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Sample records for adult xenopus laevis

  1. Thermal acclimation of locomotor performance in tadpoles and adults of the aquatic frog Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Wilson, R S; James, R S; Johnston, I A

    2000-03-01

    Among amphibians, the ability to compensate for the effects of temperature on the locomotor system by thermal acclimation has only been reported in larvae of a single species of anuran. All other analyses have examined predominantly terrestrial adult life stages of amphibians and found no evidence of thermal acclimatory capacity. We examined the ability of both tadpoles and adults of the fully aquatic amphibian Xenopus laevis to acclimate their locomotor system to different temperatures. Tadpoles were acclimated to either 12 degrees C or 30 degrees C for 4 weeks and their burst swimming performance was assessed at four temperatures between 5 degrees C and 30 degrees C. Adult X. laevis were acclimated to either 10 degrees C or 25 degrees C for 6 weeks and their burst swimming performance and isolated muscle performance was determined at six temperatures between 5 degrees C and 30 degrees C. Maximum swimming performance of cold-acclimated X. laevis tadpoles was greater at cool temperatures and lower at the highest temperature in comparison with the warm-acclimated animals. At the test temperature of 12 degrees C, maximum swimming velocity of tadpoles acclimated to 12 degrees C was 38% higher than the 30 degrees C-acclimation group, while at 30 degrees C, maximum swimming velocity of the 30 degrees C-acclimation group was 41% faster than the 12 degrees C-acclimation group. Maximum swimming performance of adult X. laevis acclimated to 10 degrees C was also higher at the lower temperatures than the 25 degrees C acclimated animals, but there was no difference between the treatment groups at higher temperatures. When tested at 10 degrees C, maximum swimming velocity of the 10 degrees C-acclimation group was 67% faster than the 25 degrees C group. Isolated gastrocnemius muscle fibres from adult X. laevis acclimated to 10 degrees C produced higher relative tetanic tensions and decreased relaxation times at 10 degrees C in comparison with animals acclimated to 25 degrees C

  2. The Pharmacokinetics of Enrofloxacin in Adult African Clawed Frogs (Xenopus laevis)

    PubMed Central

    Howard, Antwain M; Papich, Mark G; Felt, Stephen A; Long, Charles T; McKeon, Gabriel P; Bond, Emmitt S; Torreilles, Stéphanie L; Luong, Richard H; Green, Sherril L

    2010-01-01

    Pharmacokinetics of enrofloxacin, a fluoroquinolone antibiotic, was determined in adult female Xenopus laevis after single-dose administration (10 mg/kg) by intramuscular or subcutaneous injection. Frogs were evaluated at various time points until 8 h after injection. Plasma was analyzed for antibiotic concentration levels by HPLC. We computed pharmacokinetic parameters by using noncompartmental analysis of the pooled concentrations (naive pooled samples). After intramuscular administration of enrofloxacin, the half-life was 5.32 h, concentration maximum was 10.85 µg/mL, distribution volume was 841.96 mL/kg, and area under the time–concentration curve was 57.59 µg×h/mL; after subcutaneous administration these parameters were 4.08 h, 9.76 µg/mL, 915.85 mL/kg, and 47.42 µg×h/mL, respectively. According to plasma pharmacokinetics, Xenopus seem to metabolize enrofloxacin in a manner similar to mammals: low levels of the enrofloxacin metabolite, ciprofloxacin, were detected in the frogs’ habitat water and plasma. At necropsy, there were no gross or histologic signs of toxicity after single-dose administration; toxicity was not evaluated for repeated dosing. The plasma concentrations reached levels considered effective against common aquatic pathogens and suggest that a single, once-daily dose would be a reasonable regimen to consider when treating sick frogs. The treatment of sick frogs should be based on specific microbiologic identification of the pathogen and on antibiotic susceptibility testing. PMID:21205443

  3. A Tunable Silk Hydrogel Device for Studying Limb Regeneration in Adult Xenopus Laevis.

    PubMed

    Golding, Anne; Guay, Justin A; Herrera-Rincon, Celia; Levin, Michael; Kaplan, David L

    2016-01-01

    In certain amphibian models limb regeneration can be promoted or inhibited by the local wound bed environment. This research introduces a device that can be utilized as an experimental tool to characterize the conditions that promotes limb regeneration in the adult frog (Xenopus laevis) model. In particular, this device was designed to manipulate the local wound environment via a hydrogel insert. Initial characterization of the hydrogel insert revealed that this interaction had a significant influence on mechanical forces to the animal, due to the contraction of the hydrogel. The material and mechanical properties of the hydrogel insert were a factor in the device design in relation to the comfort of the animal and the ability to effectively manipulate the amputation site. The tunable features of the hydrogel were important in determining the pro-regenerative effects in limb regeneration, which was measured by cartilage spike formation and quantified by micro-computed tomography. The hydrogel insert was a factor in the observed morphological outcomes following amputation. Future work will focus on characterizing and optimizing the device's observed capability to manipulate biological pathways that are essential for limb regeneration. However, the present work provides a framework for the role of a hydrogel in the device and a path forward for more systematic studies. PMID:27257960

  4. A Tunable Silk Hydrogel Device for Studying Limb Regeneration in Adult Xenopus Laevis

    PubMed Central

    Golding, Anne; Levin, Michael; Kaplan, David L.

    2016-01-01

    In certain amphibian models limb regeneration can be promoted or inhibited by the local wound bed environment. This research introduces a device that can be utilized as an experimental tool to characterize the conditions that promotes limb regeneration in the adult frog (Xenopus laevis) model. In particular, this device was designed to manipulate the local wound environment via a hydrogel insert. Initial characterization of the hydrogel insert revealed that this interaction had a significant influence on mechanical forces to the animal, due to the contraction of the hydrogel. The material and mechanical properties of the hydrogel insert were a factor in the device design in relation to the comfort of the animal and the ability to effectively manipulate the amputation site. The tunable features of the hydrogel were important in determining the pro-regenerative effects in limb regeneration, which was measured by cartilage spike formation and quantified by micro-computed tomography. The hydrogel insert was a factor in the observed morphological outcomes following amputation. Future work will focus on characterizing and optimizing the device’s observed capability to manipulate biological pathways that are essential for limb regeneration. However, the present work provides a framework for the role of a hydrogel in the device and a path forward for more systematic studies. PMID:27257960

  5. XENOPUS LAEVIS: A CULTURING AND REARING PROTOCOL

    EPA Science Inventory

    Xenopus laevis are used extensively here at MED-Duluth as a model for assessing development toxicity to xenobiotics. As a result, a culturing system has been developed that provides eggs and tadpoles of consistent high quality for use by researchers at the facility. The methods ...

  6. Xenopus laevis in Developmental and Molecular Biology.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dawid, Igor B.; Sargent, Thomas D.

    1988-01-01

    Discusses the advantages of Xenopus laevis as an experimental animal in the study of embryogenesis in vertebrates. Summarizes the contributions of this system to the analysis of ribosomal and 5S RNA genes, and the diverse and highly productive applications of the oocyte injection technology. (RT)

  7. Xenopus laevis a success story of biological research in space

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Horn, Eberhard R.

    2006-01-01

    The clawed toad Xenopus laevis is a common experimental animal used in many disciplines of life sciences, such as integrative, developmental and molecular biology or experimental medicine. Since 30 years, Xenopus is used in biological research in space. Important milestones were the years 1975, when Xenopus embryos flew for the first time on the Russian space station Salut-4 and 1994, when Xenopus eggs were successfully fertilized for the first time in space during the Japanese Spacelab mission STS-47 and developed in microgravity to vital tadpoles. Most Xenopus studies were related to embryogenesis and development. Observations during and after altered gravity revealed changes such as the thickening of the blastocoel roof, the dorsalization of the tail, and modifications of vestibular reflexes, fictive and freely swimming. Many changes were reversible even during microgravity exposure. Studies about the vestibuloocular reflex or synapse formation revealed an age-related sensitivity to altered gravity. Xenopus offers useful tools for studies about microgravity effects on living systems. Its oocyte is a suitable model to study ion channel function in space; the dorsalization model can be used to analyse growth factor sensibilities. Hardware for life support of adults, tadpoles and embryos (cf. SUPPLY unit in combination with miniaquaria) as well as for controlled experiments in space are prerequisites for an extension of research with Xenopus. The application aspect is based on the fact that fundamental research per se brings benefit to man.

  8. Tebuconazole disrupts steroidogenesis in Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Poulsen, Rikke; Luong, Xuan; Hansen, Martin; Styrishave, Bjarne; Hayes, Tyrone

    2015-11-01

    A 27-day controlled exposure study of adult male African clawed frogs (Xenopus laevis) was conducted to examine the mechanism by which tebuconazole may disrupt steroidogenesis. The fungicide was measured by LC-MS/MS in tank water and in target tissues (adipose, kidney, liver, and brain), and we observed tissue-specific bioconcentration with BCF up to 238. Up to 10 different steroid hormones were quantified in gonads using LC-MS/MS and in plasma using GC-MS/MS and a radioimmunoassay was performed for further measurement of androgens. In order to assess whether effects increased with exposure or animals adapted to the xenobiotic, blood samples were collected 12 days into the study and at termination (day 27). After 12 days of exposure to 100 and 500μgL(-1) tebuconazole, plasma levels of testosterone (T) and dihydrotestosterone (DHT) were increased, while plasma 17β-estradiol (E2) concentrations were greatly reduced. Exposure to 0.1μgL(-1), on the other hand, resulted in decreased levels of T and DHT, with no effects observed for E2. After 27 days of exposure, effects were no longer observed in circulating androgen levels while the suppressive effect on E2 persisted in the two high-exposure groups (100 and 500μgL(-1)). Furthermore, tebuconazole increased gonadal concentrations of T and DHT as well as expression of the enzyme CYP17 (500μgL(-1), 27 days). These results suggest that tebuconazole exposure may supress the action of CYP17 at the lowest exposure (0.1μgL(-1)), while CYP19 suppression dominates at higher exposure concentrations (increased androgens and decreased E2). Increased androgen levels in plasma half-way into the study and in gonads at termination may thus be explained by compensatory mechanisms, mediated through increased enzymatic expression, as prolonged exposure had no effect on circulating androgen levels. PMID:26432166

  9. Vocal competition in male Xenopus laevis frogs.

    PubMed

    Tobias, Martha L; Corke, Anna; Korsh, Jeremy; Yin, David; Kelley, Darcy B

    2010-11-01

    Male Xenopus laevis frogs produce underwater advertisement calls that attract gravid females and suppress calling by male competitors. Here we explore whether groups of males establish vocal ranks and whether auditory cues alone suffice for vocal suppression. Tests of male-male pairs within assigned groups reveal linear vocal dominance relations, in which each male has a defined rank. Both the duration over which males interact, as well as the number of competitive opportunities, affect linearity. Linear dominance across the group is stable for about 2 weeks; rank is dynamic. Males engage in physical interactions (clasping) while paired but clasping and vocal rank are not correlated. Playbacks of advertisement calls suppress calling and calls from high- and low-ranking males are equally effective. Thus, auditory cues alone suffice to suppress vocal behavior. Playback intensities equivalent to a nearby male advertising effectively suppress calling while low-intensity playbacks are either ineffective or stimulate vocal behavior. X. laevis advertisement calls are biphasic, composed of alternating fast and slow click trills. Approximately half the males tested are more vocally suppressed by all slow than by all fast trills; thus, these males can distinguish between the two phases. The fully aquatic family Pipidae diverged from terrestrial ancestors approximately 170 mya. Vocal suppression in the X. laevis mating system may represent the translation of an ancient anuran social strategy to underwater life. PMID:21442049

  10. Facial Transplants in Xenopus laevis Embryos

    PubMed Central

    Sive, Hazel

    2014-01-01

    Craniofacial birth defects occur in 1 out of every 700 live births, but etiology is rarely known due to limited understanding of craniofacial development. To identify where signaling pathways and tissues act during patterning of the developing face, a 'face transplant' technique has been developed in embryos of the frog Xenopus laevis. A region of presumptive facial tissue (the "Extreme Anterior Domain" (EAD)) is removed from a donor embryo at tailbud stage, and transplanted to a host embryo of the same stage, from which the equivalent region has been removed. This can be used to generate a chimeric face where the host or donor tissue has a loss or gain of function in a gene, and/or includes a lineage label. After healing, the outcome of development is monitored, and indicates roles of the signaling pathway within the donor or surrounding host tissues. Xenopus is a valuable model for face development, as the facial region is large and readily accessible for micromanipulation. Many embryos can be assayed, over a short time period since development occurs rapidly. Findings in the frog are relevant to human development, since craniofacial processes appear conserved between Xenopus and mammals. PMID:24748020

  11. Analysis of neural progenitors from embryogenesis to juvenile adult in Xenopus laevis reveals biphasic neurogenesis and continuous lengthening of the cell cycle.

    PubMed

    Thuret, Raphaël; Auger, Hélène; Papalopulu, Nancy

    2015-11-30

    Xenopus laevis is a prominent model system for studying neural development, but our understanding of the long-term temporal dynamics of neurogenesis remains incomplete. Here, we present the first continuous description of neurogenesis in X. laevis, covering the entire period of development from the specification of neural ectoderm during gastrulation to juvenile frog. We have used molecular markers to identify progenitors and neurons, short-term bromodeoxyuridine (BrdU) incorporation to map the generation of newborn neurons and dual pulse S-phase labelling to characterise changes in their cell cycle length. Our study revealed the persistence of Sox3-positive progenitor cells from the earliest stages of neural development through to the juvenile adult. Two periods of intense neuronal generation were observed, confirming the existence of primary and secondary waves of neurogenesis, punctuated by a period of quiescence before metamorphosis and culminating in another period of quiescence in the young adult. Analysis of multiple parameters indicates that neural progenitors alternate between global phases of differentiation and amplification and that, regardless of their behaviour, their cell cycle lengthens monotonically during development, at least at the population level.

  12. Analysis of neural progenitors from embryogenesis to juvenile adult in Xenopus laevis reveals biphasic neurogenesis and continuous lengthening of the cell cycle

    PubMed Central

    Thuret, Raphaël; Auger, Hélène; Papalopulu, Nancy

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Xenopus laevis is a prominent model system for studying neural development, but our understanding of the long-term temporal dynamics of neurogenesis remains incomplete. Here, we present the first continuous description of neurogenesis in X. laevis, covering the entire period of development from the specification of neural ectoderm during gastrulation to juvenile frog. We have used molecular markers to identify progenitors and neurons, short-term bromodeoxyuridine (BrdU) incorporation to map the generation of newborn neurons and dual pulse S-phase labelling to characterise changes in their cell cycle length. Our study revealed the persistence of Sox3-positive progenitor cells from the earliest stages of neural development through to the juvenile adult. Two periods of intense neuronal generation were observed, confirming the existence of primary and secondary waves of neurogenesis, punctuated by a period of quiescence before metamorphosis and culminating in another period of quiescence in the young adult. Analysis of multiple parameters indicates that neural progenitors alternate between global phases of differentiation and amplification and that, regardless of their behaviour, their cell cycle lengthens monotonically during development, at least at the population level. PMID:26621828

  13. Epithelial-connective tissue interactions induced by thyroid hormone receptor are essential for adult stem cell development in the Xenopus laevis intestine.

    PubMed

    Hasebe, Takashi; Buchholz, Daniel R; Shi, Yun-Bo; Ishizuya-Oka, Atsuko

    2011-01-01

    In the amphibian intestine during metamorphosis, stem cells appear and generate the adult absorptive epithelium, analogous to the mammalian one, under the control of thyroid hormone (TH). We have previously shown that the adult stem cells originate from differentiated larval epithelial cells in the Xenopus laevis intestine. To clarify whether TH signaling in the epithelium alone is sufficient for inducing the stem cells, we have now performed tissue recombinant culture experiments using transgenic X. laevis tadpoles that express a dominant-positive TH receptor (dpTR) under a control of heat shock promoter. Wild-type (Wt) or dpTR transgenic (Tg) larval epithelium (Ep) was isolated from the tadpole intestine, recombined with homologous or heterologous nonepithelial tissues (non-Ep), and then cultivated in the absence of TH with daily heat shocks to induce transgenic dpTR expression. Adult epithelial progenitor cells expressing sonic hedgehog became detectable on day 5 in both the recombinant intestine of Tg Ep and Tg non-Ep (Tg/Tg) and that of Tg Ep and Wt non-Ep (Tg/Wt). However, in Tg/Wt intestine, they did not express other stem cell markers such as Musashi-1 and never generated the adult epithelium expressing a marker for absorptive epithelial cells. Our results indicate that, while it is unclear why some larval epithelial cells dedifferentiate into adult progenitor/stem cells, TR-mediated gene expression in the surrounding tissues other than the epithelium is required for them to develop into adult stem cells, suggesting the importance of TH-inducible epithelial-connective tissue interactions in establishment of the stem cell niche in the amphibian intestine.

  14. Susceptibility of Xenopus laevis tadpoles to infection by the ranavirus Frog-Virus 3 correlates with a reduced and delayed innate immune response in comparison with adult frogs.

    PubMed

    De Jesús Andino, Francisco; Chen, Guangchun; Li, Zhenghui; Grayfer, Leon; Robert, Jacques

    2012-10-25

    Xenopus laevis adults mount effective immune responses to ranavirus Frog Virus 3 (FV3) infections and clear the pathogen within 2-3 weeks. In contrast, most tadpoles cannot clear FV3 and succumb to infections within a month. While larval susceptibility has been attributed to ineffective adaptive immunity, the contribution of innate immune components has not been addressed. Accordingly, we performed a comprehensive gene expression analysis on FV3-infected tadpoles and adults. In comparison to adults, leukocytes and tissues of infected tadpoles exhibited modest (10-100 time lower than adult) and delayed (3 day later than adult) increase in expression of inflammation-associated (TNF-α, IL-1β and IFN-γ) and antiviral (Mx1) genes. In contrast, these genes were readily and robustly upregulated in tadpoles upon bacterial stimulation. Furthermore, greater proportions of larval than adult PLs were infected by FV3. Our study suggests that tadpole susceptibility to FV3 infection is partially due to poor virus-elicited innate immune responses.

  15. Skin wound healing in different aged Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Bertolotti, Evelina; Malagoli, Davide; Franchini, Antonella

    2013-08-01

    Xenopus froglets can perfectly heal skin wounds without scarring. To explore whether this capacity is maintained as development proceeds, we examined the cellular responses during the repair of skin injury in 8- and 15-month-old Xenopus laevis. The morphology and sequence of healing phases (i.e., inflammation, new tissue formation, and remodeling) were independent of age, while the timing was delayed in older frogs. At the beginning of postinjury, wound re-epithelialization occurred in form of a thin epithelium followed by a multilayered epidermis containing cells with apoptotic patterns and keratinocytes stained by anti-inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) antibody. The inflammatory response, early activated by recruitment of blood cells immunoreactive to anti-tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α, iNOS, transforming growth factor (TGF)-β1, and matrix metalloproteinase (MMP)-9, persisted over time. The dermis repaired by a granulation tissue with extensive angiogenesis, inflammatory cells, fibroblasts, and anti-α-SMA positive myofibroblasts. As the healing progressed, wounded areas displayed vascular regression, decrease in cellularity, and rearrangement of provisional matrix. The epidermis restored to a prewound morphology while granulation tissue was replaced by a fibrous tissue in a scar-like pattern. The quantitative PCR analysis demonstrated an up-regulated expression of Xenopus suppressor of cytokine signaling 3 (XSOCS-3) and Xenopus transforming growth factor-β2 (XTGF-β2) soon after wounding and peak levels were detected when granulation tissue was well developed with a large number of inflammatory cells. The findings indicate that X. laevis skin wound healing occurred by a combination of regeneration (in epidermis) and repair (in dermis) and, in contrast to froglet scarless wound healing, the growth to a more mature adult stage is associated with a decrease in regenerative capacity with scar-like tissue formation.

  16. Formation of extrachromosomal circles from telomeric DNA in Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Cohen, Sarit; Méchali, Marcel

    2002-12-01

    Instability and plasticity of telomeric DNA, which includes extrachromosomal DNA, are usually correlated with the absence of telomerase and with abnormal growth of mammalian cells. Here, we show the formation of extrachromosomal circular DNA of telomeric repeats (tel-eccDNA) during the development of Xenopus laevis. Tel-eccDNA is double-stranded relaxed circles composed of the vertebrate consensus telomeric repeats [TTAGGG](n). Its size varies from <2 to >20 kb and it comprises up to 10% of the total cellular telomere content of the early embryo (pre-MBT stage). The amount of tel-eccDNA is reduced in later developmental stages and in adult tissues. Using a cell-free system derived from Xenopus egg extracts, we show that tel-eccDNA can be formed de novo from the telomere chromosomal tracts of sperm nuclei and naked DNA in a replication-independent manner. These results reveal an unusual plasticity of telomeric DNA during normal development of Xenopus. PMID:12446568

  17. Cytoplasmic effect on gene function in Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Yu, H J; Shi, C P; Niu, M C

    1987-05-01

    The pigmentation gene of Xenopus laevis is dominant and that of albino aP mutant recessive. Heterologous haploid hybrids are produced by UV inactivation of the egg nuclei during second polar body formation in the mutant sperm-fertilized Xenopus eggs. During development of these hybrids, melanin appeared in the eye and melanophores in the skin at stages comparable to those of the wild type, but much earlier than in the albino mutant. The number and intensity of pigment cells are intermediate between the black Xenopus and albino mutant. While a number of pigment cells remain in the hybrids, those in the albino eventually degenerate. Therefore, the development and maintenance of pigmentation in heterologous hybrids are contributed by Xenopus cytoplasm. Tadpole tail-tips were squashed and stained for chromosome counting. The results show that Xenopus and mutants are diploid (36 chromosomes) and heterologous haploid hybrids have 18 chromosomes. PMID:3672098

  18. Characterization of histone genes isolated from Xenopus laevis and Xenopus tropicalis genomic libraries.

    PubMed Central

    Ruberti, I; Fragapane, P; Pierandrei-Amaldi, P; Beccari, E; Amaldi, F; Bozzoni, I

    1982-01-01

    Using a cDNA clone for the histone H3 we have isolated, from two genomic libraries of Xenopus laevis and Xenopus tropicalis, clones containing four different histone gene clusters. The structural organization of X. laevis histone genes has been determined by restriction mapping, Southern blot hybridization and translation of the mRNAs which hybridize to the various restriction fragments. The arrangement of the histone genes in X. tropicalis has been determined by Southern analysis using X. laevis genomic fragments, containing individual genes, as probes. Histone genes are clustered in the genome of X. laevis and X. tropicalis and, compared to invertebrates, show a higher organization heterogeneity as demonstrated by structural analysis of the four genomic clones. In fact, the order of the genes within individual clusters is not conserved. Images PMID:6296782

  19. Toward defining the phosphoproteome of Xenopus laevis embryos

    PubMed Central

    McGivern, Jered V.; Swaney, Danielle L.; Coon, Joshua J.; Sheets, Michael D.

    2010-01-01

    Phosphorylation is universally used for controlling protein function, but knowledge of the phosphoproteome in vertebrate embryos has been limited. However, recent technical advances make it possible to define an organism's phosphoproteome at a more comprehensive level. Xenopus laevis offers established advantages for analyzing the regulation of protein function by phosphorylation. Functionally unbiased, comprehensive information about the Xenopus phosphoproteome would provide a powerful guide for future studies of phosphorylation in a developmental context. To this end, we performed a phosphoproteomic analysis of Xenopus oocytes, eggs, and embryos using recently developed mass spectrometry methods. We identified 1,441 phosphorylation sites present on 654 different Xenopus proteins, including hundreds of previously unknown phosphorylation sites. This approach identified several phosphorylation sites described in the literature and/or evolutionarily conserved in other organisms, validating the data's quality. These data will serve as a powerful resource for the exploration of phosphorylation and protein function within a developmental context. PMID:19384857

  20. Photoreceptor development in premetamorphic and metamorphic Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Parker, Ryan O; Mccarragher, Brent; Crouch, Rosalie; Darden, Alix G

    2010-03-01

    Transgenic Xenopus laevis are commonly used to study gene expression in photoreceptors, but only red rods and red cones are known to exist in the pre-metamorphic stages commonly used in transgenic studies. Using RT-PCR, this study shows that violet cones develop in early pre-metamorphic stages (Stage 35) with the red rods and red cones. Green rod development began in Stage 53 with the onset of metamorphosis.

  1. Epistylididae ectoparasites in a colony of African clawed frogs (Xenopus laevis).

    PubMed

    Pritchett, Kathleen R; Sanders, George E

    2007-03-01

    This report describes the discovery and treatment of a multiagent infection in a captive colony of adult, female Xenopus laevis. Animals were determined to be infected with Saprolegnia sp, a relatively common fungal parasite in laboratory-housed frogs, and a less common ectoparasite, Epistylis sp, that had been described only once before in frogs. We discuss the diagnosis, pathology, and treatment of Epistylis and the importance of water-quality monitoring and husbandry in the care of these research animals.

  2. Chromatin immunoprecipitation and deep sequencing in Xenopus tropicalis and Xenopus laevis

    PubMed Central

    Wills, Andrea E.; Gupta, Rakhi; Chuong, Edward; Baker, Julie C.

    2014-01-01

    Chromatin immunoprecipitation and deep sequencing (ChIP-SEQ) represents a powerful tool for identifying the genomic targets of transcription factors, chromatin remodeling factors, and histone modifications. The frogs Xenopus laevis and Xenopus tropicalis have historically been outstanding model systems for embryology and cell biology, with emerging utility as highly accessible embryos for genome-wide studies. Here we focus on the particular strengths and limitations of Xenopus cell biology and genomics as they apply to ChIP-SEQ, and outline a methodology for ChIP-SEQ in both species, providing detailed strategies for sample preparation, antibody selection, quality control, sequencing library preparation, and basic analysis. PMID:24064036

  3. Expanding the genetic code in Xenopus laevis oocytes.

    PubMed

    Ye, Shixin; Riou, Morgane; Carvalho, Stéphanie; Paoletti, Pierre

    2013-01-21

    Heterologous expression of ligand-gated ion channels (LGICs) in Xenopus laevis oocytes combined with site-directed mutagenesis has been demonstrated to be a powerful approach to study structure-function relationships. In particular, introducing unnatural amino acids (UAAs) has enabled modifications that are not found in natural proteins. However, the current strategy relies on the technically demanding in vitro synthesis of aminoacylated suppressor tRNA. We report here a general method that circumvents this limitation by utilizing orthogonal aminoacyl-tRNA synthetase (aaRS)/suppressor tRNA(CUA) pairs to genetically encode UAAs in Xenopus oocytes. We show that UAAs inserted in the N-terminal domain of N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors (NMDARs) serve as photo-crosslinkers that lock the receptor in a discrete conformational state in response to UV photo treatment. Our method should be generally applicable to studies of other LGICs in Xenopus oocytes. PMID:23292655

  4. Homeolog-specific targeted mutagenesis in Xenopus laevis using TALENs.

    PubMed

    Nakade, Shota; Sakuma, Tetsushi; Sakane, Yuto; Hara, Yoshihiro; Kurabayashi, Atsushi; Kashiwagi, Keiko; Kashiwagi, Akihiko; Yamamoto, Takashi; Obara, Masanobu

    2015-10-01

    Transcription activator-like effector nucleases (TALENs) have previously been used for targeted genome editing in various organisms including Xenopus laevis. However, because of genomic polyploidization, X. laevis usually possess homeologous genes (homeologs) with quite similar sequences that make the analysis of gene function difficult. In the present study, we show methodological examples of targeted gene modification of X. laevis homeologs. The X. laevis cytoglobin gene (cygb) consists of two homeologs (xlcygba and xlcygbb), and molecular phylogenetic analysis suggested that they have potentially different functions. Thus, there is a need to establish a method of homeolog-specific gene disruption to clarify gene functions in detail. Here, we show successful examples of homeolog-specific and simultaneous gene disruption for xlcygba and xlcygbb. We found that selective digestion can be performed with at least three mismatches in TALEN target sites in both homeologs. This report paves the way for the functional analyses of X. laevis homeologs, even those containing nearly identical sequences. PMID:25920501

  5. Effect of methoxychlor on various life stages of Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Fort, Douglas J; Guiney, Patrick D; Weeks, John A; Thomas, John H; Rogers, Robert L; Noll, Andra M; Spaulding, Clinton D

    2004-10-01

    The toxicological effects of the organochlorine pesticide methoxychlor were evaluated at various life stages of the South African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis, in an effort to determine stage-specific sensitivity. A battery of four separate assays, including a short-term (4-day) early embryo-larval assay (FETAX) (NF stages 8-46 [Nieuwkoop and Faber, 1994]), 30-day hind limb development assay (NF stages 8-54), 18-day metamorphic climax assay (NF stages 58-66), and 30-day adult reproduction assay were performed. Test concentrations for the FETAX, hind limb development, metamorphic climax, and reproductive assays ranged from 0.0001-1.0 mg/l, 0.0001-0.1 mg/l, 0.0001-0.1 mg/l, and 0.001-0.1 mg/l, respectively. Results from the short-term embryo-larval assay indicated that increased embryo-lethality, malformation, and growth inhibition were not induced at /=0.01 mg/l delayed hind limb digit differentiation. Follicular hyperplasia of the thyroid glands was noted in specimens exposed to 0.1 mg/l methoxychlor. Results from the 18-day metamorphic climax assay indicated that methoxychlor inhibited the rate of tail resorption in a concentration-dependent manner. Whole body tissue triiodothyronine (T(3)) profiles showed a reduced and delayed surge during climax compared to controls. For the reproductive assessment, adult female X. laevis were super-ovulated and both female and male were then exposed to varying concentrations of methoxychlor. A concentration-dependent reduction in ovary weight and the number of viable oocytes was observed. In exposed male specimens, a concentration-dependent reduction in testis weight and sperm count was found. Methoxychlor was found to accumulate in the ovary, and to a lesser extent in the testis. Based on breeding studies in which exposed females were bred with control males and exposed males bred with control

  6. Biochemical and Hematologic Reference Intervals for Aged Xenopus laevis in a Research Colony

    PubMed Central

    Chang, Angela G; Hu, Jing; Lake, Elizabeth; Bouley, Donna M; Johns, Jennifer L

    2015-01-01

    Xenopus laevis, the African clawed frog, is commonly used in developmental and toxicology research studies. Little information is available on aged X. laevis; however, with the complete mapping of the genome and the availability of transgenic animal models, the number of aged animals in research colonies is increasing. The goals of this study were to obtain biochemical and hematologic parameters to establish reference intervals for aged X. laevis and to compare results with those from young adult X. laevis. Blood samples were collected from laboratory reared, female frogs (n = 52) between the ages of 10 and 14 y. Reference intervals were generated for 30 biochemistry analytes and full hematologic analysis; these data were compared with prior results for young X. laevis from the same vendor. Parameters that were significantly higher in aged compared with young frogs included calcium, calcium:phosphorus ratio, total protein, albumin, HDL, amylase, potassium, CO2, and uric acid. Parameters found to be significantly lower in aged frogs included glucose, AST, ALT, cholesterol, BUN, BUN:creatinine ratio, phosphorus, triglycerides, LDL, lipase, sodium, chloride, sodium:potassium ratio, and anion gap. Hematology data did not differ between young and old frogs. These findings indicate that chemistry reference intervals for young X. laevis may be inappropriate for use with aged frogs. PMID:26424243

  7. Early development of the thymus in Xenopus laevis

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Young-Hoon; Williams, Allison; Hong, Chang-Soo; You, Youngjae; Senoo, Makoto; Saint-Jeannet, Jean-Pierre

    2012-01-01

    Background Although Xenopus laevis has been a model of choice for comparative and developmental studies of the immune system, little is known about organogenesis of the thymus, a primary lymphoid organ in vertebrates. Here we examined the expression of three transcription factors that have been functionally associated with pharyngeal gland development, gcm2, hoxa3 and foxn1, and evaluated the neural crest contribution to thymus development. Results In most species Hoxa3 is expressed in the third pharyngeal pouch endoderm where it directs thymus formation. In Xenopus, the thymus primordium is derived from the second pharyngeal pouch endoderm, which is hoxa3-negative, suggesting that a different mechanism regulates thymus formation in frogs. Unlike other species foxn1 is not detected in the epithelium of the pharyngeal pouch in Xenopus, rather, its expression is initiated as thymic epithelial cell starts to differentiate and express MHC class II molecules. Using transplantation experiments we show that while neural crest cells populate the thymus primordia, they are not required for the specification and initial development of this organ or for T cell differentiation in frogs. Conclusions These studies provide novel information on early thymus development in Xenopus, and highlight a number of features that distinguish Xenopus from other organisms. PMID:23172757

  8. Nuclear proteins of quiescent Xenopus laevis cells inhibit DNA replication in intact and permeabilized nuclei

    PubMed Central

    1996-01-01

    Quiescent cells from adult vertebrate liver and contact-inhibited or serum-deprived tissue cultures are active metabolically but do not carry out nuclear DNA replication and cell division. Replication of intact nuclei isolated from either quiescent Xenopus liver or cultured Xenopus A6 cells in quiescence was barely detectable in interphase extracts of Xenopus laevis eggs, although Xenopus sperm chromatin was replicated with approximately 100% efficiency in the same extracts. Permeabilization of nuclei from quiescent Xenopus liver or cultured Xenopus epithelial A6 cells did not facilitate efficient replication in egg extracts. Moreover, replication of Xenopus sperm chromatin in egg extracts was strongly inhibited by a soluble extract of isolated Xenopus liver nuclei; in contrast, complementary-strand synthesis on single-stranded DNA templates in egg extracts was not affected. Inhibition was specific to endogenous molecules localized preferentially in quiescent as opposed to proliferating cell nuclei, and was not due to suppression of cdk2 kinase activity. Extracts of Xenopus liver nuclei also inhibited growth of sperm nuclei formed in egg extracts. However, the rate and extent of decondensation of sperm chromatin in egg extracts were not affected. The formation of prereplication centers detected by anti-RP-A antibody was not affected by extracts of liver nuclei, but formation of active replication foci was blocked by the same extracts. Inhibition of DNA replication was alleviated when liver nuclear extracts were added to metaphase egg extracts before or immediately after Ca++ ion-induced transition to interphase. A plausible interpretation of our data is that endogenous inhibitors of DNA replication play an important role in establishing and maintaining a quiescent state in Xenopus cells, both in vivo and in cultured cells, perhaps by negatively regulating positive modulators of the replication machinery. PMID:8655587

  9. Atomic force microscopy of living and fixed Xenopus laevis embryos.

    PubMed

    Efremov, Yu M; Pukhlyakova, E A; Bagrov, D V; Shaitan, K V

    2011-12-01

    Xenopus laevis embryos are a rather simple and at the same time a very interesting animal model, which is widely used for research in developmental biology. Intensive coordinated cell movements take place during the multi-cellular organism development. Little is known of the cellular, molecular and biomechanical mechanisms of these movements. The conceptual framework for analysis of cell interactions within integrated populations is poorly developed. We have used atomic force microscopy (AFM) to observe the surface of fixed X. laevis embryos at different stages of their development. We have developed a new sample preparation protocol for these observations. The obtained images were compared with scanning electronic microscopy (SEM) data. Cell rearrangement during morphogenesis in vivo was also visualized by AFM. In the current paper we discuss facilities and challenges of using this technique for further embryo researching.

  10. [Xenopus laevis peroxiredoxins: Gene expression during development and characterization of the enzymes].

    PubMed

    Sharapov, M G; Novoselov, V I; Ravin, V K

    2016-01-01

    Reactive oxygen species (ROS) are produced via catabolic and anabolic processes during normal embryonic development, and ROS content in the cell is maintained at a certain level. Peroxiredoxins are a family of selenium-independent peroxidases and play a key role in maintaining redox homeostasis of the cell. In addition to regulating the ROS level, peroxiredoxins are involved in intracellular and intercellular signaling, cell differentiation, and tissue development. The time course of peroxiredoxin gene (prx1-6) expression was studied in Xenopus laevis during early ontogeny (Nieuwkoop and Faber stages 10-63). The highest expression level was observed for prx1 at these developmental stages. The prx1, prx3, and prx4 expression level changed most dramatically in response to oxidative stress artificially induced in X. laevis embryos. In X. laevis adults, prx1-6 were all intensely expressed in all organs examined, the prx1 expression level being the highest. The X. laevis prx1-6 genes were cloned and expressed in Escherichia coli, and physico-chemical characteristics were compared for the recombinant enzymes. The highest peroxidase activity and thermal stability were observed for Prx1 and Prx2. It was assumed that Prx1 plays a leading role in X. laevis early development. PMID:27239855

  11. Waterborne infectivity of the Ranavirus frog virus 3 in Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Robert, Jacques; George, Erica; De Jesús Andino, Francisco; Chen, Guangchun

    2011-09-01

    Ranaviruses like frog virus 3 (FV3) are responsible for emerging infectious diseases spreading worldwide to fish, amphibian and reptilian species. We have developed, in Xenopus laevis, an experimental model to investigate viral transmission. We show that FV3 released in water by immunocompromised infected adults can infect adult and larval stages of Xenopus within 3h of exposure. Time course of virus load and viral transcription in different tissues suggests that early waterborne FV3 infection through the digestive tract leads to dissemination in the kidney. Finally, a fraction of adult macrophages becomes infected following exposure to waterborne FV3 as visualized by fluorescence microscopy using macrophage- and FV3-specific antibodies. Little cytopathicity and apoptosis were detected in infected macrophages, which is consistent with our proposition that macrophages are permissive to FV3. These data highlight the efficiency of FV3 infectivity by the water route and the ability of FV3 to adapt to its hosts.

  12. Susceptibility of early life stages of Xenopus laevis to cadmium

    SciTech Connect

    Herkovits, J.; Perez-Coll, C.S.; Cardellini, P.; Pavanati, C.

    1997-02-01

    The susceptibility of Xenopus laevis to cadmium during different stages of development was evaluated by exposing embryos to cadmium concentrations ranging from 0.1 to 10 mg Cd{sup 2+}/L for 24, 48, and 72 h and assessing lethality and malformations. Susceptibility increased from the two blastomeres stage (stage 2) to stage 40, in which the 24-h LC100 was 1.13 mg Cd{sup 2+}/L, and resistance increased from this stage onward. Malformations occurred at all developmental stages evaluated, the most common being reduced size, incurvated axis, underdeveloped or abnormally developed fin, microcephaly, and microphtalmy. Scanning electron microscopy revealed changes in the ectodermal surface ranging from slightly vaulted cells to a severe reduction in the number of ciliated cells as the concentration of cadmium increased. The intraspecific variation evaluated in embryos (from four sets of parents) at seven developmental stages, expressed as the coefficient of variation of the LC100, ranged from 10 to 112% and reflects the capacity of Xenopus laevis to adapt to changing environmental conditions at different embryonic stages.

  13. Effects of Elevated In Ovo Selenium Exposure on Late Stage Development of Xenopus laevis Tadpoles.

    PubMed

    Massé, Anita J; Muscatello, Jorgelina R; Janz, David M

    2016-10-01

    The effects of elevated in ovo selenium (Se) exposure on late stage larval Xenopus laevis development were investigated. Adult females were fed diets augmented with selenomethionine for 68 days and bred with untreated males to obtain embryos with measured concentrations of 1.6 (control), 10.8, 28.1 and 81.7 μg Se/g dry mass. Embryos were reared under uncontaminated conditions until 50 % of individuals within an aquarium had completed metamorphosis. The highest in ovo Se exposure group exhibited greater froglet body mass and snout to vent length while having a higher proportion of tadpoles at earlier stages of development. No differences were detected among treatment groups for mortality or metamorphic timing during the rearing period. This research suggests that in ovo Se exposure has minimal effect on the survival and development of late stage larval X. laevis in a controlled laboratory environment with adequate food availability. PMID:27412338

  14. Effects of Elevated In Ovo Selenium Exposure on Late Stage Development of Xenopus laevis Tadpoles.

    PubMed

    Massé, Anita J; Muscatello, Jorgelina R; Janz, David M

    2016-10-01

    The effects of elevated in ovo selenium (Se) exposure on late stage larval Xenopus laevis development were investigated. Adult females were fed diets augmented with selenomethionine for 68 days and bred with untreated males to obtain embryos with measured concentrations of 1.6 (control), 10.8, 28.1 and 81.7 μg Se/g dry mass. Embryos were reared under uncontaminated conditions until 50 % of individuals within an aquarium had completed metamorphosis. The highest in ovo Se exposure group exhibited greater froglet body mass and snout to vent length while having a higher proportion of tadpoles at earlier stages of development. No differences were detected among treatment groups for mortality or metamorphic timing during the rearing period. This research suggests that in ovo Se exposure has minimal effect on the survival and development of late stage larval X. laevis in a controlled laboratory environment with adequate food availability.

