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Gene Review

wt1a  -  wilms tumor 1a

Danio rerio

Synonyms: SO:0000704, wt1, zwt1
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Disease relevance of wt1a

  • Enzymatically dissociated testicular cells containing germ cells were co-cultured on feeder cells derived from tumor-like testis, which exhibited features characteristic of Sertoli cells such as phagocytic activity and transcription of the Wilms' tumor suppressor wt1 and sox9a genes [1].

High impact information on wt1a

  • Our gene knockdown experiments indicate that wt1 is required for its initial restricted expression in pronephric primordia, pronephric cell migration and fusion. wt1 also appears to be involved in interrenal development and ff1b expression [2].
  • Both wt1a and wt1b are expressed in the intermediate mesoderm, with wt1b being restricted to a smaller area lying at the caudal end of the wt1a expression domain [3].
  • The Wilms' tumor suppressor gene wt1 encodes a zinc-finger transcription factor that plays an important role in the development of the mammalian genitourinary system [3].
  • In zebrafish, an ortholog of wt1 has been described that is expressed in the pronephric field and is later restricted to the podocytes [3].
  • The inactivation of both wt1 alleles in mice gives rise to multiple organ defects, among them agenesis of kidney, spleen, and gonads [3].

Anatomical context of wt1a


  1. Transmeiotic differentiation of zebrafish germ cells into functional sperm in culture. Sakai, N. Development (2002) [Pubmed]
  2. Parallel early development of zebrafish interrenal glands and pronephros: differential control by wt1 and ff1b. Hsu, H.J., Lin, G., Chung, B.C. Development (2003) [Pubmed]
  3. Identification and comparative expression analysis of a second wt1 gene in zebrafish. Bollig, F., Mehringer, R., Perner, B., Hartung, C., Schäfer, M., Schartl, M., Volff, J.N., Winkler, C., Englert, C. Dev. Dyn. (2006) [Pubmed]
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