Expression of gata1 is regulated through multiple cis-acting GATA motifs. To elucidate regulatory mechanisms of the gata1 gene, we have used zebrafish. To this end, we isolated and analyzed zebrafish gata1 genomic DNA, which resulted in the discovery of a novel intron that was unknown in previous analyses. This intron corresponds to the first intron of other vertebrate Gata1 genes. GFP reporter analyses revealed that this intron and a distal double GATA motif in the regulatory region are important for the regulation of zebrafish gata1 gene expression. To examine whether GATA1 regulates its own gene expression, we microinjected into embryos a GFP reporter gene linked successively to the gata1 gene regulatory region and to GATA1 mRNA. Surprisingly, ectopic expression of the reporter gene was induced at the site of GATA1 overexpression and was dependent on the distal double GATA motif. Functional domain analyses using transgenic fish lines that harbor the gata1-GFP reporter construct revealed that both the N- and C-terminal zinc-finger domains of GATA1, hence intact GATA1 function, are required for the ectopic GFP expression. These results provide the first in vivo evidence that gata1 gene expression undergoes positive autoregulation.