  15. Proteolysis of Xenopus laevis egg envelope ZPA triggers envelope hardening.

    PubMed

    Lindsay, Leann L; Hedrick, Jerry L

    2004-11-12

    The egg envelope of most animal eggs is modified following fertilization, resulting in the prevention of polyspermy and hardening of the egg envelope. In frogs and mammals a prominent feature of envelope modification is N-terminal proteolysis of the envelope glycoprotein ZPA. We have purified the ZPA protease from Xenopus laevis eggs and characterized it as a zinc metalloprotease. Proteolysis of isolated egg envelopes by the isolated protease resulted in envelope hardening. The N-terminal peptide fragment of ZPA remained disulfide bond linked to the ZPA glycoprotein moiety following proteolysis. We propose a mechanism for egg envelope hardening involving ZPA proteolysis by an egg metalloprotease as a triggering event followed by induction of global conformational changes in egg envelope glycoproteins. PMID:15474476

  16. Xenopus laevis alpha and beta thyroid hormone receptors.

    PubMed Central

    Yaoita, Y; Shi, Y B; Brown, D D

    1990-01-01

    The Xenopus laevis genome encodes two genes for the alpha (TR alpha) and two genes for the beta (TR beta) thyroid hormone receptors. The two TR alpha genes closely resemble their rat, human, and chicken counterparts. No alternatively spliced TR alpha cDNA clones were found in the 5' untranslated region (5' UTR). In contrast, complex alternative splicing of TR beta mRNA occurs within the 5' UTR as well as possible alternative transcriptional start sites. As many as eight exons encoding mainly the 5' UTR are alternatively spliced, giving rise to at least two amino termini for each of the two TR beta proteins. The 5' UTR of transcripts from both TR alpha and TR beta genes contain multiple AUG sequences with short open reading frames suggesting translational control mechanisms might play a role in expression of TR genes. Images PMID:2402492

  17. Linker scanner mutagenesis of the Xenopus laevis ribosomal gene promoter.

    PubMed Central

    Reeder, R H; Pennock, D; McStay, B; Roan, J; Tolentino, E; Walker, P

    1987-01-01

    We have assayed a series of linker scanner mutants which cover the Xenopus laevis ribosomal gene promoter at approximately ten base pair intervals. All of these mutations adversely affect promoter activity with the exception of one mutation which stimulates activity. Thus, none are neutral. We show that most of the mutations can be partially rescued by ligating a block of enhancer elements upstream of the promoter. In addition, we have made extracts from liver nuclei which produce DNaseI protection footprints over the promoter. Analysis of both strands reveals a prominent footprinting domain from about -5 to -30. However, lesser changes in the digestion pattern are detected over most of the promoter. Previously published analyses have suggested that this promoter might be composed of three functional domains. The experiments presented here suggest that either 1) the three putative domains are so closely arranged that the boundaries are difficult to discern, or 2) the situation is more complex. Images PMID:3658698

  18. The structure of the mitochondrial cloud of Xenopus laevis oocytes.

    PubMed

    Billett, F S; Adam, E

    1976-12-01

    The ultrastructure of the mitochondrial cloud (Balbiani body) of the pre-vitellogenic oocytes of Xenopus laevis has been examined using transmission and stereoscan electron microscopy. Examination of conventional thin sections confirm previous observations which suggest that the cloud consists essentially of many thousands mitochondria and numerous small vesicles; larger clouds, in oocytes greater than 200 mum in diameter, contain relatively more vesicles. Using a standard electron microscope at 100 kV very long and coursing arrays of mitochondrial profiles can be detected. The presence of very long mitochondrial elements has been confirmed using a high voltage microscope operating at 500-1000 kV. Stereoscan preparations, isolated from pre-vitellogenic oocytes, lend some support to the view that the mitochondrial cloud amy consist of a mass of long filamentous mitochondria and the possibility that there are large continuous regions of mitochondrial material cannot be ruled out.

  19. Gut specific expression using mammalian promoters in transgenic Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Beck, C W; Slack, J M

    1999-11-01

    The recent development of transgenic methods for the frog Xenopus laevis provides the opportunity to study later developmental events, such as organogenesis, at the molecular level. Our studies have focused on the development of the tadpole gut, where tissue specific promoters have yet to be identified. We have used mammalian promoters, for the genes elastase, pancreatic duodenal homeobox-1, transthyretin, and intestinal fatty acid binding protein to drive green fluorescent protein expression in live tadpoles. All of these were shown to drive appropriate tissue specific expression, suggesting that the molecular mechanisms organising the gut are similar in amphibians and mammals. Furthermore, expression from the elastase promoter is initiated in the pancreatic buds before morphological definition becomes possible, making it a powerful tool for the study of pancreatic determination. PMID:10534620

  20. Identification and expression of an atypical isoform of metallothionein in the African clawed frog Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Scudiero, Rosaria; Tussellino, Margherita; Carotenuto, Rosa

    2015-05-01

    Exploiting the annotation of the western clawed frog Silurana tropicalis genome, we identified a new metallothionein (MT) gene, exhibiting all the features to be considered an active gene, but with an atypical coding region, showing only 17 cysteine residues instead of the canonical 20 cysteines of vertebrate metallothioneins and two anomalous cysteine triplets. However, the presence of a gene in the genome does not ensure its effective expression. By using conventional and Real-Time PCR analyses, we demonstrated that this atypical MT is constitutively expressed throughout the life cycle of the African clawed frog Xenopus laevis; moreover, this gene is highly expressed in the adult liver, the major site of MT expression and synthesis in vertebrates. To our knowledge, the X. laevis MT described in this paper is the first sequence of a vertebrate MT showing only 17 cysteine residues, arranged in two Cys-Cys-Cys motifs. Phylogenetic analyses also demonstrated that the atypical X. laevis MT merges in the anuran clade, but is the most derived sequence among tetrapods MTs. Finally, Tajima's Relative Rate Test suggested a different evolutionary rate between the canonical X. laevis MT and this novel isoform.

  1. THYROID AXIS INHIBITION IN XENOPUS LAEVIS: DEVELOPMENT OF AN AMPHIBIAN-BASED SCREENING ASSAY

    EPA Science Inventory

    In response to the initial EDSTAC recommendations, research was conducted on the development of a Xenopus laevis based tail resorption assay for evaluating thyroid axis disruption. These experiments highlighted key limitations associated with relying on tail resorption as a measu...

  2. Collagenoma in an African Clawed Frog (Xenopus laevis)

    PubMed Central

    Johnston, Jessica M; Philips, Blythe H; Carty, Anthony J; Klein, Peter S; Brice, Angela K

    2016-01-01

    A 3-y-old female Xenopus laevis was reported for a gray mass on the abdomen. The frog was used for egg collection and was otherwise experimentally naïve. On physical exam, the frog was bright and active and had a firm, gray, lobulated mass (1.5 cm × 0.5 cm × 0.5 cm) in the cutaneous tissue of the left lateral abdomen. An excisional biopsy was performed under anesthesia, and the entire mass was removed and processed for histopathology. Microscopically, the dermis was greatly expanded by connective tissue with a marked decrease in the number of glands, and occasional degenerative glands were present. When stained with Masson trichrome, the excessive connective tissue stained blue, indicating that it was composed of collagen. With Verhoeff–van Gieson staining, the connective tissue stained bright red with an absence of black-staining material, demonstrating the presence of collagen and ruling out elastic fibers. In light of the morphology of the mass and the results of the special stains, the mass was diagnosed as a collagenoma. To our knowledge, this report is the first description of a collagenoma in X. laevis. PMID:26884406

  3. Integument structure and function in juvenile Xenopus laevis with disrupted thyroid balance.

    PubMed

    Carvalho, Edison S M; Fuentes, Juan; Power, Deborah M

    2011-12-01

    The skin is the largest organ in the body and is a barrier between the internal and external environment. The present study evaluates how PTU, a goitrogen, that is used to treat hyperthyroidism affects the structure and electrical properties of the frog (Xenopus laevis) skin. The results are considered in the context of the two-membrane model established in the seminal work of Ussing and collegues in the 1940s and 1950s. In vitro experiments with skin from Xenopus adults revealed that PTU can act directly on skin and causes a significant increase (p<0.05, One-way ANOVA) in short circuit current (Isc) via an amiloride-insensitive mechanism. Juvenile Xenopus exposed to waterborne PTU (5 mg/L) had a significantly bigger and more active thyroid gland (p<0.01, Student's t-test) than control Xenopus. The bioelectric properties of skin taken from Xenopus juveniles treated with PTU in vivo had a lower Isc, (3.05±0.4, n=13) and Rt (288.2±39.5) than skin from control Xenopus (Isc, 4.19±1.14, n=14; Rt, 343.3±43.3). A histological assessment of skin from PTU treated Xenopus juveniles revealed the epidermis was significantly thicker (p<0.01, Student's t-test) and had a greater number of modified exocrine glands (p<0.01, Student's t-test) in the dermis compared to control skin. Modifications in skin structure are presumably the basis for its changed bioelectric properties and the study highlights a site of action for environmental chemicals which has been largely neglected. PMID:21963960

  4. Teratogenic effects of five anticancer drugs on Xenopus laevis embryos.

    PubMed

    Isidori, Marina; Piscitelli, Concetta; Russo, Chiara; Smutná, Marie; Bláha, Luděk

    2016-11-01

    In recent years, the environmental presence of pharmaceuticals - including anticancer drugs - is an emerging issue. Because of the lack of appropriate critical studies about anticancer drug effects in frogs, the aim of the present study was to investigate lethal and teratogenic effects of five anticancer drugs widely used in large quantities, i.e. 5-flourouracil, capecitabine, cisplatin, etoposide, and imatinib, in the embryos of the South African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis, using FETAX - Frog Embryo Teratogenesis Assay in Xenopus. None of the studied anticancer drugs induced statistically significant mortality within the concentrations tested (0.01-50mg/L, depending on the studied compound), and no growth inhibition of embryos after a 96-h exposure was observed. Except for cisplatin, the other pharmaceuticals induced an increase of developmental malformations such as abdominal edema, axial flexure, head, eyes, gut and heart malformations with statistically significant effects observed at the highest concentrations tested (50mg/L for 5-flourouracil; 30mg/L for etoposide and 20mg/L for capecitabine and imatinib). The results indicate that anticancer drugs can affect embryogenesis mechanisms. PMID:27423131

  5. Protein pattern of Xenopus laevis embryos grown in simulated microgravity.

    PubMed

    Tedeschi, Gabriella; Pagliato, Lara; Negroni, Manuela; Montorfano, Gigliola; Corsetto, Paola; Nonnis, Simona; Negri, Armando; Rizzo, Angela Maria

    2011-03-01

    Numerous studies indicate that microgravity affects cell growth and differentiation in many living organisms, and various processes are modified when cells are placed under conditions of weightlessness. However, until now, there is no coherent explanation for these observations, and little information is available concerning the biomolecules involved. Our aim has been to investigate the protein pattern of Xenopus laevis embryos exposed to simulated microgravity during the first 6 days of development. A proteomic approach was applied to compare the protein profiles of Xenopus embryos developed in simulated microgravity and in normal conditions. Attention was focused on embryos that do not present visible malformations in order to investigate if weightlessness has effects at protein level in the absence of macroscopic alterations. The data presented strongly suggest that some of the major components of the cytoskeleton vary in such conditions. Three major findings are described for the first time: (i) the expression of important factors involved in the organization and stabilization of the cytoskeleton, such as Arp (actin-related protein) 3 and stathmin, is heavily affected by microgravity; (ii) the amount of the two major cytoskeletal proteins, actin and tubulin, do not change in such conditions; however, (iii) an increase in the tyrosine nitration of these two proteins can be detected. The data suggest that, in the absence of morphological alterations, simulated microgravity affects the intracellular movement system of cells by altering cytoskeletal proteins heavily involved in the regulation of cytoskeleton remodelling.

  6. A quantitative adverse outcome pathway model for thyroid axis disruption in Xenopus laevis tadpoles

    EPA Science Inventory

    The development of Xenopus laevis tadpoles is tightly controlled by the thyroid hormones tetraiodothyronine (T4) and triiodothyronine (T3). Toxicity testing efforts have shown that several compounds interfere with development in X. laevis tadpoles by disrupting the thyroid axis a...

  7. Xenopus laevis - A success story in biological research in Space

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Horn, E.

    A feature of sensory, neuronal and motor systems is the existence of a critical period during their development. Environmental modifications, in particular stimulus depri-vation, during this period of life affects development in a long-term manner. For gravity sensory systems, space flights offer the only opportunity for deprivation conditions. Studies in the amphibian Xenopus laevis presented the most complete picture. The presentation demonstrates the importance of Xenopus laevis as an ex-perimental model animal in the past and even for future research in Space. Studies are presented which range from fertilization in Space and anatomical studies during early development under weightlessness up to post-flight studies on the anatomy of the peripheral sense organ, the spinal motor activity and behavior. Gravity depriva-tion induces anatomical as well as behavioral and neurophysiological modifications, which are normalized either during flight (thickening of the blastocoel roof) or after reentry in 1g-conditions (swimming and reflex behavior, spinal motor activity). The physiological changes can be explained by mechanisms of physiological adaptation. However, the studies also revealed stages which were insensitive to gravity depriva-tion; they point to the existence of a critical period. Observations on morphological mal-formations are described which are reversible after termination of microgravity and which are linked to a depression of vestibular reflex behavior. They might be caused by a competition between dorsalization and ventralization inducing growth factors. This observation offers the possibility for a genetic approach in finding ba-sics for microgravity effects on the development of Xenopus, and in a general frame, on the development of vertebrates including men. At the present stage of research, it remains open whether adaptive processes during exposure to altered gravity or the existence of a critical period in vestibular development are responsible for

  8. Mechanisms of amphibian macrophage development: characterization of the Xenopus laevis colony-stimulating factor-1 receptor.

    PubMed

    Grayfer, Leon; Edholm, Eva-Stina; Robert, Jacques

    2014-01-01

    Macrophage-lineage cells are indispensable to vertebrate homeostasis and immunity. In turn, macrophage development is largely regulated through colony-stimulating factor-1 (CSF1) binding to its cognate receptor (CSF1R). To study amphibian monopoiesis, we identified and characterized the X. laevis CSF1R cDNA transcript. Quantitative analysis revealed that CSF1R tissue gene expression increased with X. laevis development, with greatest transcript levels detected in the adult lung, spleen and liver tissues. Notably, considerable levels of CSF1R mRNA were also detected in the regressing tails of metamorphosing animals, suggesting macrophage involvement in this process, and in the adult bone marrow; corroborating the roles for this organ in Xenopus monopoiesis. Following animal infections with the ranavirus Frog Virus 3 (FV3), both tadpole and adult X. laevis exhibited increased kidney CSF1R gene expression. Conversely, while FV3-infected tadpoles increased their spleen and liver CSF1R mRNA levels, the FV3-challenged adults did not. Notably, FV3 induced elevated bone marrow CSF1R expression, and while stimulation of tadpoles with heat-killed E. coli had no transcriptional effects, bacterial stimulation of adult frogs resulted in significantly increased spleen, liver and bone marrow CSF1R expression. We produced the X. laevis CSF1R in recombinant form (rXlCSF1R) and determined, via in vitro cross-linking studies, that two molecules of rXlCSF1R bound the dimeric rXlCSF1. Finally, administration of rXlCSF1R abrogated the rXlCSF1-induced tadpole macrophage recruitment and differentiation as well as bacterial and FV3-elicited peritoneal leukocyte accumulation. This work marks a step towards garnering greater understanding of the unique mechanisms governing amphibian macrophage biology.

  9. Metamorphic remodeling of the olfactory organ of the African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Dittrich, Katarina; Kuttler, Josua; Hassenklöver, Thomas; Manzini, Ivan

    2016-04-01

    The amphibian olfactory system undergoes massive remodeling during metamorphosis. The transition from aquatic olfaction in larvae to semiaquatic or airborne olfaction in adults requires anatomical, cellular, and molecular modifications. These changes are particularly pronounced in Pipidae, whose adults have secondarily adapted to an aquatic life style. In the fully aquatic larvae of Xenopus laevis, the main olfactory epithelium specialized for sensing water-borne odorous substances lines the principal olfactory cavity (PC), whereas a separate olfactory epithelium lies in the vomeronasal organ (VNO). During metamorphosis, the epithelium of the PC is rearranged into the adult "air nose," whereas a new olfactory epithelium, the adult "water nose," forms in the emerging middle cavity (MC). Here we performed a stage-by-stage investigation of the anatomical changes of the Xenopus olfactory organ during metamorphosis. We quantified cell death in all olfactory epithelia and found massive cell death in the PC and the VNO, suggesting that the majority of larval sensory neurons is replaced during metamorphosis in both sensory epithelia. The moderate cell death in the MC shows that during the formation of this epithelium some cells are sorted out. Our results show that during MC formation some supporting cells, but not sensory neurons, are relocated from the PC to the MC and that they are eventually eliminated during metamorphosis. Together our findings illustrate the structural and cellular changes of the Xenopus olfactory organ during metamorphosis.

  10. Spatiotemporal expression profile of no29/nucleophosmin3 in the intestine of Xenopus laevis during metamorphosis.

    PubMed

    Motoi, Natsuki; Hasebe, Takashi; Suzuki, Ken-Ichi T; Ishizuya-Oka, Atsuko

    2011-06-01

    A Xenopus laevis homolog of nucleophosmin/nucleoplasmin3 (NPM3), no29, has been previously identified as a thyroid hormone (TH)-response gene during TH-induced metamorphosis. X. laevis has another NPM3 homolog (npm3) in the pseudo-tetraploid genome, whereas X. tropicalis possesses one ortholog in the diploid genome. To assess the possible roles of these NPM3 homologs in amphibian metamorphosis, we have analyzed their expression profiles in X. laevis tadpoles. Levels of no29 and npm3 mRNA are rapidly up-regulated by exogenous TH in various organs of the premetamorphic tadpoles. Notably, in the small intestine, no29 and npm3 mRNA levels are transiently up-regulated during metamorphic climax, when progenitor/stem cells of the adult epithelium appear and actively proliferate. In situ hybridization analysis has revealed that the no29 transcript is specifically localized in adult epithelial progenitor/stem cells of the intestine during natural and TH-induced metamorphosis. Double-staining for in situ hybridization and immunohistochemistry has shown co-expression of no29 mRNA and no38 protein (an ortholog of NPM1), which is known to interact with NPM3 and to regulate cell proliferation in mammals. Thus, no29/npm3 might serve as a stem cell marker in the intestine during metamorphosis.

  11. Production of transgenic Xenopus laevis by restriction enzyme mediated integration and nuclear transplantation.

    PubMed

    Amaya, Enrique; Kroll, Kristen

    2010-01-01

    Stable integration of cloned gene products into the Xenopus genome is necessary to control the time and place of expression, to express genes at later stages of embryonic development, and to define how enhancers and promoters regulate gene expression within the embryo. The protocol demonstrated here can be used to efficiently produce transgenic Xenopus laevis embryos. This transgenesis approach involves three parts: 1. Sperm nuclei are isolated from adult X. laevis testis by treatment with lysolecithin, which permeabilizes the sperm plasma membrane. 2. Egg extract is prepared by low speed centrifugation, addition of calcium to cause the extract to progress to interphase of the cell cycle, and a high-speed centrifugation to isolate interphase cytosol. 3. Nuclear transplantation: the nuclei and extract are combined with the linearized plasmid DNA to be introduced as the transgene and a small amount of restriction enzyme. During a short reaction, egg extract partially decondenses the sperm chromatin and the restriction enzyme generates chromosomal breaks that promote recombination of the transgene into the genome. The treated sperm nuclei are then transplanted into unfertilized eggs. Integration of the transgene usually occurs prior to the first embryonic cleavage such that the resulting embryos are not chimeric. These embryos can be analyzed without any need to breed to the next generation, allowing for efficient and rapid generation of transgenic embryos for analyses of promoter and gene function. Adult X. laevis resulting from this procedure also propagate the transgene through the germline and can be used to generate lines of transgenic animals for multiple purposes. PMID:20811326

  12. Biochemical study of prolactin binding sites in Xenopus laevis brain and choroid plexus

    SciTech Connect

    Muccioli, G.; Guardabassi, A.; Pattono, P. )

    1990-03-01

    The occurrence of prolactin binding sites in some brain structures (telencephalon, ventral hypothalamus, myelencephalon, hypophysis, and choroid plexus) from Xenopus laevis (anuran amphibian) was studied by the in vitro biochemical technique. The higher binding values were obtained at the level of the choroid plexus and above all of the hypothalamus. On the bases of hormonal specificity and high affinity, these binding sites are very similar to those of prolactin receptors of classical target tissues as well as of those described by us in other structures from Xenopus. To our knowledge, the present results provide the first demonstration of the occurrence of prolactin specific binding sites in Xenopus laevis choroid plexus cells.

  13. Dissection, culture, and analysis of Xenopus laevis embryonic retinal tissue.

    PubMed

    McDonough, Molly J; Allen, Chelsea E; Ng-Sui-Hing, Ng-Kwet-Leok A; Rabe, Brian A; Lewis, Brittany B; Saha, Margaret S

    2012-01-01

    The process by which the anterior region of the neural plate gives rise to the vertebrate retina continues to be a major focus of both clinical and basic research. In addition to the obvious medical relevance for understanding and treating retinal disease, the development of the vertebrate retina continues to serve as an important and elegant model system for understanding neuronal cell type determination and differentiation(1-16). The neural retina consists of six discrete cell types (ganglion, amacrine, horizontal, photoreceptors, bipolar cells, and Müller glial cells) arranged in stereotypical layers, a pattern that is largely conserved among all vertebrates (12,14-18). While studying the retina in the intact developing embryo is clearly required for understanding how this complex organ develops from a protrusion of the forebrain into a layered structure, there are many questions that benefit from employing approaches using primary cell culture of presumptive retinal cells (7,19-23). For example, analyzing cells from tissues removed and dissociated at different stages allows one to discern the state of specification of individual cells at different developmental stages, that is, the fate of the cells in the absence of interactions with neighboring tissues (8,19-22,24-33). Primary cell culture also allows the investigator to treat the culture with specific reagents and analyze the results on a single cell level (5,8,21,24,27-30,33-39). Xenopus laevis, a classic model system for the study of early neural development (19,27,29,31-32,40-42), serves as a particularly suitable system for retinal primary cell culture (10,38,43-45). Presumptive retinal tissue is accessible from the earliest stages of development, immediately following neural induction (25,38,43). In addition, given that each cell in the embryo contains a supply of yolk, retinal cells can be cultured in a very simple defined media consisting of a buffered salt solution, thus removing the confounding

  14. Reproduction, larval growth, and reproductive development in African clawed frogs (Xenopus laevis) exposed to atrazine.

    PubMed

    Du Preez, Louis H; Kunene, Nisile; Everson, Gideon J; Carr, James A; Giesy, John P; Gross, Timothy S; Hosmer, Alan J; Kendall, Ronald J; Smith, Ernest E; Solomon, Keith R; Van Der Kraak, Glen J

    2008-03-01

    Reproductive success and development of F2 offspring from F1 adult African clawed frogs (Xenopus laevis) exposed to atrazine throughout larval development and as sexually mature adults was examined. Larval X. laevis were exposed to one of four nominal concentrations of atrazine (0, 1, 10, 25 microg atrazine/l) beginning 96 hr after fertilization and continuing through two years post-metamorphosis. Clutch size and survival of offspring were used as measurement endpoints to gauge reproductive success of the F1 frogs. Larval survivorship and time to metamorphosis were used to gauge developmental success of the F2 offspring from atrazine-exposed frogs. Testes in F1 and F2 frogs were examined for incidence of anomalies, such as testicular ovarian follicles, and sex ratios in F2 offspring were investigated to determine if exposure to atrazine caused trans-generational effects (effects on F2 individuals due to exposure of F1 individuals). There were no effects of any of the studied concentrations of atrazine on clutch size of F1 frogs. There were also no effects on hatching success or time to metamorphosis. Sex ratios did not differ between F2 offspring among treatments. There was no evidence to suggest a transgenerational effect of atrazine on spawning success or reproductive development of X. laevis. This is consistent with the presence of robust populations of X. laevis in areas where they are exposed to atrazine that has been used for several decades for weed control in production of corn. Our observations also are consistent with the results of most other studies of frogs where no effects were found to be associated with exposure to atrazine. Our data do not support the hypothesis that atrazine significantly affects reproductive fitness and development of frogs.

  15. Valproate-induced neurodevelopmental deficits in Xenopus laevis tadpoles.

    PubMed

    James, Eric J; Gu, Jenny; Ramirez-Vizcarrondo, Carolina M; Hasan, Mashfiq; Truszkowski, Torrey L S; Tan, Yuqi; Oupravanh, Phouangmaly M; Khakhalin, Arseny S; Aizenman, Carlos D

    2015-02-18

    Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is increasingly thought to result from low-level deficits in synaptic development and neural circuit formation that cascade into more complex cognitive symptoms. However, the link between synaptic dysfunction and behavior is not well understood. By comparing the effects of abnormal circuit formation and behavioral outcomes across different species, it should be possible to pinpoint the conserved fundamental processes that result in disease. Here we use a novel model for neurodevelopmental disorders in which we expose Xenopus laevis tadpoles to valproic acid (VPA) during a critical time point in brain development at which neurogenesis and neural circuit formation required for sensory processing are occurring. VPA is a commonly prescribed antiepileptic drug with known teratogenic effects. In utero exposure to VPA in humans or rodents results in a higher incidence of ASD or ASD-like behavior later in life. We find that tadpoles exposed to VPA have abnormal sensorimotor and schooling behavior that is accompanied by hyperconnected neural networks in the optic tectum, increased excitatory and inhibitory synaptic drive, elevated levels of spontaneous synaptic activity, and decreased neuronal intrinsic excitability. Consistent with these findings, VPA-treated tadpoles also have increased seizure susceptibility and decreased acoustic startle habituation. These findings indicate that the effects of VPA are remarkably conserved across vertebrate species and that changes in neural circuitry resulting from abnormal developmental pruning can cascade into higher-level behavioral deficits.

  16. Valproate-Induced Neurodevelopmental Deficits in Xenopus laevis Tadpoles

    PubMed Central

    James, Eric J.; Gu, Jenny; Ramirez-Vizcarrondo, Carolina M.; Hasan, Mashfiq; Truszkowski, Torrey L.S.; Tan, Yuqi; Oupravanh, Phouangmaly M.

    2015-01-01

    Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is increasingly thought to result from low-level deficits in synaptic development and neural circuit formation that cascade into more complex cognitive symptoms. However, the link between synaptic dysfunction and behavior is not well understood. By comparing the effects of abnormal circuit formation and behavioral outcomes across different species, it should be possible to pinpoint the conserved fundamental processes that result in disease. Here we use a novel model for neurodevelopmental disorders in which we expose Xenopus laevis tadpoles to valproic acid (VPA) during a critical time point in brain development at which neurogenesis and neural circuit formation required for sensory processing are occurring. VPA is a commonly prescribed antiepileptic drug with known teratogenic effects. In utero exposure to VPA in humans or rodents results in a higher incidence of ASD or ASD-like behavior later in life. We find that tadpoles exposed to VPA have abnormal sensorimotor and schooling behavior that is accompanied by hyperconnected neural networks in the optic tectum, increased excitatory and inhibitory synaptic drive, elevated levels of spontaneous synaptic activity, and decreased neuronal intrinsic excitability. Consistent with these findings, VPA-treated tadpoles also have increased seizure susceptibility and decreased acoustic startle habituation. These findings indicate that the effects of VPA are remarkably conserved across vertebrate species and that changes in neural circuitry resulting from abnormal developmental pruning can cascade into higher-level behavioral deficits. PMID:25698756

  17. Plasticity of lung development in the amphibian, Xenopus laevis

    PubMed Central

    Rose, Christopher S.; James, Brandon

    2013-01-01

    Summary Contrary to previous studies, we found that Xenopus laevis tadpoles raised in normoxic water without access to air can routinely complete metamorphosis with lungs that are either severely stunted and uninflated or absent altogether. This is the first demonstration that lung development in a tetrapod can be inhibited by environmental factors and that a tetrapod that relies significantly on lung respiration under unstressed conditions can be raised to forego this function without adverse effects. This study compared lung development in untreated, air-deprived (AD) and air-restored (AR) tadpoles and frogs using whole mounts, histology, BrdU labeling of cell division and antibody staining of smooth muscle actin. We also examined the relationship of swimming and breathing behaviors to lung recovery in AR animals. Inhibition and recovery of lung development occurred at the stage of lung inflation. Lung recovery in AR tadpoles occurred at a predictable and rapid rate and correlated with changes in swimming and breathing behavior. It thus presents a new experimental model for investigating the role of mechanical forces in lung development. Lung recovery in AR frogs was unpredictable and did not correlate with behavioral changes. Its low frequency of occurrence could be attributed to developmental, physical and behavioral changes, the effects of which increase with size and age. Plasticity of lung inflation at tadpole stages and loss of plasticity at postmetamorphic stages offer new insights into the role of developmental plasticity in amphibian lung loss and life history evolution. PMID:24337117

  18. Circadian rhythm of interrenal activity in Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Thurmond, W; Kloas, W; Hanke, W

    1986-02-01

    Young specimens of Xenopus laevis were kept under constant environmental conditions (artifical light from 600 to 1800 hr, feeding between 800 and 900 hr) and the concentrations of aldosterone and corticosterone in the serum were measured every 3 hr. Furthermore, the kidneys containing the interrenals were removed and their corticosteroid release under stimulation by the pars distalis and mammalian ACTH was determined. Under these conditions, the corticosteroid levels in the serum were maximal from 900 to 1200 hr (corticosterone, 7.7 +/- 0.47 ng/ml; aldosterone, 2.8 +/- 0.27 ng/ml) and minimal during the night (corticosterone, 5.2 +/- 0.43 ng/ml; aldosterone, 1.7 +/- 0.18 ng/ml). The basal secretion rate of the interrenals in vitro showed the opposite course (corticosterone, 24 +/- 3 to 72 +/- 8 pg/min/tissue; aldosterone, 46 +/- 5 to 68 +/- 9 pg/min/tissue). Stimulation by the pars distalis and mammalian ACTH clearly increased the secretion rate. After both types of stimulation the original rhythm was lost for aldosterone but still present for corticosterone. The ratio of the amounts of corticosterone/aldosterone was greater than 1.0 in the serum but less than 1.0 in the incubation fluid. It decreased significantly after stimulation in vitro by pars distalis or ACTH.

  19. Kidins220/ARMS is dynamically expressed during Xenopus laevis development.

    PubMed

    Marracci, Silvia; Giannini, Marianna; Vitiello, Marianna; Andreazzoli, Massimiliano; Dente, Luciana

    2013-01-01

    Kidins220 (Kinase D interacting substrate of 220 kDa)/ARMS (Ankyrin Repeat-rich Membrane Spanning) is a conserved scaffold protein that acts as a downstream substrate for protein kinase D and mediates multiple receptor signalling pathways. Despite the dissecting of the function of this protein in mammals, using both in vitro and in vivo studies, a detailed characterization of its gene expression during early phases of embryogenesis has not been described yet. Here, we have used Xenopus laevis as a vertebrate model system to analyze the gene expression and the protein localization of Kidins220/ARMS. We found its expression was dynamically regulated during development. Kidins220/ARMS mRNA was expressed from neurula to larval stage in different embryonic regions including the nervous system, eye, branchial arches, heart and somites. Similar to the transcript, the protein was present in multiple embryonic domains including the central nervous system, cranial nerves, motor nerves, intersomitic junctions, retinal ganglion cells, lens, otic vesicle, heart and branchial arches. In particular, in some regions such as the retina and somites, the protein displayed a differential localization pattern in stage 42 embryos when compared to the earlier examined stages. Taken together our results suggest that this multidomain protein is involved in distinct spatio-temporal differentiative events.

  20. D-Amino acid oxidase and presence of D-proline in Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Soma, Hiroki; Furuya, Ryuji; Kaneko, Ryo; Tsukamoto, Ayaka; Shirasu, Kazumitsu; Tanigawa, Minoru; Nagata, Yoko

    2013-10-01

    We purified D-amino acid oxidase (EC 1.4.3.3, DAO) from Xenopus laevis tadpoles. The optimal temperature and pH for enzyme activity were 35-40 °C and 8.3-9.0, respectively, depending on the substrate amino acids available to the enzyme; the highest activity was observed with D-proline followed by D-phenylalanine. Activity was significantly inhibited by p-hydroxymercuribenzoate, but only moderately by p-chloromercuribenzoate or benzoate. Enzyme activity was increased until the final tadpole stage, but was reduced to one-third in the adult and was localized primarily in the kidney. The tadpoles contained high concentrations of D-proline close to the final developmental stage and nearly no D-amino acids were detected in the adult frog, indicating that D-amino acid oxidase functions in metamorphosis.

  1. Sequencing and analysis of 10967 full-length cDNA clones from Xenopus laevis and Xenopus tropicalis

    SciTech Connect

    Morin, R D; Chang, E; Petrescu, A; Liao, N; Kirkpatrick, R; Griffith, M; Butterfield, Y; Stott, J; Barber, S; Babakaiff, R; Matsuo, C; Wong, D; Yang, G; Smailus, D; Brown-John, M; Mayo, M; Beland, J; Gibson, S; Olson, T; Tsai, M; Featherstone, R; Chand, S; Siddiqui, A; Jang, W; Lee, E; Klein, S; Prange, C; Myers, R M; Green, E D; Wagner, L; Gerhard, D; Marra, M; Jones, S M; Holt, R

    2005-10-31

    Sequencing of full-insert clones from full-length cDNA libraries from both Xenopus laevis and Xenopus tropicalis has been ongoing as part of the Xenopus Gene Collection initiative. Here we present an analysis of 10967 clones (8049 from X. laevis and 2918 from X. tropicalis). The clone set contains 2013 orthologs between X. laevis and X. tropicalis as well as 1795 paralog pairs within X. laevis. 1199 are in-paralogs, believed to have resulted from an allotetraploidization event approximately 30 million years ago, and the remaining 546 are likely out-paralogs that have resulted from more ancient gene duplications, prior to the divergence between the two species. We do not detect any evidence for positive selection by the Yang and Nielsen maximum likelihood method of approximating d{sub N}/d{sub S}. However, d{sub N}/d{sub S} for X. laevis in-paralogs is elevated relative to X. tropicalis orthologs. This difference is highly significant, and indicates an overall relaxation of selective pressures on duplicated gene pairs. Within both groups of paralogs, we found evidence of subfunctionalization, manifested as differential expression of paralogous genes among tissues, as measured by EST information from public resources. We have observed, as expected, a higher instance of subfunctionalization in out-paralogs relative to in-paralogs.

  2. Homoeologous chromosomes of Xenopus laevis are highly conserved after whole-genome duplication

    PubMed Central

    Uno, Y; Nishida, C; Takagi, C; Ueno, N; Matsuda, Y

    2013-01-01

    It has been suggested that whole-genome duplication (WGD) occurred twice during the evolutionary process of vertebrates around 450 and 500 million years ago, which contributed to an increase in the genomic and phenotypic complexities of vertebrates. However, little is still known about the evolutionary process of homoeologous chromosomes after WGD because many duplicate genes have been lost. Therefore, Xenopus laevis (2n=36) and Xenopus (Silurana) tropicalis (2n=20) are good animal models for studying the process of genomic and chromosomal reorganization after WGD because X. laevis is an allotetraploid species that resulted from WGD after the interspecific hybridization of diploid species closely related to X. tropicalis. We constructed a comparative cytogenetic map of X. laevis using 60 complimentary DNA clones that covered the entire chromosomal regions of 10 pairs of X. tropicalis chromosomes. We consequently identified all nine homoeologous chromosome groups of X. laevis. Hybridization signals on two pairs of X. laevis homoeologous chromosomes were detected for 50 of 60 (83%) genes, and the genetic linkage is highly conserved between X. tropicalis and X. laevis chromosomes except for one fusion and one inversion and also between X. laevis homoeologous chromosomes except for two inversions. These results indicate that the loss of duplicated genes and inter- and/or intrachromosomal rearrangements occurred much less frequently in this lineage, suggesting that these events were not essential for diploidization of the allotetraploid genome in X. laevis after WGD. PMID:23820579

  3. Quantifying calcium fluxes underlying calcium puffs in Xenopus laevis oocytes

    PubMed Central

    Bruno, Luciana; Solovey, Guillermo; Ventura, Alejandra C.; Dargan, Sheila; Dawson, Silvina Ponce

    2010-01-01

    Summary We determine the calcium fluxes through inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate receptor/channels underlying calcium puffs of Xenopus laevis oocytes using a simplified version of the algorithm of Ventura et al., 2005 [1]. An analysis of 130 puffs obtained with Fluo-4 indicates that Ca2+ release comes from a region of width ~ 450 nm, that the release duration is peaked around 18ms and that the underlying Ca2+ currents range between 0.12 and 0.95pA. All these parameters are independent of IP3 concentration. We explore what distributions of channels that open during a puff, Np, and what relations between current and number of open channels, I(Np), are compatible with our findings and with the distribution of puff-to-trigger amplitude ratio reported in Rose et al, 2006 [2]. To this end, we use simple “mean field” models in which all channels open and close simultaneously. We find that the variability among clusters plays an important role in shaping the observed puff amplitude distribution and that a model for which I(Np) ~Np for small Np and I(Np)~Np1/α (α>1) for large Np, provides the best agreement. Simulations of more detailed models in which channels open and close stochastically show that this nonlinear behavior can be attributed to the limited time resolution of the observations and to the averaging procedure that is implicit in the mean-field models. These conclusions are also compatible with observations of ~400 puffs obtained using the dye Oregon green. PMID:20097419

  4. Vitellogenin and lipovitellin: zinc proteins of Xenopus laevis oocytes.

    PubMed

    Montorzi, M; Falchuk, K H; Vallee, B L

    1995-08-29

    Xenopus laevis vitellogenin is a plasma protein that contains a total of 5 mol of metal/440 kDa dimer, 2 mol of zinc, and 3 mol of calcium (Montorzi et al. (1994) Biochem. Biophys. Res. Commun. 200, 1407-1413]. There are no other group IIB or transition metals in the molecule. The zinc atoms are removed instantaneously by 1,10-phenanthroline (OP) (pK 4.8). Once internalized by receptor-mediated endocytosis, vitellogenin is cleaved into multiple polypeptides, i.e., the two lipovitellin subunits (1 and 2) plus phosvitin; these are then stored as microcrystals within yolk platelets. We here show by metal analysis of the individual proteins generated by vitellogenin processing that zinc and calcium occur in different domains of the vitellogenin polypeptide chain. All of the vitellogenin zinc is present in lipovitellin, in amounts equal to 1 mol of zinc/141 kDa. Calcium, in contrast, is detected exclusively in phosvitin which, in addition, contains 3 mol of magnesium/35 kDa, apparently acquired following vitellogenin entry into the oocyte. The zinc in lipovitellin is removed by OP in a concentration-dependent manner with a pK of 4.8, identical to that obtained for vitellogenin, and by exposure to acidic conditions (below pH 5). Following removal of zinc, the two lipovitellin subunits remain associated, suggesting that zinc is not involved in their interaction. On exposure to 1% SDS, lipovitellin does dissociate into 106 and 33 kDa subunits. The presence of stoichiometric quantities of zinc in both vitellogenin and lipovitellin calls for the study of the hitherto unrecognized biochemistry and functions of these proteins in zinc metabolism and development of the frog oocyte and embryo.

