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

Calcium transients accompany ooplasmic segregation in zebrafish embryos.

Through the injection of f-aequorin (a calcium-specific luminescent reporter), and the use of an imaging photon detector, transient localized elevations of free cytosolic calcium in the forming blastodisc (BD) and animal hemisphere cortex were visualized that correlated with ooplasmic segregation. The introduction of an appropriate concentration of the weak (KD = 1.5 micromol/L) calcium buffer 5,5'-dibromo-BAPTA results in the dissipation of these calcium domains, and inhibits cytoplasmic streaming and the subsequent formation of a BD at the animal pole. These inhibitory actions are dependent on the final cytosolic concentration of buffer within the egg: > or = 1.3 mmol/L blocks ooplasmic streaming; < 1.3 mmol/L eggs segregate normally. Injection of 5,5'-dimethyl-BAPTA (KD = 0.15 micromol/L) to a final concentration of 1.5 mmol/L as a control has no effect on ooplasmic streaming. These results suggest that localized domains of elevated free cytosolic calcium are essential for ooplasmic segregation in zebrafish. Furthermore, a hypothetical model is presented linking these calcium transients to the contraction of a cortically located actin microfilament network as a possible mechanism providing the driving force for segregation.[1]


  1. Calcium transients accompany ooplasmic segregation in zebrafish embryos. Leung, C.F., Webb, S.E., Miller, A.L. Dev. Growth Differ. (1998) [Pubmed]
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