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Gene Review

isl1  -  ISL LIM homeobox 1

Danio rerio

Synonyms: Insulin gene enhancer protein isl-1, Isl-1, Islet-1, SO:0000704, isl-1, ...
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Disease relevance of isl1


High impact information on isl1


Biological context of isl1

  • Comparative functional genomics revealed conservation and diversification of three enhancers of the isl1 gene for motor and sensory neuron-specific expression [5].
  • Initially, two enhancer elements, CREST1 and CREST2, were identified downstream of the isl1 locus in the genomes of fugu, chick, mouse, and human by BLAST searching for highly similar elements to those originally identified as motor and sensory neuron-specific enhancers in the zebrafish genome [5].
  • Three novel LIM domain homeobox cDNAs encoding proteins structurally related to the Isl-1 protein were isolated from a chinook salmon pituitary cDNA library [1].
  • The islet-1 gene expression, irregular distribution and dorsolateral position of spt-expressing cells in the developing CNS are characteristic of dorsal longitudinal ascending (DoLA) interneurons [6].
  • An evolutionary conserved functional role for Isl-1 in the expression of the pioneering phenotype of the primary neurons is suggested [4].

Anatomical context of isl1


Regulatory relationships of isl1

  • In the ventral spinal cord of the spadetail mutant embryo, which has defects in the somites, the cells expressing zfIsl-2 mRNA significantly decreased in number in contrast to the increase in cells expressing Isl-1 mRNA, suggesting the influence of the somites on the expression of both genes [10].

Other interactions of isl1

  • We previously reported that, while several ventral cells initially express the zebrafish Islet-1 (Isl-1) gene, a member of the LIM/homeobox gene family, the expression of this gene becomes restricted to a single or a pair of cells slightly anterior to each segment border by 16 hr after fertilization [10].
  • The level of isl-1 mRNA is generally higher than those of isl-2 and isl-3 mRNAs [1].
  • Further, induction of islet1 and lim3 expression in the eye at 2 days postfertilization (dpf) was suppressed in mbx-MO-injected embryos [11].
  • Expression of islet-1 occurs in nrd-positive cells after expression of nrd, and the expression of the two genes partially overlaps in time [12].
  • Overexpression, mutant and inhibitor analyses show that nkx2.2b expression in the LFP is up-regulated by Shh, but repressed by retinoids and ectopic islet-1 (isl1) expression [13].

Analytical, diagnostic and therapeutic context of isl1


  1. Presence of isl-1-related LIM domain homeobox genes in teleost and their similar patterns of expression in brain and spinal cord. Gong, Z., Hui, C.C., Hew, C.L. J. Biol. Chem. (1995) [Pubmed]
  2. Functional repression of Islet-2 by disruption of complex with Ldb impairs peripheral axonal outgrowth in embryonic zebrafish. Segawa, H., Miyashita, T., Hirate, Y., Higashijima, S., Chino, N., Uyemura, K., Kikuchi, Y., Okamoto, H. Neuron (2001) [Pubmed]
  3. Islet1 and Islet2 have equivalent abilities to promote motoneuron formation and to specify motoneuron subtype identity. Hutchinson, S.A., Eisen, J.S. Development (2006) [Pubmed]
  4. Zebrafish primary neurons initiate expression of the LIM homeodomain protein Isl-1 at the end of gastrulation. Korzh, V., Edlund, T., Thor, S. Development (1993) [Pubmed]
  5. Comparative functional genomics revealed conservation and diversification of three enhancers of the isl1 gene for motor and sensory neuron-specific expression. Uemura, O., Okada, Y., Ando, H., Guedj, M., Higashijima, S., Shimazaki, T., Chino, N., Okano, H., Okamoto, H. Dev. Biol. (2005) [Pubmed]
  6. The identity and distribution of neural cells expressing the mesodermal determinant spadetail. Tamme, R., Wells, S., Conran, J.G., Lardelli, M. BMC Dev. Biol. (2002) [Pubmed]
  7. Developmental regulation of islet-1 mRNA expression during neuronal differentiation in embryonic zebrafish. Inoue, A., Takahashi, M., Hatta, K., Hotta, Y., Okamoto, H. Dev. Dyn. (1994) [Pubmed]
  8. Analyses of pancreas development by generation of gfp transgenic zebrafish using an exocrine pancreas-specific elastaseA gene promoter. Wan, H., Korzh, S., Li, Z., Mudumana, S.P., Korzh, V., Jiang, Y.J., Lin, S., Gong, Z. Exp. Cell Res. (2006) [Pubmed]
  9. Differential expression of two somatostatin genes during zebrafish embryonic development. Devos, N., Deflorian, G., Biemar, F., Bortolussi, M., Martial, J.A., Peers, B., Argenton, F. Mech. Dev. (2002) [Pubmed]
  10. Molecular heterogeneity among primary motoneurons and within myotomes revealed by the differential mRNA expression of novel islet-1 homologs in embryonic zebrafish. Tokumoto, M., Gong, Z., Tsubokawa, T., Hew, C.L., Uyemura, K., Hotta, Y., Okamoto, H. Dev. Biol. (1995) [Pubmed]
  11. The homeobox gene mbx is involved in eye and tectum development. Kawahara, A., Chien, C.B., Dawid, I.B. Dev. Biol. (2002) [Pubmed]
  12. Expression of zebrafish bHLH genes ngn1 and nrd defines distinct stages of neural differentiation. Korzh, V., Sleptsova, I., Liao, J., He, J., Gong, Z. Dev. Dyn. (1998) [Pubmed]
  13. Hedgehog and retinoid signalling confines nkx2.2b expression to the lateral floor plate of the zebrafish trunk. Schäfer, M., Kinzel, D., Neuner, C., Schartl, M., Volff, J.N., Winkler, C. Mech. Dev. (2005) [Pubmed]
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