  5. Functional domains of the Xenopus laevis 5S gene promoter.

    PubMed Central

    Pieler, T; Oei, S L; Hamm, J; Engelke, U; Erdmann, V A

    1985-01-01

    To study the fine structure of the Xenopus laevis somatic 5S gene internal control region, we have created 15 different transversions using mutagenic oligonucleotide primers. The effects of these mutations on 5S DNA transcription in vitro as well as on stable complex formation with transcription factor TF III A and TF III C in crude nuclear extracts were analyzed. Mutations in the common class III 5' promoter element (nucleotides 50-61 in the 5S gene) interfere with transcription activity and stable complex formation whenever they contradict the tDNA box A consensus sequence. The second promoter element is defined by a major sequence block (nucleotides 80-89, box C) and two additional internal residues (70 and 71) at a distance of roughly one helical turn from both the major 3' and 5' control sequences; these two 3' elements contain the primary TF III A binding domain. The remaining nucleotides (62-69 and 71-79) when mutated do not interfere with transcription activity or factor binding and thus they constitute two spacer elements within a symmetrically structured 5S gene promoter. An increase in the relative spacing of box A and box C by insertion of 3 bp between nucleotides 66 and 67 leads to a drastic reduction in transcription activity and the ability to form a stable complex with TF III A and/or TF III C. Thus, accurate spacing is essential for the proper orientation of TF III A on 5S DNA and/or TF III C binding. Images Fig. 1. Fig. 3. Fig. 4. PMID:3004969

  6. Plasticity in the melanotrope neuroendocrine interface of Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Jenks, Bruce G; Kidane, Adhanet H; Scheenen, Wim J J M; Roubos, Eric W

    2007-01-01

    Melanotrope cells of the amphibian pituitary pars intermedia produce alpha-melanophore-stimulating hormone (alpha-MSH), a peptide which causes skin darkening during adaptation to a dark background. The secretory activity of the melanotrope of the South African clawed toad Xenopus laevis is regulated by multiple factors, both classical neurotransmitters and neuropeptides from the brain. This review concerns the plasticity displayed in this intermediate lobe neuroendocrine interface during physiological adaptation to the environment. The plasticity includes dramatic morphological plasticity in both pre- and post-synaptic elements of the interface. Inhibitory neurons in the suprachiasmatic nucleus, designated suprachiasmatic melanotrope-inhibiting neurons (SMINs), possess more and larger synapses on the melanotrope cells in white than in black-background adapted animals; in the latter animals the melanotropes are larger and produce more proopiomelanocortin (POMC), the precursor of alpha-MSH. On a white background, pre-synaptic SMIN plasticity is reflected by a higher expression of inhibitory neuropeptide Y (NPY) and is closely associated with postsynaptic melanotrope plasticity, namely a higher expression of the NPY Y1 receptor. Interestingly, melanotrope cells in such animals also display higher expression of the receptors for thyrotropin-releasing hormone (TRH) and urocortin 1, two neuropeptides that stimulate alpha-MSH secretion. Possibly, in white-adapted animals melanotropes are sensitized to neuropeptide stimulation so that, when the toad moves to a black background, they can immediately initiate alpha-MSH secretion to achieve rapid adaptation to the new background condition. The melanotrope cell also produces brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), which is co-sequestered with alpha-MSH in secretory granules within the cells. The neurotrophin seems to control melanotrope cell plasticity in an autocrine way and we speculate that it may also control presynaptic

  7. Breathing and calling: neuronal networks in the Xenopus laevis hindbrain.

    PubMed

    Zornik, Erik; Kelley, Darcy B

    2007-03-20

    Xenopus laevis is an aquatic anuran with a complex vocal repertoire. Unlike terrestrial frogs, vocalizations are independent of respiration, and a single muscle group--the laryngeal dilators--produces underwater calls. We sought to identify the premotor neural network that underlies vocal behaviors. Vocal patterns generated by premotor networks control laryngeal motor neurons in cranial nucleus (n.) IX-X. Glottal motor neurons, active during respiration, are also present in n.IX-X. We used horseradish peroxidase (HRP), Lucifer yellow, and fluorescently conjugated dextrans to characterize the organization of n.IX-X and to trace premotor neuron projections. Premotor nuclei include the inferior reticular formation (Ri) adjacent to n.IX-X and the pretrigeminal nucleus of the dorsal tegmental area of the medulla (DTAM), the primary descending input to n.IX-X. Intramuscular HRP injections revealed a spatially segregated pattern, with glottal motor neurons in anterior n.IX-X and laryngeal motor neurons in the caudal portion of the nucleus. Dextran injections identified commissural n.IX-X neurons that project to the contralateral motor nucleus and DTAM-projecting n.IX-X neurons. Both neuronal types are clustered in anteromedial n.IX-X, closely associated with glottal motor neurons. Ri neurons project to ipsilateral and contralateral DTAM. Projections from DTAM target n.IX-X bilaterally, and all four identified subtypes receive DTAM input. In contrast, Ri neurons receive little input from DTAM. We hypothesize that connectivity between neurons in n.IX-X, Ri and DTAM may provide mechanisms to generate laryngeal and glottal activity patterns and that DTAM may coordinate vocal and respiratory motor pools, perhaps acting to switch between these two mutually exclusive behaviors.

  8. Characterization of nuclear protein kinases of Xenopus laevis oocytes

    SciTech Connect

    Leiva, L.; Gonzalez, C.; Allende, C.; Allende, J.

    1986-05-01

    Xenopus laevis oocytes contain large nuclei (germinal vesicles) that can be isolated in very pure form and which permit the study of enzymatic activities present in these organelles. Incubation of pure oocyte nuclear homogenates with /sup 32/P in a buffered solution containing 5 mM MgCl/sub 2/ results in the phosphorylation of a large number of proteins by endogenous protein kinases. This phosphorylation is not affected by the addition of cyclic nucleotides or calcium ion and calmodulin. On the other hand the nuclear kinases are considerably stimulated by spermine and spermidine and strongly inhibited by heparin (10 ..mu..g/ml). Addition of exogenous protein substrates shows that the major oocyte kinases are very active with casein and phosvitin as substrates but do not phosphorylate histones or protamines. DEAE-Sephadex chromatography of the nuclear extract fractionates the casein phosphorylating activity in two main peaks. The first peak is not retained on the column equilibrated with 0.1 M NH/sub 2/SO/sub 4/ and uses exclusively ATP as phosphate donor and is insensitive to polyamines or heparin. The second peak which corresponds to 70% of the casein phosphorylation elutes at 0.27 M NH/sub 2/SO/sub 4/ and uses both ATP and GTP as phosphate donors and is greatly stimulated by polyamines and completely inhibited by 10 ..mu..g/ml heparin. On this evidence the authors conclude that the major protein kinase peak corresponds to casein kinase type II which has been found in mammalian nuclei.

  9. Prominent Amphibian (Xenopus laevis) Tadpole Type III Interferon Response to the Frog Virus 3 Ranavirus

    PubMed Central

    Grayfer, Leon; De Jesús Andino, Francisco

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Ranaviruses (Iridoviridae) are posing an increasing threat to amphibian populations, with anuran tadpoles being particularly susceptible to these viral infections. Moreover, amphibians are the most basal phylogenetic class of vertebrates known to possess both type I and type III interferon (IFN)-mediated immunity. Moreover, little is known regarding the respective roles of the IFN mediators in amphibian antiviral defenses. Accordingly, we transcriptionally and functionally compared the amphibian Xenopus laevis type I (IFN) and III (IFN-λ) IFNs in the context of infections by the ranavirus frog virus 3 (FV3). X. laevis IFN and IFN-λ displayed distinct tissue expression profiles. In contrast to our previous findings that X. laevis tadpoles exhibit delayed and modest type I IFN responses to FV3 infections compared to the responses of adults, here we report that tadpoles mount timely and robust type III IFN gene responses. Recombinant forms of these cytokines (recombinant X. laevis IFN [rXlIFN] and rXlIFN-λ) elicited antiviral gene expression in the kidney-derived A6 cell line as well as in tadpole leukocytes and tissues. However, rXlIFN-λ was less effective than rXlIFN in preventing FV3 replication in A6 cells and tadpoles and inferior at promoting tadpole survival. Intriguingly, FV3 impaired A6 cell and tadpole kidney type III IFN receptor gene expression. Furthermore, in A6 cultures rXlIFN-λ conferred equal or greater protection than rXlIFN against recombinant viruses deficient for the putative immune evasion genes, the viral caspase activation and recruitment domain (vCARD) or a truncated vIF-2α gene. Thus, in contrast to previous assumptions, tadpoles possess intact antiviral defenses reliant on type III IFNs, which are overcome by FV3 pathogens. IMPORTANCE Anuran tadpoles, including those of Xenopus laevis, are particularly susceptible to infection by ranavirus such as FV3. We investigated the respective roles of X. laevis type I and type III

  10. A New Nomenclature of Xenopus laevis Chromosomes Based on the Phylogenetic Relationship to Silurana/Xenopus tropicalis.

    PubMed

    Matsuda, Yoichi; Uno, Yoshinobu; Kondo, Mariko; Gilchrist, Michael J; Zorn, Aaron M; Rokhsar, Daniel S; Schmid, Michael; Taira, Masanori

    2015-01-01

    Xenopus laevis (XLA) is an allotetraploid species which appears to have undergone whole-genome duplication after the interspecific hybridization of 2 diploid species closely related to Silurana/Xenopus tropicalis (XTR). Previous cDNA fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) experiments have identified 9 sets of homoeologous chromosomes in X. laevis, in which 8 sets correspond to chromosomes 1-8 of X. tropicalis (XTR1-XTR8), and the last set corresponds to a fusion of XTR9 and XTR10. In addition, recent X. laevis genome sequencing and BAC-FISH experiments support this physiological relationship and show no gross chromosome translocation in the X. laevis karyotype. Therefore, for the benefit of both comparative cytogenetics and genome research, we here propose a new chromosome nomenclature for X. laevis based on the phylogenetic relationship and chromosome length, i.e. XLA1L, XLA1S, XLA2L, XLA2S, and so on, in which the numbering of XLA chromosomes corresponds to that in X. tropicalis and the postfixes 'L' and 'S' stand for 'long' and 'short' chromosomes in the homoeologous pairs, which can be distinguished cytologically by their relative size. The last chromosome set is named XLA9L and XLA9S, in which XLA9 corresponds to both XTR9 and XTR10, and hence, to emphasize the phylogenetic relationship to X. tropicalis, XLA9_10L and XLA9_10S are also used as synonyms.

  11. Biological and biochemical properties of two Xenopus laevis N-acetylgalactosaminyltransferases with contrasting roles in embryogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Voglmeir, Josef; Laurent, Nicolas; Flitsch, Sabine L.; Oelgeschläger, Michael; Wilson, Iain B.H.

    2015-01-01

    The biosynthesis of mucin-type O-linked glycans in animals is initiated by members of the large family of polypeptide N-acetylgalactosaminyltransferases (GalNAc-Ts), which play important roles in embryogenesis, organogenesis, adult tissue homeostasis and carcinogenesis. Until now, the mammalian forms of these enzymes have been the best characterized. However, two N-acetylgalactosaminyltransferases (xGalNAc-T6 and xGalNAc-T16) from the African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis), which are most homologous to those encoded by the human GALNT6 and GALNT16 (GALNTL1) genes, were shown to have contrasting roles in TGF-β/BMP signaling in embryogenesis. In this study we have examined these two enzymes further and show differences in their in vivo function during X. laevis embyrogenesis as evidenced by in situ hybridization and overexpression experiments. In terms of enzymatic activity, both enzymes were found to be active towards the EA2 peptide, but display differential activity towards a peptide based on the sequence of ActR-IIB, a receptor relevant to TGF-β/BMP signaling. In summary, these data demonstrate that these two enzymes from different branches of the N-acetylgalactosaminyltransferase do not only display differential substrate specificities, but also specific and distinct expression pattern and biological activities in vivo. PMID:25447273

  12. Molecular analysis of Xenopus laevis SPARC (Secreted Protein, Acidic, Rich in Cysteine). A highly conserved acidic calcium-binding extracellular-matrix protein.

    PubMed Central

    Damjanovski, S; Liu, F; Ringuette, M

    1992-01-01

    SPARC (Secreted Protein, Acidic, Rich in Cysteine) is expressed as a 1.6 kb mRNA in Xenopus laevis. On the basis of cDNA sequence analysis, Xenopus SPARC has a core Mr of 32643, with one potential N-glycosylation site. Western analysis of SPARC isolated from Xenopus long bone indicates that the mature protein has an Mr of 43,000. At the amino acid level, Xenopus SPARC has 78-79% sequence similarity to mouse, bovine and human SPARC. The least-conserved region is found within the N-terminal glutamic acid-rich domain, with the C-terminal Ca(2+)-binding domain being the most conserved. Adult Xenopus tissues show the same pattern of tissue-specific distribution of SPARC mRNAs as adult mouse. Images Fig. 1. Fig. 5. PMID:1736898

  13. Neural transduction in Xenopus laevis lateral line system.

    PubMed

    Strelioff, D; Honrubia, V

    1978-03-01

    1. The process of neural excitation in hair cell systems was studied in an in vitro preparation of the Xenopus laevis (African clawed toad) lateral line organ. A specially designed stimulus chamber was used to apply accurately controlled pressure, water movement, or electrical stimuli, and to record the neural responses of the two afferent fibers innervating each organ or stitch. The objective of the study was to determine the characteristics of the neural responses to these stimuli, and thus gain insight into the transduction process. 2. A sustained deflection of the hair cell cilia due to a constant flow of water past the capula resulted in a maintained change in the mean firing rate (MFR) of the afferent fibers. The data also demonstrated that the neural response was proportional to the velocity of the water flow and indicated that both deflection and movement of the cilia were the effective physiological stimuli for this hair cell system. 3. The preparations responded to sinusoidal water movements (past the capula) over the entire frequency range of the stimulus chamber, 0.1-130 Hz, and were most sensitive between 10 and 40 Hz. The variation of the MFR and the percent modulation indicated that the average dynamic range of each organ was 23.5 dB. 4. The thresholds, if any, for sustained pressure changes and for sinusoidal pressure variations in the absence of water movements were very high. Due to the limitations of the stimulus chamber it was not possible to generate pressure stimuli of sufficient magnitude to elicit a neural response without also generating suprathreshold water-movement stimuli. Sustained pressures had no detectable effect on the neural response to water-movement stimuli. 5. The preparations were very sensitive to electrical potentials applied across the toad skin on which the hair cells were located. Potentials which made the ciliated surfaces of the hair cells positive with respect to their bases increased the MFR of the fibers, whereas

  14. Regulation of cyclin E stability in Xenopus laevis embryos

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brandt-(Webb), Yekaterina

    Cyclin-Cdk complexes positively regulate cell cycle progression. Cyclins are regulatory subunits that bind to and activate cyclin-dependent kinases or Cdks. Cyclin E associates with Cdk2 to mediate G1/S phase transition of the cell cycle. Cyclin E is overexpressed in breast, lung, skin, gastrointestinal, cervical, and ovarian cancers. Its overexpression correlates with poor patient prognosis and is involved in the etiology of breast cancer. We have been studying how this protein is downregulated during development in order to determine if these mechanisms are disrupted during tumorigenesis, leading to its overexpression. Using Xenopus laevis embryos as a model, we have shown previously that during the first 12 embryonic cell cycles Cyclin E levels remain constant yet Cdk2 activity oscillates twice per cell cycle. Cyclin E is abruptly destabilized by an undefined mechanism after the 12th cell cycle, which corresponds to the midblastula transition (MBT). Based on work our work and work by others, we have hypothesized that differential phosphorylation and a change in localization result in Cyclin E degradation by the 26S proteasome at the MBT. To test this, we generated a series of point mutations in conserved threonine/serine residues implicated in degradation of human Cyclin E. Using Western blot analysis, we show that similarly to human Cyclin E, mutation of these residues to unphosphorylatable alanine stabilizes Cyclin E past the MBT when they are expressed in vivo. Cyclin E localization was studied by immunofluorescence analysis of endogenous and exogenous protein in pre-MBT, MBT, and post-MBT embryos. In addition, we developed a novel method of conjugating recombinant His6-tagged Cyclin E to fluorescent (CdSe)ZnS nanoparticles (quantum dots) capped with dihydrolipoic acid. Confocal microscopy was used to visualize His6Cyclin E-quantum dot complexes inside embryo cells in real time. We found that re-localization at the MBT from the cytoplasm to the nucleus

  15. METAMORPHIC INHIBITION OF XENOPUS LAEVIS BY SODIUM PERCHLORATE: EFFECTS ON DEVELOPMENT AND THYROID HISTOLOGY

    EPA Science Inventory

    The perchlorate anion inhibits thyroid hormone (TH) synthesis via inhibition of the sodium-iodide symporter. It is, therefore, a good model chemical to aid in the development of a bioassay to screen chemicals for effects on thyroid function. Xenopus laevis larvae were exposed to ...

  16. cnrip1 is a regulator of eye and neural development in Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Xiaona; Suzuki, Toshiyasu; Takahashi, Chika; Nishida, Eisuke; Kusakabe, Morioh

    2015-04-01

    Cannabinoid receptor interacting protein 1 (CNRIP1), which has been originally identified as the binding partner of cannabinoid receptor 1 (CNR1), is evolutionarily conserved throughout vertebrates, but its physiological function has been unknown. Here, we identify a developmental role of CNRIP1 using Xenopus laevis embryos. During early embryogenesis, expression of Xenopus laevis cnrip1 is highly restricted to the animal region of gastrulae where neural and eye induction occur, and afterward it is seen in neural and other tissues with a temporally and spatially regulated pattern. Morpholino-mediated knockdown experiments indicate that cnrip1 has an essential role in early eye and neural development by regulating the onset of expression of key transcription factor genes, sox2, otx2, pax6 and rax. Also, over-expression experiments suggest that cnrip1 has a potential to expand sox2, otx2, pax6 and rax expression. These results suggest an instructive role of Xenopus laevis cnrip1 in early eye and neural development. Furthermore, Xenopus laevis cnr1 knockdown leads to eye defects, which are partly similar to, but milder than, those caused by cnrip1 knockdown, suggesting a possible functional similarity between CNRIP1 and CNR1. This study is the first characterization of an in vivo role of CNRIP1 in the context of whole organisms.

  17. CONCENTRATION DEPENDENT ACCUMULATION OF [3H]-DELTAMETHRIN IN XENOPUS LAEVIS OOCYTES.

    EPA Science Inventory

    Pyrethroid insecticides such as deltamethrin have been demonstrated to target and disrupt voltage-sensitive sodium channels (VSSCs). VSSCs were expressed in Xenopus laevis oocytes and used to study the effects of deltamethrin on VSSCs. This study evaluated the amount of deltameth...

  18. Characterization of X-OCRL, a Xenopus laevis homologue of OCRL-1, the Lowe oculocerebrorenal syndrome candidate gene

    SciTech Connect

    Reilly, D.S.; Nussbaum, R.L.

    1994-09-01

    The Lowe oculocerebrorenal syndrome (OCRL) is an X-linked disease characterized by congenital cataract, mental retardation, and renal tubular dysfunction. A candidate cDNA, OCRL-1, was identified by positional cloning and mutations in OCRL-1 have been detected in patients with Lowe syndrome. The OCRL-1 nucleotide sequence encodes a predicted protein of 968 amino acids and shares 51% amino acid identity with a human inositol polyphosphate-5-phosphatase. This suggests that the underlying defect in OCRL may be due to a defect in inositol phosphate metabolism. The isolation of OCRL-1 provides the opportunity to investigate its function through the use of animal model systems. We have isolated a partial cDNA clone encoding an OCRL-1 homologue, X-OCRL, from the South African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis. We used a portion of the human cDNA to screen a Xenopus laevis embryo cDNA library and isolated four positive clones. One clone, 42-5A, is a 650 bp insert with over 75% amino acid identity to the corresponding region of the human OCRL-1 sequence. 42-5A detects messenger RNA in adult Xenopus brain, stomach, small intestine, skin, muscle, lung, blood, and oviduct. X-OCRL messenger RNA is first detected during late gastrula and continues to be expressed throughout Xenopus development. In situ hybridization studies are underway to identify the cellular localization of X-OCRL expression in Xenopus embryos and adult tissues. We are especially interested in characterizing X-OCRL expression during formation of the amphibian lens since congenital cataracts are a constant feature of the human disease.

  19. Vestibular lesion-induced developmental plasticity in spinal locomotor networks during Xenopus laevis metamorphosis.

    PubMed

    Beyeler, Anna; Rao, Guillaume; Ladepeche, Laurent; Jacques, André; Simmers, John; Le Ray, Didier

    2013-01-01

    During frog metamorphosis, the vestibular sensory system remains unchanged, while spinal motor networks undergo a massive restructuring associated with the transition from the larval to adult biomechanical system. We investigated in Xenopus laevis the impact of a pre- (tadpole stage) or post-metamorphosis (juvenile stage) unilateral labyrinthectomy (UL) on young adult swimming performance and underlying spinal locomotor circuitry. The acute disruptive effects on locomotion were similar in both tadpoles and juvenile frogs. However, animals that had metamorphosed with a preceding UL expressed restored swimming behavior at the juvenile stage, whereas animals lesioned after metamorphosis never recovered. Whilst kinematic and electrophysiological analyses of the propulsive system showed no significant differences in either juvenile group, a 3D biomechanical simulation suggested that an asymmetry in the dynamic control of posture during swimming could account for the behavioral restoration observed in animals that had been labyrinthectomized before metamorphosis. This hypothesis was subsequently supported by in vivo electromyography during free swimming and in vitro recordings from isolated brainstem/spinal cord preparations. Specifically, animals lesioned prior to metamorphosis at the larval stage exhibited an asymmetrical propulsion/posture coupling as a post-metamorphic young adult. This developmental alteration was accompanied by an ipsilesional decrease in propriospinal coordination that is normally established in strict left-right symmetry during metamorphosis in order to synchronize dorsal trunk muscle contractions with bilateral hindlimb extensions in the swimming adult. Our data thus suggest that a disequilibrium in descending vestibulospinal information during Xenopus metamorphosis leads to an altered assembly of adult spinal locomotor circuitry. This in turn enables an adaptive compensation for the dynamic postural asymmetry induced by the vestibular imbalance

  20. Vestibular Lesion-Induced Developmental Plasticity in Spinal Locomotor Networks during Xenopus laevis Metamorphosis

    PubMed Central

    Beyeler, Anna; Rao, Guillaume; Ladepeche, Laurent; Jacques, André; Simmers, John; Le Ray, Didier

    2013-01-01

    During frog metamorphosis, the vestibular sensory system remains unchanged, while spinal motor networks undergo a massive restructuring associated with the transition from the larval to adult biomechanical system. We investigated in Xenopus laevis the impact of a pre- (tadpole stage) or post-metamorphosis (juvenile stage) unilateral labyrinthectomy (UL) on young adult swimming performance and underlying spinal locomotor circuitry. The acute disruptive effects on locomotion were similar in both tadpoles and juvenile frogs. However, animals that had metamorphosed with a preceding UL expressed restored swimming behavior at the juvenile stage, whereas animals lesioned after metamorphosis never recovered. Whilst kinematic and electrophysiological analyses of the propulsive system showed no significant differences in either juvenile group, a 3D biomechanical simulation suggested that an asymmetry in the dynamic control of posture during swimming could account for the behavioral restoration observed in animals that had been labyrinthectomized before metamorphosis. This hypothesis was subsequently supported by in vivo electromyography during free swimming and in vitro recordings from isolated brainstem/spinal cord preparations. Specifically, animals lesioned prior to metamorphosis at the larval stage exhibited an asymmetrical propulsion/posture coupling as a post-metamorphic young adult. This developmental alteration was accompanied by an ipsilesional decrease in propriospinal coordination that is normally established in strict left-right symmetry during metamorphosis in order to synchronize dorsal trunk muscle contractions with bilateral hindlimb extensions in the swimming adult. Our data thus suggest that a disequilibrium in descending vestibulospinal information during Xenopus metamorphosis leads to an altered assembly of adult spinal locomotor circuitry. This in turn enables an adaptive compensation for the dynamic postural asymmetry induced by the vestibular imbalance

  1. Compact structure of ribosomal chromatin in Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed Central

    Spadafora, C; Crippa, M

    1984-01-01

    Micrococcal nuclease digestion was used as a tool to study the organization of the ribosomal chromatin in liver, blood and embryo cells of X. laevis. It was found that in liver and blood cells, ribosomal DNA is efficiently protected from nuclease attack in comparison to bulk chromatin. Although ribosomal chromatin is fragmented in a typical nucleosomal pattern, a considerable portion of ribosomal DNA retains a high molecular weight even after extensive digestion. A greater accessibility of the coding region in comparison to the non-coding spacer was found. In embryos, when ribosomal DNA is fully transcribed, these genes are even more highly protected than in adult tissues: in fact, the nucleosomal ladder can hardly be detected and rDNA is preserved in high molecular weight. Treatment of chromatin with 0.8 M NaCl abolishes the specific resistance of the ribosomal chromatin to digestion. The ribosomal chromatin, particularly in its active state, seems to be therefore tightly complexed with chromosomal proteins which protect its DNA from nuclease degradation. Images PMID:6709502

  2. Glomerular development and growth of the renal blood vascular system in Xenopus laevis (Amphibia: Anura: Pipidae) during metamorphic climax.

    PubMed

    Ditrich, H; Lametschwandtner, A

    1992-09-01

    Microcorrosion casts of the renal vascular system of tadpoles of the Clawed Frog, Xenopus laevis, were observed by scanning electron microscopy. Glomerular differentiation was studied qualitatively and quantitatively during developmental stages 56-66 (metamorphic climax). The general structure of the renal vascular system corresponds to the pattern commonly found in anurans; however, the arterial supply has conspicuous connecting vessels that supply groups of glomeruli. In the dorsal part of the kidney, qualitative differentiation of glomerular structures precedes quantitative growth. The ventral part of the kidney has larger, well-developed renal corpuscles of nearly adult appearance. Four developmental stages of glomerulogenesis are distinguished morphologically and their glomerular and vascular growth is analyzed.

  3. Identification of novel microRNAs in Xenopus laevis metaphase II arrested eggs

    PubMed Central

    Ambady, Sakthikumar; Wu, Zheyang; Dominko, Tanja

    2012-01-01

    Using a combination of deep sequencing and bioinformatics approach, we for the first time identify miRNAs and their relative abundance in mature, metaphase II arrested eggs in X. laevis. We characterize 115 miRNAs that have been described either in X. tropicalis (85), X. laevis (9) or other vertebrate species (21) that also map to known Xenopus pre-miRNAs and to the X. tropicalis genome. Additionally, 72 new X. laevis putative candidate miRNAs are identified based on mapping to X. tropicalis genome within regions that have the propensity to form hairpin loops. These data expand on the availability of genetic information in X. laevis and identifies target miRNAs for future functional studies. PMID:22223599

  4. THYROID AXIS INHIBITION IN XENOPUS LAEVIS: DEVELOPMENT OF AN AMPHIBIAN-BASED SCREENING ASSAY FOR THYROID DISRUPTION

    EPA Science Inventory

    In response to the initial EDSTAC recommendations, research was conducted on the development of a Xenopus laevis based tail resorption assay for evaluating thyroid axis disruption. These experiments highlighted key limitations associated with reliance on tail resorption as a meas...

  5. CONCENTRATION DEPENDENT ACCUMULATION OF [3H]-DELTAMETHRIN IN SODIUM CHANNEL N AV1.2 EXPRESSING XENOPUS LAEVIS OOCYTES.

    EPA Science Inventory

    Disruption of neuronal voltage-sensitive sodium channels (VSSCs) by pyrethroid insecticides such as deltamethrin (DLT) has been widely studied using Xenopus laevis oocytes transfected with VSSC. However, the extent of pyrethroid accumulation in VSSC-expressing oocytes is unknown....

  6. Cell Type-specific Translational Profiling in the Xenopus laevis Retina

    PubMed Central

    Watson, F.L.; Mills, E. A.; Wang, X.; Guo, C.; Chen, D.F.; Marsh-Armstrong, N.

    2013-01-01

    Background Translating Ribosome Affinity Purification (TRAP), a method recently developed to generate cell type-specific translational profiles, relies on creating transgenic lines of animals in which a tagged ribosomal protein is placed under regulatory control of a cell type-specific promoter. An antibody is then used to affinity purify the tagged ribosomes so that cell type-specific mRNAs can be isolated from whole tissue lysates. Results Here, cell type-specific transgenic lines were generated to enable TRAP studies for retinal ganglion cells and rod photoreceptors in the Xenopus laevis retina. Using real time quantitative PCR for assessing expression levels of cell type-specific mRNAs, the TRAP method was shown to selectively isolate mRNAs expressed in the targeted cell and was efficient at purifying mRNAs expressed at both high and low levels. Statistical measures used to distinguish cell type-specific RNAs from low level background and non-specific RNAs showed TRAP to be highly effective in Xenopus. Conclusions TRAP can be used to purify mRNAs expressed in rod photoreceptors and retinal ganglion cells in Xenopus laevis. The generated transgenic lines will enable numerous studies into the development, disease and injury of the Xenopus laevis retina. PMID:23074098

  7. Parasites of the African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis, in southern California, U.S.A

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kuperman, Boris I.; Matey, Victoria E.; Fisher, Richard N.; Ervin, Edward L.; Warburton, Manna L.; Bakhireva, Ludmila; Lehman, Cynthia A.

    2004-01-01

    A total of 230 feral African clawed frogs, Xenopus laevis, from 3 localities in southern California were examined for parasites. The following species were found: 3 species of Protozoa, Nyctotherussp., Balantidium xenopodis, Protoopalina xenopodus; 2 species of Monogenea, Protopolystoma xenopodis, Gyrdicotylus gallieni; 1 species of Digenea, Clinostomum sp. (as metacercariae); 1 species of Cestoda, Cephalochlamys namaquensis; 2 species of Nematoda, Contracaecum sp. (as larvae), Eustrongylides sp. (as larvae); and 1 species of Acanthocephala, Acanthocephalus sp. (as cystacanth). Of these, the protozoans P. xenopodus and B. xenopodis, both monogeneans, and the cestode have an African origin. Contracaecum sp., Eustrongylides sp., and Acanthocephalus sp. have not been previously reported from X. laevis.

  8. Inflammation-Induced Reactivation of the Ranavirus Frog Virus 3 in Asymptomatic Xenopus laevis

    PubMed Central

    Robert, Jacques; Grayfer, Leon; Edholm, Eva-Stina; Ward, Brian; De Jesús Andino, Francisco

    2014-01-01

    Natural infections of ectothermic vertebrates by ranaviruses (RV, family Iridoviridae) are rapidly increasing, with an alarming expansion of RV tropism and resulting die-offs of numerous animal populations. Notably, infection studies of the amphibian Xenopus laevis with the ranavirus Frog Virus 3 (FV3) have revealed that although the adult frog immune system is efficient at controlling RV infections, residual quiescent virus can be detected in mononuclear phagocytes of otherwise asymptomatic animals following the resolution of RV infections. It is noteworthy that macrophage-lineage cells are now believed to be a critical element in the RV infection strategy. In the present work, we report that inflammation induced by peritoneal injection of heat-killed bacteria in asymptomatic frogs one month after infection with FV3 resulted in viral reactivation including detectable viral DNA and viral gene expression in otherwise asymptomatic frogs. FV3 reactivation was most prominently detected in kidneys and in peritoneal HAM56+ mononuclear phagocytes. Notably, unlike adult frogs that typically clear primary FV3 infections, a proportion of the animals succumbed to the reactivated FV3 infection, indicating that previous exposure does not provide protection against subsequent reactivation in these animals. PMID:25390636

  9. Inflammation-induced reactivation of the ranavirus Frog Virus 3 in asymptomatic Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Robert, Jacques; Grayfer, Leon; Edholm, Eva-Stina; Ward, Brian; De Jesús Andino, Francisco

    2014-01-01

    Natural infections of ectothermic vertebrates by ranaviruses (RV, family Iridoviridae) are rapidly increasing, with an alarming expansion of RV tropism and resulting die-offs of numerous animal populations. Notably, infection studies of the amphibian Xenopus laevis with the ranavirus Frog Virus 3 (FV3) have revealed that although the adult frog immune system is efficient at controlling RV infections, residual quiescent virus can be detected in mononuclear phagocytes of otherwise asymptomatic animals following the resolution of RV infections. It is noteworthy that macrophage-lineage cells are now believed to be a critical element in the RV infection strategy. In the present work, we report that inflammation induced by peritoneal injection of heat-killed bacteria in asymptomatic frogs one month after infection with FV3 resulted in viral reactivation including detectable viral DNA and viral gene expression in otherwise asymptomatic frogs. FV3 reactivation was most prominently detected in kidneys and in peritoneal HAM56+ mononuclear phagocytes. Notably, unlike adult frogs that typically clear primary FV3 infections, a proportion of the animals succumbed to the reactivated FV3 infection, indicating that previous exposure does not provide protection against subsequent reactivation in these animals.

  10. Accelerated Gene Evolution and Subfunctionalization in thePseudotetraploid Frog Xenopus Laevis

    SciTech Connect

    Hellsten, Uffe; Khokha, Mustafa K.; Grammar, Timothy C.; Harland,Richard M.; Richardson, Paul; Rokhsar, Daniel S.

    2007-03-01

    Ancient whole genome duplications have been implicated in the vertebrate and teleost radiations, and in the emergence of diverse angiosperm lineages, but the evolutionary response to such a perturbation is still poorly understood. The African clawed frog Xenopus laevis experienced a relatively recent tetraploidization {approx} 40 million years ago. Analysis of the considerable amount of EST sequence available for this species together with the genome sequence of the related diploid Xenopus tropicalis provides a unique opportunity to study the genomic response to whole genome duplication.

  11. Gender-related sensitivity of development and growth to real microgravity in Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Horn, Eberhard R; Gabriel, Martin

    2014-01-01

    Exposure of organisms to microgravity can induce morphological, physiological, and behavioral modifications which normalize after re-entry in 1g-condition within hours to few weeks. Development of Xenopus laevis tadpoles, their metamorphosis, and adults' growth were monitored for 3 years after their flight on the 12-day Soyuz mission TMA13 to the International Space Station. At onset of microgravity, tadpoles had just developed the hind limb (stage 47) or forelimb bud (stage 50). Recordings during the first 4 days after landing revealed no differences of developmental progresses and growth between flight and ground tadpoles. Further development and growth were strongly retarded in all animals; nevertheless, significant differences appeared between flight and ground groups during this postflight period. They include (1) acceleration of development in stage 47 but not stage 50 flight tadpoles; (2) earlier metamorphosis of stage 47 flight tadpoles compared to their 1g-ground controls while stage 50 flight tadpoles metamorphosed later than their ground controls; (3) maintenance of a tail during the juvenile stage exclusively in some stage 47 flight animals, and (4) accelerated growth of stage 47 male flight toads but retarded growth of stage 50 flight males compared to the respective 1g-ground control males. No difference of growth was detected between flight and ground females after metamorphosis. All differences between flight and ground animals disappeared 1 year after landing. We conclude (1) that limited spatial and nutritional conditions during the mission period caused developmental retardation, and (2) that the thyroid gland of Xenopus is susceptible to spatial environment, in particular, during the period of beginning activation.

  12. Effects of tributyltin on metamorphosis and gonadal differentiation of Xenopus laevis at environmentally relevant concentrations.

    PubMed

    Shi, Huahong; Zhu, Pan; Guo, Suzhen

    2014-05-01

    Tributyltin (TBT), a well known endocrine disruptor, has high teratogenicity to embryos of amphibian (Xenopus tropicalis). An amphibian metamorphosis assay (AMA) and a complete AMA (CAMA) were conducted for TBT. In AMA, the body weight, the snout-to-vent length and the hind limb length of X. laevis tadpoles were decreased in tributyltin chloride (TBTCl; 12.5-200 ng/L) treatment groups after 7 days exposure. TBT greatly retarded the development of tadpoles, decreased the number of follicle and induced thyroid follicle cell hyperplasia after 19 days exposure. In CAMA, 10 and 100 ng/L TBTCl led to various malformations of gonad, including intersex, segmental aplasia and multiple ovary cavities of X. laevis following exposure from stages 46 to stage 66. The sex ratio was male-biased in TBT treatment groups. These results suggest that TBT delayed the metamorphosis, inhibited the growth of tadpoles and disrupted the gonadal differentiation of X. laevis at environmentally relevant concentrations.

  13. Effects of tributyltin on metamorphosis and gonadal differentiation of Xenopus laevis at environmentally relevant concentrations.

    PubMed

    Shi, Huahong; Zhu, Pan; Guo, Suzhen

    2014-05-01

    Tributyltin (TBT), a well known endocrine disruptor, has high teratogenicity to embryos of amphibian (Xenopus tropicalis). An amphibian metamorphosis assay (AMA) and a complete AMA (CAMA) were conducted for TBT. In AMA, the body weight, the snout-to-vent length and the hind limb length of X. laevis tadpoles were decreased in tributyltin chloride (TBTCl; 12.5-200 ng/L) treatment groups after 7 days exposure. TBT greatly retarded the development of tadpoles, decreased the number of follicle and induced thyroid follicle cell hyperplasia after 19 days exposure. In CAMA, 10 and 100 ng/L TBTCl led to various malformations of gonad, including intersex, segmental aplasia and multiple ovary cavities of X. laevis following exposure from stages 46 to stage 66. The sex ratio was male-biased in TBT treatment groups. These results suggest that TBT delayed the metamorphosis, inhibited the growth of tadpoles and disrupted the gonadal differentiation of X. laevis at environmentally relevant concentrations. PMID:22903176

  14. Effect of titanium dioxide nanomaterials and ultraviolet light coexposure on African clawed frogs (Xenopus laevis).

    PubMed

    Zhang, Junling; Wages, Mike; Cox, Stephen B; Maul, Jonathan D; Li, Yujia; Barnes, Melanie; Hope-Weeks, Louisa; Cobb, George P

    2012-01-01

    Titanium dioxide nanomaterials (nano-TiO(2) ) exhibit stronger photochemical oxidation/reduction capacity compared with their bulk counterparts, but the effectiveness of nano-TiO(2) interaction with ultraviolet (UV) light strongly depends on particle size. In this study, the dependence of nano-TiO(2) toxicity on particle size and interaction with UV light were investigated. Toxicity tests with Xenopus laevis included eight concentrations of nano-TiO(2) in the presence of either white light or UVA (315-400 nm). We quantified viability and growth of Xenopus laevis. Results showed that, regardless of UV light exposure, increasing TiO(2) concentration decreased X. laevis survival (p < 0.05). Coexposure to 5-nm TiO(2) and UVA caused near-significant decreases in X. laevis survival (p = 0.08). Coexposure to 10-nm TiO(2) and UVA significantly decreased X. laevis survival (p = 0.005). However, coexposure to 32-nm TiO(2) and UVA had no statistical effect on X. laevis survival (p = 0.8). For all three particle sizes, whether alone or with UV light, the nano-TiO(2) concentrations significantly affected growth of tadpoles as determined by total body length, snout-vent length, and developmental stage. High-concentration TiO(2) solutions suppressed tadpole body length and delayed developmental stages. Further research to explore reasons for the growth and mortality in tadpoles is still underway in our laboratory. Given the widespread application of nano-TiO(2) , our results may be useful in the management of nano-TiO(2) released from industrial, municipal, and nonpoint sources. PMID:22012895

  15. Lethal and sublethal effects of three insecticides on two developmental stages of Xenopus laevis and comparison with other amphibians.

    PubMed

    Yu, Shuangying; Wages, Mike R; Cai, Qingsong; Maul, Jonathan D; Cobb, George P

    2013-09-01

    It has been suggested that Xenopus laevis is less sensitive than other amphibians to some chemicals, and therefore, that the Frog Embryo Teratogenesis Assay-Xenopus (FETAX) may have limited use in risk assessments for other amphibians. However, comparisons are based mostly on results of FETAX, which emphasizes embryos. Larval X. laevis may be more sensitive to chemicals than embryos and may serve as a better life stage in risk assessments. The present study was conducted to determine the lethal and sublethal effects of 3 insecticides (malathion, endosulfan, and α-cypermethrin) on X. laevis embryos and larvae and to compare toxicity of X. laevis with that of other amphibians. All 3 insecticides have different modes of action, and they caused mortality, malformations, and growth inhibition in both developmental stages. Compared with embryos, larvae were more sensitive to endosulfan and α-cypermethrin but not to malathion. Xenopus laevis larvae had low sensitivity to endosulfan, median sensitivity to malathion, and high sensitivity to α-cypermethrin/cypermethrin relative to other larval amphibians. Our results suggest that X. laevis larvae may generate more protective toxicity estimates in risk assessments than embryos. Xenopus laevis may have limited use in evaluating risk of organochlorine insecticides to other amphibians but may provide useful toxicity thresholds for pyrethroid and perhaps organophosphorus insecticides.

  16. Different conformations of ribosomal DNA in active and inactive chromatin in Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Spadafora, C; Riccardi, P

    1985-12-20

    The chromatin structure of the ribosomal DNA in Xenopus laevis was studied by micrococcal nuclease digestions of blood, liver and embryonic cell nuclei. We have found that BglI-restricted DNA from micrococcal nuclease-digested blood cell nuclei has an increased electrophoretic mobility compared to the undigested control. Micrococcal nuclease digestion of liver cell nuclei causes a very slight shift in mobility, only in the region of the spacer containing the "Bam Islands". In contrast, the mobility of ribosomal DNA in chromatin of embryonic cells, under identical digestion conditions, remains unaffected by the nuclease activity. Denaturing gels or ligase action on the nuclease-treated DNA abolishes the differences in the electrophoretic mobility. Ionic strength and ethidium bromide influence the relative electrophoretic migration of the two DNA fragment populations, suggesting that secondary structure may play an important role in the observed phenomena. In addition, restriction analysis under native electrophoretic conditions of DNA prepared from blood, liver and embryonic cells shows that blood cell DNA restriction fragments always have a faster mobility than the corresponding fragments of liver and embryo cell DNA. We therefore propose that nicking activity by micrococcal nuclease modifies the electrophoretic mobility of an unusual DNA conformation, present in blood cell, and to a lesser extent, in liver cell ribosomal chromatin. A possible function for these structures is discussed. The differences of the ribosomal chromatin structures in adult and embryonic tissues may reflect the potential of the genes to be expressed.

