KazrinA is required for axial elongation and epidermal integrity in Xenopus tropicalis

Dev Dyn. 2008 Jun;237(6):1718-25. doi: 10.1002/dvdy.21557.


Kazrin is a recently described desmosomal protein that binds the cornified envelope precursor periplakin. In this study, we have examined kazrin isoform A expression during the development of Xenopus tropicalis and investigated the consequences of its depletion. Whole mount in situ hybridisation revealed that kazrinA mRNA is expressed throughout the embryo at least until tadpole stages. Xenopus tropicalis embryos that had been injected with antisense morpholino oligonucleotides directed against kazrinA failed to elongate properly and showed defects in development of the head, eye, notochord, and somites. We also observed that the epidermis became disorganised and frequently separated from the underlying mesoderm, causing the formation of epidermal blisters. Together, our results suggest that loss of kazrinA causes defects in cell adhesion that affect axial elongation, cell differentiation, and epidermal morphogenesis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Base Sequence
  • Body Patterning
  • Carrier Proteins / genetics
  • Carrier Proteins / metabolism
  • Carrier Proteins / physiology*
  • Cell Adhesion
  • Cell Differentiation
  • Cytoskeleton / metabolism
  • Epidermis / embryology*
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Developmental*
  • In Situ Hybridization
  • Models, Biological
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Phenotype
  • RNA, Messenger / metabolism
  • Xenopus / embryology*
  • Xenopus / metabolism*


  • Carrier Proteins
  • RNA, Messenger