Zebrafish pax[zf-a]: a paired box-containing gene expressed in the neural tube

EMBO J. 1991 Dec;10(12):3609-19.


Murine and human sequences homologous to the paired box of the Drosophila segmentation gene paired have been reported previously. Here we describe a zebrafish (Brachydanio rerio) paired box-containing clone, pax[zf-a], which is clearly distinct from reported vertebrate Pax genes. The putative protein encoded by pax[zf-a] contains a paired box and a paired-type homeobox separated by a glycine-rich, acidic linker and a carboxy-terminal end which is remarkably rich in serine, threonine and proline residues. By in situ hybridization to embryonic tissue sections and whole mount embryos, pax[zf-a] transcripts were found within restricted regions of the central nervous system and the eye. In contrast to the murine Pax genes recently characterized, pax[zf-a] is not expressed in the segmented mesoderm. At the 17 h stage, pax[zf-a] expression is detected in a defined area of the diencephalon which circumscribes the presumptive thalamus. This suggests an involvement of pax[zf-a] in pattern formation in the rostral brain. The pax[zf-a] gene is also expressed throughout the hindbrain and spinal cord. This hybridization signal is restricted to a longitudinal column which includes the basal plate. Later in development, at 36 h post-fertilization, pax[zf-a] transcripts are no longer restricted to a specific region of the diencephalon, but are distributed over the entire developing brain.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Animals
  • Base Sequence
  • Blotting, Northern
  • Cloning, Molecular
  • DNA
  • Eye / chemistry
  • Gene Expression
  • Genes, Regulator*
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Nervous System / chemistry
  • Nervous System / embryology*
  • Nucleic Acid Hybridization
  • RNA / genetics
  • Rhombencephalon / chemistry
  • Rhombencephalon / embryology
  • Sequence Homology, Nucleic Acid
  • Spinal Cord / chemistry
  • Spinal Cord / embryology
  • Transcription, Genetic
  • Zebrafish / embryology
  • Zebrafish / genetics


  • RNA
  • DNA

Associated data

  • GENBANK/S59995
  • GENBANK/S60010
  • GENBANK/S60014
  • GENBANK/S60016
  • GENBANK/S64918
  • GENBANK/S70678
  • GENBANK/X60045
  • GENBANK/X60046
  • GENBANK/X60047
  • GENBANK/X60048
  • GENBANK/X61389