  17. Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) expression in normal and regenerating olfactory epithelium of Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Frontera, Jimena Laura; Cervino, Ailen Soledad; Jungblut, Lucas David; Paz, Dante Agustín

    2015-03-01

    Olfactory epithelium has the capability to continuously regenerate olfactory receptor neurons throughout life. Adult neurogenesis results from proliferation and differentiation of neural stem cells, and consequently, olfactory neuroepithelium offers an excellent opportunity to study neural regeneration and the factors involved in the maintenance and regeneration of all their cell types. We analyzed the expression of BDNF in the olfactory system under normal physiological conditions as well as during a massive regeneration induced by chemical destruction of the olfactory epithelium in Xenopus laevis larvae. We described the expression and presence of BDNF in the olfactory epithelium and bulb. In normal physiological conditions, sustentacular (glial) cells and a few scattered basal (stem) cells express BDNF in the olfactory epithelium as well as the granular cells in the olfactory bulb. Moreover, during massive regeneration, we demonstrated a drastic increase in basal cells expressing BDNF as well as an increase in BDNF in the olfactory bulb and nerve. Together these results suggest an important role of BDNF in the maintenance and regeneration of the olfactory system.

  18. Mortality and morbidity in African clawed frogs (Xenopus laevis) associated with construction noise and vibrations.

    PubMed

    Felt, Stephen A; Cowan, Andrea M; Luong, Richard; Green, Sherril L

    2012-03-01

    In Spring 2008, 175 adult female Xenopus laevis were exposed to construction-related vibrations that caused overt water rippling in the frog tanks. The 3 affected tanks were custom-built static, 300-gal 'pond-style' tanks that sat on the floor of the housing room. The water in the tank developed visible ripples as a result of the vibrations transmitted through the floor during jack-hammering in an adjacent room that was approximately 10 ftaway. All frogs in the tanks displayed buoyancy problems, excessive air gulping, and skin sloughing; ultimately 7 frogs died. In addition, these 7 animals were bloated, and 5 of these 7 had regurgitated and everted their stomach and distal esophagus into the oral cavity, resulting in airway obstruction and death. Gross pathologic findings included regurgitation and eversion of the stomach of the distal portion of the esophagus into the oral cavity, obstruction of the airway, and lung overinflation. No significant histologic lesions were observed. Construction vibrations transmitted through the water appeared to have disrupted the mechanoreceptive function of the lateral line system, resulting in overstimulation of the noxious feeding response, regurgitation, and eversion of the stomach and distal esophagus into the oral cavity and subsequent suffocation due to airway obstruction. After immediate cessation of the jack-hammering and relocation of the remaining frogs, no additional morbidities or mortalities occurred. PMID:22776127

  19. Temperature-independent energy expenditure in early development of the African clawed frog Xenopus laevis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nagano, Yatsuhisa; Ode, Koji L.

    2014-08-01

    The thermal dissipation of activated eggs and embryos undergoing development from cleavage to the tailbud stage of the African clawed frog Xenopus laevis was measured as a function of incubation time at temperatures ranging from T = 288.2 K to 295.2 K, using a high-precision isothermal calorimeter. A23187-mediated activation of mature eggs induced stable periodic thermal oscillations lasting for 8-34 h. The frequency agreed well with the cell cycle frequency of initial cleavages at the identical temperature. In the developing embryo, energy metabolism switches from embryonic to adult features during gastrulation. The thermal dissipation after gastrulation fit well with a single modified Avrami equation, which has been used for modeling crystal-growth. Both the oscillation frequency of the activated egg and the growth rate of the embryo strongly depend on temperature with the same apparent activation energy of approximately 87 kJ mole-1. This result suggests that early development proceeds as a single biological time, attributable to a single metabolic rate. A temperature-independent growth curve was derived by scaling the thermogram to the biological time, indicating that the amount of energy expenditure during each developmental stage is constant over the optimal temperature range.

  20. Mortality and morbidity in African clawed frogs (Xenopus laevis) associated with construction noise and vibrations.

    PubMed

    Felt, Stephen A; Cowan, Andrea M; Luong, Richard; Green, Sherril L

    2012-03-01

    In Spring 2008, 175 adult female Xenopus laevis were exposed to construction-related vibrations that caused overt water rippling in the frog tanks. The 3 affected tanks were custom-built static, 300-gal 'pond-style' tanks that sat on the floor of the housing room. The water in the tank developed visible ripples as a result of the vibrations transmitted through the floor during jack-hammering in an adjacent room that was approximately 10 ftaway. All frogs in the tanks displayed buoyancy problems, excessive air gulping, and skin sloughing; ultimately 7 frogs died. In addition, these 7 animals were bloated, and 5 of these 7 had regurgitated and everted their stomach and distal esophagus into the oral cavity, resulting in airway obstruction and death. Gross pathologic findings included regurgitation and eversion of the stomach of the distal portion of the esophagus into the oral cavity, obstruction of the airway, and lung overinflation. No significant histologic lesions were observed. Construction vibrations transmitted through the water appeared to have disrupted the mechanoreceptive function of the lateral line system, resulting in overstimulation of the noxious feeding response, regurgitation, and eversion of the stomach and distal esophagus into the oral cavity and subsequent suffocation due to airway obstruction. After immediate cessation of the jack-hammering and relocation of the remaining frogs, no additional morbidities or mortalities occurred.

  1. Role of piperonyl butoxide in the toxicity of chlorpyrifos to Ceriodaphnia dubia and Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    El-Merhibi, A; Kumar, A; Smeaton, T

    2004-02-01

    The use of chemical inhibitors/inducers is one of the strategies employed to determine whether a particular metabolic pathway is involved in the metabolism of a xenobiotic. The objective of this study was to assess the role of piperonyl butoxide (PBO) on the toxicity of an organophosphorus insecticide, chlorpyrifos (CPF) to two species, Ceriodaphnia dubia (waterflea) and Xenopus laevis (South African clawed frog). Chlorpyrifos was highly toxic to C. dubia (48-h LC50: 0.05 microg/L) in comparison with X. laevis (96-h LC50: 2410 microg/L). Piperonyl butoxide at 200 microg/L reduced the toxicity of chlorpyrifos to C. dubia by a factor of 6. Piperonyl butoxide at 3000 microg/L also reduced the toxicity of CPF to X. laevis with respect to mortality and malformations. Acetylcholinesterase (AChE) activity was used as a biomarker to further assess the role of PBO in chlorpyrifos toxicity. X. laevis exposed to CPF and PBO exhibited a biphasic response in terms of AChE activity with an initial increase in the AChE activity followed by a drastic decrease. The results from the present study indicate that C. dubia and X. laevis have the capability to metabolize chlorpyrifos via cytochromes P450 mediated reactions. The results also indicate that the use of the biomarker AChE is useful in determining metabolic processes of organophosphorus insecticides, which require metabolic activation.

  2. The Expression of TALEN before Fertilization Provides a Rapid Knock-Out Phenotype in Xenopus laevis Founder Embryos.

    PubMed

    Miyamoto, Kei; Suzuki, Ken-Ichi T; Suzuki, Miyuki; Sakane, Yuto; Sakuma, Tetsushi; Herberg, Sarah; Simeone, Angela; Simpson, David; Jullien, Jerome; Yamamoto, Takashi; Gurdon, J B

    2015-01-01

    Recent advances in genome editing using programmable nucleases have revolutionized gene targeting in various organisms. Successful gene knock-out has been shown in Xenopus, a widely used model organism, although a system enabling less mosaic knock-out in founder embryos (F0) needs to be explored in order to judge phenotypes in the F0 generation. Here, we injected modified highly active transcription activator-like effector nuclease (TALEN) mRNA to oocytes at the germinal vesicle (GV) stage, followed by in vitro maturation and intracytoplasmic sperm injection, to achieve a full knock-out in F0 embryos. Unlike conventional injection methods to fertilized embryos, the injection of TALEN mRNA into GV oocytes allows expression of nucleases before fertilization, enabling them to work from an earlier stage. Using this procedure, most of developed embryos showed full knock-out phenotypes of the pigmentation gene tyrosinase and/or embryonic lethal gene pax6 in the founder generation. In addition, our method permitted a large 1 kb deletion. Thus, we describe nearly complete gene knock-out phenotypes in Xenopus laevis F0 embryos. The presented method will help to accelerate the production of knock-out frogs since we can bypass an extra generation of about 1 year in Xenopus laevis. Meantime, our method provides a unique opportunity to rapidly test the developmental effects of disrupting those genes that do not permit growth to an adult able to reproduce. In addition, the protocol shown here is considerably less invasive than the previously used host transfer since our protocol does not require surgery. The experimental scheme presented is potentially applicable to other organisms such as mammals and fish to resolve common issues of mosaicism in founders.

  3. The Expression of TALEN before Fertilization Provides a Rapid Knock-Out Phenotype in Xenopus laevis Founder Embryos

    PubMed Central

    Suzuki, Miyuki; Sakane, Yuto; Sakuma, Tetsushi; Herberg, Sarah; Simeone, Angela; Simpson, David; Jullien, Jerome; Yamamoto, Takashi; Gurdon, J. B.

    2015-01-01

    Recent advances in genome editing using programmable nucleases have revolutionized gene targeting in various organisms. Successful gene knock-out has been shown in Xenopus, a widely used model organism, although a system enabling less mosaic knock-out in founder embryos (F0) needs to be explored in order to judge phenotypes in the F0 generation. Here, we injected modified highly active transcription activator-like effector nuclease (TALEN) mRNA to oocytes at the germinal vesicle (GV) stage, followed by in vitro maturation and intracytoplasmic sperm injection, to achieve a full knock-out in F0 embryos. Unlike conventional injection methods to fertilized embryos, the injection of TALEN mRNA into GV oocytes allows expression of nucleases before fertilization, enabling them to work from an earlier stage. Using this procedure, most of developed embryos showed full knock-out phenotypes of the pigmentation gene tyrosinase and/or embryonic lethal gene pax6 in the founder generation. In addition, our method permitted a large 1 kb deletion. Thus, we describe nearly complete gene knock-out phenotypes in Xenopus laevis F0 embryos. The presented method will help to accelerate the production of knock-out frogs since we can bypass an extra generation of about 1 year in Xenopus laevis. Meantime, our method provides a unique opportunity to rapidly test the developmental effects of disrupting those genes that do not permit growth to an adult able to reproduce. In addition, the protocol shown here is considerably less invasive than the previously used host transfer since our protocol does not require surgery. The experimental scheme presented is potentially applicable to other organisms such as mammals and fish to resolve common issues of mosaicism in founders. PMID:26580070

  4. Pattern and morphogenesis of presumptive superficial mesoderm in two closely related species, Xenopus laevis and Xenopus tropicalis.

    PubMed

    Shook, David R; Majer, Christina; Keller, Ray

    2004-06-01

    The mesoderm, comprising the tissues that come to lie entirely in the deep layer, originates in both the superficial epithelial and the deep mesenchymal layers of the early amphibian embryo. Here, we characterize the mechanisms by which the superficial component of the presumptive mesoderm ingresses into the underlying deep mesenchymal layer in Xenopus tropicalis and extend our previous findings for Xenopus laevis. Fate mapping the superficial epithelium of pregastrula stage embryos demonstrates ingression of surface cells into both paraxial and axial mesoderm (including hypochord), in similar patterns and amounts in both species. Superficial presumptive notochord lies medially, flanked by presumptive hypochord and both overlie the deep region of the presumptive notochord. These tissues are flanked laterally by superficial presumptive somitic mesoderm, the anterior tip of which also appears to overlay the presumptive deep notochord. Time-lapse recordings show that presumptive somitic and notochordal cells move out of the roof of the gastrocoel and into the deep region during neurulation, whereas hypochordal cells ingress after neurulation. Scanning electron microscopy at the stage and position where ingression occurs suggests that superficial presumptive somitic cells in X. laevis ingress into the deep region as bottle cells whereas those in X. tropicalis ingress by "relamination" (e.g., [Dev. Biol. 174 (1996) 92]). In both species, the superficially derived presumptive somitic cells come to lie in the medial region of the presumptive somites during neurulation. By the early tailbud stages, these cells lie at the horizontal myoseptum of the somites. The morphogenic pathway of these cells strongly resembles that of the primary slow muscle pioneer cells of the zebrafish. We present a revised fate map of Xenopus, and we discuss the conservation of superficial mesoderm within amphibians and across the chordates and its implications for the role of this tissue in

  5. Overland movement in African clawed frogs (Xenopus laevis): a systematic review.

    PubMed

    Measey, John

    2016-01-01

    African clawed frogs (Xenopus laevis) are often referred to as 'purely aquatic' but there are many publications which suggest extensive overland movements. Previous reviews which considered the topic have not answered the following questions: (1) is there evidence for overland dispersal in native and invasive ranges; (2) what is the range of distances moved overland; (3) when does overland movement occur; and (4) is there evidence of breeding migratory behaviour? A systematic review was chosen to synthesise and critically analyse all literature on the overland movement in Xenopus laevis. Database searches resulted in 57 documents which revealed a paucity of empirical studies, with 28 containing no data, and 19 having anecdotal content. Overwhelming evidence shows that both native and invasive populations of X. laevis move overland, with well documented examples for several other members of the genus (X. borealis, X. gilli, X. muelleri, X. fraseriand X. tropicalis). Reports of distances moved overland were from 40 m to 2 km, with no apparent difference between native and invasive ranges. Overland movements are not confined to wet seasons or conditions, but the literature suggests that moving overland does not occur in the middle of the day. Migrations to temporary water-bodies for breeding have been suggested, but without any corroborating data. PMID:27688972

  6. Effects of depleted uranium on survival, growth, and metamorphosis in the african clawed frog (Xenopus laevis)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Mitchell, S.E.; Caldwell, C.A.; Gonzales, G.; Gould, W.R.; Arimoto, R.

    2005-01-01

    Embryos (stage 8-47, Nieuwkoop and Faber) of the African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis) were subjected to water-borne depleted uranium (DU) concentrations that ranged from 4.8 to 77.7 mg/Lusing an acute 96-h frog embryo teratogenesis assay-Xenopus (FETAX). In a chronic 64-d assay, X. laevis (from embryo through metamorphosis; stages 8-66) were subjected to concentrations of DU that ranged from 6.2 to 54.3 mg/L Our results indicate DU is a non teratogenic metal. No effects on mortality, malformations, or growth were observed in the 96-h FETAX with concentrations of DU that ranged from 4.8 to 77.7 mg/L From stage 8 to stage 47, X. laevis tadpoles do not actively feed and the gills are not well developed. Thus, uptake of DU was reduced despite exposure to elevated concentrations. The 64-d assay resulted in no concentration response for either mortality or malformations; however, a delay in metamorphosis was observed in tadpoles subjected to elevated DU concentrations (from 13.1 to 54.3 mg/L) compared to tadpoles in both the well-water control and reference. The delay in metamorphosis was likely due to increasing body burden of DU that ranged from 0.98 to 2.82 mg/kg. Copyright?? Taylor & Francis Inc.

  7. β-hexosaminidase from Xenopus laevis eggs and oocytes: from gene to immunochemical characterization.

    PubMed

    Morales, Enrique S; Krapf, Darío; Botta, Pablo E; Cabada, Marcelo O; Arranz, Silvia E

    2012-12-01

    Glycosidases are present both in sperm and eggs in vertebrates and have been associated with different fertilization steps as gamete binding, egg coat penetration, and polyspermy prevention. In this manuscript, we have analyzed the activity of different glycosidases of Xenopus laevis eggs. The main activity corresponded to N-acetyl-β-D-glucosaminidase (Hex), which was reported to participate both in gamete binding and polyspermy prevention among phylogenetically distant animals. We have raised homologous antibodies against a recombinant N-terminal fragment of a X. laevis Hex, and characterized egg's Hex both by Western blot and immunohistochemical assays. Noteworthy, Hex was mainly localized to the cortex of animal hemisphere of full-grown oocytes and oviposited eggs, and remained unaltered after fertilization. Hex is constituted by different pair arrangements of two subunits (α and β), giving rise to three possible Hex isoforms: A (αβ), B (ββ), and S (αα). However, no information was available regarding molecular identity of Hex in amphibians. We present for the first time the primary sequences of two isoforms of X. laevis Hex. Interestingly, our results suggest that α- and β-like subunits that constitute Hex isoforms could be synthesized from a same gene in Xenopus, by alternative exon use. This finding denotes an evolutionary divergence with mammals, where α and β Hex subunits are synthesized from different genes on different chromosomes. PMID:22753314

  8. Xenopus laevis oocytes infected with multi-drug–resistant bacteria: implications for electrical recordings

    PubMed Central

    O'Connell, Denice; Mruk, Karen; Rocheleau, Jessica M.

    2011-01-01

    The Xenopus laevis oocyte has been the workhorse for the investigation of ion transport proteins. These large cells have spawned a multitude of novel techniques that are unfathomable in mammalian cells, yet the fickleness of the oocyte has driven many researchers to use other membrane protein expression systems. Here, we show that some colonies of Xenopus laevis are infected with three multi-drug–resistant bacteria: Pseudomonas fluorescens, Pseudomonas putida, and Stenotrophomonas maltophilia. Oocytes extracted from infected frogs quickly (3–4 d) develop multiple black foci on the animal pole, similar to microinjection scars, which render the extracted eggs useless for electrical recordings. Although multi-drug resistant, the bacteria were susceptible to amikacin and ciprofloxacin in growth assays. Supplementing the oocyte storage media with these two antibiotics prevented the appearance of the black foci and afforded oocytes suitable for whole-cell recordings. Given that P. fluorescens associated with X. laevis has become rapidly drug resistant, it is imperative that researchers store the extracted oocytes in the antibiotic cocktail and not treat the animals harboring the multi-drug–resistant bacteria. PMID:21788613

  9. Overland movement in African clawed frogs (Xenopus laevis): a systematic review

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    African clawed frogs (Xenopus laevis) are often referred to as ‘purely aquatic’ but there are many publications which suggest extensive overland movements. Previous reviews which considered the topic have not answered the following questions: (1) is there evidence for overland dispersal in native and invasive ranges; (2) what is the range of distances moved overland; (3) when does overland movement occur; and (4) is there evidence of breeding migratory behaviour? A systematic review was chosen to synthesise and critically analyse all literature on the overland movement in Xenopus laevis. Database searches resulted in 57 documents which revealed a paucity of empirical studies, with 28 containing no data, and 19 having anecdotal content. Overwhelming evidence shows that both native and invasive populations of X. laevis move overland, with well documented examples for several other members of the genus (X. borealis, X. gilli, X. muelleri, X. fraseriand X. tropicalis). Reports of distances moved overland were from 40 m to 2 km, with no apparent difference between native and invasive ranges. Overland movements are not confined to wet seasons or conditions, but the literature suggests that moving overland does not occur in the middle of the day. Migrations to temporary water-bodies for breeding have been suggested, but without any corroborating data. PMID:27688972

  10. Overland movement in African clawed frogs (Xenopus laevis): a systematic review

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    African clawed frogs (Xenopus laevis) are often referred to as ‘purely aquatic’ but there are many publications which suggest extensive overland movements. Previous reviews which considered the topic have not answered the following questions: (1) is there evidence for overland dispersal in native and invasive ranges; (2) what is the range of distances moved overland; (3) when does overland movement occur; and (4) is there evidence of breeding migratory behaviour? A systematic review was chosen to synthesise and critically analyse all literature on the overland movement in Xenopus laevis. Database searches resulted in 57 documents which revealed a paucity of empirical studies, with 28 containing no data, and 19 having anecdotal content. Overwhelming evidence shows that both native and invasive populations of X. laevis move overland, with well documented examples for several other members of the genus (X. borealis, X. gilli, X. muelleri, X. fraseriand X. tropicalis). Reports of distances moved overland were from 40 m to 2 km, with no apparent difference between native and invasive ranges. Overland movements are not confined to wet seasons or conditions, but the literature suggests that moving overland does not occur in the middle of the day. Migrations to temporary water-bodies for breeding have been suggested, but without any corroborating data.

  11. Comparative functional analysis of rat TGF-beta1 and Xenopus laevis TGF-beta5 promoters suggest differential regulations.

    PubMed

    Goswami, Moloy T; Desai, Kartiki V; Kondaiah, Paturu

    2003-07-01

    We have carried out a comparative functional analysis of the rat TGF-beta1 and Xenopus laevis TGF-beta5 promoters across several mammalian and amphibian cell lines. Progressive deletion constructs of both the promoters have been made using a PCR based approach and the basal promoter activities studied in Xenopus tadpole cell line (XTC), Xenopus adult kidney fibroblast cell line (A6), human hepatoma cell line (HepG2), normal rat kidney cell line (NRK), and Chinese hamster ovary cell line (CHO). Data suggests that the basal promoter activity of TGF-beta1 is low as compared to TGF-beta5 promoter in XTC cells but comparable in A6 cells, while TGF-beta5 promoter shows nearly negligible activity as compared to TGF-beta5 promoter in all the tested mammalian cell lines. Moreover, TGF-beta5 promoter is found to be repressed in XTC cells on treatment with TGF-beta5 protein. Thus, the regulation of TGF-beta1 and TGF-beta5 promoters is distinct in amphibian and mammalian species. We therefore suggest that contrary to the suggested functional equivalence of TGF-beta1 and TGF-beta5 proteins, TGF-beta1 and TGF-beta5 genes have distinct functions in their respective species.

  12. The Amphibian (Xenopus laevis) Type I Interferon Response to Frog Virus 3: New Insight into Ranavirus Pathogenicity

    PubMed Central

    Grayfer, Leon; De Jesús Andino, Francisco

    2014-01-01

    ABSTRACT The increasing prevalence of ranavirus (RV; Iridoviridae) infections of wild and commercially maintained aquatic species is raising considerable concerns. While Xenopus laevis is the leading model for studies of immunity to RV, amphibian antiviral interferon (IFN) responses remain largely uncharacterized. Accordingly, an X. laevis type I interferon was identified, the expression of the gene for this IFN was examined in RV (frog virus 3 [FV3])-infected tadpoles and adult frogs by quantitative PCR, and a recombinant form of this molecule (recombinant X. laevis interferon [rXlIFN]) was produced for the purpose of functional studies. This rXlIFN protected the kidney-derived A6 cell line and tadpoles against FV3 infection, decreasing the infectious viral burdens in both cases. Adult frogs are naturally resistant to FV3 and clear the infection within a few weeks, whereas tadpoles typically succumb to this virus. Hence, as predicted, virus-infected adult X. laevis frogs exhibited significantly more robust FV3-elicited IFN gene expression than tadpoles; nevertheless, they also tolerated substantially greater viral burdens following infection. Although tadpole stimulation with rXlIFN prior to FV3 challenge markedly impaired viral replication and viral burdens, it only transiently extended tadpole survival and did not prevent the eventual mortality of these animals. Furthermore, histological analysis revealed that despite rXlIFN treatment, infected tadpoles had considerable organ damage, including disrupted tissue architecture and extensive necrosis and apoptosis. Conjointly, these findings indicate a critical protective role for the amphibian type I IFN response during ranaviral infections and suggest that these viruses are more pathogenic to tadpole hosts than was previously believed, causing extensive and fatal damage to multiple organs, even at very low titers. IMPORTANCE Ranavirus infections are threatening wild and commercially maintained aquatic species. The

  13. Developmental segregation of spinal networks driving axial- and hindlimb-based locomotion in metamorphosing Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Combes, D; Merrywest, S D; Simmers, J; Sillar, K T

    2004-08-15

    Amphibian metamorphosis includes a complete reorganization of an organism's locomotory system from axial-based swimming in larvae to limbed propulsion in the young adult. At critical stages during this behavioural switch, larval and adult motor systems operate in the same animal, commensurate with a gradual and dynamic reconfiguration of spinal locomotor circuitry. To study this plasticity, we have developed isolated preparations of the spinal cord and brainstem from pre- to post-metamorphic stages of the amphibian Xenopus laevis, in which spinal motor output patterns expressed spontaneously or in the presence of NMDA correlate with locomotor behaviour in the freely swimming animal. Extracellular ventral root recordings along the spinal cord of pre-metamorphic tadpoles revealed motor output corresponding to larval axial swimming, whereas postmetamorphic animals expressed motor patterns appropriate for bilaterally synchronous hindlimb flexion-extension kicks. However, in vitro recordings from metamorphic climax stages, with the tail and the limbs both functional, revealed two distinct motor patterns that could occur either independently or simultaneously, albeit at very different frequencies. Activity at 0.5-1 Hz in lumbar ventral roots corresponded to bipedal extension-flexion cycles, while the second, faster pattern (2-5 Hz) recorded from tail ventral roots corresponded to larval-like swimming. These data indicate that at intermediate stages during metamorphosis separate networks, one responsible for segmentally organized axial locomotion and another for more localized appendicular rhythm generation, coexist in the spinal cord and remain functional after isolation in vitro. These preparations now afford the opportunity to explore the cellular basis of locomotor network plasticity and reconfiguration necessary for behavioural changes during development.

  14. Teratogenicity of Ni2+ in Xenopus laevis, assayed by the FETAX procedure.

    PubMed

    Hopfer, S M; Plowman, M C; Sweeney, K R; Bantle, J A; Sunderman, F W

    1991-06-01

    The teratogenicity of Ni2+ was tested by the FETAX (Frog Embryo Teratogenesis Assay: Xenopus) procedure in the South African frog, Xenopus laevis. In seven assays, beginning at 5 h postfertilization, groups of Xenopus embryos were incubated for 96 h in media that contained Ni2+ (added as NiCl2) at concentrations ranging from 1 x 10(-7) to 3 x 10(-3) mol/L; control groups were incubated in the same medium without added NiCl2. At 101 h postfertilization, surviving embryos were counted, fixed in formalin, and examined by microscopy to determine their developmental stages, malformations, and head-to-tail lengths. In control embryos, survival was greater than or equal to 95% and malformations were less than or equal to 7%. Malformations were found in greater than 95% of embryos exposed to Ni2+ concentrations greater than or equal to 5.6 mumol/L. The most frequent malformations in Ni(2+)-exposed embryos were ocular, skeletal, and intestinal deformities; less common malformations included facial, cardiac, and integumentary deformities. Other abnormalities, not categorized as malformations, included stunted growth, dermal hypopigmentation, and coelomic effusions or hemorrhages. The median embryolethal concentration (LC50) of Ni2+ was 365 (SE +/- 9) mumol/L; the median teratogenic concentration (EC50) was 2.5 (SE +/- 0.1) mumol/L; the Teratogenic Index (TI = LC50/EC50) was 147 (SE +/- 5), indicating that Ni2+ is a potent teratogen for Xenopus laevis. Experiments in which Ni(2+)-exposures were limited to specific 24 h periods showed that Xenopus embryos were most susceptible to Ni(2+)-induced malformations on the second and third days of life, during the most active period of organogenesis.

  15. Negative Effects of Low Dose Atrazine Exposure on the Development of Effective Immunity to FV3 in Xenopus laevis

    PubMed Central

    Sifkarovski, Jason; Grayfer, Leon; De Jesús Andino, Francisco; Lawrence, B. Paige; Robert, Jacques

    2014-01-01

    The recent dramatic increase of the prevalence and range of amphibian host species and populations infected by ranaviruses such as Frog Virus 3 (FV3) raises concerns about the efficacies of amphibian antiviral immunity. In this context, the potential negative effects of water contaminants such as the herbicide atrazine, at environmentally relevant levels, on host antiviral immunity remains unclear. Here we describe the use of the amphibian Xenopus laevis as an ecotoxiciology platform to elucidate the consequences of exposure to ecologically relevant doses of atrazine on amphibian antiviral immunity. X. laevis were exposed at tadpole and adult stages as well as during metamorphosis to atrazine (range from 0.1 to 10.0 ppb) prior to infection with FV3. Quantitative analysis of gene expression revealed significant changes in the pro-inflammatory cytokine, TNF-α and the antiviral type I IFN gene in response to FV3 infection. This was most marked in tadpoles that were exposed to atrazine at doses as low 0.1 ppb. Furthermore, atrazine exposure significantly compromised tadpole survival following FV3 infections. In contrast, acute atrazine exposure of mature adult frogs did not induce detectable effects on anti-FV3 immunity, but adults that were exposed to atrazine during metamorphosis exhibited pronounced defects in FV3-induced TNF-α gene expression responses and slight diminution in type I IFN gene induction. Thus, even at low doses, atrazine exposure culminates in impaired development of amphibian antiviral defenses. PMID:24984115

  16. Negative effects of low dose atrazine exposure on the development of effective immunity to FV3 in Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Sifkarovski, Jason; Grayfer, Leon; De Jesús Andino, Francisco; Lawrence, B Paige; Robert, Jacques

    2014-11-01

    The recent dramatic increase of the prevalence and range of amphibian host species and populations infected by ranaviruses such as Frog Virus 3 (FV3) raises concerns about the efficacies of amphibian antiviral immunity. In this context, the potential negative effects of water contaminants such as the herbicide atrazine, at environmentally relevant levels, on host antiviral immunity remains unclear. Here we describe the use of the amphibian Xenopus laevis as an ecotoxicology platform to elucidate the consequences of exposure to ecologically relevant doses of atrazine on amphibian antiviral immunity. X. laevis were exposed at tadpole and adult stages as well as during metamorphosis to atrazine (range from 0.1 to 10.0 ppb) prior to infection with FV3. Quantitative analysis of gene expression revealed significant changes in the pro-inflammatory cytokine, TNF-α and the antiviral type I IFN gene in response to FV3 infection. This was most marked in tadpoles that were exposed to atrazine at doses as low 0.1 ppb. Furthermore, atrazine exposure significantly compromised tadpole survival following FV3 infections. In contrast, acute atrazine exposure of mature adult frogs did not induce detectable effects on anti-FV3 immunity, but adults that were exposed to atrazine during metamorphosis exhibited pronounced defects in FV3-induced TNF-α gene expression responses and slight diminution in type I IFN gene induction. Thus, even at low doses, atrazine exposure culminates in impaired development of amphibian antiviral defenses.

  17. Effect of Light on Expression of Clock Genes in Xenopus laevis Melanophores.

    PubMed

    de Carvalho Magalhães Moraes, Maria Nathália; de Oliveira Poletini, Maristela; Ramos, Bruno Cesar Ribeiro; de Lima, Leonardo Henrique Ribeiro Graciani; de Lauro Castrucci, Ana Maria

    2013-12-26

    Light-dark cycles are considered important cues to entrain biological clocks. A feedback loop of clock gene transcription and translation is the molecular basis underlying the mechanism of both central and peripheral clocks. Xenopus laevis embryonic melanophores respond to light with melanin granule dispersion, response possibly mediated by the photopigment melanopsin. In order to test whether light modulates clock gene expression in Xenopus melanophores, we used qPCR to evaluate the relative mRNA levels of Per1, Per2, Clock and Bmal1 in cultured melanophores exposed to light-dark (LD) cycle or constant darkness (DD). LD cycles elicited temporal changes in the expression of Per1, Per2 and Bmal1. A 10-min pulse of blue light was able to increase the expression of Per1 and Per2. Red light had no effect on the expression of these clock genes. These data suggest the participation of a blue-wavelength sensitive pigment in the light-dark cycle-mediated oscillation of the endogenous clock. Our results add an important contribution to the emerging field of peripheral clocks, which in non-mammalian vertebrates have been mostly studied in Drosophila and Danio rerio. Within this context, we show that Xenopus laevis melanophores, which have already led to melanopsin discovery, represent an ideal model to understanding circadian rhythms. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

  18. Functional expression of murine multidrug resistance in Xenopus laevis oocytes

    SciTech Connect

    Castillo, G.; Vera, J.C.; Rosen, O.M. ); Yang, Chiaping Huang; Horwitz, S.B. )

    1990-06-01

    The development of multidrug resistance (MDR) is associated with the overproduction of a plasma membrane glycoprotein, P glycoprotein. Here the authors report the functional expression of a member of the murine MDR family of proteins and show that Xenopus oocytes injected with RNA encoding the mouse mdr1b P glycoprotein develop a MDR-like phenotype. Immunological analysis indicated that oocytes injected with the mdr1b RNA synthesized a protein with the size and immunological characteristics of the mouse mdr1b P glycoprotein. These oocytes exhibited a decreased accumulation of ({sup 3}H)vinblastine and showed an increased capacity to extrude the drug compared to control oocytes not expressing the P glycoprotein. In addition, competition experiments indicated that verapamil, vincristine, daunomycin, and quinidine, but not colchicine, can overcome the rapid drug efflux conferred by the expression of the mouse P glycoprotein.

  19. Effects of ZnO nanomaterials on Xenopus laevis growth and development.

    PubMed

    Nations, Shawna; Long, Monique; Wages, Mike; Canas, Jaclyn; Maul, Jonathan D; Theodorakis, Chris; Cobb, George P

    2011-02-01

    The objectives of this study were to quantify uptake and developmental effects of zinc oxide nanomaterials (nano-ZnO) on Xenopus laevis throughout the metomormosis process. To accomplish this, X. laevis were exposed to aqueous suspensions of 40-100 nm nano-ZnO beginning in-ovo and proceeding through metamorphosis. Nanomaterials were dispersed via sonication methods into reconstituted moderately hard water test solutions. A flow-through system was utilized to decrease the likelihood of depletion in ZnO concentration. Exposure to 2 mg/L nano-ZnO significantly increased mortality incidence to 40% and negatively affected metamorphosis of X. laevis. Tadpoles exposed to 2 mg/L nano-ZnO developed slower as indicated by tadpoles with an average stage of 56 at the conclusion of the study which was significantly lower than the control tadpole stages. No tadpoles exposed to 2 mg/L of nano-ZnO completed metamorphosis by the conclusion of the study. Tadpoles exposed to 0.125 mg/L nano-ZnO experienced faster development along with larger body measurements indicating that low dose exposure to nano-ZnO can stimulate growth and metamorphosis of X. laevis. PMID:20801509

  20. Identification, characterization, and expression of dentin matrix protein 1 gene in Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Yonekura, Tomoko; Homma, Hiromi; Sakurai, Atsuo; Moriguchi, Mitsuko; Miake, Yasuo; Toyosawa, Satoru; Shintani, Seikou

    2013-12-01

    Dentin matrix protein 1 (DMP1) is an acidic extracellular matrix protein expressed mainly in bone and dentin, and is a member of the small integrin-binding ligand N-linked glycoprotein (SIBLING) family. The DMP1 gene, however, appears to evolve rapidly in comparison with other SIBLING genes, even though such functionally important molecules usually evolve more slowly than less important ones. The purpose of this study was to identify and characterize an ortholog of the DMP1 gene in an amphibian (Xenopus laevis; X. laevis) to clarify molecular evolutionary alterations in DMP1 associated with calcified tissues in tetrapods. Furthermore, we analyzed the mRNA expression of this gene to elucidate its functional change in bone and developing tooth germ in comparison with amniote DMP1s. The similarities of the deduced amino acid sequence of X. laevis DMP1 to that of the corresponding amniote proteins were low, although they did share several unique features specific to DMP1 and have similar properties. Expression of X. laevis DMP1 mRNA was predominant in osteocytes and odontoblasts, but only transiently observed in ameloblasts, as in amniotes. These results suggest that DMP1 has conserved several functions during tetrapod evolution. This indicates that continuity of biochemical properties has been more important in maintaining DMP1 functionality than that of the sequence of amino acid residues, which has undergone change over the course of molecular evolution.

  1. The optic vesicle promotes cornea to lens transdifferentiation in larval Xenopus laevis

    PubMed Central

    Cannata, Stefano M; Bernardini, Sergio; Filoni, Sergio; Gargioli, Cesare

    2008-01-01

    The outer cornea and pericorneal epidermis (lentogenic area) of larval Xenopus laevis are the only epidermal regions competent to regenerate a lens under the influence of the retinal inducer. However, the head epidermis of the lentogenic area can acquire the lens-regenerating competence following transplantation of an eye beneath it. In this paper we demonstrate that both the outer cornea and the head epidermis covering a transplanted eye are capable of responding not only to the retinal inducer of the larval eye but also to the inductive action of the embryonic optic vesicle by synthesizing crystallins. As the optic vesicle is a very weak lens inductor, which promotes crystallin synthesis only on the lens biased ectoderm of the embryo, these results indicate that the lens-forming competence in the outer cornea and epidermis of larval X. laevis corresponds to the persistence and acquisition of a condition similar to that of the embryonic biased ectoderm. PMID:18430089

  2. Expression of the rabbit intestinal N2 Na+/nucleoside transporter in Xenopus laevis oocytes.

    PubMed Central

    Jarvis, S M; Griffith, D A

    1991-01-01

    Polyadenylated [poly(A)+] mRNA isolated from rabbit small-intestinal mucosa was injected into Xenopus laevis oocytes, and expression of the N2 Na+/nucleoside co-transporter was assayed by measuring Na(+)-dependent thymidine uptake. Expression of Na(+)-dependent thymidine uptake steadily increased after mRNA injection and was on average increased 11-fold by day 6 over background. Na(+)-dependent thymidine uptake was saturable (apparent Km approximately 30 microM at 22 degrees C) and inhibited by uridine and cytidine, but not by guanosine and inosine. These properties of the expressed thymidine transport strongly suggest that the epithelial N2 Na+/nucleoside co-transporter can be expressed in X. laevis oocytes. PMID:1898349

  3. Diagnosis of Aeromonas hydrophila, Mycobacterium species, and Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis in an African Clawed Frog (Xenopus laevis)

    PubMed Central

    Hill, William A; Newman, Shelley J; Craig, Linden; Carter, Christopher; Czarra, Jane; Brown, J Paige

    2010-01-01

    Here we describe diagnosis of concurrent infection with Aeromonas hydrophila, Mycobacterium spp., and Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis in a wild female Xenopus laevis captured in Chile and transported to the United States. After approximately 130 d in the laboratory, the frog was presented for dysecdysis and obtundation. After euthanasia, tissues were submitted for histopathologic evaluation and PCR analysis for B. dendrobatidis and Ranavirus. Clinically significant gross lesions included cutaneous ulcerations on the lip, right forelimb, and ventral chest. Microscopic findings included regionally extensive splenic necrosis, diffuse pneumonia, and fibrinous coelomitis all containing intralesional bacteria. PCR analysis yielded positive results for B. dendrobatidis only. Bacterial culture of the ulcerated skin and liver yielded A. hydrophila. Infection with Contracaecum spp. was diagnosed as an incidental finding. To our knowledge, this case is the first report of simultaneous infection with Aeromonas hydrophila, Mycobacterium spp., and Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis in a laboratory-maintained X. laevis captured from the wild. PMID:20353698

  4. Isolation of Chlamydia psittaci from naturally infected African clawed frogs (Xenopus laevis).

    PubMed Central

    Wilcke, B W; Newcomer, C E; Anver, M R; Simmons, J L; Nace, G W

    1983-01-01

    An inclusion-forming agent was isolated from the livers of commercially raised African clawed frogs (Xenopus laevis) involved in an epizootic of high morbidity and mortality. Original isolation was made in McCoy cells. This agent was identified as Chlamydia psittaci based on the formation of typical intracytoplasmic inclusions which developed within 48 h, were not stained by iodine, and were resistant to sulfadiazine. The isolate from one particular frog (designated as strain 178) was further studied and found to be lethal for 7-day-old embryonated chicken eggs after intra-yolk sac inoculation. This strain was demonstrated not to be pathogenic for mice when inoculated intraperitoneally. The cell culture isolate of C. psittaci was transmitted to uninfected X. laevis, causing disease and death. Images PMID:6347897

  5. Arsenic toxicity and HSP70 expression in Xenopus laevis embryos.

    PubMed

    Gornati, Rosalba; Monetti, Claudio; Vigetti, Davide; Bosisio, Stefano; Fortaner, Salvador; Sabbioni, Enrico; Bernardini, Giovanni; Prati, Mariangela

    2002-01-01

    The evaluation of the effect of trace metals on health can be difficult, because of their presence in the environment in various chemical forms. Exposure to arsenic compounds is an example of this complexity, as it can be present in the environment in inorganic and organic forms. The effects of arsenic in vertebrates are complicated by several variables, such as speciation of the element, the exposure route, and the susceptibility of the particular animal species. The embryotoxicity and teratogenicity of three arsenic species - sodium arsenite (NaAsO(2)), disodium hydrogen arsenate (Na(2)HAsO(4)) and dimethylarsinic acid [(CH3)2AsOOH] - were evaluated by the modified frog embryo teratogenic assay on Xenopus (FETAX). We also show how the classical FETAX endpoints, based on morphological and morphometrical analysis, can conveniently be integrated with the study of molecular markers. Possible changes in the expression of the mRNA for the heat-shock protein HSP70, following exposure to NaAsO(2), were examined by using the reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction. HSP70 mRNA is strongly induced by arsenic.

