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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Development of the pteridine pathway in the zebrafish, Danio rerio.

In the zebrafish, the peripheral neurons and the pigment cells are derived from the neural crest and share the pteridine pathway, which leads either to the cofactor tetrahydrobiopterin or to xanthophore pigments. The components of the pteridine pattern were identified as tetrahydrobiopterin, sepiapterin, 7-oxobiopterin, isoxanthopterin, and 2,4,7-trioxopteridine. The expression of GTP cyclohydrolase I activity during the first 24-h postfertilization, followed by 6-pyruvoyl-5,6,7,8-tetrahydropterin synthase and sepiapterin reductase, suggest an early supply of tetrahydrobiopterin for neurotransmitter synthesis in the neurons and for tyrosine supply in the melanophores. At 48-h postfertilization, sepiapterin formation branches off the de novo pathway of tetrahydrobiopterin synthesis. Sepiapterin, via 7,8-dihydrobiopterin and biopterin, serves as a precursor for the formation of 7-oxobiopterin, which may be further catabolized to isoxanthopterin and 2,4,7-trioxopteridine. Neither 7, 8-dihydrobiopterin nor biopterin is a substrate for xanthine oxidoreductase. In contrast, both of these compounds are oxidized at C-7 by a xanthine oxidase variant form, which is inactivated by KCN, but is insensitive to allopurinol. The oxidase and the dehydrogenase form of xanthine oxidoreductase as well as the xanthine oxidase variant have specific developmental patterns. It follows that GTP cyclohydrolase I, the formation of sepiapterin, and the xanthine oxidoreductase family control the pteridine pathway in the zebrafish.[1]


  1. Development of the pteridine pathway in the zebrafish, Danio rerio. Ziegler, I., McDonald, T., Hesslinger, C., Pelletier, I., Boyle, P., McDonaldo, T. J. Biol. Chem. (2000) [Pubmed]
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