Altered cell fate in LiCl-treated sea urchin embryos

Dev Biol. 1991 Oct;147(2):445-50. doi: 10.1016/0012-1606(91)90302-j.


Endo16 is a lineage-specific protein expressed during embryogenesis in the sea urchin, Strongylocentrotus purpuratus. We have examined the effects of various concentrations of lithium chloride, a well-known vegetalizing agent, on Endo16 expression in whole sea urchin embryos. Our results show that treatment with LiCl causes increased steady-state levels of Endo16 transcripts. An increase in the number of endodermal cells in treated embryos demonstrates a change in cell lineage. In addition, we observed a delay in development of lithium-treated embryos that is accompanied by a delay in the expression of a late class histone H2B gene.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Blotting, Northern
  • Cell Adhesion Molecules / biosynthesis
  • Cell Differentiation / drug effects
  • Chlorides / pharmacology*
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Endoderm / metabolism
  • Fluorescent Antibody Technique
  • Gene Expression / drug effects
  • In Vitro Techniques
  • Lithium / pharmacology*
  • Lithium Chloride
  • Protein Biosynthesis
  • Proteins*
  • RNA / analysis
  • Sea Urchins / embryology*
  • Transcription, Genetic / drug effects


  • Cell Adhesion Molecules
  • Chlorides
  • Proteins
  • endo16 protein, sea urchin
  • RNA
  • Lithium
  • Lithium Chloride