  6. Removal of 2',3'-dideoxynucleotide residues from injected DNA in Xenopus laevis oocytes.

    PubMed

    Legerski, R J; Penkala, J E; Peterson, C A; Wright, D A

    1990-07-01

    Dideoxynucleotides have proved to be potent differential inhibitors of DNA polymerases in vitro and in vivo. Used extensively in studies of DNA repair and replication, they have more recently been used as antiviral agents particularly in treating patients for acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). Once incorporated, these sugar-modified analogues prevent the further extension of the polynucleotide chain because of the absence of a 3'-hydroxyl group. We demonstrated that, upon injection into Xenopus laevis oocytes, 2',3'-dideoxynucleotides are efficiently removed from plasmid DNA preterminated with these analogues allowing subsequent closure by ligation. The removal process is not sensitive to aphidicolin but is quantitatively inhibited by novobiocin. PMID:2366792

  7. Purification and Fluorescent Labeling of Tubulin from Xenopus laevis Egg Extracts.

    PubMed

    Groen, Aaron C; Mitchison, Timothy J

    2016-01-01

    For many years, microtubule research has depended on tubulin purified from cow and pig brains, which may not be ideal for experiments using proteins or extracts from non-brain tissues and cold-blooded organisms. Here, we describe a method to purify functional tubulin from the eggs of the frog, Xenopus laevis. This tubulin has many benefits for the study of microtubules and microtubule based structures assembled in vitro at room temperature. Frog tubulin lacks many of the highly stabilizing posttranslational modifications present in pig brain-derived tubulin, and polymerizes efficiently at room temperature. In addition, fluorescently labeled frog egg tubulin incorporates into meiotic spindles assembled in egg extract more efficiently than brain tubulin, and is thus superior as a probe for Xenopus egg extract experiments. Frog egg tubulin will provide excellent opportunities to identify active nucleation complexes and revisit microtubule polymerization dynamics in vitro. PMID:27193841

  8. Quantitative proteomics of Xenopus laevis embryos: expression kinetics of nearly 4000 proteins during early development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sun, Liangliang; Bertke, Michelle M.; Champion, Matthew M.; Zhu, Guijie; Huber, Paul W.; Dovichi, Norman J.

    2014-03-01

    While there is a rich literature on transcription dynamics during the development of many organisms, protein data is limited. We used iTRAQ isotopic labeling and mass spectrometry to generate the largest developmental proteomic dataset for any animal. Expression dynamics of nearly 4,000 proteins of Xenopus laevis was generated from fertilized egg to neurula embryo. Expression clusters into groups. The cluster profiles accurately reflect the major events that mark changes in gene expression patterns during early Xenopus development. We observed decline in the expression of ten DNA replication factors after the midblastula transition (MBT), including a marked decline of the licensing factor XCdc6. Ectopic expression of XCdc6 leads to apoptosis; temporal changes in this protein are critical for proper development. Measurement of expression in single embryos provided no evidence for significant protein heterogeneity between embryos at the same stage of development.

  9. Optogenetic Control of Apoptosis in Targeted Tissues of Xenopus laevis Embryos

    PubMed Central

    Jewhurst, Kyle; Levin, Michael; McLaughlin, Kelly A

    2014-01-01

    KillerRed (KR) is a recently discovered fluorescent protein that, when activated with green light, releases reactive oxygen species (ROS) into the cytoplasm, triggering apoptosis in a KR-expressing cell. This property allows for the use of KR as a means of killing cells in an organism with great temporal and spatial specificity, while minimizing the nonspecific effects that can result from mechanical or chemical exposure damage techniques. Such optogenetic control of cell death, and the resulting ability to induce the targeted death of specific tissues, is invaluable for regeneration/repair studies—particularly in Xenopus laevis, where apoptosis plays a key role in regeneration and repair. We here describe a method by which membrane-bound KR, introduced to Xenopus embryos by mRNA microinjection, can be activated with green light to induce apoptosis in specific organs and tissues, with a focus on the developing eye and pronephric kidney. PMID:25374461

  10. Water transport by GLUT2 expressed in Xenopus laevis oocytes.

    PubMed

    Zeuthen, Thomas; Zeuthen, Emil; Macaulay, Nanna

    2007-03-01

    The glucose transporter GLUT2 has been shown to also transport water. In the present paper we investigated the relation between sugar and water transport in human GLUT2 expressed in Xenopus oocytes. Sugar transport was determined from uptakes of non-metabolizable glucose analogues, primarily 3-O-methyl-D-glucopyranoside; key experimental results were confirmed using D(+)-glucose. Water transport was derived from changes in oocyte volume monitored at a high resolution (20 pl, 1 s). Expression of GLUT2 induced a sugar permeability, P(S), of about 5 x 10(-6) cm s(-1) and a passive water permeability, L(p), of 5.5 x 10(-5) cm s(-1). Accordingly, the passive water permeability of a GLUT2 protein is about 10 times higher than its sugar permeability. Both permeabilities were abolished by phloretin. Isosmotic addition of sugar to the bathing solution (replacing mannitol) induced two parallel components of water influx in GLUT2, one by osmosis and one by cotransport. The osmotic driving force arose from sugar accumulation at the intracellular side of the membrane and was given by an intracellular diffusion coefficient for sugar of 10(-6) cm(2) s(-1), one-fifth of the free solution value. The diffusion coefficient was determined in oocytes coexpressing GLUT2 and the water channel AQP1 where water transport was predominantly osmotic. By the cotransport mechanism about 35 water molecules were transported for each sugar molecule by a mechanism within the GLUT2. These water molecules could be transported uphill, against an osmotic gradient, energized by the flux of sugar. This capacity for cotransport is 10 times smaller than that of the Na(+)-coupled glucose transporters (SGLT1). The physiological role of GLUT2 for intestinal transport under conditions of high luminal sugar concentrations is discussed. PMID:17158169

  11. Sequencing and analysis of 10,967 full-length cDNA clones from Xenopus laevis and Xenopus tropicalis reveals post-tetraploidization transcriptome remodeling.

    PubMed

    Morin, Ryan D; Chang, Elbert; Petrescu, Anca; Liao, Nancy; Griffith, Malachi; Chow, William; Kirkpatrick, Robert; Butterfield, Yaron S; Young, Alice C; Stott, Jeffrey; Barber, Sarah; Babakaiff, Ryan; Dickson, Mark C; Matsuo, Corey; Wong, David; Yang, George S; Smailus, Duane E; Wetherby, Keith D; Kwong, Peggy N; Grimwood, Jane; Brinkley, Charles P; Brown-John, Mabel; Reddix-Dugue, Natalie D; Mayo, Michael; Schmutz, Jeremy; Beland, Jaclyn; Park, Morgan; Gibson, Susan; Olson, Teika; Bouffard, Gerard G; Tsai, Miranda; Featherstone, Ruth; Chand, Steve; Siddiqui, Asim S; Jang, Wonhee; Lee, Ed; Klein, Steven L; Blakesley, Robert W; Zeeberg, Barry R; Narasimhan, Sudarshan; Weinstein, John N; Pennacchio, Christa Prange; Myers, Richard M; Green, Eric D; Wagner, Lukas; Gerhard, Daniela S; Marra, Marco A; Jones, Steven J M; Holt, Robert A

    2006-06-01

    Sequencing of full-insert clones from full-length cDNA libraries from both Xenopus laevis and Xenopus tropicalis has been ongoing as part of the Xenopus Gene Collection Initiative. Here we present 10,967 full ORF verified cDNA clones (8049 from X. laevis and 2918 from X. tropicalis) as a community resource. Because the genome of X. laevis, but not X. tropicalis, has undergone allotetraploidization, comparison of coding sequences from these two clawed (pipid) frogs provides a unique angle for exploring the molecular evolution of duplicate genes. Within our clone set, we have identified 445 gene trios, each comprised of an allotetraploidization-derived X. laevis gene pair and their shared X. tropicalis ortholog. Pairwise dN/dS, comparisons within trios show strong evidence for purifying selection acting on all three members. However, dN/dS ratios between X. laevis gene pairs are elevated relative to their X. tropicalis ortholog. This difference is highly significant and indicates an overall relaxation of selective pressures on duplicated gene pairs. We have found that the paralogs that have been lost since the tetraploidization event are enriched for several molecular functions, but have found no such enrichment in the extant paralogs. Approximately 14% of the paralogous pairs analyzed here also show differential expression indicative of subfunctionalization. PMID:16672307

  12. Sequencing and analysis of 10,967 full-length cDNA clones from Xenopus laevis and Xenopus tropicalis reveals post-tetraploidization transcriptome remodeling

    PubMed Central

    Morin, Ryan D.; Chang, Elbert; Petrescu, Anca; Liao, Nancy; Griffith, Malachi; Kirkpatrick, Robert; Butterfield, Yaron S.; Young, Alice C.; Stott, Jeffrey; Barber, Sarah; Babakaiff, Ryan; Dickson, Mark C.; Matsuo, Corey; Wong, David; Yang, George S.; Smailus, Duane E.; Wetherby, Keith D.; Kwong, Peggy N.; Grimwood, Jane; Brinkley, Charles P.; Brown-John, Mabel; Reddix-Dugue, Natalie D.; Mayo, Michael; Schmutz, Jeremy; Beland, Jaclyn; Park, Morgan; Gibson, Susan; Olson, Teika; Bouffard, Gerard G.; Tsai, Miranda; Featherstone, Ruth; Chand, Steve; Siddiqui, Asim S.; Jang, Wonhee; Lee, Ed; Klein, Steven L.; Blakesley, Robert W.; Zeeberg, Barry R.; Narasimhan, Sudarshan; Weinstein, John N.; Pennacchio, Christa Prange; Myers, Richard M.; Green, Eric D.; Wagner, Lukas; Gerhard, Daniela S.; Marra, Marco A.; Jones, Steven J.M.; Holt, Robert A.

    2006-01-01

    Sequencing of full-insert clones from full-length cDNA libraries from both Xenopus laevis and Xenopus tropicalis has been ongoing as part of the Xenopus Gene Collection Initiative. Here we present 10,967 full ORF verified cDNA clones (8049 from X. laevis and 2918 from X. tropicalis) as a community resource. Because the genome of X. laevis, but not X. tropicalis, has undergone allotetraploidization, comparison of coding sequences from these two clawed (pipid) frogs provides a unique angle for exploring the molecular evolution of duplicate genes. Within our clone set, we have identified 445 gene trios, each comprised of an allotetraploidization-derived X. laevis gene pair and their shared X. tropicalis ortholog. Pairwise dN/dS, comparisons within trios show strong evidence for purifying selection acting on all three members. However, dN/dS ratios between X. laevis gene pairs are elevated relative to their X. tropicalis ortholog. This difference is highly significant and indicates an overall relaxation of selective pressures on duplicated gene pairs. We have found that the paralogs that have been lost since the tetraploidization event are enriched for several molecular functions, but have found no such enrichment in the extant paralogs. Approximately 14% of the paralogous pairs analyzed here also show differential expression indicative of subfunctionalization. PMID:16672307

  13. Xenopus laevis: an ideal experimental model for studying the developmental dynamics of neural network assembly and sensory-motor computations.

    PubMed

    Straka, Hans; Simmers, John

    2012-04-01

    The amphibian Xenopus laevis represents a highly amenable model system for exploring the ontogeny of central neural networks, the functional establishment of sensory-motor transformations, and the generation of effective motor commands for complex behaviors. Specifically, the ability to employ a range of semi-intact and isolated preparations for in vitro morphophysiological experimentation has provided new insights into the developmental and integrative processes associated with the generation of locomotory behavior during changing life styles. In vitro electrophysiological studies have begun to explore the functional assembly, disassembly and dynamic plasticity of spinal pattern generating circuits as Xenopus undergoes the developmental switch from larval tail-based swimming to adult limb-based locomotion. Major advances have also been made in understanding the developmental onset of multisensory signal processing for reactive gaze and posture stabilizing reflexes during self-motion. Additionally, recent evidence from semi-intact animal and isolated CNS experiments has provided compelling evidence that in Xenopus tadpoles, predictive feed-forward signaling from the spinal locomotor pattern generator are engaged in minimizing visual disturbances during tail-based swimming. This new concept questions the traditional view of retinal image stabilization that in vertebrates has been exclusively attributed to sensory-motor transformations of body/head motion-detecting signals. Moreover, changes in visuomotor demands associated with the developmental transition in propulsive strategy from tail- to limb-based locomotion during metamorphosis presumably necessitates corresponding adaptive alterations in the intrinsic spinoextraocular coupling mechanism. Consequently, Xenopus provides a unique opportunity to address basic questions on the developmental dynamics of neural network assembly and sensory-motor computations for vertebrate motor behavior in general. PMID:21834082

  14. Xenopus laevis: an ideal experimental model for studying the developmental dynamics of neural network assembly and sensory-motor computations.

    PubMed

    Straka, Hans; Simmers, John

    2012-04-01

    The amphibian Xenopus laevis represents a highly amenable model system for exploring the ontogeny of central neural networks, the functional establishment of sensory-motor transformations, and the generation of effective motor commands for complex behaviors. Specifically, the ability to employ a range of semi-intact and isolated preparations for in vitro morphophysiological experimentation has provided new insights into the developmental and integrative processes associated with the generation of locomotory behavior during changing life styles. In vitro electrophysiological studies have begun to explore the functional assembly, disassembly and dynamic plasticity of spinal pattern generating circuits as Xenopus undergoes the developmental switch from larval tail-based swimming to adult limb-based locomotion. Major advances have also been made in understanding the developmental onset of multisensory signal processing for reactive gaze and posture stabilizing reflexes during self-motion. Additionally, recent evidence from semi-intact animal and isolated CNS experiments has provided compelling evidence that in Xenopus tadpoles, predictive feed-forward signaling from the spinal locomotor pattern generator are engaged in minimizing visual disturbances during tail-based swimming. This new concept questions the traditional view of retinal image stabilization that in vertebrates has been exclusively attributed to sensory-motor transformations of body/head motion-detecting signals. Moreover, changes in visuomotor demands associated with the developmental transition in propulsive strategy from tail- to limb-based locomotion during metamorphosis presumably necessitates corresponding adaptive alterations in the intrinsic spinoextraocular coupling mechanism. Consequently, Xenopus provides a unique opportunity to address basic questions on the developmental dynamics of neural network assembly and sensory-motor computations for vertebrate motor behavior in general.

  15. Ectopic blastema induction by nerve deviation and skin wounding: a new regeneration model in Xenopus laevis

    PubMed Central

    Mitogawa, Kazumasa; Hirata, Ayako; Moriyasu, Miyuki; Makanae, Aki; Miura, Shinichirou; Endo, Tetsuya

    2014-01-01

    Abstract Recently, the accessory limb model (ALM) has become an alternative study system for limb regeneration studies in axolotls instead of using an amputated limb. ALM progresses limb regeneration study in axolotls because of its advantages. To apply and/or to compare knowledge in axolotl ALM studies to other vertebrates is a conceivable next step. First, Xenopus laevis, an anuran amphibian, was investigated. A Xenopus frog has hypomorphic regeneration ability. Its regeneration ability has been considered intermediate between that of non‐regenerative higher vertebrates and regenerative urodele amphibians. Here, we successfully induced an accessory blastema in Xenopus by skin wounding and rerouting of brachial nerve bundles to the wound site, which is the regular ALM surgery. The induced Xenopus ALM blastemas have limited regenerative potential compared with axolotl ALM blastemas. Comparison of ALM blastemas from species with different regenerative potentials may facilitate the identification of the novel expression programs necessary for the formation of cartilage and other tissues during limb regeneration. PMID:27499859

  16. Parallel biotransformation of tetrabromobisphenol A in Xenopus laevis and mammals: Xenopus as a model for endocrine perturbation studies.

    PubMed

    Fini, Jean-Baptiste; Riu, Anne; Debrauwer, Laurent; Hillenweck, Anne; Le Mével, Sébastien; Chevolleau, Sylvie; Boulahtouf, Abdelaye; Palmier, Karima; Balaguer, Patrick; Cravedi, Jean-Pierre; Demeneix, Barbara A; Zalko, Daniel

    2012-02-01

    The flame retardant tetrabromobisphenol A (TBBPA) is a high production flame retardant that interferes with thyroid hormone (TH) signaling. Despite its rapid metabolism in mammals, TBBPA is found in significant amounts in different tissues. Such findings highlight first a need to better understand the effects of TBBPA and its metabolites and second the need to develop models to address these questions experimentally. We used Xenopus laevis tadpoles to follow radiolabeled (14)C-TBBPA uptake and metabolism. Extensive and rapid uptake of radioactivity was observed, tadpoles metabolizing > 94% of (14)C-TBBPA within 8 h. Four metabolites were identified in water and tadpole extracts: TBBPA-glucuronide, TBBPA-glucuronide-sulfate, TBBPA-sulfate, and TBBPA-disulfate. These metabolites are identical to the TBBPA conjugates characterized in mammals, including humans. Most radioactivity (> 75%) was associated with sulfated conjugates. The antithyroid effects of TBBPA and the metabolites were compared using two in vivo measures: tadpole morphology and an in vivo tadpole TH reporter gene assay. Only TBBPA, and not the sulfated metabolites, disrupted thyroid signaling. Moreover, TBBPA treatment did not affect expression of phase II enzymes involved in TH metabolism, suggesting that the antithyroid effects of TBBPA are not due to indirect effects on TH metabolism. Finally, we show that only the parent TBBPA inhibits T3-induced transactivation in cells expressing human, zebrafish, or X. laevis TH receptor, TRα. We conclude, first, that perturbation of thyroid signaling by TBBPA is likely due to rapid direct action of the parent compound, and second, that Xenopus is an excellent vertebrate model for biotransformation studies, displaying homologous pathways to mammals. PMID:22086976

  17. Does atrazine influence larval development and sexual differentiation in Xenopus laevis?

    PubMed

    Kloas, Werner; Lutz, Ilka; Springer, Timothy; Krueger, Henry; Wolf, Jeff; Holden, Larry; Hosmer, Alan

    2009-02-01

    Debate and controversy exists concerning the potential for the herbicide atrazine to cause gonadal malformations in developing Xenopus laevis. Following review of the existing literature the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency required a rigorous investigation conducted under standardized procedures. X. laevis tadpoles were exposed to atrazine at concentrations of 0.01, 0.1, 1, 25, or 100 microg/l from day 8 postfertilization (dpf) until completion of metamorphosis or dpf 83, whichever came first. Nearly identical experiments were performed in two independent laboratories: experiment 1 at Wildlife International, Ltd. and experiment 2 at the Leibniz-Institute of Freshwater Ecology and Inland Fisheries (IGB). Both experiments employed optimized animal husbandry procedures and environmental conditions in validated flow-through exposure systems. The two experiments demonstrated consistent survival, growth, and development of X. laevis tadpoles, and all measured parameters were within the expected ranges and were comparable in negative control and atrazine-treated groups. Atrazine, at concentrations up to 100 microg/l, had no effect in either experiment on the percentage of males or the incidence of mixed sex as determined by histological evaluation. In contrast, exposure of larval X. laevis to 0.2 microg 17beta-estradiol/l as the positive control resulted in gonadal feminization. Instead of an even distribution of male and female phenotypes, percentages of males:females:mixed sex were 19:75:6 and 22:60:18 in experiments 1 and 2, respectively. These studies demonstrate that long-term exposure of larval X. laevis to atrazine at concentrations ranging from 0.01 to 100 microg/l does not affect growth, larval development, or sexual differentiation.

  18. Furrow microtubules and localized exocytosis in cleaving Xenopus laevis embryos

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Danilchik, Michael V.; Bedrick, Steven D.; Brown, Elizabeth E.; Ray, Kimberly

    2003-01-01

    In dividing Xenopus eggs, furrowing is accompanied by expansion of a new domain of plasma membrane in the cleavage plane. The source of the new membrane is known to include a store of oogenetically produced exocytotic vesicles, but the site where their exocytosis occurs has not been described. Previous work revealed a V-shaped array of microtubule bundles at the base of advancing furrows. Cold shock or exposure to nocodazole halted expansion of the new membrane domain, which suggests that these microtubules are involved in the localized exocytosis. In the present report, scanning electron microscopy revealed collections of pits or craters, up to approximately 1.5 micro m in diameter. These pits are evidently fusion pores at sites of recent exocytosis, clustered in the immediate vicinity of the deepening furrow base and therefore near the furrow microtubules. Confocal microscopy near the furrow base of live embryos labeled with the membrane dye FM1-43 captured time-lapse sequences of individual exocytotic events in which irregular patches of approximately 20 micro m(2) of unlabeled membrane abruptly displaced pre-existing FM1-43-labeled surface. In some cases, stable fusion pores, approximately 2 micro m in diameter, were seen at the surface for up to several minutes before suddenly delivering patches of unlabeled membrane. To test whether the presence of furrow microtubule bundles near the surface plays a role in directing or concentrating this localized exocytosis, membrane expansion was examined in embryos exposed to D(2)O to induce formation of microtubule monasters randomly under the surface. D(2)O treatment resulted in a rapid, uniform expansion of the egg surface via random, ectopic exocytosis of vesicles. This D(2)O-induced membrane expansion was completely blocked with nocodazole, indicating that the ectopic exocytosis was microtubule-dependent. Results indicate that exocytotic vesicles are present throughout the egg subcortex, and that the presence of

  19. The Effects of 2,3,7,8-Tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (TCDD) on the Mortality and Growth of Two Amphibian Species (Xenopus laevis and Pseudacris triseriata)

    PubMed Central

    Collier, Alex; Orr, Lowell; Morris, Julie; Blank, James

    2008-01-01

    We observed a slight drop in the growth of Xenopus laevis and Pseudacris triseriata larvae following acute exposure (24–48 h) during egg development to three concentrations of TCDD (0.3, 3.0, 30.0 μg/l). Our exposure protocol was modeled on a previous investigation that was designed to mimic the effects of maternal deposition of TCDD. The doses selected were consistent with known rates of maternal transfer between mother and egg using actual adult body burdens from contaminated habitats. Egg and embryonic mortality immediately following exposure increased only among 48 h X. laevis treatments. Control P. triseriata and X. laevis completed metamorphosis more quickly than TCDD-treated animals. The snout-vent length of recently transformed P. triseriata did not differ between treatments although controls were heavier than high-dosed animals. Likewise, the snout-vent length and weight of transformed X. laevis did not differ between control and TCDD treatments. These findings provide additional evidence that amphibians, including P. triseriata and X. laevis are relatively insensitive to acute exposure to TCDD during egg and embryonic development. Although the concentrations selected for this study were relatively high, they were not inconsistent with our current understanding of bioaccumulation via maternal transfer. PMID:19151431

  20. Effect of light on expression of clock genes in Xenopus laevis melanophores.

    PubMed

    Magalhães Moraes, Maria Nathália de Carvalho; de Oliveira Poletini, Maristela; Ribeiro Ramos, Bruno Cesar; de Lima, Leonardo Henrique Ribeiro Graciani; de Lauro Castrucci, Ana Maria

    2014-01-01

    Light-dark cycles are considered important cues to entrain biological clocks. A feedback loop of clock gene transcription and translation is the molecular basis underlying the mechanism of both central and peripheral clocks. Xenopus laevis embryonic melanophores respond to light with melanin granule dispersion, response possibly mediated by the photopigment melanopsin. To test whether light modulates clock gene expression in Xenopus melanophores, we used qPCR to evaluate the relative mRNA levels of Per1, Per2, Clock and Bmal1 in cultured melanophores exposed to light-dark (LD) cycle or constant darkness (DD). LD cycles elicited temporal changes in the expression of Per1, Per2 and Bmal1. A 10-min pulse of blue light was able to increases the expression of Per1 and Per2. Red light had no effect on the expression of these clock genes. These data suggest the participation of a blue-wavelength sensitive pigment in the light-dark cycle-mediated oscillation of the endogenous clock. Our results add an important contribution to the emerging field of peripheral clocks, which in nonmammalian vertebrates have been mostly studied in Drosophila and Danio rerio. Within this context, we show that X. laevis melanophores, which have already led to melanopsin discovery, represent an ideal model to understanding circadian rhythms.

  1. In vivo tracking of histone H3 lysine 9 acetylation in Xenopus laevis during tail regeneration.

    PubMed

    Suzuki, Miyuki; Takagi, Chiyo; Miura, Shinichirou; Sakane, Yuto; Suzuki, Makoto; Sakuma, Tetsushi; Sakamoto, Naoaki; Endo, Tetsuya; Kamei, Yasuhiro; Sato, Yuko; Kimura, Hiroshi; Yamamoto, Takashi; Ueno, Naoto; Suzuki, Ken-ichi T

    2016-04-01

    Xenopus laevis tadpoles can completely regenerate their appendages, such as tail and limbs, and therefore provide a unique model to decipher the molecular mechanisms of organ regeneration in vertebrates. Epigenetic modifications are likely to be involved in this remarkable regeneration capacity, but they remain largely unknown. To examine the involvement of histone modification during organ regeneration, we generated transgenic X. laevis ubiquitously expressing a fluorescent modification-specific intracellular antibody (Mintbody) that is able to track histone H3 lysine 9 acetylation (H3K9ac) in vivo through nuclear enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) fluorescence. In embryos ubiquitously expressing H3K9ac-Mintbody, robust fluorescence was observed in the nuclei of somites. Interestingly, H3K9ac-Mintbody signals predominantly accumulated in nuclei of regenerating notochord at 24 h postamputation following activation of reactive oxygen species (ROS). Moreover, apocynin (APO), an inhibitor of ROS production, attenuated H3K9ac-Mintbody signals in regenerating notochord. Our results suggest that ROS production is involved in acetylation of H3K9 in regenerating notochord at the onset of tail regeneration. We also show this transgenic Xenopus to be a useful tool to investigate epigenetic modification, not only in organogenesis but also in organ regeneration. PMID:26914410

  2. Entire mesodermal mantle behaves as Spemann's organizer in dorsoanterior enhanced Xenopus laevis embryos

    SciTech Connect

    Kao, K.R.; Elinson, R.P.

    1988-05-01

    The body plan of Xenopus laevis can be respecified by briefly exposing early cleavage stage embryos to lithium. Such embryos develop exaggerated dorsoanterior structures such as a radial eye and cement gland. In this paper, we demonstrate that the enhanced dorsoanterior phenotype results from an overcommitment of mesoderm to dorsoanterior mesoderm. Histological and immunohistochemical observations reveal that the embryos have a greatly enlarged notochord with very little muscle tissue. In addition, they develop a radial, beating heart, suggesting that lithium also specifies anterior mesoderm and pharyngeal endoderm. Randomly oriented diametrically opposed marginal zone grafts from lithium-treated embryos, when transplanted into ultraviolet (uv)-irradiated axis-deficient hosts, rescue dorsal axial structures. These transplantation experiments demonstrate that the entire marginal zone of the early gastrula consists of presumptive dorsal mesoderm. Vital dye marking experiments also indicate that the entire marginal zone maps to the prominent proboscis that is composed of chordamesoderm and represents the long axis of the embryo. These results suggest that lithium respecifies the mesoderm of Xenopus laevis embryos so that it differentiates into the Spemann organizer. We suggest that the origin of the dorsoanterior enhanced phenotypes generated by lithium and the dorsoanterior deficient phenotypes generated by uv irradiation are due to relative quantities of organizer. Our evidence demonstrates the existence of a continuum of body plan phenotypes based on this premise.

  3. Cloning and functional characterization of a novel aquaporin from Xenopus laevis oocytes.

    PubMed

    Virkki, Leila V; Franke, Christina; Somieski, Petra; Boron, Walter F

    2002-10-25

    We have cloned a novel aquaporin (AQP) from Xenopus laevis oocytes, which we have provisionally named AQPxlo. The predicted protein showed highest homology (39-50%) to aquaglyceroporins. Northern blot analysis showed strong hybridization to an approximately 1.4-kb transcript in X. laevis fat body and oocytes, whereas a weaker signal was obtained in kidney. We injected in vitro transcribed cRNA encoding AQPxlo into Xenopus oocytes for functional characterization. AQPxlo expression increased osmotic water permeability (P(f)), as well as the uptake of glycerol and urea. However, AQPxlo excluded larger polyols and thiourea. An alkaline extracellular pH (pH(o)) increased P(f) and to a lesser extent urea uptake but not glycerol uptake. Remarkably, low HgCl(2) concentrations (0.3-10 microm) reduced P(f) and urea uptake, whereas high concentrations (300-1000 microm) reversed the inhibition. We propose that AQPxlo is a new AQP paralogue unknown in mammals.

  4. Activin-like factor from a Xenopus laevis cell line responsible for mesoderm induction.

    PubMed

    van den Eijnden-Van Raaij, A J; van Zoelent, E J; van Nimmen, K; Koster, C H; Snoek, G T; Durston, A J; Huylebroeck, D

    1990-06-21

    Induction of mesoderm during early amphibian embryogenesis can be mimicked in vitro by adding growth factors, including heparin-binding and type-beta transforming growth factors (TGF-beta), to isolated ectoderm explants from Xenopus laevis embryos. Although the mesoderm-inducing factor (MIF) from X. laevis XTC cells (XTC-MIF) has properties similar to TGF-beta, this factor is still unidentified. Recently, we obtained a number of homogeneous cell lines from the heterogeneous XTC population, which differ in their MIF production. Only one, XTC-GTX-11, produced MIF, although it was similar to the rest of the clones in its production of known growth factors, including TGF-beta activity. This observation, together with the identification of activin A as a potent MIF led us to study the parallel activities of MIF and activin. Here we report an analysis of activin-like activity from XTC cells and some of the XTC clones, including XTC-GTX-11. There is a clear consistent correlation between MIF activity and presence of activin activity, indicating that XTC-MIF is the Xenopus homologue of mammalian activin.

  5. The entire mesodermal mantle behaves as Spemann's organizer in dorsoanterior enhanced Xenopus laevis embryos.

    PubMed

    Kao, K R; Elinson, R P

    1988-05-01

    The body plan of Xenopus laevis can be respecified by briefly exposing early cleavage stage embryos to lithium. Such embryos develop exaggerated dorsoanterior structures such as a radial eye and cement gland (K.R. Kao, Y. Masui, and R.P. Elinson, 1986, Nature (London) 322, 371-373). In this paper, we demonstrate that the enhanced dorsoanterior phenotype results from an overcommitment of mesoderm to dorsoanterior mesoderm. Histological and immunohistochemical observations reveal that the embryos have a greatly enlarged notochord with very little muscle tissue. In addition, they develop a radial, beating heart, suggesting that lithium also specifies anterior mesoderm and pharyngeal endoderm. Randomly oriented diametrically opposed marginal zone grafts from lithium-treated embryos, when transplanted into ultraviolet (uv)-irradiated axis-deficient hosts, rescue dorsal axial structures. These transplantation experiments demonstrate that the entire marginal zone of the early gastrula consists of presumptive dorsal mesoderm. Vital dye marking experiments also indicate that the entire marginal zone maps to the prominent proboscis that is composed of chordamesoderm and represents the long axis of the embryo. These results suggest that lithium respecifies the mesoderm of Xenopus laevis embryos so that it differentiates into the Spemann organizer. We suggest that the origin of the dorsoanterior enhanced phenotypes generated by lithium and the dorsoanterior deficient phenotypes generated by uv irradiation are due to relative quantities of organizer. Our evidence demonstrates the existence of a continuum of body plan phenotypes based on this premise. PMID:3282938

  6. Swimming kinematics and respiratory behaviour of Xenopus laevis larvae raised in altered gravity

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fejtek, M.; Souza, K.; Neff, A.; Wassersug, R.

    1998-01-01

    We examined the respiratory behaviours and swimming kinematics of Xenopus laevis tadpoles hatched in microgravity (Space Shuttle), simulated microgravity (clinostat) and hypergravity (3 g centrifuge). All observations were made in the normal 1 g environment. Previous research has shown that X. laevis raised in microgravity exhibit abnormalities in their lungs and vestibular system upon return to 1 g. The tadpoles raised in true microgravity exhibited a significantly lower tailbeat frequency than onboard 1 g centrifuge controls on the day of landing (day0), but this behaviour normalized within 9 days. The two groups did not differ significantly in buccal pumping rates. Altered buoyancy in the space-flight microgravity tadpoles was indicated by an increased swimming angle on the day after landing (day1). Tadpoles raised in simulated microgravity differed to a greater extent in swimming behaviours from their 1 g controls. The tadpoles raised in hypergravity showed no substantive effects on the development of swimming or respiratory behaviours, except swimming angle. Together, these results show that microgravity has a transient effect on the development of locomotion in X. laevis tadpoles, most notably on swimming angle, indicative of stunted lung development. On the basis of the behaviours we studied, there is no indication of neuromuscular retardation in amphibians associated with embryogenesis in microgravity.

  7. Effects of Aroclor 1254 on oxidative stress in developing Xenopus laevis tadpoles.

    PubMed

    Gillardin, Virginie; Silvestre, Frédéric; Divoy, Céline; Thomé, Jean-Pierre; Kestemont, Patrick

    2009-02-01

    Over the last decades, amphibians decline has been reported worldwide. Exposure to polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) is one of the possible causes in addition to climate changes, UV-radiation or habitat destruction. In the present study, we tested the hypothesis that PCBs could induce oxidative stress in young tadpoles. Developing Xenopus laevis were exposed from 2- to 5-d postfertilization (pf) to 0.1 or 1 mg/l of Aroclor 1254. Lipid peroxidation and antioxidant systems (SOD, CAT, GST, GPx, GR activities and t-GSH level) were investigated in whole organisms. Exposure to both concentrations did not impact on the survival and development whereas the average body weight decreased. Exposure to 1 mg/l of Aroclor 1254 induced a significant (p<0.05) increase of GST activity when compared to controls 0 and DMSO. The other antioxidant enzymes and LPO evaluation remained unchanged. Our results demonstrate that exposure of X. laevis tadpoles to environmental concentrations of Aroclor 1254 interfere with normal growth. They also highlight that very young X. laevis tadpoles express antioxidant systems. PMID:18407353

  8. Thyroid hormone signaling in the Xenopus laevis embryo is functional and susceptible to endocrine disruption.

    PubMed

    Fini, J B; Le Mével, S; Palmier, K; Darras, V M; Punzon, I; Richardson, S J; Clerget-Froidevaux, M S; Demeneix, B A

    2012-10-01

    Thyroid hormone (TH) is essential for vertebrate brain development. Most research on TH and neuronal development focuses on late development, mainly the perinatal period in mammals. However, in human infants neuromotor development correlates best with maternal TH levels in the first trimester of pregnancy, suggesting that TH signaling could affect early brain development. Studying TH signaling in early embryogenesis in mammals is experimentally challenging. In contrast, free-living embryos, such as Xenopus laevis, permit physiological experimentation independent of maternal factors. We detailed key elements of TH signaling: ligands, receptors (TR), and deiodinases during early X. laevis development, before embryonic thyroid gland formation. Dynamic profiles for all components were found. Between developmental stages 37 and 41 (~48 h after hatching, coincident with a phase of continuing neurogenesis) significant increases in T(3) levels as well as in mRNA encoding deiodinases and TR occurred. Exposure of embryos at this developmental stage for 24 h to either a TH antagonist, NH-3, or to tetrabromobisphenol A, a flame retardant and known TH disruptor, differentially modulated the expression of a number of TH target genes implicated in neural stem cell function or neural differentiation. Moreover, 24-h exposure to either NH-3 or tetrabromobisphenol A diminished cell proliferation in the brain. Thus, these data show first, that TH signaling exerts regulatory roles in early X. laevis neurogenesis and second, that this period represents a potential window for endocrine disruption. PMID:22968643

  9. Thyroid disruption effects of environmental level perfluorooctane sulfonates (PFOS) in Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Cheng, Yan; Cui, Yuan; Chen, Hui-ming; Xie, Wen-ping

    2011-11-01

    Perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS), one of the emerging persistent organic pollutants (POPs), has caused growing international concern especially related to the potential disruption in the development and function of thyroid system. Xenopus laevis is an amphibian species widely used as a suitable amphibian model for thyroid disruption research. To study the thyroid disruption effects related to PFOS exposure at environmental low levels, X. laevis tadpoles were exposed to 0.1, 1, 10 and 100 μg/l PFOS in water respectively from stage 46/47 to stage 62. The results showed that the time to metamorphosis (presented by forelimb emergence, FLE) did not significantly change with PFOS exposure, but exhibited an increasing trend (except for 10 μg/l exposure). Partial colloid depletion was observed for PFOS exposure, but no significant histological abnormality was observed in treatment groups. In addition, PFOS exposure resulted in up-regulation of thyroid hormone-regulated genes-thyroid receptor beta A (TRβA), basic transcription element-binding protein (BTEB) and type II deiodinase (DI2) mRNA expression, presented as an inverted U-shaped dose response pattern. However, the mRNA expression of type III deiodinase (DI3) remained unaffected compared with the control. These results demonstrated that PFOS might disrupt the thyroid system in X. laevis tadpoles regarding FLE changes and regulation alternation of thyroid hormone-regulated genes. Our study has raised new concerns for possible thyroid disruption of PFOS in amphibians at environmental relevant levels. PMID:21809121

  10. Thrombopoietin induces production of nucleated thrombocytes from liver cells in Xenopus laevis

    PubMed Central

    Tanizaki, Yuta; Ichisugi, Megumi; Obuchi-Shimoji, Miyako; Ishida-Iwata, Takako; Tahara-Mogi, Ayaka; Meguro-Ishikawa, Mizue; Kato, Takashi

    2015-01-01

    The development of mammalian megakaryocytes (MKs) and platelets, which are thought to be absent in non-mammals, is primarily regulated by the thrombopoietin (TPO)/Mpl system. Although non-mammals possess nucleated thrombocytes instead of platelets, the features of nucleated thrombocyte progenitors remain to be clarified. Here, we provide the general features of TPO using Xenopus laevis TPO (xlTPO). Hepatic and splenic cells were cultured in liquid suspension with recombinant xlTPO. These cells differentiated into large, round, polyploid CD41-expressing cells and were classified as X. laevis MKs, comparable to mammalian MKs. The subsequent culture of MKs after removal of xlTPO produced mature, spindle-shaped thrombocytes that were activated by thrombin, thereby altering their morphology. XlTPO induced MKs in cultured hepatic cells for at least three weeks; however, this was not observed in splenic cells; this result demonstrates the origin of early haematopoietic progenitors in the liver rather than the spleen. Additionally, xlTPO enhanced viability of peripheral thrombocytes, indicating the xlTPO-Mpl pathway stimulates anti-apoptotic in peripheral thrombocytes. The development of thrombocytes from MKs via the TPO-Mpl system in X. laevis plays a crucial role in their development from MKs, comparable to mammalian thrombopoiesis. Thus, our results offer insight into the cellular evolution of platelets/MKs in vertebrates. (200/200). PMID:26687619

  11. Swimming kinematics and respiratory behaviour of xenopus laevis larvae raised in altered gravity

    PubMed

    Fejtek; Souza; Neff; Wassersug

    1998-05-21

    We examined the respiratory behaviours and swimming kinematics of Xenopus laevis tadpoles hatched in microgravity (Space Shuttle), simulated microgravity (clinostat) and hypergravity (3 g centrifuge). All observations were made in the normal 1 g environment. Previous research has shown that X. laevis raised in microgravity exhibit abnormalities in their lungs and vestibular system upon return to 1 g. The tadpoles raised in true microgravity exhibited a significantly lower tailbeat frequency than onboard 1 g centrifuge controls on the day of landing (day0), but this behaviour normalized within 9 days. The two groups did not differ significantly in buccal pumping rates. Altered buoyancy in the space-flight microgravity tadpoles was indicated by an increased swimming angle on the day after landing (day1). Tadpoles raised in simulated microgravity differed to a greater extent in swimming behaviours from their 1 g controls. The tadpoles raised in hypergravity showed no substantive effects on the development of swimming or respiratory behaviours, except swimming angle. Together, these results show that microgravity has a transient effect on the development of locomotion in X. laevis tadpoles, most notably on swimming angle, indicative of stunted lung development. On the basis of the behaviours we studied, there is no indication of neuromuscular retardation in amphibians associated with embryogenesis in microgravity.

