Egr1 is a highly conserved zinc finger protein which plays important roles in many aspects of vertebrate development and in the adult. The cDNA coding for zebrafish Egr1 was obtained and its expression pattern was examined during zebrafish embryogenesis using whole-mount in situ hybridization. Egr1 mRNA is first detected in adaxial cells in the presomitic mesoderm between 11 and 20 h post-fertilization (hpf), spanning the 4-24 somite stages. Later, Egr1 expression is observed only in specific brain areas, starting at 21 hpf and subsequently increasing in distinct domains of the central nervous system, e.g. in the telencephalon, diencephalon and hypothalamus. Between 24 and 48 hpf, Egr1 is expressed in specific domains of the hypothalamus, mesencephalon, tegmentum, pharynx, retina, otic vesicle and heart.