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Gene Review

grem1  -  gremlin 1, DAN family BMP antagonist

Xenopus laevis

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Disease relevance of Cktsf1b1

  • Differential screening-selected gene aberrative in neuroblastoma (DAN) belongs to a novel gene family that includes the Xenopus head-inducing factor, Cerberus and the dorsalizing factor, Gremlin [1].

High impact information on Cktsf1b1

  • Therefore, we propose that Gremlin, Cerberus, and DAN control diverse processes in growth and development by selectively antagonizing the activities of different subsets of the TGF beta ligands [2].
  • Using a Xenopus expression-cloning screen, we have isolated Gremlin, a novel antagonist of bone morphogenetic protein (BMP) signaling that is expressed in the neural crest [2].
  • The secreted BMP antagonists noggin and gremlin both efficiently block mesoderm induction by BMP homo- and heterodimers in animal caps [3].
  • In the gastrula grm becomes restricted to the dorsolateral region of the embryo, and during somitogenesis it is strongly expressed in the presomitic mesoderm and developing somites, and in the ventral neural tube [4].
  • Our results show that grm encodes a maternal transcript, and the zygotic transcription is turned on at the mid-blastula transition (MBT), when grm is detected in the entire blastoderm [4].

Biological context of Cktsf1b1

  • Xenopus laevis Gremlin has been isolated as a novel dorsalizing factor, belonging to a family of secreted proteins with axial patterning activity . In a search for genes that control development in zebrafish (Danio rerio), we have identified a sequence homologous to Xenopus gremlin [4].

Analytical, diagnostic and therapeutic context of Cktsf1b1

  • Electron microscopy showed that the tubules in the explants were similar to the pronephric ducts of normal larvae, and they also expressed Gremlin and c-ret, molecular markers for pronephric ducts [5].


  1. Differential screening-selected gene aberrative in neuroblastoma protein modulates inflammatory pain in the spinal dorsal horn. Ohtori, S., Yamamoto, T., Ino, H., Hanaoka, E., Shinbo, J., Ozaki, T., Takada, N., Nakamura, Y., Chiba, T., Nakagawara, A., Sakiyama, S., Sakashita, Y., Takahashi, K., Tanaka, K., Yamagata, M., Yamazaki, M., Shimizu, S., Moriya, H. Neuroscience (2002) [Pubmed]
  2. The Xenopus dorsalizing factor Gremlin identifies a novel family of secreted proteins that antagonize BMP activities. Hsu, D.R., Economides, A.N., Wang, X., Eimon, P.M., Harland, R.M. Mol. Cell (1998) [Pubmed]
  3. In Xenopus embryos, BMP heterodimers are not required for mesoderm induction, but BMP activity is necessary for dorsal/ventral patterning. Eimon, P.M., Harland, R.M. Dev. Biol. (1999) [Pubmed]
  4. Regulated expression pattern of gremlin during zebrafish development. Nicoli, S., Gilardelli, C.N., Pozzoli, O., Presta, M., Cotelli, F. Gene Expr. Patterns (2005) [Pubmed]
  5. In vitro induction of the pronephric duct in Xenopus explants. Osafune, K., Nishinakamura, R., Komazaki, S., Asashima, M. Dev. Growth Differ. (2002) [Pubmed]
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