  12. Swimming kinematics and respiratory behaviour of Xenopus laevis larvae raised in altered gravity.

    PubMed

    Fejtek, M; Souza, K; Neff, A; Wassersug, R

    1998-06-01

    We examined the respiratory behaviours and swimming kinematics of Xenopus laevis tadpoles hatched in microgravity (Space Shuttle), simulated microgravity (clinostat) and hypergravity (3 g centrifuge). All observations were made in the normal 1 g environment. Previous research has shown that X. laevis raised in microgravity exhibit abnormalities in their lungs and vestibular system upon return to 1 g. The tadpoles raised in true microgravity exhibited a significantly lower tailbeat frequency than onboard 1 g centrifuge controls on the day of landing (day0), but this behaviour normalized within 9 days. The two groups did not differ significantly in buccal pumping rates. Altered buoyancy in the space-flight microgravity tadpoles was indicated by an increased swimming angle on the day after landing (day1). Tadpoles raised in simulated microgravity differed to a greater extent in swimming behaviours from their 1 g controls. The tadpoles raised in hypergravity showed no substantive effects on the development of swimming or respiratory behaviours, except swimming angle. Together, these results show that microgravity has a transient effect on the development of locomotion in X. laevis tadpoles, most notably on swimming angle, indicative of stunted lung development. On the basis of the behaviours we studied, there is no indication of neuromuscular retardation in amphibians associated with embryogenesis in microgravity.

  13. Effects of Chinese domestic polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) on gonadal differentiation in Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed Central

    Qin, Zhan-Fen; Zhou, Jing-Ming; Chu, Shao-Gang; Xu, Xiao-Bai

    2003-01-01

    To determine whether polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) influence gonadal differentiation in Xenopus laevis, tadpoles were exposed to two Chinese domestic PCBs (PCB3 and PCB5 from Nieuwkoop and Faber stage 46/47 to complete metamorphosis. Gonads were characterized using a dissecting microscope. The control X. laevis had normal ovaries or testes in gross morphology, whereas obviously abnormal testes including ovotestes were found in PCB3- and PCB5-exposed groups. Ovotestes were characterized by morphologic ovaries in the cranial and caudal parts and morphologic testes in the middle part. PCBs did not alter the percentage of females but reduced the percentage of males with morphologically normal testes. The histologic structure of gonads was examined by a series of sections. Morphologically normal and abnormal testes from a few frogs exposed to PCBs were interspersed with oocytes in histologic sections. These testes exhibited looser structure with fewer seminiferous tubes, spermatogonia, and spermatozoa than in controls. The findings suggest that PCB3 and PCB5 have significant feminization effects on gonadal differentiation in X. laevis and that this species is sensitive to endocrine disruption and may be used as a good model to study endocrine disruption. PMID:12676614

  14. Evaluation of Presurgical Skin Preparation Agents in African Clawed Frogs (Xenopus laevis)

    PubMed Central

    Philips, Blythe H; Crim, Marcus J; Hankenson, F Claire; Steffen, Earl K; Klein, Peter S; Brice, Angela K; Carty, Anthony J

    2015-01-01

    Despite the routine collection of oocytes from African clawed frogs (Xenopus laevis) for use in research, few studies have evaluated methods for preparing their skin for surgery. We evaluated 3 skin preparatory agents by examining their antibacterial efficacy and the gross and microscopic appearance of Xenopus skin after exposure. Frogs (n = 14) were sedated and treated (contact time, 10 min) with 0.9% sterile NaCl on one-half of the ventrum and with 0.5% povidone–iodine or 0.75% chlorhexidine on the other half. Bacterial cultures were obtained before and after skin treatment; bacteria were identified by mass spectrometry. To assess inflammation and degenerative changes, the incision sites were photographed and biopsied at 0, 1, and 7 d after surgery. We isolated at least 22 genera of bacteria from the skin of our frog population (mean ± SE, 5.21 ± 0.82 genera per frog). Iodine (2.00 ± 0.44 genera) and chlorhexidine (0.29 ± 0.76 genera) both had greater antimicrobial activity than did saline. Skin erythema did not correlate with treatment group. Histologic evidence of epidermal degeneration and necrosis was greater on days 1 and 7 after chlorhexidine treatment than after iodine or saline. In addition, frogs treated with chlorhexidine had a higher incidence of clinical illness associated with the exposure site. In summary, although chlorhexidine has adequate antimicrobial activity against organisms on X. laevis skin, it leads to skin damage and subsequent clinical complications. We therefore do not recommend chlorhexidine as a preoperative preparation agent in Xenopus. PMID:26632790

  15. Inverse Effects on Growth and Development Rates by Means of Endocrine Disruptors in African Clawed Frog Tadpoles ("Xenopus Laevis")

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hackney, Zachary Carl

    2007-01-01

    Previous work on fish, frogs, and salamanders, showed the ability for estrogen (EE2) and anthropogenic endocrine disruptors to skew sex ratios and cause hermaphrodism. This study addressed the effects of estrogens on growth and development rates of African clawed frog tadpoles ("Xenopus laevis") during their gender determination stages. The…

  16. Maintenance of Multipotency in Human Dermal Fibroblasts Treated with Xenopus laevis Egg Extract Requires Exogenous Fibroblast Growth Factor-2

    PubMed Central

    Kole, Denis; Ambady, Sakthikumar; Page, Raymond L.

    2014-01-01

    Abstract Direct reprogramming of a differentiated somatic cell into a developmentally more plastic cell would offer an alternative to applications in regenerative medicine that currently depend on either embryonic stem cells (ESCs), adult stem cells, or induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs). Here we report the potential of select Xenopus laevis egg extract fractions, in combination with exogenous fibroblast growth factor-2 (FGF2), to affect life span, morphology, gene expression, protein translation, and cellular localization of OCT4 and NANOG transcription factors, and the developmental potential of human dermal fibroblasts in vitro. A gradual change in morphology is accompanied by translation of embryonic transcription factors and their nuclear localization and a life span exceeding 60 population doublings. Cells acquire the ability to follow adipogenic, neuronal, and osteogenic differentiation under appropriate induction conditions in vitro. Analysis of active extract fractions reveals that Xenopus egg protein and RNAs as well as exogenously supplemented FGF2 are required and sufficient for induction and maintenance of this phenotypic change. Factors so far identified in the active fractions include FGF2 itself, transforming growth factor-β, maskin, and nucleoplasmin. Identification of critical factors needed for reprogramming may allow for nonviral, chemically defined derivation of human-induced multipotent cells that can be maintained by exogenous FGF2. PMID:24405062

  17. Regulation of Xenopus laevis DNA topoisomerase I activity by phosphorylation in vitro

    SciTech Connect

    Kaiserman, H.B.; Ingebritsen, T.S.; Benbow, R.M.

    1988-05-03

    DNA topoisomerase I has been purified to electrophoretic homogeneity from ovaries of the frog Xenopus laevis. Sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis of the most purified fraction revealed a single major band at 110 kDa and less abundant minor bands centered at 62 kDa. Incubation of the most purified fraction with immobilized calf intestinal alkaline phosphatase abolished all DNA topoisomerase enzymatic activity in a time-dependent reaction. Treatment of the dephosphorylated X. laevis DNA topoisomerase I with a X. laevis casein kinase type II activity and ATP restored DNA topoisomerase activity to a level higher than that observed in the most purified fraction. In vitro labeling experiments which employed the most purified DNA topoisomerase I fraction, (..gamma..-/sup 32/P)ATP, and the casein kinase type II enzyme showed that both the 110- and 62-kDa bands became phosphorylated in approximately molar proportions. Phosphoamino acid analysis showed that only serine residues became phosphorylated. Phosphorylation was accompanied by an increase in DNA topoisomerase activity in vitro. Dephosphorylation of DNA topoisomerase I appears to block formation of the initial enzyme-substrate complex on the basis of the failure of the dephosphorylated enzyme to nick DNA in the presence of camptothecin. The authors conclude that X. laevis DNA topoisomerase I is partially phosphorylated as isolated and that this phosphorylation is essential for expression of enzymatic activity in vitro. On the basis of the ability of the casein kinase type II activity to reactivate dephosphorylated DNA topoisomerase I, they speculate that this kinase may contribute to the physiological regulation of DNA topoisomerase I activity.

  18. Impacts of Climate Change on the Global Invasion Potential of the African Clawed Frog Xenopus laevis

    PubMed Central

    Ihlow, Flora; Courant, Julien; Secondi, Jean; Herrel, Anthony; Rebelo, Rui; Measey, G. John; Lillo, Francesco; De Villiers, F. André; Vogt, Solveig; De Busschere, Charlotte; Backeljau, Thierry; Rödder, Dennis

    2016-01-01

    By altering or eliminating delicate ecological relationships, non-indigenous species are considered a major threat to biodiversity, as well as a driver of environmental change. Global climate change affects ecosystems and ecological communities, leading to changes in the phenology, geographic ranges, or population abundance of several species. Thus, predicting the impacts of global climate change on the current and future distribution of invasive species is an important subject in macroecological studies. The African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis), native to South Africa, possesses a strong invasion potential and populations have become established in numerous countries across four continents. The global invasion potential of X. laevis was assessed using correlative species distribution models (SDMs). SDMs were computed based on a comprehensive set of occurrence records covering South Africa, North America, South America and Europe and a set of nine environmental predictors. Models were built using both a maximum entropy model and an ensemble approach integrating eight algorithms. The future occurrence probabilities for X. laevis were subsequently computed using bioclimatic variables for 2070 following four different IPCC scenarios. Despite minor differences between the statistical approaches, both SDMs predict the future potential distribution of X. laevis, on a global scale, to decrease across all climate change scenarios. On a continental scale, both SDMs predict decreasing potential distributions in the species’ native range in South Africa, as well as in the invaded areas in North and South America, and in Australia where the species has not been introduced. In contrast, both SDMs predict the potential range size to expand in Europe. Our results suggest that all probability classes will be equally affected by climate change. New regional conditions may promote new invasions or the spread of established invasive populations, especially in France and Great

  19. Impacts of Climate Change on the Global Invasion Potential of the African Clawed Frog Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Ihlow, Flora; Courant, Julien; Secondi, Jean; Herrel, Anthony; Rebelo, Rui; Measey, G John; Lillo, Francesco; De Villiers, F André; Vogt, Solveig; De Busschere, Charlotte; Backeljau, Thierry; Rödder, Dennis

    2016-01-01

    By altering or eliminating delicate ecological relationships, non-indigenous species are considered a major threat to biodiversity, as well as a driver of environmental change. Global climate change affects ecosystems and ecological communities, leading to changes in the phenology, geographic ranges, or population abundance of several species. Thus, predicting the impacts of global climate change on the current and future distribution of invasive species is an important subject in macroecological studies. The African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis), native to South Africa, possesses a strong invasion potential and populations have become established in numerous countries across four continents. The global invasion potential of X. laevis was assessed using correlative species distribution models (SDMs). SDMs were computed based on a comprehensive set of occurrence records covering South Africa, North America, South America and Europe and a set of nine environmental predictors. Models were built using both a maximum entropy model and an ensemble approach integrating eight algorithms. The future occurrence probabilities for X. laevis were subsequently computed using bioclimatic variables for 2070 following four different IPCC scenarios. Despite minor differences between the statistical approaches, both SDMs predict the future potential distribution of X. laevis, on a global scale, to decrease across all climate change scenarios. On a continental scale, both SDMs predict decreasing potential distributions in the species' native range in South Africa, as well as in the invaded areas in North and South America, and in Australia where the species has not been introduced. In contrast, both SDMs predict the potential range size to expand in Europe. Our results suggest that all probability classes will be equally affected by climate change. New regional conditions may promote new invasions or the spread of established invasive populations, especially in France and Great Britain

  20. Impacts of Climate Change on the Global Invasion Potential of the African Clawed Frog Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Ihlow, Flora; Courant, Julien; Secondi, Jean; Herrel, Anthony; Rebelo, Rui; Measey, G John; Lillo, Francesco; De Villiers, F André; Vogt, Solveig; De Busschere, Charlotte; Backeljau, Thierry; Rödder, Dennis

    2016-01-01

    By altering or eliminating delicate ecological relationships, non-indigenous species are considered a major threat to biodiversity, as well as a driver of environmental change. Global climate change affects ecosystems and ecological communities, leading to changes in the phenology, geographic ranges, or population abundance of several species. Thus, predicting the impacts of global climate change on the current and future distribution of invasive species is an important subject in macroecological studies. The African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis), native to South Africa, possesses a strong invasion potential and populations have become established in numerous countries across four continents. The global invasion potential of X. laevis was assessed using correlative species distribution models (SDMs). SDMs were computed based on a comprehensive set of occurrence records covering South Africa, North America, South America and Europe and a set of nine environmental predictors. Models were built using both a maximum entropy model and an ensemble approach integrating eight algorithms. The future occurrence probabilities for X. laevis were subsequently computed using bioclimatic variables for 2070 following four different IPCC scenarios. Despite minor differences between the statistical approaches, both SDMs predict the future potential distribution of X. laevis, on a global scale, to decrease across all climate change scenarios. On a continental scale, both SDMs predict decreasing potential distributions in the species' native range in South Africa, as well as in the invaded areas in North and South America, and in Australia where the species has not been introduced. In contrast, both SDMs predict the potential range size to expand in Europe. Our results suggest that all probability classes will be equally affected by climate change. New regional conditions may promote new invasions or the spread of established invasive populations, especially in France and Great Britain.

  1. DNaseI-hypersensitive sites at promoter-like sequences in the spacer of Xenopus laevis and Xenopus borealis ribosomal DNA.

    PubMed Central

    La Volpe, A; Taggart, M; McStay, B; Bird, A

    1983-01-01

    We have detected a DNAseI hypersensitive site in the ribosomal DNA spacer of Xenopus laevis and Xenopus borealis. The site is present in blood and embryonic nuclei of each species. In interspecies hybrids, however, the site is absent in unexpressed borealis rDNA, but is present normally in expressed laevis rDNA. Hypersensitive sites are located well upstream (over lkb) of the pre-ribosomal RNA promoter. Sequencing of the hypersensitive region in borealis rDNA, however, shows extensive homology with the promoter sequence, and with the hypersensitive region in X. laevis. Of two promoter-like duplications in each spacer, only the most upstream copy is associated with hypersensitivity to DNAaseI. Unlike DNAaseI, Endo R. MspI digests the rDNA of laevis blood nuclei at a domain extending downstream from the hypersensitive site to near the 40S promoter. Since the organisation of conserved sequence elements within this "proximal domain" is similar in three Xenopus species whose spacers have otherwise evolved rapidly, we conclude that this domain plays an important role in rDNA function. Images PMID:6310495

  2. Analysis of Histones and Chromatin in Xenopus laevis Egg and Oocyte Extracts

    PubMed Central

    Banaszynski, Laura A.; Allis, C. David; Shechter, David

    2010-01-01

    Histones are the major protein components of chromatin, the physiological form of the genome in all eukaryotic cells. Chromatin is the substrate of information-directed biological processes, such as gene regulation and transcription, replication, and mitosis. A long-standing experimental model system to study many of these processes is the extract made from the eggs of the anuran Xenopus laevis. Since work in recent years has solidified the importance of post-translational modification of histones in directing biological processes, the study of histones in a biochemically dissectible model such as Xenopus is crucial for the understanding of their biological significance. Here we present a rationale and methods for isolating and studying histones and chromatin in different Xenopus egg and oocyte extracts. In particular, we present protocols for the preparation of: cell-free egg and oocyte extract; nucleoplasmic extract (“NPE”); biochemical purification of maternally-deposited, stored histones in the oocyte and the egg; assembly of pronuclei in egg extract and the isolation of pronuclear chromatin and histones; and an extract chromatin assembly assay. We also demonstrate aspects of the variability of the system to be mindful of when working with extract and the importance of proper laboratory temperature in preparing quality extracts. We expect that these methods will be of use in promoting further understanding of embryonic chromatin in a unique experimental system. PMID:20051265

  3. CHAPERONE-MEDIATED CHROMATIN ASSEMBLY AND TRANSCRIPTION REGULATION IN XENOPUS LAEVIS

    PubMed Central

    Onikubo, Takashi; Shechter, David

    2016-01-01

    Chromatin is the complex of DNA and histone proteins that is the physiological form of the eukaryotic genome. Chromatin is generally repressive for transcription, especially so during early metazoan development when maternal factors are explicitly in control of new zygotic gene expression. In the important model organism Xenopus laevis, maturing oocytes are transcriptionally active with reduced rates of chromatin assembly, while laid eggs and fertilized embryos have robust rates of chromatin assembly and are transcriptionally repressed. As the DNA-to-cytoplasmic ratio decreases approaching the mid-blastula transition (MBT) and the onset of zygotic transcription activation (ZGA), the chromatin assembly process changes with the concomitant reduction in maternal chromatin components. Chromatin assembly is mediated in part by histone chaperones that store maternal histones and release them into new zygotic chromatin. Here, we review literature on chromatin and transcription in frog embryos and cell-free extracts and highlight key insights demonstrating the roles of maternal and zygotic histone deposition and their relationship with transcriptional regulation. We explore the central historical and recent literature on the use of Xenopus embryos and the key contributions provided by experiments in cell-free oocyte and egg extracts for the interplay between histone chaperones, chromatin assembly, and transcriptional regulation. Ongoing and future studies in Xenopus cell free extracts will likely contribute essential new insights into the interplay between chromatin assembly and transcriptional regulation. PMID:27759155

  4. Post-translational Regulation of Hexokinase Function and Protein Stability in the Aestivating Frog Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Childers, Christine L; Storey, Kenneth B

    2016-02-01

    Xenopus laevis endure substantial dehydration which can impose hypoxic stress due to impaired blood flow. Tissues may increase reliance on anaerobic glycolysis for energy production making the regulation of hexokinase (HK) important. We investigated the enzymatic properties and phosphorylation state of purified HK from the muscle of control and dehydrated (30% total body water lost) frogs. Bioinformatic tools were also applied to analyze the structural implication of HK phosphorylation in silico. HK from the muscle of dehydrated frogs showed a significantly higher Vmax (3.4-fold) and Km for glucose (2.4-fold) compared with control HK but the Km for ATP was unaltered. HK from dehydrated frogs also showed greater phosphoserine content (20% increase) and lower phosphothreonine (22% decrease) content compared to control HK. Control HK had a higher melting temperature (Tm = 61.9 °C) than from dehydrated (Tm = 54.2 °C) frogs when thermostability was tested using differential scanning fluorimetry. In silico phosphorylation of a Xenopus HK caused alterations in active site binding, corroborating phosphorylation as the probable mechanism for kinetic regulation. Physiological consequences of dehydration-induced HK phosphorylation appear to facilitate glycolytic metabolism in hypoxic situations. Augmented HK function increases the ability of Xenopus to overcome compromised oxidative phosphorylation associated with ischemia during dehydration. PMID:26797504

  5. Localization of two IQGAPs in cultured cells and early embryos of Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Yamashiro, Sawako; Noguchi, Tatsuhiko; Mabuchi, Issei

    2003-05-01

    Mammalian IQGAP1 is considered to modulate organization of the actin cytoskeleton under regulation of signaling proteins Cdc42 or Rac and calmodulin [Bashour et al., 1997: J Cell Biol 137:1555-1566; Hart et al., 1996: EMBO J 15:2997-3005] and also to be involved in cadherin-based cell adhesion [Kuroda et al., 1998: Science 281:832-835]. However, its function in the cell has not been clear. In order to clarify the function of IQGAP, we investigated IQGAP in Xenopus laevis cells. We isolated two Xenopus cDNAs encoding homologues of mammalian IQGAP, XIQGAP1, and XIQGAP2, which show high homology with human IQGAP1 and IQGAP2, respectively. Immunofluorescent localization of XIQGAPs in Xenopus tissue cultured cells (XTC cells) and in developing embryos was examined. In XTC cells, XIQGAP1 was colocalized with F-actin at cell-to-cell contact sites, membrane ruffles in lamellipodia, and filopodia. During development of embryos, XIQGAP1 was concentrated in the borders of all embryonic cells. An intense staining for XIQGAP1 was found in regions undergoing active morphogenetic movements, such as the blastopore lip of gastrulae, and the neural plate, the notochord, and the somite of neurulae. These results suggest that XIQGAP1 is involved in both cell-to-cell adhesion and cell migration during Xenopus embryogenesis and in cultured cells. On the other hand, the localization of XIQGAP2 in XTC cells was distinct from that of XIQGAP1 although it was also seen in lamellipodia, filopodia, and borders between cells. In addition to these regions, strong nuclear staining was observed in both XTC cells and embryonic cells.

  6. Water permeability properties of the ovarian oocytes from Bufo arenarum and Xenopus laevis: a comparative study.

    PubMed

    Capurro, C; Ford, P; Ibarra, C; Ripoche, P; Parisi, M

    1994-03-01

    The water permeability properties of ovarian oocytes from Xenopus laevis and Bufo arenarum, a toad species found in the Buenos Aires region, were studied. We report that: (i) the water osmotic permeability (Pf, cm/sec x 10(-4)) was significantly higher in Bufo (6 degrees C = 12.3 +/- 2.4; 18 degrees C = 20.8 +/- 4.8) than in Xenopus oocytes (6 degrees C = 5.3 +/- 0.3; 18 degrees C = 6.2 +/- 1.6). The corresponding water diffusion permeability values (Pd, cm/sec x 10(-4)) were: Xenopus = 2.3 +/- 0.3 (6 degrees C) and 4.8 +/- 0.7 (18 degrees C); Bufo = 2.7 +/- 0.4 (6 degrees C) and 6.0 +/- 0.5 (18 degrees C). (ii) Amphotericin B increased the Pf and Pd values. The observed delta Pf/delta Pd ratio was not significantly different from the expected results (n = 3), after amphotericin B incorporation in both species. This means that the influence of unstirred layers and other potential artifactual compounds did not significantly affect our experimental results. (iii) Preincubation with gramicidin during 12 hr induced a clear increase in the oocyte volume. After that, a hypotonic shock only slightly increased the oocyte volume. Conversely, a hypertonic challenge induced a volume change significantly higher than the one observed in control conditions. (iv) Mercury ions did not affect the osmotic permeability in Xenopus oocytes but clearly inhibited, in a reversible way, the osmotic permeability in oocytes from B. arenarum. (v) Mercury ions did not reduce Pd values in either species.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

  7. Unequal contribution of native South African phylogeographic lineages to the invasion of the African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis, in Europe

    PubMed Central

    Courant, Julien; Herrel, Anthony; Rebelo, Rui; Rödder, Dennis; Measey, G. John; Backeljau, Thierry

    2016-01-01

    Due to both deliberate and accidental introductions, invasive African Clawed Frog (Xenopus laevis) populations have become established worldwide. In this study, we investigate the geographic origins of invasive X. laevis populations in France and Portugal using the phylogeographic structure of X. laevis in its native South African range. In total, 80 individuals from the whole area known to be invaded in France and Portugal were analysed for two mitochondrial and three nuclear genes, allowing a comparison with 185 specimens from the native range. Our results show that native phylogeographic lineages have contributed differently to invasive European X. laevis populations. In Portugal, genetic and historical data suggest a single colonization event involving a small number of individuals from the south-western Cape region in South Africa. In contrast, French invasive X. laevis encompass two distinct native phylogeographic lineages, i.e., one from the south-western Cape region and one from the northern regions of South Africa. The French X. laevis population is the first example of a X. laevis invasion involving multiple lineages. Moreover, the lack of population structure based on nuclear DNA suggests a potential role for admixture within the invasive French population. PMID:26855879

  8. GAP-43 augments G protein-coupled receptor transduction in Xenopus laevis oocytes.

    PubMed Central

    Strittmatter, S M; Cannon, S C; Ross, E M; Higashijima, T; Fishman, M C

    1993-01-01

    The neuronal protein GAP-43 is thought to play a role in determining growth-cone motility, perhaps as an intracellular regulator of signal transduction, but its molecular mechanism of action has remained unclear. We find that GAP-43, when microinjected into Xenopus laevis oocytes, increases the oocyte response to G protein-coupled receptor agonists by 10- to 100-fold. Higher levels of GAP-43 cause a transient current flow, even without receptor stimulation. The GAP-43-induced current, like receptor-stimulated currents, is mediated by a calcium-activated chloride channel and can be desensitized by injection of inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate. This suggests that neuronal GAP-43 may serve as an intracellular signal to greatly enhance the sensitivity of G protein-coupled receptor transduction. Images Fig. 1 Fig. 2 PMID:7685122

  9. Dynein-Based Accumulation of Membranes Regulates Nuclear Expansion in Xenopus laevis Egg Extracts.

    PubMed

    Hara, Yuki; Merten, Christoph A

    2015-06-01

    Nuclear size changes dynamically during development and has long been observed to correlate with the space surrounding the nucleus, as well as with the volume of the cell. Here we combine an in vitro cell-free system of Xenopus laevis egg extract with microfluidic devices to systematically analyze the effect of spatial constraints. The speed of nuclear expansion depended on the available space surrounding the nucleus up to a threshold volume in the nanoliter range, herein referred to as the nuclear domain. Under spatial constraints smaller than this nuclear domain, the size of microtubule-occupied space surrounding the nucleus turned out to be limiting for the accumulation of membranes around the nucleus via the motor protein dynein, therefore determining the speed of nuclear expansion. This mechanism explains how spatial information surrounding the nucleus, such as the positioning of the nucleus inside the cell, can control nuclear expansion.

  10. Planar induction of anteroposterior pattern in the developing central nervous system of Xenopus laevis

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Doniach, T.; Phillips, C. R.; Gerhart, J. C.

    1992-01-01

    It has long been thought that anteroposterior (A-P) pattern in the vertebrate central nervous system is induced in the embryo's dorsal ectoderm exclusively by signals passing vertically from underlying, patterned dorsal mesoderm. Explants from early gastrulae of the frog Xenopus laevis were prepared in which vertical contact between dorsal ectoderm and mesoderm was prevented but planar contact was maintained. In these, four position-specific neural markers (engrailed-2, Krox-20, XlHbox 1, and XlHbox 6) were expressed in the ectoderm in the same A-P order as in the embryo. Thus, planar signals alone, following a path available in the normal embryo, can induce A-P neural pattern.

  11. Circus movements and blebbing locomotion in dissociated embryonic cells of an amphibian, Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Johnson, K E

    1976-12-01

    Circus movements, which involve the circumferential rotation of a hyaline cytoplasmic protrusion, occur in cells obtained by EDTA dissociation of gastrula-stage Xenopus laevis embryos. Only a few dissociated blastula-stage cells show circus movements, more early gastrula-stage cells show them, and nearly all late gastrula-stage cells show them. Circus movements cease in cells prior to mitosis and begin again in daughter cells after mitosis is completed. In early gastrulae, only 17% of prospective endodermal cells show circus movements while 79% of prospective mesodern, archenteric roof, and posterior neural ectoderm do so. Isolated cells as well as groups of cells in vitro are often propelled by circus movements. There is an obvious antagonism between cell contact and circus movements. The morphogenetic significance of circus movements and blebbing locomotion is discussed.

  12. Rhodopsin Forms Nanodomains in Rod Outer Segment Disc Membranes of the Cold-Blooded Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Rakshit, Tatini; Senapati, Subhadip; Sinha, Satyabrata; Whited, A M; Park, Paul S-H

    2015-01-01

    Rhodopsin forms nanoscale domains (i.e., nanodomains) in rod outer segment disc membranes from mammalian species. It is unclear whether rhodopsin arranges in a similar manner in amphibian species, which are often used as a model system to investigate the function of rhodopsin and the structure of photoreceptor cells. Moreover, since samples are routinely prepared at low temperatures, it is unclear whether lipid phase separation effects in the membrane promote the observed nanodomain organization of rhodopsin from mammalian species. Rod outer segment disc membranes prepared from the cold-blooded frog Xenopus laevis were investigated by atomic force microscopy to visualize the organization of rhodopsin in the absence of lipid phase separation effects. Atomic force microscopy revealed that rhodopsin nanodomains form similarly as that observed previously in mammalian membranes. Formation of nanodomains in ROS disc membranes is independent of lipid phase separation and conserved among vertebrates. PMID:26492040

  13. A kinetic model of the cyclin E/Cdk2 developmental timer in Xenopus laevis embryos.

    PubMed

    Ciliberto, Andrea; Petrus, Matthew J; Tyson, John J; Sible, Jill C

    2003-07-01

    Early cell cycles of Xenopus laevis embryos are characterized by rapid oscillations in the activity of two cyclin-dependent kinases. Cdk1 activity peaks at mitosis, driven by periodic degradation of cyclins A and B. In contrast, Cdk2 activity oscillates twice per cell cycle, despite a constant level of its partner, cyclin E. Cyclin E degrades at a fixed time after fertilization, normally corresponding to the midblastula transition. Based on published data and new experiments, we constructed a mathematical model in which: (1) oscillations in Cdk2 activity depend upon changes in phosphorylation, (2) Cdk2 participates in a negative feedback loop with the inhibitory kinase Wee1; (3) cyclin E is cooperatively removed from the oscillatory system; and (4) removed cyclin E is degraded by a pathway activated by cyclin E/Cdk2 itself. The model's predictions about embryos injected with Xic1, a stoichiometric inhibitor of cyclin E/Cdk2, were experimentally validated. PMID:12914904

  14. Subchronic and chronic developmental effects of copper oxide (CuO) nanoparticles on Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Nations, Shawna; Long, Monique; Wages, Mike; Maul, Jonathan D; Theodorakis, Christopher W; Cobb, George P

    2015-09-01

    Metal oxide nanoparticles, such as copper oxide (CuO), are mass produced for use in a variety of products like coatings and ceramics. Acute exposure to CuO nanoparticles has caused toxicity to many aquatic organisms, yet there is no information on the effect of prolonged CuO nanomaterial exposures. This study examined effects of chronic exposure to CuO nanoparticles on Xenopus laevis growth and development. Experiments included a 14 d subchronic exposure and a 47 d chronic exposure throughout metamorphosis. The subchronic exposure caused mortality in all tested CuO concentrations, and significant growth effects occurred after exposure to 2.5 mg L(-1) CuO. Chronic exposure to 0.3 mg L(-1) CuO elicited significant mortality and affected the rate of metamorphosis. Exposure to lower concentrations of CuO stimulated metamorphosis and growth, indicating that low dose exposure can have hormetic effects. PMID:25950410

  15. Light conditions affect the roll-induced vestibuloocular reflex in Xenopus laevis tadpoles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    El-Yamany, Nabil A.

    2008-12-01

    In Xenopus laevis tadpoles, effects of asymmetrical light conditions on the roll-induced vestibuloocular reflex (rVOR) were tested for the developmental period between stage 47 and 49. For comparison, the rVOR was tested in dim- and high-symmetrical light environments. Test parameters were the rVOR gain and rVOR amplitude. Under all light conditions, the rVOR increased from tadpole stage 47 to 49. For all stages, the asymmetrical light field induced the strongest response, the dim light field the weakest one. The response for the left and right eye was identical, even if the tadpoles were tested under asymmetrical light conditions. The experiments can be considered as hints (1) for an age-dependent light sensitivity of vestibular neurons, and (2) for the existence of control systems for coordinated eye movements that has its origin in the proprioceptors of the extraocular eye muscles.

  16. Xenopus laevis actin-depolymerizing factor/cofilin: a phosphorylation- regulated protein essential for development

    PubMed Central

    1996-01-01

    Two cDNAs, isolated from a Xenopus laevis embryonic library, encode proteins of 168 amino acids, both of which are 77% identical to chick cofilin and 66% identical to chick actin-depolymerizing factor (ADF), two structurally and functionally related proteins. These Xenopus ADF/cofilins (XADs) differ from each other in 12 residues spread throughout the sequence but do not differ in charge. Purified GST- fusion proteins have pH-dependent actin-depolymerizing and F-actin- binding activities similar to chick ADF and cofilin. Similarities in the developmental and tissue specific expression, embryonic localization, and in the cDNA sequence of the noncoding regions, suggest that the two XACs arise from allelic variants of the pseudotetraploid X. laevis. Immunofluorescence localization of XAC in oocyte sections with an XAC-specific monoclonal antibody shows it to be diffuse in the cortical cytoplasm. After fertilization, increased immunostaining is observed in two regions: along the membrane, particularly that of the vegetal hemisphere, and at the interface between the cortical and animal hemisphere cytoplasm. The cleavage furrow and the mid-body structure are stained at the end of first cleavage. Neuroectoderm derived tissues, notochord, somites, and epidermis stain heavily either continuously or transiently from stages 18-34. A phosphorylated form of XAC (pXAC) was identified by 2D Western blotting, and it is the only species found in oocytes. Dephosphorylation of >60% of the pXAC occurs within 30 min after fertilization. Injection of one blastomere at the 2 cell stage, either with constitutively active XAC or with an XAC inhibitory antibody, blocked cleavage of only the injected blastomere in a concentration- dependent manner without inhibiting nuclear division. The cleavage furrow of eggs injected with constitutively active XAC completely regressed. Blastomeres injected with neutralized antibody developed normally. These results suggest that XAC is necessary for

  17. Assessment of laryngeal muscle and testicular cell types in Xenopus laevis (Anura Pipidae) inhabiting maize and non-maize growing areas of South Africa

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Smith, E.E.; Du Preez, L.H.; Gentles, A.; Solomon, K.R.; Tandler, B.; Carr, J.A.; Van Der Kraak, G. L.; Kendall, R.J.; Giesy, J.P.; Gross, T.S.

    2005-01-01

    We tested the hypothesis that adult African clawed frogs (Xenopus laevis) inhabiting water bodies in maize-growing areas (MGA) of South Africa would exhibit differences in testicular structure compared to frogs from water bodies in non-maize-growing areas (NMGA) in the same locale. Adults of both sexes were collected during the autumn of 2002 in South Africa, and stereological analytical techniques were used to quantify the distribution of testicular cell types. In addition, total laryngeal mass was used as a gauge of secondary sex differences in animals from MGA and NMGA study sites. Evaluation of the total laryngeal mass revealed that there were no statistically significant differences between X. laevis of the same sex from the NMGA and MGA sites. Mean percent fractional-volume values for seminiferous tubule distribution of testicular cell types of mature X. laevis, ranged from 3-4% for spermatogonia, 26-28% for spermatocytes, 54-57% for spermatozoa, and 14-15% for other cells types. The mean percent volume for blood vessels ranged from 0.3-0.4%. These values did not differ significantly between frogs from NMGA and MGA areas. Collectively, these data demonstrated no differences in gonadal and laryngeal development in X. laevis collected in South Africa from MGA and NMGA areas and that there is little evidence for an effect of agricultural chemicals used in maize production functioning as endocrine disrupters in this species. Screening of X. laevis testes revealed a small incidence of Stage 1 testicular oocytes in adult male frogs collected from the NMGA (3%) and MGA (2%).

  18. CHROMATIN ASSEMBLY AND TRANSCRIPTIONAL CROSS-TALK IN XENOPUS LAEVIS OOCYTE AND EGG EXTRACTS

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Wei-Lin; Shechter, David

    2016-01-01

    Chromatin, primarily a complex of DNA and histone proteins, is the physiological form of the genome. Chromatin is generally repressive for transcription and other information transactions that occur on DNA. A wealth of post-translational modifications on canonical histones and histone variants encode regulatory information to recruit or repel effector proteins on chromatin, promoting and further repressing transcription and thereby form the basis of epigenetic information. During metazoan oogenesis, large quantities of histone proteins are synthesized and stored in preparation for the rapid early cell cycles of development and to elicit maternal control of chromatin assembly pathways. Oocyte and egg cell-free extracts of the frog Xenopus laevis are a compelling model system for the study of chromatin assembly and transcription precisely because they exist in an extreme state primed for rapid chromatin assembly or for transcriptional activity. We show that chromatin assembly rates are slower in X. laevis oocyte than in egg extracts, while conversely only oocyte extracts transcribe template plasmids. We demonstrate that rapid chromatin assembly in egg extracts represses RNA Polymerase II dependent transcription, while pre-binding of TATA-Binding Protein (TBP) to a template plasmid promotes transcription. Our experimental evidence presented here supports a model in which chromatin assembly and transcription are in competition and that the onset of zygotic genomic activation may be in part due to stable transcriptional complex assembly. PMID:27759158

  19. Distribution of single wall carbon nanotubes in the Xenopus laevis embryo after microinjection.

    PubMed

    Holt, Brian D; Shawky, Joseph H; Dahl, Kris Noel; Davidson, Lance A; Islam, Mohammad F

    2016-04-01

    Single wall carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) are advanced materials with the potential for a myriad of diverse applications, including biological technologies and large-scale usage with the potential for environmental impacts. SWCNTs have been exposed to developing organisms to determine their effects on embryogenesis, and results have been inconsistent arising, in part, from differing material quality, dispersion status, material size, impurity from catalysts and stability. For this study, we utilized highly purified SWCNT samples with short, uniform lengths (145 ± 17 nm) well dispersed in solution. To test high exposure doses, we microinjected > 500 µg ml(-1) SWCNT concentrations into the well-established embryogenesis model, Xenopus laevis, and determined embryo compatibility and subcellular localization during development. SWCNTs localized within cellular progeny of the microinjected cells, but were heterogeneously distributed throughout the target-injected tissue. Co-registering unique Raman spectral intensity of SWCNTs with images of fluorescently labeled subcellular compartments demonstrated that even at regions of highest SWCNT concentration, there were no gross alterations to subcellular microstructures, including filamentous actin, endoplasmic reticulum and vesicles. Furthermore, SWCNTs did not aggregate and localized to the perinuclear subcellular region. Combined, these results suggest that purified and dispersed SWCNTs are not toxic to X. laevis animal cap ectoderm and may be suitable candidate materials for biological applications. PMID:26510384

  20. Biochemical response to exposure to six textile dyes in early developmental stages of Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Güngördü, Abbas; Birhanli, Ayse; Ozmen, Murat

    2013-01-01

    The present study was undertaken to determine the toxic effect of a lethal concentration of six different commercially used textile dyes on the 46th stage of Xenopus laevis tadpoles. The tadpoles were exposed to Astrazon Red FBL, Astrazon Blue FGRL, Remazol Red RR, Remazol Turquoise Blue G-A, Cibacron Red FN-3G, and Cibacron Blue FN-R for 168 h in static test conditions, and thus, 168-h median lethal concentrations (LC(50)s) of each dye were determined to be 0.35, 0.13, 112, 7, 359, and 15.8 mg/L, respectively. Also, to evaluate the sublethal effects of each dye, tadpoles were exposed to different concentrations of dyes (with respect to 168-h LC(50)s) for 24 h. The alteration of selected enzyme activities was tested. For this aim, glutathione S-transferase (GST), carboxylesterase, and lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) were assayed. After dye exposure, the GST induction or inhibition and LDH induction indicated some possible mechanisms of oxidative stress and deterioration in aerobic respiration processes induced by the tested dyes. Findings of the study suggest that selected biomarker enzymes are useful in understanding the toxic mechanisms of these dyes in X. laevis tadpoles as early warning indicators. Therefore, these selected biomarkers may evaluate the effect of environmental factors, such as textile dye effluents and other industrial pollutants, on amphibians in biomonitoring studies.

  1. Significant modulation of the hepatic proteome induced by exposure to low temperature in Xenopus laevis

    PubMed Central

    Nagasawa, Kazumichi; Tanizaki, Yuta; Okui, Takehito; Watarai, Atsuko; Ueda, Shinobu; Kato, Takashi

    2013-01-01

    Summary The African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis, is an ectothermic vertebrate that can survive at low environmental temperatures. To gain insight into the molecular events induced by low body temperature, liver proteins were evaluated at the standard laboratory rearing temperature (22°C, control) and a low environmental temperature (5°C, cold exposure). Using nano-flow liquid chromatography coupled with tandem mass spectrometry, we identified 58 proteins that differed in abundance. A subsequent Gene Ontology analysis revealed that the tyrosine and phenylalanine catabolic processes were modulated by cold exposure, which resulted in decreases in hepatic tyrosine and phenylalanine, respectively. Similarly, levels of pyruvate kinase and enolase, which are involved in glycolysis and glycogen synthesis, were also decreased, whereas levels of glycogen phosphorylase, which participates in glycogenolysis, were increased. Therefore, we measured metabolites in the respective pathways and found that levels of hepatic glycogen and glucose were decreased. Although the liver was under oxidative stress because of iron accumulation caused by hepatic erythrocyte destruction, the hepatic NADPH/NADP ratio was not changed. Thus, glycogen is probably utilized mainly for NADPH supply rather than for energy or glucose production. In conclusion, X. laevis responds to low body temperature by modulating its hepatic proteome, which results in altered carbohydrate metabolism. PMID:24167716

  2. Proteomics analysis of Xenopus laevis gonad tissue following chronic exposure to atrazine.

    PubMed

    Chen, Xiuping; Wang, Jiamei; Zhu, Haojun; Ding, Jiatong; Peng, Yufa

    2015-08-01

    Atrazine is the most commonly detected pesticide contaminant in ground and surface water. Previous studies have shown that atrazine is an endocrine disruptor owing to its adverse effects on the male reproductive system in several vertebrates, but very few molecular mechanisms for these effects have been revealed. In the present study, Xenopus laevis were exposed to 100 ppb of atrazine for 120 d, and then the isobaric tags for relative and absolute quantitation (iTRAQ) technique was used to detect global changes in protein profiles of the testes and ovaries. The results showed that 100 ppb of atrazine exposure adversely affected the growth of X. laevis and did not induce hermaphroditism but delayed or prevented the development of male seminiferous tubules. Proteomic analysis showed that atrazine altered expression of 143 and 121 proteins in the testes and ovaries, respectively, and most of them are involved in cellular and metabolic processes and biological regulation based on their biological processes. In addition, apoptosis, tight junctions, and metabolic pathways were significantly altered in the atrazine-treated gonads. Based on the above results, it is postulated that the reproductive toxicity of atrazine may be the result of disruption of tight junctions and metabolic signaling pathways and/or induction of apoptosis in germ cells.

