAs fragments with sequences conserved with humans. To understand the potential function of these miRNAs, we built a network of 1,550 commonly differentially expressed mRNAs that had functional relationships to 11 orthologous blastema-associated genes. As miR-21 was the most highly upregulated and most highly expressed miRNA in all three models, we validated the expression of known target genes, including the tumor suppressor, pdcd4, and TGFβ receptor subunit, tgfbr2 and novel putative target genes such as the anti-apoptotic factor, bcl2l13, Choline kinase alpha, chka and the regulator of G-protein signaling, rgs5.Our extensive analysis of RNA-seq transcriptome profiling studies in three regenerative animal models, that diverged in evolution ~420 million years ago, reveals a common miRNA-regulated genetic network of blastema genes. These comparative studies extend our current understanding of limb/appendage regeneration by identifying previously unassociated blastema genes and the extensive regulation by miRNAs, which could serve as a foundation for future

  18. Cranial muscles in amphibians: development, novelties and the role of cranial neural crest cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmidt, Jennifer; Piekarski, Nadine; Olsson, Lennart

    2013-01-01

    Our research on the evolution of the vertebrate head focuses on understanding the developmental origins of morphological novelties. Using a broad comparative approach in amphibians, and comparisons with the well-studied quail-chicken system, we investigate how evolutionarily conserved or variable different aspects of head development are. Here we review research on the often overlooked development of cranial muscles, and on its dependence on cranial cartilage development. In general, cranial muscle cell migration and the spatiotemporal pattern of cranial muscle formation appears to be very conserved among the few species of vertebrates that have been studied. However, fate-mapping of somites in the Mexican axolotl revealed differences in the specific formation of hypobranchial muscles (tongue muscles) in comparison to the chicken. The proper development of cranial muscles has been shown to be strongly dependent on the mostly neural crest-derived cartilage elements in the larval head of amphibians. For example, a morpholino-based knock-down of the transcription factor FoxN3 in Xenopus laevis has drastic indirect effects on cranial muscle patterning, although the direct function of the gene is mostly connected to neural crest development. Furthermore, extirpation of single migratory streams of cranial neural crest cells in combination with fate-mapping in a frog shows that individual cranial muscles and their neural crest-derived connective tissue attachments originate from the same visceral arch, even when the muscles attach to skeletal components that are derived from a different arch. The same pattern has also been found in the chicken embryo, the only other species that has been thoroughly investigated, and thus might be a conserved pattern in vertebrates that reflects the fundamental nature of a mechanism that keeps the segmental order of the head in place despite drastic changes in adult anatomy. There is a need for detailed comparative fate-mapping of pre

  19. Cranial muscles in amphibians: development, novelties and the role of cranial neural crest cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmidt, Jennifer; Piekarski, Nadine; Olsson, Lennart

    2013-01-01

    Our research on the evolution of the vertebrate head focuses on understanding the developmental origins of morphological novelties. Using a broad comparative approach in amphibians, and comparisons with the well-studied quail-chicken system, we investigate how evolutionarily conserved or variable different aspects of head development are. Here we review research on the often overlooked development of cranial muscles, and on its dependence on cranial cartilage development. In general, cranial muscle cell migration and the spatiotemporal pattern of cranial muscle formation appears to be very conserved among the few species of vertebrates that have been studied. However, fate-mapping of somites in the Mexican axolotl revealed differences in the specific formation of hypobranchial muscles (tongue muscles) in comparison to the chicken. The proper development of cranial muscles has been shown to be strongly dependent on the mostly neural crest-derived cartilage elements in the larval head of amphibians. For example, a morpholino-based knock-down of the transcription factor FoxN3 in Xenopus laevis has drastic indirect effects on cranial muscle patterning, although the direct function of the gene is mostly connected to neural crest development. Furthermore, extirpation of single migratory streams of cranial neural crest cells in combination with fate-mapping in a frog shows that individual cranial muscles and their neural crest-derived connective tissue attachments originate from the same visceral arch, even when the muscles attach to skeletal components that are derived from a different arch. The same pattern has also been found in the chicken embryo, the only other species that has been thoroughly investigated, and thus might be a conserved pattern in vertebrates that reflects the fundamental nature of a mechanism that keeps the segmental order of the head in place despite drastic changes in adult anatomy. There is a need for detailed comparative fate-mapping of pre

  20. BALB/C鼠睾丸组织中冷诱导RNA结合蛋白的cDNA克隆与序列分析%Cloning and Sequence Analysis of Cold Inducible RNA-binding Protein cDNA from Testis Tissue in BALB/C Mice

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    金福厚; 庞岩; 李士泽; 杨焕民; 计红; 赵巧香; 尹位

    2009-01-01

    冷诱导RNA结合蛋白(Cold inducible RNA-binding protein,CIRP)在多种冷应激细胞(包括重组中国仓鼠卵巢细胞)中被发现.迄今为止,冷应激对活体生物基凶表达的影响还未见报道.和细胞相比,生物体具有更加复杂的冷应激调节机制.本研究以冷处理的BALB/C鼠为实验动物,从其睾丸组织巾克隆出了CIRP的cDNA.结果表明,CIRP在生物体中能够被低温诱导,可能防止生物体遭受冷损伤.根据克隆的cDNA所推测的氨基酸序列与GenBank上公布的小鼠、大鼠、人类、牛蛙、美西螈、非洲爪蟾胚胎细胞和卵母细胞的CIRP氨基酸序列同源性分别为100%、99.40%、95.5%、67.4%、58.4%、76.9%和79.1%.这表明CIRP在生物进化过程中是高度保守的,可能具有多种生理功能.因此,这一研究将为探索人类和动物冷应激分子机制创立系统试验模型和奠定新的实践基础.图5参14%The cold-inducible RNA-binding protein (CIRP) was found in various cells including recombinant Chinese hamster ovary (rCHO) cells under cold stress. However, the effect of cold stress on the gene expression of the intravital animals has not been reported till now. Compared with their cells, there were much more complicated regulatory mechanisms for cold stress response in the organisms. The BALB/C mice with cold treatment were used as experimental animals for this study. The cDNA of CIRP was firstly cloned from the testis tissues of the BALB/C mice treated by cold stress. The results indicated that CIRP in the organisms could be induced at low temperature and might protect the organisms from the cold damage. The amino acid sequences deduced via cDNA clone were 100%, 99.4%, 95.5%, 67.4%, 58.4%,76.9%, and 79.1% identical to those of the CIRP in mice, rats, human, bullfrog and axolotl cells, and Xenopus embryos and oocytes, respectively. These results show that the CIRP is highly conserved in the evolution process and may be involved in various