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Gene Review

pax6  -  paired box 6

Xenopus (Silurana) tropicalis

Synonyms: XLPAX6, an2, d11s812e, mgda, pax-6, ...
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High impact information on pax6

  • At the neurula and tailbud stages, dorsoanterior structures are affected: embryos displayed micropthalmia and the loss of the first branchial arch, as detected by the expression of pax-6, Xotx2 and en-2 [1].
  • XTcf-4A restored the expression of the mesencephalon marker genes pax-6 and wnt-2b but not the isthmus marker gene en-2 [2].
  • In support of this, we demonstrate that some transcription factors expressed in the anterior neural ectoderm and/or presumptive eye field (otx2, pax6, and rx1) change the fate of competent, ventral progenitors, which normally do not contribute to the retina, from an epidermal to a retinal fate [3].
  • Thereby, otx2, pax6, and rx1 mediate early steps of retinal specification, including the regulation of morphogenetic cell movements, that are dependent on the level of neural-inductive signaling [3].
  • By using in situ and immunohistochemical analysis of pax6, Xbf1, and tyrosine hydroxylase (TH), gene expression during eye field, telencephalon field, and retinal development was followed with and without RA treatment [4].

Biological context of pax6

  • The regeneration potential and the lens-forming transformations of the implants were tested using an antisense probe for pax6 as an earlier marker of lens formation and a monoclonal antibody anti-lens as a definitive indicator of lens cell differentiation [5].

Anatomical context of pax6

  • PURPOSE: Both rx1 and pax6 are expressed during the initial formation of the vertebrate eye field, and they are thought to be crucial for maintenance of the retinal stem cells in the ciliary marginal zone [6].

Associations of pax6 with chemical compounds

  • In this study, we compared the expression of a number of genes known to be activated during various phases of embryonic lens formation, during the process of cornea-lens transdifferentiation. mRNA expression was monitored via in situ hybridization using digoxigenin-labeled riboprobes of pax-6, Xotx2, xSOX3, XProx1, and gamma6-cry [7].

Analytical, diagnostic and therapeutic context of pax6

  • In situ hybridization revealed that neither type of axis-deficient embryo expressed goosecoid or pax-6. brachyury was expressed in the constricted waist region of the wasp-shaped embryos but was not expressed in the permanent-blastula-type embryos [8].


  1. XIPOU 2 is a potential regulator of Spemann's Organizer. Witta, S.E., Sato, S.M. Development (1997) [Pubmed]
  2. Autoregulation of canonical Wnt signaling controls midbrain development. Kunz, M., Herrmann, M., Wedlich, D., Gradl, D. Dev. Biol. (2004) [Pubmed]
  3. Transcription factors of the anterior neural plate alter cell movements of epidermal progenitors to specify a retinal fate. Kenyon, K.L., Zaghloul, N., Moody, S.A. Dev. Biol. (2001) [Pubmed]
  4. Effects of retinoic acid upon eye field morphogenesis and differentiation. Eagleson, G.W., Johnson-Meeter, L.J., Frideres, J. Dev. Dyn. (2001) [Pubmed]
  5. Tissue interactions and lens-forming competence in the outer cornea of larval Xenopus laevis. Cannata, S.M., Arresta, E., Bernardini, S., Gargioli, C., Filoni, S. J. Exp. Zoolog. Part A Comp. Exp. Biol. (2003) [Pubmed]
  6. Changes in Rx1 and Pax6 activity at eye field stages differentially alter the production of amacrine neurotransmitter subtypes in Xenopus. Zaghloul, N.A., Moody, S.A. Mol. Vis. (2007) [Pubmed]
  7. Conservation of gene expression during embryonic lens formation and cornea-lens transdifferentiation in Xenopus laevis. Schaefer, J.J., Oliver, G., Henry, J.J. Dev. Dyn. (1999) [Pubmed]
  8. Distribution of dorsal-forming activity in precleavage embryos of the Japanese newt, Cynops pyrrhogaster: effects of deletion of vegetal cytoplasm, UV irradiation, and lithium treatment. Doi, J.Y., Niigaki, H., Sone, K., Takabatake, T., Takeshima, K., Yasui, K., Tosuji, H., Tsukahara, J., Sakai, M. Dev. Biol. (2000) [Pubmed]
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