  3. Effects of agricultural pesticides on the immune system of Xenopus laevis and Rana pipiens.

    PubMed

    Christin, M S; Ménard, L; Gendron, A D; Ruby, S; Cyr, D; Marcogliese, D J; Rollins-Smith, L; Fournier, M

    2004-03-30

    Over the last 30 years, there have been mass declines in diverse geographic locations among amphibian populations. Multiple causes have been suggested to explain this decline. Among these, environmental pollution is gaining attention. Indeed, some chemicals of environmental concern are known to alter the immune system. Given that amphibians are frequently exposed to agricultural pesticides, it is possible that these pollutants alter their immune system and render them more susceptible to different pathogens. In this study, we exposed two frog species, Xenopus laevis and Rana pipiens, for a short period of time to a mixture of pesticides (atrazine, metribuzine, endosulfan, lindane, aldicarb and dieldrin) representative in terms of composition and concentrations to what it is found in the environment of the southwest region of the province of Quebec. The pesticides were known to be present in surface water of many tributaries of the St. Lawrence River (Quebec, Canada). Our results demonstrate that the mixture of pesticides could alter the cellularity and phagocytic activity of X. laevis and the lymphocyte proliferation of R. pipiens. Taken together, these results indicate that agricultural pesticides can alter some aspects of the immune response in frogs and could contribute to their global decline by rendering them more susceptible to certain infections.

  4. Biochemical response to exposure to six textile dyes in early developmental stages of Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Güngördü, Abbas; Birhanli, Ayse; Ozmen, Murat

    2013-01-01

    The present study was undertaken to determine the toxic effect of a lethal concentration of six different commercially used textile dyes on the 46th stage of Xenopus laevis tadpoles. The tadpoles were exposed to Astrazon Red FBL, Astrazon Blue FGRL, Remazol Red RR, Remazol Turquoise Blue G-A, Cibacron Red FN-3G, and Cibacron Blue FN-R for 168 h in static test conditions, and thus, 168-h median lethal concentrations (LC(50)s) of each dye were determined to be 0.35, 0.13, 112, 7, 359, and 15.8 mg/L, respectively. Also, to evaluate the sublethal effects of each dye, tadpoles were exposed to different concentrations of dyes (with respect to 168-h LC(50)s) for 24 h. The alteration of selected enzyme activities was tested. For this aim, glutathione S-transferase (GST), carboxylesterase, and lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) were assayed. After dye exposure, the GST induction or inhibition and LDH induction indicated some possible mechanisms of oxidative stress and deterioration in aerobic respiration processes induced by the tested dyes. Findings of the study suggest that selected biomarker enzymes are useful in understanding the toxic mechanisms of these dyes in X. laevis tadpoles as early warning indicators. Therefore, these selected biomarkers may evaluate the effect of environmental factors, such as textile dye effluents and other industrial pollutants, on amphibians in biomonitoring studies. PMID:22802115

  5. Significant modulation of the hepatic proteome induced by exposure to low temperature in Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Nagasawa, Kazumichi; Tanizaki, Yuta; Okui, Takehito; Watarai, Atsuko; Ueda, Shinobu; Kato, Takashi

    2013-01-01

    The African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis, is an ectothermic vertebrate that can survive at low environmental temperatures. To gain insight into the molecular events induced by low body temperature, liver proteins were evaluated at the standard laboratory rearing temperature (22°C, control) and a low environmental temperature (5°C, cold exposure). Using nano-flow liquid chromatography coupled with tandem mass spectrometry, we identified 58 proteins that differed in abundance. A subsequent Gene Ontology analysis revealed that the tyrosine and phenylalanine catabolic processes were modulated by cold exposure, which resulted in decreases in hepatic tyrosine and phenylalanine, respectively. Similarly, levels of pyruvate kinase and enolase, which are involved in glycolysis and glycogen synthesis, were also decreased, whereas levels of glycogen phosphorylase, which participates in glycogenolysis, were increased. Therefore, we measured metabolites in the respective pathways and found that levels of hepatic glycogen and glucose were decreased. Although the liver was under oxidative stress because of iron accumulation caused by hepatic erythrocyte destruction, the hepatic NADPH/NADP ratio was not changed. Thus, glycogen is probably utilized mainly for NADPH supply rather than for energy or glucose production. In conclusion, X. laevis responds to low body temperature by modulating its hepatic proteome, which results in altered carbohydrate metabolism.

  6. Gene expression profiles in testis of developing male Xenopus laevis damaged by chronic exposure of atrazine.

    PubMed

    Sai, Linlin; Dong, Zhihua; Li, Ling; Guo, Qiming; Jia, Qiang; Xie, Lin; Bo, Cunxiang; Liu, Yanzhong; Qu, Binpeng; Li, Xiangxin; Shao, Hua; Ng, Jack C; Peng, Cheng

    2016-09-01

    As a widely used herbicide, atrazine (AZ) has been extensively studied for its adverse effects on the reproductive system, especially feminization in male animals. However, the relationship of gene expression changes and associated toxicological endpoints remains unclear. In this study, developing Xenopus laevis tadpoles were exposed to concentration of AZ at 0.1, 1, 10 or 100 μg/L continuously. Compared with froglets in the control group, there were no significant differences in body length, body weight, liver weight and hepatosomatic index (HSI) of males in groups treated with AZ for 90 d. At 100 μg/L AZ treatment caused a significant reduction of gonad weight and gonadosomatic index (GSI) of males (p < 0.01). In addition, AZ at all dose levels caused testicular degeneration, especially in froglets from the groups with 0.1 and 100 μg/L which exhibited U-shaped dose-response trend. We further investigated the gene expression changes associated with the testicular degeneration induced by AZ. We found that the expression of 1165 genes was significantly altered with 616 upregulated and 549 downregulated compared to the expression profile of the control animals. KEGG analysis showed that genes which were significantly affected by AZ are mainly involved in arginine and proline metabolism, cell cycle, riboflavin metabolism, spliceosome, base excision repair and progesterone-mediated oocyte maturation pathway. Our results show that AZ may affect reproductive and immune systems by interference with the related gene expression changes during the male X. laevis development. The findings may help to clarify the feminization mechanisms of AZ in male X. laevis. PMID:27288644

  7. Effects of perfluorooctanesulfonate and perfluorobutanesulfonate on the growth and sexual development of Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Lou, Qin-Qin; Zhang, Yin-Feng; Zhou, Zhen; Shi, Ya-Li; Ge, Ya-Nan; Ren, Dong-Kai; Xu, Hai-Ming; Zhao, Ya-Xian; Wei, Wu-Ji; Qin, Zhan-Fen

    2013-09-01

    Perfluorobutanesulfonate (PFBS), as a substitute for perfluorooctanesulfonate (PFOS), is widespread in the environment and biotic samples as well as PFOS. To investigate effects of PFOS and PFBS on the growth and sexual development of amphibians, we exposed Xenopus laevis tadpoles at a series of concentrations of PFOS and PFBS (0.1; 1; 100; 1,000 μg/l) as well as 17-beta-estradiol (E2, 100 ng/l) and 5 alpha-androstan-17-beta-ol-3-one (DHT, 100 ng/l) from stage 46/47 to 2 months postmetamorphosis. We found that neither PFOS nor PFBS had a significant effect on the survival and growth. However, they caused hepatohistological impairment at higher concentrations (100; 1,000 μg/l). Unlike E2, PFOS at all concentrations did not alter the sex ratio and induce intersex, but caused degeneration of spermatogonia in testes except for the lowest concentration. PFBS had no effect on the sex ratio and gonadal histology. PFOS and PFBS promoted expression of estrogen receptor (ER) and androgen receptor (AR), but not affected aromatase expression in the brain. The increase in expression of ER and AR suggests an increase in the responsiveness to the corresponding sex hormone and potential effects on sexual development. Our results show that PFBS as well as PFOS have adverse effects on hepato-histology and sexual development on X. laevis. Also, PFOS- and PFBS-induced increase in ER and AR expression highlights the need to further study effects of PFOS and PFBS on subsequently gonadal development, sexual dimorphism, and secondary sex characteristics in X. laevis. It is debatable that PFBS is widely used as a substitute of PFOS.

  8. Dehydration triggers differential microRNA expression in Xenopus laevis brain.

    PubMed

    Luu, Bryan E; Storey, Kenneth B

    2015-11-15

    African clawed frogs, Xenopus laevis, although primarily aquatic, have a high tolerance for dehydration, being capable of withstanding the loss of up to 32-35% of total water body water. Recent studies have shown that microRNAs play a role in the response to dehydration by the liver, kidney and ventral skin of X. laevis. MicroRNAs act by modulating the expression of mRNA transcripts, thereby affecting diverse biochemical pathways. In this study, 43 microRNAs were assessed in frog brains comparing control and dehydrated (31.2±0.83% of total body water lost) conditions. MicroRNAs of interest were measured using a modified protocol which employs polyadenylation of microRNAs prior to reverse transcription and qPCR. Twelve microRNAs that showed a significant decrease in expression (to 41-77% of control levels) in brains from dehydrated frogs (xla-miR-15a, -150, -181a, -191, -211, -218, -219b, -30c, -30e, -31, -34a, and -34b) were identified. Genomic analysis showed that the sequences of these dehydration-responsive microRNAs were highly conserved as compared with the comparable microRNAs of mice (91-100%). Suppression of these microRNAs implies that translation of the mRNA transcripts under their control could be enhanced in response to dehydration. Bioinformatic analysis using the DIANA miRPath program (v.2.0) predicted the top two KEGG pathways that these microRNAs collectively regulate: 1. Axon guidance, and 2. Long-term potentiation. Previous studies indicated that suppression of these microRNAs promotes neuroprotective pathways by increasing the expression of brain-derived neurotrophic factor and activating anti-apoptotic pathways. This suggests that similar actions may be triggered in X. laevis brains as a protective response to dehydration. PMID:26169019

  9. Photoconversion for tracking the dynamics of cell movement in Xenopus laevis embryos.

    PubMed

    Chernet, Brook T; Adams, Dany S; Levin, Michael

    2012-06-01

    Xenopus laevis is an ideal model system for investigating dynamic morphogenetic processes during embryogenesis, regeneration, and homeostasis. Our understanding of these events has been greatly facilitated by lineage labeling, that is, marking a cell or a group of cells and all their descendants using vital dyes, fluorescent molecules, or transplantation techniques. Unfortunately, these strategies are limited in their spatiotemporal resolution: They do not allow long-term dynamic in vivo imaging, are generally invasive, and labeling is restricted to cells on the surface. Genetically encoded fluorescent proteins (FPs), on the other hand, provide excellent alternative methods to traditional lineage labeling, enabling labeling with high spatiotemporal resolution and tracking of cellular and subcellular structures to study patterning events. Over the past decade, FPs have evolved to allow fine control of their spectral properties (in a defined region of interest) for greater labeling specificity. One example is EosFP, which is a protein cloned from the scleractinian coral Lobophyllia hemprichii that can be photoconverted from green to red fluorescence state with near-ultraviolet (UV) light irradiation. Here, we describe EosFP-photoconversion of Xenopus embryos to track cells during developmental and regenerative processes using a metal-halide- or xenon-arc-based fluorescent microscope system, which provides a simpler, less expensive alternative to photoconversion using laser microscopy. PMID:22661444

  10. Functional joint regeneration is achieved using reintegration mechanism in Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Tsutsumi, Rio; Yamada, Shigehito; Agata, Kiyokazu

    2016-02-01

    A functional joint requires integration of multiple tissues: the apposing skeletal elements should form an interlocking structure, and muscles should insert into skeletal tissues via tendons across the joint. Whereas newts can regenerate functional joints after amputation, Xenopus laevis regenerates a cartilaginous rod without joints, a "spike." Previously we reported that the reintegration mechanism between the remaining and regenerated tissues has a significant effect on regenerating joint morphogenesis during elbow joint regeneration in newt. Based on this insight into the importance of reintegration, we amputated frogs' limbs at the elbow joint and found that frogs could regenerate a functional elbow joint between the remaining tissues and regenerated spike. During regeneration, the regenerating cartilage was partially connected to the remaining articular cartilage to reform the interlocking structure of the elbow joint at the proximal end of the spike. Furthermore, the muscles of the remaining part inserted into the regenerated spike cartilage via tendons. This study might open up an avenue for analyzing molecular and cellular mechanisms of joint regeneration using Xenopus.

  11. A simple behavioral assay for testing visual function in Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Viczian, Andrea S; Zuber, Michael E

    2014-01-01

    Measurement of the visual function in the tadpoles of the frog, Xenopus laevis, allows screening for blindness in live animals. The optokinetic response is a vision-based, reflexive behavior that has been observed in all vertebrates tested. Tadpole eyes are small so the tail flip response was used as alternative measure, which requires a trained technician to record the subtle response. We developed an alternative behavior assay based on the fact that tadpoles prefer to swim on the white side of a tank when placed in a tank with both black and white sides. The assay presented here is an inexpensive, simple alternative that creates a response that is easily measured. The setup consists of a tripod, webcam and nested testing tanks, readily available in most Xenopus laboratories. This article includes a movie showing the behavior of tadpoles, before and after severing the optic nerve. In order to test the function of one eye, we also include representative results of a tadpole in which each eye underwent retinal axotomy on consecutive days. Future studies could develop an automated version of this assay for testing the vision of many tadpoles at once. PMID:24962702

  12. In vitro maintenance of spermatogenesis in Xenopus laevis testis explants cultured in serum-free media

    SciTech Connect

    Risley, M.S.; Miller, A.; Bumcrot, D.A.

    1987-05-01

    Spermatogenesis has been maintained for extended periods in Xenopus laevis testis explants cultured in serum-free media supplemented with bovine serum albumin, insulin, transferrin, follicle-stimulating hormone, dihydrotestosterone, testosterone, retinol, ascorbate, and tocopherol. The organization of the testis fragments was maintained for 28 days, and all stages of development were present throughout the culture period. /sup 3/H-Thymidine-labeled secondary (Type B) spermatogonia developed in 28 days into spermatids at the acrosomal vesicle stage whereas labeled zygotene spermatocytes became mature spermatids in 28 days. Spermatogonial proliferation also continued in vitro for 28 days. Germ cell differentiation was not dependent upon exogenous testosterone, ascorbate, or tocopherol since /sup 3/H-labeled spermatogonia became mature spermatids in testes cultured 35 days in media lacking these supplements. Autoradiography demonstrated that 55% of the luminal sperm present in explants cultured 10 days had differentiated in vitro. Sperm from testes cultured 10-35 days were similar to sperm from freshly dissected testes with regard to motility and fecundity, and eggs fertilized with sperm from explant cultures developed normally into swimming tadpoles. The results demonstrate the feasibility of maintaining vertebrate spermatogenesis in culture and suggest that in vitro analysis of Xenopus spermatogenesis using defined media may provide important insights into the evolution of regulatory mechanisms in spermatogenesis.

  13. Functional joint regeneration is achieved using reintegration mechanism in Xenopus laevis

    PubMed Central

    Yamada, Shigehito

    2016-01-01

    Abstract A functional joint requires integration of multiple tissues: the apposing skeletal elements should form an interlocking structure, and muscles should insert into skeletal tissues via tendons across the joint. Whereas newts can regenerate functional joints after amputation, Xenopus laevis regenerates a cartilaginous rod without joints, a “spike.” Previously we reported that the reintegration mechanism between the remaining and regenerated tissues has a significant effect on regenerating joint morphogenesis during elbow joint regeneration in newt. Based on this insight into the importance of reintegration, we amputated frogs’ limbs at the elbow joint and found that frogs could regenerate a functional elbow joint between the remaining tissues and regenerated spike. During regeneration, the regenerating cartilage was partially connected to the remaining articular cartilage to reform the interlocking structure of the elbow joint at the proximal end of the spike. Furthermore, the muscles of the remaining part inserted into the regenerated spike cartilage via tendons. This study might open up an avenue for analyzing molecular and cellular mechanisms of joint regeneration using Xenopus. PMID:27499877

  14. Adrenocorticotropin receptors: Functional expression from rat adrenal mRNA in Xenopus laevis oocytes

    SciTech Connect

    Mertz, L.M.; Catt, K.J. )

    1991-10-01

    The adrenocorticotropin (ACTH) receptor, which binds corticotropin and stimulates adenylate cyclase and steroidogenesis in adrenocortical cells, was expressed in Xenopus laevis oocytes microinjected with rat adrenal poly(A){sup +} RNA. Expression of the ACTH receptor in individual stage 5 and 6 oocytes was monitored by radioimmunoassay of ligand-stimulated cAMP production. Injection of 5-40 ng of adrenal mRNA caused dose-dependent increases in ACTH-responsive cAMP production. Size fractionation of rat adrenal poly(A){sup +}RNA by sucrose density-gradient centrifugation revealed that mRNA encoding the ACTH receptor was present in the 1.1-to 2.0-kilobase fraction. These data indicate that ACTH receptors can be expressed from adrenal mRNA in Xenopus oocytes and are fully functional in terms of ligand specificity and signal generation. The extracellular cAMP response to ACTH is a sensitive and convenient index of receptor expression. This system should permit more complete characterization and expression cloning of the ACTH receptor.

  15. Effect of chronic copper and pentachlorophenol exposure to early life stages of Xenopus laevis

    SciTech Connect

    Fort, D.J.; Stover, E.L.

    1995-12-31

    An evaluation of the effects of low-level copper and pentachlorophenol exposure on various early life stages of the South African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis was performed using stage-specific and long-term continuous exposures. Stage-specific exposure experiments were conducted such that separate subsets of embryos and larvae from the same clutch were exposed to two toxicants, copper and pentachlorophenol, from 0 d to 4 d (standard Frog Embryo Teratagenesis Assay Xenopus [FETAX]), 4 d to 8 d, 8 d to 12 d, and 12 d to 16 d. Results from two separate concentration-response experiments indicated that sensitivity to either toxicant increased in each successive time period. Continuous exposure studies conducted for 60 to 75 days indicated that copper, but not pentachlorophenol induced reduction deficiency malformations of the hind limb at concentrations as low as 0.05 mg/L. Pentachlorophenol concentrations as low as 0.5/{micro}g/L inhibited tail resorption. However, copper did not adversely affect the process of tail resorption. These results indicated that studies evaluating longer-term developmental processes are important in ecological hazard evaluation.

  16. Functional joint regeneration is achieved using reintegration mechanism in Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Tsutsumi, Rio; Yamada, Shigehito; Agata, Kiyokazu

    2016-02-01

    A functional joint requires integration of multiple tissues: the apposing skeletal elements should form an interlocking structure, and muscles should insert into skeletal tissues via tendons across the joint. Whereas newts can regenerate functional joints after amputation, Xenopus laevis regenerates a cartilaginous rod without joints, a "spike." Previously we reported that the reintegration mechanism between the remaining and regenerated tissues has a significant effect on regenerating joint morphogenesis during elbow joint regeneration in newt. Based on this insight into the importance of reintegration, we amputated frogs' limbs at the elbow joint and found that frogs could regenerate a functional elbow joint between the remaining tissues and regenerated spike. During regeneration, the regenerating cartilage was partially connected to the remaining articular cartilage to reform the interlocking structure of the elbow joint at the proximal end of the spike. Furthermore, the muscles of the remaining part inserted into the regenerated spike cartilage via tendons. This study might open up an avenue for analyzing molecular and cellular mechanisms of joint regeneration using Xenopus. PMID:27499877

  17. Expression of a novel serine/threonine kinase gene, Ulk4, in neural progenitors during Xenopus laevis forebrain development.

    PubMed

    Domínguez, L; Schlosser, G; Shen, S

    2015-04-01

    We have analyzed the expression pattern of a novel serine/threonine kinase gene Ulk4 during forebrain development in Xenopus laevis. To this aim, we firstly cloned a Ulk4 cDNA fragment from X.laevis and generated a RNA probe that was used for its detection by in situ hybridization. Throughout development xUlk4 expression was detected along the ventricular (vz) and subventricular zones (svz) of all forebrain regions, with the exception of the vz of the striatum. In the adult, xUlk4 was also mainly located in the vz, with some xUlk4 expressing cells reaching the svz/mantle zone (mz). This xUlk4 expression was especially remarkable in forebrain regions involving the homeostatic control of the brain such as the preoptic region, the hypothalamic territory and some neurosecretory circumventricular organs (CVOs). We further combined in situ hybridization for xUlk4 with immunohistochemistry for the neural progenitor cell marker SOX3, the radial glial marker brain lipid-binding protein (BLBP), neuronal markers MAP2 and doublecortin (DCX) and the specific neuronal marker tyrosine hydroxylase (TH). xUlk4 was co-expressed with the neural stem/progenitor cell marker SOX3 in the vz of all the forebrain regions throughout development and in the adult, and this co-expression was also especially evident in the svz of the hypothalamic region. xUlk4 was also expressed in the radial glia along the whole brain. We have also found minor expression of xUlk4 in some DCX- or MAP2-positive cells but not in TH-positive neurons. These findings suggest that Ulk4 may play roles in neural stem/progenitor cells during neurogenesis both in development and in the adulthood, in migrating cells as well as in cells committed to neuronal fate in Xenopus. Moreover, the results obtained in this study argue for an involvement of Ulk4 in the control of the neuroendocrine homeostatic functions in the brain. PMID:25637795

  18. Prepatterning and patterning of the thalamus along embryonic development of Xenopus laevis

    PubMed Central

    Bandín, Sandra; Morona, Ruth; González, Agustín

    2015-01-01

    Previous developmental studies of the thalamus (alar part of the diencephalic prosomere p2) have defined the molecular basis for the acquisition of the thalamic competence (preparttening), the subsequent formation of the secondary organizer in the zona limitans intrathalamica, and the early specification of two anteroposterior domains (rostral and caudal progenitor domains) in response to inducing activities and that are shared in birds and mammals. In the present study we have analyzed the embryonic development of the thalamus in the anuran Xenopus laevis to determine conserved or specific features in the amphibian diencephalon. From early embryonic stages to the beginning of the larval period, the expression patterns of 22 markers were analyzed by means of combined In situ hybridization (ISH) and immunohistochemical techniques. The early genoarchitecture observed in the diencephalon allowed us to discern the boundaries of the thalamus with the prethalamus, pretectum, and epithalamus. Common molecular features were observed in the thalamic prepatterning among vertebrates in which Wnt3a, Fez, Pax6 and Xiro1 expression were of particular importance in Xenopus. The formation of the zona limitans intrathalamica was observed, as in other vertebrates, by the progressive expression of Shh. The largely conserved expressions of Nkx2.2 in the rostral thalamic domain vs. Gbx2 and Ngn2 (among others) in the caudal domain strongly suggest the role of Shh as morphogen in the amphibian thalamus. All these data showed that the molecular characteristics observed during preparttening and patterning in the thalamus of the anuran Xenopus (anamniote) share many features with those described during thalamic development in amniotes (common patterns in tetrapods) but also with zebrafish, strengthening the idea of a basic organization of this diencephalic region across vertebrates. PMID:26321920

  19. Inhibition of gonadotropin-induced oviposition and ovarian steroidogenesis in the African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis) by the pesticide methoxychlor.

    PubMed

    Pickford, Daniel B; Morris, Ian D

    2003-02-12

    Concern over the role of environmental toxicants in amphibian population declines has highlighted the need to develop more comprehensive ecotoxicological test methods for this at-risk group. With continued interest in environmental endocrine disrupters (EDs), and the paucity of data pertaining to endocrine disrupting effects in amphibia, such tests should incorporate reproductive and endocrine endpoints. We investigated the effects of in vivo exposure to the pesticide methoxychlor (MXC) on reproductive and endocrine function in adult female African clawed frogs, (Xenopus laevis). Frogs were exposed to MXC (0.5-500 microg/l) in tank water throughout a cycle of oogenesis stimulated by exogenous gonadotropins. Gonadotropin-induced oviposition was delayed, and reduced numbers of unfertilizable eggs of increased size were oviposited by frogs exposed to 500 microg/l MXC. Reduced egg output was mirrored by increased gonado-somatic index in MXC-treated frogs. Post-oviposition, plasma sex steroid profiles were altered in MXC-exposed frogs as estradiol/progesterone and estradiol/testosterone ratios were elevated. Ex vivo synthesis of progesterone by ovarian explants was significantly reduced for frogs exposed to MXC> or = 0.5 microg/l. Additionally, plasma vitellogenin concentrations were significantly depressed in frogs exposed to 500 microg/l MXC. These data indicate that reproductive and endocrine dysfunction can occur in adult amphibia exposed to high concentrations of an environmental toxin with endocrine disrupting activity. Such effects may be indicative of the potential for adverse effects on amphibian wildlife exposed to environmental EDs.

  20. Using Xenopus laevis retinal and spinal neurons to study mechanisms of axon guidance in vivo and in vitro.

    PubMed

    Erdogan, Burcu; Ebbert, Patrick T; Lowery, Laura Anne

    2016-03-01

    The intricate and precise establishment of neuronal connections in the developing nervous system relies on accurate navigation of growing axons. Since Ramón y Cajal's discovery of the growth cone, the phenomenon of axon guidance has been revealed as a coordinated operation of guidance molecules, receptors, secondary messengers, and responses driven by the dynamic cytoskeleton within the growth cone. With the advent of new and accelerating techniques, Xenopus laevis emerged as a robust model to investigate neuronal circuit formation during development. We present here the advantages of the Xenopus nervous system to our growing understanding of axon guidance.

  1. RMND5 from Xenopus laevis is an E3 ubiquitin-ligase and functions in early embryonic forebrain development.

    PubMed

    Pfirrmann, Thorsten; Villavicencio-Lorini, Pablo; Subudhi, Abinash K; Menssen, Ruth; Wolf, Dieter H; Hollemann, Thomas

    2015-01-01

    In Saccharomyces cerevisiae the Gid-complex functions as an ubiquitin-ligase complex that regulates the metabolic switch between glycolysis and gluconeogenesis. In higher organisms six conserved Gid proteins form the CTLH protein-complex with unknown function. Here we show that Rmnd5, the Gid2 orthologue from Xenopus laevis, is an ubiquitin-ligase embedded in a high molecular weight complex. Expression of rmnd5 is strongest in neuronal ectoderm, prospective brain, eyes and ciliated cells of the skin and its suppression results in malformations of the fore- and midbrain. We therefore suggest that Xenopus laevis Rmnd5, as a subunit of the CTLH complex, is a ubiquitin-ligase targeting an unknown factor for polyubiquitination and subsequent proteasomal degradation for proper fore- and midbrain development. PMID:25793641

  2. RMND5 from Xenopus laevis Is an E3 Ubiquitin-Ligase and Functions in Early Embryonic Forebrain Development

    PubMed Central

    Pfirrmann, Thorsten; Villavicencio-Lorini, Pablo; Subudhi, Abinash K.; Menssen, Ruth; Wolf, Dieter H.; Hollemann, Thomas

    2015-01-01

    In Saccharomyces cerevisiae the Gid-complex functions as an ubiquitin-ligase complex that regulates the metabolic switch between glycolysis and gluconeogenesis. In higher organisms six conserved Gid proteins form the CTLH protein-complex with unknown function. Here we show that Rmnd5, the Gid2 orthologue from Xenopus laevis, is an ubiquitin-ligase embedded in a high molecular weight complex. Expression of rmnd5 is strongest in neuronal ectoderm, prospective brain, eyes and ciliated cells of the skin and its suppression results in malformations of the fore- and midbrain. We therefore suggest that Xenopus laevis Rmnd5, as a subunit of the CTLH complex, is a ubiquitin-ligase targeting an unknown factor for polyubiquitination and subsequent proteasomal degradation for proper fore- and midbrain development. PMID:25793641

  3. The amphibians Xenopus laevis and Silurana tropicalis possess a family of activating KIR-related Immunoglobulin-like receptors

    PubMed Central

    Guselnikov, Sergey V; Reshetnikova, Evdokiya S; Najakshin, Alexander M; Mechetina, Ludmila V; Robert, Jacques; Taranin, Alexander V

    2009-01-01

    In this study, we searched the amphibian species Xenopus laevis and Silurana (Xenopus) tropicalis for the presence of genes homologous to mammalian KIRs and avian CHIRs (KRIR family). By experimental and computational procedures, we identified four related ILR (Ig-like receptors) genes in S. tropicalis and three in X. laevis. ILRs encode type I transmembrane receptors with 3–4 Ig-like extracellular domains. All predicted ILR proteins appear to be activating receptors. ILRs have a broad expression pattern, the gene transcripts were found in both lymphoid and non-lymphoid tissues. Phylogenetic analysis shows that the amphibian KRIR family receptors evolved independently from their mammalian and avian counterparts. The only conserved structural element of tetrapod KRIRs is the NxxR motif-containing transmembrane domain that facilitates association with FcR subunit. Our findings suggest that if KRIRs of various vertebrates have any common function at all, such a function is activating rather than inhibitory. PMID:19896971

  4. A preliminary investigation into the effect of thyroid hormones on the metamorphic changes in Meckel's cartilage in Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed Central

    Thomson, D A

    1989-01-01

    The effects of short-term dosage with thyroid powder on the metamorphic changes in Meckel's cartilage in Xenopus laevis are described. The Lag phase of development appears to be by-passed, and the usual sequential arrangement of the Division and Synthesis phases is disrupted, the processes of normal metamorphic changes being considerably accelerated. Images Fig. 1 Fig. 2 Fig. 3 Fig. 4 PMID:2808112

  5. Serum clinical biochemical and hematologic reference ranges of laboratory-reared and wild-caught Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Wilson, Sabrina; Felt, Stephen; Torreilles, Stéphanie; Howard, Antwain; Behan, Colleen; Moorhead, Roberta; Green, Sherril

    2011-09-01

    The South African clawed frogs Xenopus laevis and X. tropicalis are fully aquatic amphibians and well-established animal models. Because genetically engineered laboratory Xenopus are now being produced, the establishment of normal reference ranges for serum biochemical and hematologic parameters is essential for phenotyping and as a diagnostic aide. We determined normal reference ranges for hematologic values from 3 populations of X. laevis: wild-caught frogs (n = 43) and frogs from 2 commercial sources (A, n = 166; B, n = 109). For serum biochemistry, we determined normal reference ranges for frogs from source A and wild-caught frogs divided by sex and season. Significant differences across populations were found in WBC and RBC counts, hemoglobin concentration, hematocrit, mean corpuscular hemoglobin concentration, and mean corpuscular volume. Among serum biochemical analytes, significant differences were found for albumin:globulin ratio, anion gap, and concentrations of albumin, globulin, total protein, lipase, alanine transaminase, γ-glutamyl transpeptidase; creatine phosphokinase; indirect, direct, and total bilirubin; cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein lipase, carbon dioxide, glucose, lactacte dehydrogenase, calcium, chloride, and sodium. We hypothesize that these differences can be attributed to differences in water quality, habitat, ambient temperature, diet, sex, recent transport or shipment, and genetic background. However, testing that hypothesis is beyond the scope of the current study. In addition, clinical chemistry and hematologic reference range values Xenopus laevis are quite distinct from those for other species and are most consistent with the only values published for another fully aquatic amphibian, the Eastern hellbender (Cryptobranchus alleganiensis). PMID:22330708

  6. Serum Clinical Biochemical and Hematologic Reference Ranges of Laboratory-Reared and Wild-Caught Xenopus laevis

    PubMed Central

    Wilson, Sabrina; Felt, Stephen; Torreilles, Stéphanie; Howard, Antwain; Behan, Colleen; Moorhead, Roberta; Green, Sherril

    2011-01-01

    The South African clawed frogs Xenopus laevis and X. tropicalis are fully aquatic amphibians and well-established animal models. Because genetically engineered laboratory Xenopus are now being produced, the establishment of normal reference ranges for serum biochemical and hematologic parameters is essential for phenotyping and as a diagnostic aide. We determined normal reference ranges for hematologic values from 3 populations of X. laevis: wild-caught frogs (n = 43) and frogs from 2 commercial sources (A, n = 166; B, n = 109). For serum biochemistry, we determined normal reference ranges for frogs from source A and wild-caught frogs divided by sex and season. Significant differences across populations were found in WBC and RBC counts, hemoglobin concentration, hematocrit, mean corpuscular hemoglobin concentration, and mean corpuscular volume. Among serum biochemical analytes, significant differences were found for albumin:globulin ratio, anion gap, and concentrations of albumin, globulin, total protein, lipase, alanine transaminase, γ-glutamyl transpeptidase; creatine phosphokinase; indirect, direct, and total bilirubin; cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein lipase, carbon dioxide, glucose, lactacte dehydrogenase, calcium, chloride, and sodium. We hypothesize that these differences can be attributed to differences in water quality, habitat, ambient temperature, diet, sex, recent transport or shipment, and genetic background. However, testing that hypothesis is beyond the scope of the current study. In addition, clinical chemistry and hematologic reference range values Xenopus laevis are quite distinct from those for other species and are most consistent with the only values published for another fully aquatic amphibian, the Eastern hellbender (Cryptobranchus alleganiensis). PMID:22330708

  7. Effect of antisense oligonucleotides on the expression of hepatocellular bile acid and organic anion uptake systems in Xenopus laevis oocytes.

    PubMed Central

    Hagenbuch, B; Scharschmidt, B F; Meier, P J

    1996-01-01

    A Na(+)-dependent bile acid (Na+/taurocholate co-transporting polypeptide; Ntcp) and a Na(+)-independent bromosulphophthalein (BSP)/bile acid uptake system (organic-anion-transporting polypeptide; oatp) have been cloned from rat liver by using functional expression cloning in Xenopus laevis oocytes. To evaluate the extent to which these cloned transporters could account for overall hepatic bile acid and BSP uptake, we used antisense oligonucleotides to inhibit the expression of Ntcp and oatp in Xenopus laevis oocytes injected with total rat liver mRNA. An Ntcp-specific antisense oligonucleotide co-injected with total rat liver mRNA blocked the expression of Na(+)-dependent taurocholate uptake by approx. 95%. In contrast, an oatp-specific antisense oligonucleotide when co-injected with total rat liver mRNA had no effect on the expression of Na(+)-dependent taurocholate uptake, but it blocked Na(+)-independent uptake of taurocholate by approx. 80% and of BSP by 50%. Assuming similar expression of hepatocellular bile acid and organic anion transporters in Xenopus laevis oocytes, these results indicate that Ntcp and oatp respectively represent the major, if not the only, Na(+)-dependent and Na(+)-independent taurocholate uptake systems in rat liver. By contrast, the cloned oatp accounts for only half of BSP transport, suggesting that there must be additional, non-bile acid transporting organic anion uptake systems in rat liver. PMID:8670169

  8. Effect of water hardness on oocyte quality and embryo development in the African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis).

    PubMed

    Godfrey, Earl W; Sanders, George E

    2004-04-01

    Husbandry and health of the African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis, greatly influences the quality of oocytes produced. One factor affecting oocyte quality is the water conditions in which females are maintained. Dechlorination and adequate salt concentration are known to affect oocytes, but water hardness has not been considered an important factor in Xenopus husbandry by the research community. We found that, when females were kept in soft water or water with marine salts alone, even when it was cooled to 17 to 18 degrees C, the quality of oocytes decreased; only 20 to 25% of resulting embryos developed to tailbud stages. Survival and normal development of embryos increased significantly within one month of addition to the laboratory housing water of salts that mimic conditions in African Rift Valley lakes. These salts greatly increased water hardness; development of embryos to tailbud stages remained high (50 to 70% on average) for more than a year after their addition to the water housing females. Water from South African ponds where X. laevis are collected, and from wells used by the major suppliers of X. laevis, also was moderately to very hard. Our results suggest that X. laevis is naturally adapted to hard water, and indicate that increasing general hardness during laboratory housing is more important for oocyte quality and embryo development than is increasing carbonate hardness (alkalinity) in the water used to house females.

  9. Atrazine and malathion shorten the maturation process of Xenopus laevis oocytes and have an adverse effect on early embryo development.

    PubMed

    Ji, Qichao; Lee, Jessica; Lin, Yu-Huey; Jing, Guihua; Tsai, L Jillianne; Chen, Andrew; Hetrick, Lindsay; Jocoy, Dylan; Liu, Junjun

    2016-04-01

    The use of pesticides has a negative impact on the environment. Amphibians have long been regarded as indicator species to pollutants due to their permeable skin and sensitivity to the environment. Studies have shown that population declines of some amphibians are directly linked with exposure to agricultural contaminants. In the past, much of the studies have focused on the toxic effect of contaminants on larvae (tadpoles), juvenile and adult frogs. However, due to the nature of their life cycle, amphibian eggs and early embryos are especially susceptible to the contaminants, and any alteration during the early reproductive stages may have a profound effect on the health and population of amphibians. In this study, we analyzed the effect of atrazine and malathion, two commonly used pesticides, on Xenopus laevis oocyte maturation and early embryogenesis. We found that both atrazine and malathion shortened the frog oocyte maturation process and resulted in reduced Emi2 levels at cytostatic factor-mediated metaphase arrest, and a high level of Emi2 is critically important for oocyte maturation. Furthermore, frog embryos fertilized under the influence of atrazine and/or malathion displayed a higher rate of abnormal division that eventually led to embryo death during early embryogenesis. PMID:26686575

  10. Atrazine and malathion shorten the maturation process of Xenopus laevis oocytes and have an adverse effect on early embryo development.

    PubMed

    Ji, Qichao; Lee, Jessica; Lin, Yu-Huey; Jing, Guihua; Tsai, L Jillianne; Chen, Andrew; Hetrick, Lindsay; Jocoy, Dylan; Liu, Junjun

    2016-04-01

    The use of pesticides has a negative impact on the environment. Amphibians have long been regarded as indicator species to pollutants due to their permeable skin and sensitivity to the environment. Studies have shown that population declines of some amphibians are directly linked with exposure to agricultural contaminants. In the past, much of the studies have focused on the toxic effect of contaminants on larvae (tadpoles), juvenile and adult frogs. However, due to the nature of their life cycle, amphibian eggs and early embryos are especially susceptible to the contaminants, and any alteration during the early reproductive stages may have a profound effect on the health and population of amphibians. In this study, we analyzed the effect of atrazine and malathion, two commonly used pesticides, on Xenopus laevis oocyte maturation and early embryogenesis. We found that both atrazine and malathion shortened the frog oocyte maturation process and resulted in reduced Emi2 levels at cytostatic factor-mediated metaphase arrest, and a high level of Emi2 is critically important for oocyte maturation. Furthermore, frog embryos fertilized under the influence of atrazine and/or malathion displayed a higher rate of abnormal division that eventually led to embryo death during early embryogenesis.

  11. The morphology and attachment of Protopolystoma xenopodis (Monogenea: Polystomatidae) infecting the African clawed frog Xenopus laevis

    PubMed Central

    Theunissen, Maxine; Tiedt, Louwrens; Du Preez, Louis H.

