Many members of the Btg/Tob family, which possess anti-proliferation activity, have been identified in mammals but their physiological functions are poorly understood. We have identified a zebrafish tob1 gene, which encodes a peptide of 322 amino acids. The expression pattern of zebrafish tob1 during early embryogenesis is examined by RT-PCR and whole-mount in situ hybridization. The maternal tob1 transcript is abundant in fertilized eggs and blastulas. The expression of tob1 ceases during midgastrulation and early segmentation, when it is expressed and restricted to the notochord and somites. On day 2, expression occurs in the pectoral fin bud but not in other tissues. It will be interesting to investigate whether Tob1 is required for controlling cell proliferation during vertebrate embryogenesis.