    2014-01-01

    The African clawed frog Xenopus laevis (Anura: Pipidae) is host to more than 25 parasite genera encompassing most of the parasitic invertebrate groups. Protopolystoma xenopodis Price, 1943 (Monogenea: Polystomatidae) is one of two monogeneans infecting X. laevis. This study focussed on the external morphology of different developmental stages using scanning electron microscopy, histology and light microscopy. Eggs are released continuously and are washed out when the frog urinates. After successful development, an active swimming oncomiracidium leaves the egg capsule and locates a potential post-metamorphic clawed frog. The oncomiracidium migrates to the kidney where it attaches and starts to feed on blood. The parasite then migrates to the urinary bladder where it reaches maturity. Eggs are fusiform, about 300 μm long, with a smooth surface and are operculated. Oncomiracidia are elongated and cylindrical in shape, with an oval posterior cup-shaped haptor that bears a total of 20 sclerites; 16 marginal hooklets used for attachment to the kidney of the host and two pairs of hamulus primordia. Cilia from the 64 ciliated cells enable the oncomiracidium to swim for up to 24 h when the cilia subsequently curl up, become non-functional and are shed from the body. The tegument between the ciliated cells bears a series of sensory papillae. The body of the mature parasite is elongated and pyriform and possesses an opisthaptor armed with three pairs of suckers and two pairs of falciform hooks to ensure a firm grip on the flexible internal surface of the urinary bladder. PMID:24823278

  12. Exposure to butachlor causes thyroid endocrine disruption and promotion of metamorphosis in Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Li, Shuying; Li, Meng; Wang, Qiangwei; Gui, Wenjun; Zhu, Guonian

    2016-06-01

    Butachlor is extensively applied in rice paddy ecosystem in china, and has been widespread contaminant in the aquatic environment. Here, Xenopus laevis was used for the evaluation of teratogenesis developmental toxicity, and disruption of thyroid system when exposure to different concentrations of butachlor by window phase exposure. Acute toxicity investigation shown that 96 h-LC50 value of butachlor was 1.424 mg L(-1) and 0.962 mg L(-1) for tadpoles (starting from stages 46/47) and embryos (starting from stages 8/9), respectively. Exposure to butachlor caused malformation, including abnormal eye, pericardial edema, enlarged proctodaeum and bent tail. Window phase exposure test indicated that butachlor significantly promote the contents of whole-body thyroid hormones (THs, T3 and T4) at higher levels, indicating thyroid endocrine disruption. At 7 days, exposure to butachlor up-regulated the mRNA expression of genes involved in THs synthesis and metabolism (tshα, tg, tpo and dio1) and THs receptors (trα and trβ). At 14 days, up-regulation of the mRNA expression of genes related to THs synthesis and metabolism (tshα, tshβ, tg, tpo, dio1, dio2 and ttr) and THs receptors (trβ) were also observed after the exposure to butachlor. At 21 days, butachlor up-regulated the mRNA expression of tshα, tg, tpo genes and down-regulated the mRNA expression of tshβ, tg, dio1, ttr and trα genes. These results showed that butachlor could change the mRNA expression of genes involved in the HPT axis and increase whole-body thyroid hormones levels of X. laevis tadpoles in a dose- and time-dependent manner, causing thyroid endocrine disruption and developmental toxicity.

  13. Effects of Transgenic cry1Ca Rice on the Development of Xenopus laevis

    PubMed Central

    Zhu, Haojun; Li, Yunhe; Ding, Jiatong; Peng, Yufa

    2015-01-01

    In fields of genetically modified, insect-resistant rice expressing Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) proteins, frogs are exposed to Bt Cry proteins by consuming both target and non-target insects, and through their highly permeable skin. In the present study, we assessed the potential risk posed by transgenic cry1Ca rice (T1C-19) on the development of a frog species by adding purified Cry1Ca protein or T1C-19 rice straw into the rearing water of Xenopus laevis tadpoles, and by feeding X. laevis froglets diets containing rice grains of T1C-19 or its non-transformed counterpart MH63. Our results showed that there were no significant differences among groups receiving 100 μg L–1 or 10 μg L–1 Cry1Ca and the blank control in terms of time to completed metamorphosis, survival rate, body weight, body length, organ weight and liver enzyme activity after being exposed to the Cry1Ca (P > 0.05). Although some detection indices in the rice straw groups were significantly different from those of the blank control group (P < 0.05), there was no significant difference between the T1C-19 and MH63 rice straw groups. Moreover, there were no significant differences in the mortality rate, body weight, daily weight gain, liver and fat body weight of the froglets between the T1C-19 and MH63 dietary groups after 90 days, and there were no abnormal pathological changes in the stomach, intestines, livers, spleens and gonads. Thus, we conclude that the planting of transgenic cry1Ca rice will not adversely affect frog development. PMID:26695426

  14. Heterogeneous nuclear ribonucleoprotein complexes from Xenopus laevis oocytes and somatic cells.

    PubMed

    Marcu, A; Bassit, B; Perez, R; Piñol-Roma, S

    2001-09-01

    HnRNP proteins have been implicated in most stages of cellular mRNA metabolism, including processing, nucleocytoplasmic transport, stability, and localization. Several hnRNP proteins are also known to participate in key early developmental decisions. In order to facilitate functional studies of these pre-mRNA- and mRNA-binding proteins in a vertebrate organism amenable to developmental studies and experimental manipulation, we identified and purified the major hnRNP proteins and isolated the hnRNP complex from Xenopus laevis oocytes and somatic cells. Using affinity chromatography and immunological methods, we isolated a family of >15 abundant single-stranded nucleic acid-binding proteins, which range in apparent molecular weight from approximately 20 kDa to >150 kDa, and with isoelectric points from <5 to >8. Monoclonal antibodies revealed that a subset of these proteins are major hnRNP proteins in both oocytes and somatic cells in culture, and include proteins related to human hnRNP A2/B1/B2 and hnRNP K. UV crosslinking in living cells demonstrated that these proteins bind poly(A)+ RNA in vivo. Immunopurification using a monoclonal antibodyto X. aevishnRNPA2 resulted in the isolation of RNP complexes that contain a specific subset of single-stranded nucleic acid-binding proteins. The protein composition of complexes isolated from somatic cells and from oocyte germinal vesicles was similar, suggesting that the overall properties and functions of hnRNP proteins in these two cell types are comparable. These findings, together with the novel probes generated here, will also facilitate studies of the function of vertebrate RNA-binding proteins using the well characterized X. laevis oocyte and early embryo as experimental systems. PMID:11669376

  15. A role for biliverdin IXalpha in dorsal axis development of Xenopus laevis embryos.

    PubMed

    Falchuk, Kenneth H; Contin, Jennifer M; Dziedzic, T Scott; Feng, Zhongling; French, Thayer C; Heffron, Gregory J; Montorzi, Marcelo

    2002-01-01

    The determinants of Xenopus laevis embryos that act before their first cell division are mandatory for the formation of mRNas required to establish the dorsal axis. Although their chemical identities are unknown, a number of their properties have long been recognized. One of the determinants is present in the cytoplasm and is sensitive to UV light. Thus, exposing stage 1 embryos to either standard 254-nm or, as shown here, to 366-nm UV light during the 0.3-0.4 time fraction of their first cycle inactivates the cytoplasmic determinant. As a consequence, both types of irradiated embryos fail to express dorsal markers, e.g., goosecoid and chordin, without affecting formation of ventral markers, e.g., Vent-1. The developmental outcome is dorsal axis-deficient morphology. We report here that biliverdin IXalpha, a normal constituent of cytoplasmic yolk platelets, is photo-transformed by irradiation with either 254- or 366-nm UV light and that the transformation triggers the dorsal axis deficiency. When the 254- or 366-nm UV-irradiated embryos, fated to dorsal axis deficiency, are incubated solely with microM amounts of biliverdin, they recover and form the axis. In contrast, incubation with either in vitro photo-transformed biliverdin or biliverdin IXalpha dimethyl ester does not induce recovery. The results define an approach to produce dorsal axis-deficient embryos by photo-transforming its biliverdin by irradiation with 366-nm UV light and identify an unsuspected role for biliverdin IXalpha in X. laevis embryogenesis. PMID:11782548

  16. Effects of 17 beta-estradiol exposure on Xenopus laevis gonadal histopathology.

    PubMed

    Wolf, Jeffrey C; Lutz, Ilka; Kloas, Werner; Springer, Timothy A; Holden, Larry R; Krueger, Henry O; Hosmer, Alan J

    2010-05-01

    The natural estrogen 17 beta-estradiol (E2) is a potential environmental contaminant commonly employed as a positive control substance in bioassays involving estrogenic effects. The aquatic anuran Xenopus laevis is a frequent subject of reproductive endocrine disruptor research; however, histopathological investigations have tended to be less than comprehensive. Consequently, a study was designed to characterize gross and microscopic changes in the gonads of X. laevis as a result of E2 exposure. Additional goals of this study, which consisted of three separate experiments, included the standardization of diagnostic terminology and criteria, the validation of statistical methodology, and the establishment of a half maximal effective concentration (EC50) for E2 as defined by an approximately 50% conversion of presumptive genotypic males to phenotypic females. In the first experiment, frogs were exposed to nominal concentrations of 0, 0.2, 1.5, or 6.0 microg/L E2. From these experimental results and those of a subsequent range finding trial, the EC50 for E2 was determined to be approximately 0.2 microg/L. This E2 concentration was utilized in the other two experiments, which were performed at different facilities to confirm the reproducibility of results. Experiments were conducted according to Good Laboratory Practice guidelines, and the histopathologic evaluations were peer reviewed by an independent pathologist. Among the three trials, the histopathological findings that were strongly associated with E2-exposure (p<0.001 to 0.0001) included an increase in the proportion of phenotypic females, mixed sex, dilated testis tubules, dividing gonocytes in the testis, and dilated ovarian cavities in phenotypic ovaries. A comparison of the gross and microscopic evaluations suggested that some morphologic changes in the gonads may potentially be missed if studies rely entirely on macroscopic assessment.

  17. Functional and Structural Effects of Amyloid-β Aggregate on Xenopus laevis Oocytes

    PubMed Central

    Parodi, Jorge; la Paz, Lenin Ochoa-de; Miledi, Ricardo; Martínez-Torres, Ataúlfo

    2012-01-01

    Xenopus laevis oocytes exposed to amyloid-β aggregate generated oscillatory electric activity (blips) that was recorded by two-microelectrode voltage-clamp. The cells exhibited a series of “spontaneous” blips ranging in amplitude from 3.8 ± 0.9 nA at the beginning of the recordings to 6.8 ± 1.7 nA after 15 min of exposure to 1 μM aggregate. These blips were similar in amplitude to those induced by the channel-forming antimicrobial agents amphotericin B (7.8 ± 1.2 nA) and gramicidin (6.3 ± 1.1 nA). The amyloid aggregate-induced currents were abolished when extracellular Ca2+ was removed from the bathing solution, suggesting a central role for this cation in generating the spontaneous electric activity. The amyloid aggregate also affected the Ca2+-dependent Cl− currents of oocytes, as shown by increased amplitude of the transient-outward chloride current (Tout) and the serum-activated, oscillatory Cl− currents. Electron microcopy revealed that amyloid aggregate induced the dissociation of the follicular cells that surround the oocyte, thus leading to a failure in the electro-chemical communication between these cells. This was also evidenced by the suppression of the oscillatory Ca2+-dependent ATP-currents, which require proper coupling between oocytes and the follicular cell layer. These observations, made using the X. laevis oocytes as a versatile experimental model, may help to understand the effects of amyloid aggregate on cellular communication. PMID:23104436

  18. Identification of a novel dehydration responsive gene, drp10, from the African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Biggar, Kyle K; Biggar, Yulia; Storey, Kenneth B

    2015-07-01

    During periods of environmental stress a number of different anuran species employ adaptive strategies to promote survival. Our study found that in response to dehydration (i.e., loss of total body water content), the African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis) increased the expression of a novel gene (drp10) that encodes a structural homolog of the freeze-responsive FR10 protein found in wood frogs. Similar to FR10, the DRP10 protein was found to also contain a highly conserved N-terminal cleavable signal peptide. Furthermore, DRP10 was found to have high structural homology to the available crystal structures of type A and E apolipoproteins in Homo sapiens, and a type IV LS-12 anti-freeze protein in the longhorn sculpin, Myoxocephalus octodecemspinosis. In response to dehydration, the transcript expression of drp10 was found to increase 1.52 ± 0.16-fold and 1.97 ± 0.11-fold in response to medium (15%) and high (30%) dehydration stresses in the liver tissue of X. laevis, respectively, while drp10 expression increased 2.12 ± 0.12-fold and 1.46 ± 0.16-fold in kidney tissue. Although the molecular function of both dehydration-responsive DRP10 and the freeze-responsive FR10 have just begun to be elucidated, it is likely that both are frog-specific proteins that likely share a similar purpose during water-related stresses. PMID:25866033

  19. Effects of Transgenic cry1Ca Rice on the Development of Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Chen, Xiuping; Wang, Jiamei; Zhu, Haojun; Li, Yunhe; Ding, Jiatong; Peng, Yufa

    2015-01-01

    In fields of genetically modified, insect-resistant rice expressing Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) proteins, frogs are exposed to Bt Cry proteins by consuming both target and non-target insects, and through their highly permeable skin. In the present study, we assessed the potential risk posed by transgenic cry1Ca rice (T1C-19) on the development of a frog species by adding purified Cry1Ca protein or T1C-19 rice straw into the rearing water of Xenopus laevis tadpoles, and by feeding X. laevis froglets diets containing rice grains of T1C-19 or its non-transformed counterpart MH63. Our results showed that there were no significant differences among groups receiving 100 μg L-1 or 10 μg L-1 Cry1Ca and the blank control in terms of time to completed metamorphosis, survival rate, body weight, body length, organ weight and liver enzyme activity after being exposed to the Cry1Ca (P > 0.05). Although some detection indices in the rice straw groups were significantly different from those of the blank control group (P < 0.05), there was no significant difference between the T1C-19 and MH63 rice straw groups. Moreover, there were no significant differences in the mortality rate, body weight, daily weight gain, liver and fat body weight of the froglets between the T1C-19 and MH63 dietary groups after 90 days, and there were no abnormal pathological changes in the stomach, intestines, livers, spleens and gonads. Thus, we conclude that the planting of transgenic cry1Ca rice will not adversely affect frog development. PMID:26695426

  20. Peripheral myelin of Xenopus laevis: Role of electrostatic and hydrophobic interactions in membrane compaction

    PubMed Central

    Luo, XiaoYang; Cerullo, Jana; Dawli, Tamara; Priest, Christina; Haddadin, Zaid; Kim, Angela; Inouye, Hideyo; Suffoletto, Brian P.; Avila, Robin L.; Lees, Jonathan P.B.; Sharma, Deepak; Xie, Bo; Costello, Catherine E.; Kirschner, Daniel A.

    2008-01-01

    P0 glycoprotein is the major structural protein of peripheral nerve myelin where it is thought to modulate inter-membrane adhesion at both the extracellular apposition, which is labile upon changes in pH and ionic strength, and the cytoplasmic apposition, which is resistant to such changes. Most studies on P0 have focused on structure-function correlates in higher vertebrates. Here, we focused on its role in the structure and interactions of frog (Xenopus laevis) myelin, where it exists primarily in a dimeric form. As part of our study, we deduced the full sequence of Xenopus laevis P0 (xP0) from its cDNA. The xP0 sequence was found to be similar to P0 sequences of higher vertebrates, suggesting that a common mechanism of PNS myelin compaction via P0 interaction might have emerged through evolution. As previously reported for mouse PNS myelin, a similar change of extracellular apposition in frog PNS myelin as a function of pH and ionic strength was observed, which can be explained by a conformational change of P0 due to protonation-deprotonation of His52 at P0’s putative adhesive interface. On the other hand, the cytoplasmic apposition in frog PNS myelin, like that in the mouse, remained unchanged at different pH and ionic strength. The contribution of hydrophobic interactions to stabilizing the cytoplasmic apposition was tested by incubating sciatic nerves with detergents. Dramatic expansion at the cytoplasmic apposition was observed for both frog and mouse, indicating a common hydrophobic nature at this apposition. Urea also expanded the cytoplasmic apposition of frog myelin likely owing to denaturation of P0. Removal of the fatty acids that attached to the single Cys residue in the cytoplasmic domain of P0 did not change PNS myelin structure of either frog or mouse, suggesting that the P0-attached fatty acyl chain does not play a significant role in PNS myelin compaction and stability. These results help clarify the present understanding of P0’s adhesion

  1. Activation of Src and release of intracellular calcium by phosphatidic acid during Xenopus laevis fertilization

    PubMed Central

    Bates, Ryan C.; Fees, Colby P.; Holland, William L.; Winger, Courtney C.; Batbayar, Khulan; Ancar, Rachel; Bergren, Todd; Petcoff, Douglas; Stith, Bradley J.

    2014-01-01

    We report a new step in the fertilization in Xenopus laevis which has been found to involve activation of Src tyrosine kinase to stimulate phospholipase C-γ (PLC- γ) which increases inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate (IP3) to release intracellular calcium ([Ca]i). Molecular species analysis and mass measurements suggested that sperm activate phospholipase D (PLD) to elevate phosphatidic acid (PA). We now report that PA mass increased 2.7 fold by 1 minute after insemination and inhibition of PA production by two methods inhibited activation of Src and PLCγ, increased [Ca]i and other fertilization events. As compared to 14 other lipids, PA strongly bound Xenopus Src but not PLCγ. Addition of synthetic PA activated egg Src (an action requiring intact lipid rafts) and PLCγ as well as doubling the amount of PLCγ in rafts. In the absence of elevated [Ca]i, PA addition elevated IP3 mass to levels equivalent to that induced by sperm (but twice that achieved by calcium ionophore). Finally, PA induced [Ca]i release that was blocked by an IP3 receptor inhibitor. As only PLD1b message was detected, and Western blotting did not detect PLD2, we suggest that sperm activate PLD1b to elevate PA which then binds to and activates Src leading to PLCγ stimulation, IP3 elevation and [Ca]i release. Due to these and other studies, PA may also play a role in membrane fusion events such as sperm-egg fusion, cortical granule exocytosis, the elevation of phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate and the large, late increase in sn 1,2-diacylglycerol in fertilization. PMID:24269904

  2. Caging, but not air deprivation, slows tadpole growth and development in the amphibian Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Rose, Christopher S

    2014-08-01

    Xenopus laevis tadpoles raised in submerged cages in normoxic water develop more slowly than tadpoles raised with access to air. This study distinguishes between the effects of being caged and being deprived access to air on development and growth. Tadpoles were raised in high and low density control tanks and in cages in the same tank that were either completely submerged or with the top exposed to air. Experiments were repeated with the cages in different positions relative to the air stones and with and without the water flow from air stones supplemented with a pump. Whereas caging tadpoles has a large effect on their development and growth, additionally depriving them of air has a small effect and this effect can be removed by optimizing water flow through the cage. The effect of caging, though significant in this study, is small compared to the variation in growth and developmental rates that is commonly encountered within and among controls in lab studies. Caging effects can also be diminished by optimizing rearing conditions and/or having exceptionally vigorous tadpoles. The effects of air deprivation and caging thus pose less of a problem for experimenting on air-deprived (AD) and air-restored Xenopus tadpoles than their inherent variability in growth and developmental rates and their susceptibility to growth and developmental arrest. Further, the effect of air deprivation in this air-breathing amphibian does not pose a conflict with evolutionary hypotheses for lung loss involving lengthening of the larval period and delay in the onset of air breathing.

  3. Caging, but not air deprivation, slows tadpole growth and development in the amphibian Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Rose, Christopher S

    2014-08-01

    Xenopus laevis tadpoles raised in submerged cages in normoxic water develop more slowly than tadpoles raised with access to air. This study distinguishes between the effects of being caged and being deprived access to air on development and growth. Tadpoles were raised in high and low density control tanks and in cages in the same tank that were either completely submerged or with the top exposed to air. Experiments were repeated with the cages in different positions relative to the air stones and with and without the water flow from air stones supplemented with a pump. Whereas caging tadpoles has a large effect on their development and growth, additionally depriving them of air has a small effect and this effect can be removed by optimizing water flow through the cage. The effect of caging, though significant in this study, is small compared to the variation in growth and developmental rates that is commonly encountered within and among controls in lab studies. Caging effects can also be diminished by optimizing rearing conditions and/or having exceptionally vigorous tadpoles. The effects of air deprivation and caging thus pose less of a problem for experimenting on air-deprived (AD) and air-restored Xenopus tadpoles than their inherent variability in growth and developmental rates and their susceptibility to growth and developmental arrest. Further, the effect of air deprivation in this air-breathing amphibian does not pose a conflict with evolutionary hypotheses for lung loss involving lengthening of the larval period and delay in the onset of air breathing. PMID:24799365

  4. Determination of ionic permeability coefficients of the plasma membrane of Xenopus laevis oocytes under voltage clamp.

    PubMed

    Costa, P F; Emilio, M G; Fernandes, P L; Ferreira, H G; Ferreira, K G

    1989-06-01

    1. A method of estimating absolute ionic permeability coefficients which does not depend on the use of impermeant substitutes is reported. 2. The method is based on a pump leak model of the Xenopus laevis oocyte membrane. The procedure consists of measuring, in the same experiment, the pump current and the currents generated under voltage clamp by the partial substitution of one or two ions at a time. For each experimental condition, the measured currents are substituted in a Goldman-Hodgkin-Katz type equation with two unknowns (the permeability coefficients). The set of equations thus generated enables the computation of all the ionic permeability coefficients. 3. The Xenopus oocyte membrane (stages IV and V, Dumont, 1972) has been found to be permeable to conventional ion substitutes such as N-methyl-D-glucamine (NMG), sulphate, isethionate and gluconate. 4. The values for sodium, potassium and chloride permeability coefficients obtained from sixty-eight pooled experiments were, respectively, 5.44, 17.41 and 1.49 x 10(-8) cm s-1. 5. The diffusional currents for sodium, potassium and chloride computed from the experiments referred to above were, respectively, -1.16, 0.69 and -0.038 microA cm-2. 6. A stoichiometry of the Na+-K+ pump exchange of 3/1.8 was computed. 7. The intracellular concentrations of sodium, potassium and chloride ions, as determined by ion-selective microelectrodes, were, respectively, 10.1 +/- 0.66 mM (n = 12), 109.5 +/- 3.3 mM (n = 13) and 37.7 +/- 1.18 mM (n = 19), corresponding to equilibrium potentials of 61, -95 and -28 mV. 8. Since chloride is not at equilibrium across the membrane, we propose that there is an inward uphill Cl- transport. PMID:2600847

  5. Effects of atrazine on CYP19 gene expression and aromatase activity in testes and on plasma sex steroid concentrations of male African clawed frogs (Xenopus laevis).

    PubMed

    Hecker, Markus; Park, June-Woo; Murphy, Margaret B; Jones, Paul D; Solomon, Keith R; Van Der Kraak, Glen; Carr, James A; Smith, Ernest E; du Preez, Louis; Kendall, Ronald J; Giesy, John P

    2005-08-01

    Some investigators have suggested that the triazine herbicide atrazine can cause demasculinization of male amphibians via upregulation of the enzyme aromatase. Male adult African clawed frogs (Xenopus laevis) were exposed to three nominal concentrations of atrazine (1, 25, or 250 microg atrazine/l) for 36 days, and testicular aromatase activity and CYP19 gene expression, as well as concentrations of the plasma sex steroids testosterone (T) and 17beta-estradiol (E2), and gonad size (GSI) were measured. There were no effects on any of the parameters measured, with the exception of plasma T concentrations. Plasma T concentrations in X. laevis exposed to the greatest concentration of atrazine were significantly less (p = 0.034) than those in untreated frogs. Both CYP19 gene expression and aromatase activities were low regardless of treatment, and neither parameter correlated with the other. We conclude that aromatase enzyme activity and gene expression were at basal levels in X. laevis from all treatments, and that the tested concentrations of atrazine did not interfere with steroidogenesis through an aromatase-mediated mechanism of action.

  6. The two nonallelic insulin-like growth factor-I genes in Xenopus laevis are differentially regulated during development.

    PubMed

    Perfetti, R; Scott, L A; Shuldiner, A R

    1994-11-01

    To study the potential role of insulin-like growth factor-I (IGF-I) during early embryogenesis, we have used the amphibian Xenopus laevis, a versatile model of vertebrate development. Using polymerase chain reaction (PCR)-based cloning strategies, we have previously identified two different nonallelic Xenopus IGF-I genes (IGF-I' and IGF-I"). Both are expressed in similar quantities in adult liver. We now report the use of a modification of the reverse transcription-PCR method, designated RNA template-specific PCR (RS-PCR), to detect IGF-I messenger RNA (mRNA) from single oocytes and embryos. The same primer pair was used to amplify both IGF-I' and IGF-I" mRNAs. Slot blot analysis of the RS-PCR products with internal oligonucleotide probes that specifically recognize IGF-I' or IGF-I" sequences revealed that only IGF-I' mRNA was present in follicles surrounding mature (stage VI) oocytes; neither IGF-I mRNA was present in follicles surrounding less mature oocytes (stages I and IV) or within oocytes or unfertilized eggs. After fertilization, IGF-I' mRNA was first detected during early organogenesis (stages 21-23), and increased during subsequent stages of development. To localize early IGF-I' expression, a stage 27 embryo was sliced into 24-microns cross-sections; RS-PCR and slot blot analysis were performed on RNA extracts from consecutive sections. IGF-I' mRNA was expressed in all sections, but was most abundant in the body region from which the visceral organs were developing. In contrast, to the early expression of IGF-I', IGF-I" mRNA was not detected until stage 41, a period corresponding to premetamorphic growth. Reverse PCR for Xenopus GH mRNA demonstrated that the onset of GH gene expression was coincident with the onset of IGF-I" gene expression (stage 41). These data suggest that the early expression of IGF-I' may be GH independent, whereas later expression of IGF-I" is GH dependent. We conclude that the two nonallelic IGF-I genes are expressed differentially

  7. Chytrid fungus infections in laboratory and introduced Xenopus laevis populations: assessing the risks for U.K. native amphibians

    PubMed Central

    Tinsley, Richard C.; Coxhead, Peter G.; Stott, Lucy C.; Tinsley, Matthew C.; Piccinni, Maya Z.; Guille, Matthew J.

    2015-01-01

    The chytrid fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd) is notorious amongst current conservation biology challenges, responsible for mass mortality and extinction of amphibian species. World trade in amphibians is implicated in global dissemination. Exports of South African Xenopus laevis have led to establishment of this invasive species on four continents. Bd naturally infects this host in Africa and now occurs in several introduced populations. However, no previous studies have investigated transfer of infection into co-occurring native amphibian faunas. A survey of 27 U.K. institutions maintaining X. laevis for research showed that most laboratories have low-level infection, a risk for native species if animals are released into the wild. RT-PCR assays showed Bd in two introduced U.K. populations of X. laevis, in Wales and Lincolnshire. Laboratory and field studies demonstrated that infection levels increase with stress, especially low temperature. In the U.K., native amphibians may be exposed to intense transmission in spring when they enter ponds to spawn alongside X. laevis that have cold-elevated Bd infections. Exposure to cross-infection has probably been recurrent since the introduction of X. laevis, >20 years in Lincolnshire and 50 years in Wales. These sites provide an important test for assessing the impact of X. laevis on Bd spread. However, RT-PCR assays on 174 native amphibians (Bufo, Rana, Lissotriton and Triturus spp.), sympatric with the Bd-infected introduced populations, showed no foci of self-sustaining Bd transmission associated with X. laevis. The abundance of these native amphibians suggested no significant negative population-level effect after the decades of co-occurrence. PMID:25843959

  8. Vital dye labelling of Xenopus laevis trunk neural crest reveals multipotency and novel pathways of migration.

    PubMed

    Collazo, A; Bronner-Fraser, M; Fraser, S E

    1993-06-01

    Although the Xenopus embryo has served as an important model system for both molecular and cellular studies of vertebrate development, comparatively little is known about its neural crest. Here, we take advantage of the ease of manipulation and relative transparency of Xenopus laevis embryos to follow neural crest cell migration and differentiation in living embryos. We use two techniques to study the lineage and migratory patterns of frog neural crest cells: (1) injections of DiI or lysinated rhodamine dextran (LRD) into small populations of neural crest cells to follow movement and (2) injections of LRD into single cells to follow cell lineage. By using non-invasive approaches that allow observations in living embryos and control of the time and position of labelling, we have been able to expand upon the results of previous grafting experiments. Migration and differentiation of the labelled cells were observed over time in individual living embryos, and later in sections to determine precise position and morphology. Derivatives populated by the neural crest are the fins, pigment stripes, spinal ganglia, adrenal medulla, pronephric duct, enteric nuclei and the posterior portion of the dorsal aorta. In the rostral to mid-trunk levels, most neural crest cells migrate along two paths: a dorsal pathway into the fin, followed by presumptive fin cells, and a ventral pathway along the neural tube and notochord, followed by presumptive pigment, sensory ganglion, sympathetic ganglion and adrenal medullary cells. In the caudal trunk, two additional paths were noted. One group of cells moves circumferentially within the fin, in an arc from dorsal to ventral; another progresses ventrally to the anus and subsequently populates the ventral fin. By labelling individual precursor cells, we find that neural tube and neural crest cells often share a common precursor. The majority of clones contain labelled progeny cells in the dorsal fin. The remainder have progeny in multiple

  9. Characterization of highly and moderately repetitive 500 bp Eco RI fragments from Xenopus laevis DNA.

    PubMed Central

    Hummel, S; Meyerhof, W; Korge, E; Knöchel, W

    1984-01-01

    Three different types of repetitive Eco RI fragments, which comigrate within a visible band of approximately 500 bp at gel electrophoresis of Xenopus laevis DNA Eco RI digests have been cloned and sequenced. These sequences are designated as Repetitive Eco RI Monomers: REM 1, REM 2 and REM 3. The sequences contain direct repeats, inverted repeats and palindromic elements. Genomic organization of the most abundant sequence (REM 1; 0.4% of total DNA) is that of an interspersed sequence. REM 2 (0.08%) is partly organized as an interspersed element and partly found in tandem arrangement, whereas REM 3 (0.02%) represents the tandemly repeated monomeric unit of a satellite DNA. In situ hybridization has shown that REM 1 and REM 2 sequences are found on most chromosomes, REM 1 being preferentially located on specific chromosomal loci. REM 3 is located near the centromere region of only one chromosome pair (presumably number 1). Hybridization of Northern blots from RNAs of different developmental stages revealed that REM 1, REM 2 and REM 3 sequences are transcribed and that transcription is under developmental control. Images PMID:6330690

  10. Onset and early development of hypoxic ventilatory responses and branchial neuroepithelial cells in Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Pan, Tien-Chien F; Burggren, Warren W

    2010-12-01

    Onset and ontogeny of the O₂ chemoreceptive control of ventilation was investigated in Xenopus laevis. The density and size of branchial serotonin-immunoreactive neuroepithelial cells (5-HT-IR NECs) were also determined using confocal immunofluorescent microscopy. Larvae started gill ventilation at 3 days post-fertilization (dpf), and, at this early stage, acute hypoxic exposure produced an increase in frequency from 28 ± 4 to 60 ± 2 beats x min⁻¹. Concurrent with the onset of ventilatory responses, 5-HT-IR NECs appeared in the gill filament bud. Lung ventilation began at 5 dpf and exhibited a 3-fold increase in frequency during acute hypoxia. At 10 dpf, gill ventilatory sensitivity to hypoxia increased, as did NEC density, from 15 ± 1 (5 dpf) to 29 ± 2 (10 dpf) cells x mm of filament⁻¹. Unlike ventilation frequency, gill ventilation amplitude and lung expired volume were unaltered by acute hypoxia. Chronic exposure to moderate hypoxia, at a P(O₂) of 110 mmHg, attenuated acute responses to moderate hypoxia at 10 and 14 dpf but had no effect at more severe hypoxia or at other stages. Chronic hypoxia also stimulated 5-HT-IR NECs growth at 21 dpf. Collectively, larvae at 5 dpf exhibited strong O₂-driven gill and lung ventilatory responses, and between 10 and 21 dpf, the early hypoxic responses can be shaped by the ambient P(O₂).

  11. Using plusTipTracker software to measure microtubule dynamics in Xenopus laevis growth cones.

    PubMed

    Stout, Alina; D'Amico, Salvatore; Enzenbacher, Tiffany; Ebbert, Patrick; Lowery, Laura Anne

    2014-01-01

    Microtubule (MT) plus-end-tracking proteins (+TIPs) localize to the growing plus-ends of MTs and regulate MT dynamics(1,2). One of the most well-known and widely-utilized +TIPs for analyzing MT dynamics is the End-Binding protein, EB1, which binds all growing MT plus-ends, and thus, is a marker for MT polymerization(1). Many studies of EB1 behavior within growth cones have used time-consuming and biased computer-assisted, hand-tracking methods to analyze individual MTs(1-3). Our approach is to quantify global parameters of MT dynamics using the software package, plusTipTracker(4), following the acquisition of high-resolution, live images of tagged EB1 in cultured embryonic growth cones(5). This software is a MATLAB-based, open-source, user-friendly package that combines automated detection, tracking, visualization, and analysis for movies of fluorescently-labeled +TIPs. Here, we present the protocol for using plusTipTracker for the analysis of fluorescently-labeled +TIP comets in cultured Xenopus laevis growth cones. However, this software can also be used to characterize MT dynamics in various cell types(6-8). PMID:25225829

  12. Expression analysis of epb41l4a during Xenopus laevis embryogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Guo, Yanchun; Christine, Kathleen S.; Conlon, Frank; Gessert, Susanne

    2013-01-01

    Epbl41l4a (erythrocyte protein band 4.1-like 4a, also named Nbl4) is a member of the band 4.1/Nbl4 (novel band 4.1-like protein 4) group of the FERM (4.1, ezrin, radixin, moesin) protein superfamily. Proteins encoded by this gene family are involved in many cellular processes such as organization of epithelial cells and signal transduction. On a molecular level, band 4.1/Nbl4 proteins have been shown to link membrane-associated proteins and lipids to the actin cytoskeleton. Epbl41l4a has also recently been identified as a target gene of the Wnt/β-catenin pathway. Here, we describe for the first time the spatiotemporal expression of epbl41l4a using Xenopus laevis as a model system. We observed a strong and specific expression of epb41l4a in the developing somites, in particular during segmentation as well as in the nasal and cranial placodes, pronephros, and neural tube. Thus, epbl41l4a is expressed in tissues undergoing morphogenetic movements, suggesting a functional role of epbl41l4a during these processes. PMID:21556855

  13. Inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate mass changes from fertilization through first cleavage in Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed Central

    Stith, B J; Goalstone, M; Silva, S; Jaynes, C

    1993-01-01

    After fertilization in Xenopus laevis, inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate (IP3) mass increased from 53 to 261 fmol/cell and returned to near basal by 10 min after insemination. IP3 was also elevated over control egg levels during first mitosis and first cleavage. Because IP3 levels and the fertilization calcium wave decline at about the same time and because calcium ionophore or pricking the egg increased IP3, the fertilization calcium wave may be due to calcium-induced IP3 production. In addition, the onset of sperm motility was associated with an increase, whereas the acrosomal reaction was accompanied by a decrease in IP3 mass. Combining our published data with this report, the first chronology of the levels of IP3 from the induction of meiosis (maturation) through fertilization and cleavage in one cellular system is summarized. These data suggest an in vivo dose response for IP3 and calcium release. A small (17 fmol/cell) IP3 change during the induction of meiosis may not be associated with a calcium change. Larger IP3 changes at cleavage (40 fmol/cell) and mitosis (125 fmol/cell) are associated with localized small calcium increases, whereas the largest IP3 change (208 fmol/cell) is associated with the large calcium increase at fertilization. PMID:8507898

  14. Changes in Oscillatory Dynamics in the Cell Cycle of Early Xenopus laevis Embryos

    PubMed Central

    Tsai, Tony Y.-C.; Theriot, Julie A.; Ferrell, James E.

    2014-01-01

    During the early development of Xenopus laevis embryos, the first mitotic cell cycle is long (∼85 min) and the subsequent 11 cycles are short (∼30 min) and clock-like. Here we address the question of how the Cdk1 cell cycle oscillator changes between these two modes of operation. We found that the change can be attributed to an alteration in the balance between Wee1/Myt1 and Cdc25. The change in balance converts a circuit that acts like a positive-plus-negative feedback oscillator, with spikes of Cdk1 activation, to one that acts like a negative-feedback-only oscillator, with a shorter period and smoothly varying Cdk1 activity. Shortening the first cycle, by treating embryos with the Wee1A/Myt1 inhibitor PD0166285, resulted in a dramatic reduction in embryo viability, and restoring the length of the first cycle in inhibitor-treated embryos with low doses of cycloheximide partially rescued viability. Computations with an experimentally parameterized mathematical model show that modest changes in the Wee1/Cdc25 ratio can account for the observed qualitative changes in the cell cycle. The high ratio in the first cycle allows the period to be long and tunable, and decreasing the ratio in the subsequent cycles allows the oscillator to run at a maximal speed. Thus, the embryo rewires its feedback regulation to meet two different developmental requirements during early development. PMID:24523664

  15. Gonadal development of larval male Xenopus laevis exposed to atrazine in outdoor microcosms

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Jooste, A.M.; Du Preez, L.H.; Carr, J.A.; Giesy, J.P.; Gross, T.S.; Kendall, R.J.; Smith, E.E.; Van Der Kraak, G. L.; Solomon, K.R.

    2005-01-01

    The potential effects of atrazine on gonadal development in metamorphs and subadults of the African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis) were studied under conditions of natural photoperiod and temperatures in outdoor microcosms from August 2002 to June 2003 in South Africa. Triplicate 1100 L microcosms for each nominal concentration of 0.0, 1, 10, and 25 ??g of atrazine/L were used. Measured atrazine concentrations varied <25% throughout the study, and no atrazine was detected in the control microcosms. Tadpoles developed well at all concentrations. On the basis of histological examination of testes of recently metamorphosed stage 66 frogs, 57% of the individuals in the reference group exhibited testicular oocytes as compared with 57, 59, and 39% of the 1, 10, and 25 ??g/L atrazine groups, respectively. The average prevalence of testicular oocytes for all of the treatments including the controls was 54% in a single testis, while, in 35% of individuals, testicular oocytes were observed in both testes. The number of testicular oocytes per individual ranged from 0 to 58 with means of 9.5, 9.8, 8.5, and 11.1 for the 0.0, 1, 10, and 25 ??g of atrazine/L groups, respectively. Ten months after metamorphosis, another subset of juveniles was examined, and the maximum number of testicular oocytes observed was five in one animal. The presence of testicular oocytes was not related to exposure to atrazine and may be a natural phenomenon during ontogeny. ?? 2005 American Chemical Society.

  16. Tolerance maintenance depends on persistence of the tolerizing antigen: evidence from transplantation studies on Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Kaye, C; Schermer, J A; Tompkins, R

    1983-01-01

    In order to assess the role of antigen persistence in the tolerant state, tolerance was induced in Xenopus laevis by the embryonic transplantation of whole eyes or tail tissue. Both types of transplants were seen to heal in and persist, with no signs of immunological incompatibility. At metamorphosis, tail resorption occurred and grafted tail tissue was lost. Eye transplants were maintained through metamorphosis in most eye grafted animals. Eye graft recipients which had maintained the transplant were observed to accept challenge skin allografts from donors of the same genotype as the eye donor in all but one case, while recipients which had lost the eye transplant at metamorphosis or had the eye transplant experimentally removed sometimes did not accept the challenge skin graft. Animals tail grafted as embryos did not accept post metamorphic skin grafts from donors of the same genotype as the tail tissue donor, but rejection was not accelerated. It is proposed that tolerance induction is dependent on the presence of appropriately presented antigen at a time when precursor thymocyte cells are migrating to the thymus, prior to their processing into alloreactive cells, and that tolerance maintenance is dependent upon the persistence of the tolerizing antigen. PMID:6357880

  17. Characterization of tweety gene (ttyh1-3) expression in Xenopus laevis during embryonic development

    PubMed Central

    Rabe, Brian A.; Huyck, Ryan W.; Williams, Cheyenne C.; Saha, Margaret S.

    2015-01-01

    The tweety family of genes encodes large-conductance chloride channels and has been implicated in a wide array of cellular processes including cell division, cell adhesion, regulation of calcium activity, and tumorigenesis, particularly in neuronal cells. However, their expression patterns during early development remain largely unknown. Here, we describe the spatial and temporal patterning of ttyh1, ttyh2, and ttyh3 in Xenopus laevis during early embryonic development. Ttyh1 and ttyh3 are initially expressed at the late neurula stage are and primarily localized to the developing nervous system; however ttyh1 and ttyh3 both show transient expression in the somites. By swimming tadpole stages, all three genes are expressed in the brain, spinal cord, eye, and cranial ganglia. While ttyh1 is restricted to proliferative, ventricular zones, ttyh3 is primarily localized to postmitotic regions of the developing nervous system. Ttyh2, however, is strongly expressed in cranial ganglia V, VII, IX and X. The differing temporal and spatial expression patterns of ttyh1, ttyh2, and ttyh3 suggest that they may play distinct roles throughout embryonic development. PMID:25541457

  18. The Effect of Plasma on Tail Regeneration of Tadpoles Xenopus Laevis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    June, Joyce; Amadi, Chima; Menon, Jaishri; Martus, Kevin

    2013-03-01

    Healthy wounds require a balanced combination of nutrients and growth factors for healing and tissue regeneration. Nitric oxide, (NO), is also crucial in wound healing processes and linked with production of several cytokines, interaction with other free radicals and influence on microcirculation. Hypothesize is that exposure to plasma will affect wound healing and tail regeneration in tadpoles Xenopus laevis and plasma induced endogenous NO production may have an important role to play at the cellular level. Tail amputation was immediately followed by exposure of the wound to the helium plasma. For histological features, blastema (growing regenerate) was fixed in 4% neutral buffer formalin for paraffin sections. In situ staining for NO was carried out 5 days post amputation. The rate of the regenerating tail was proportional to the plasma exposure time at the expense of metamorphic rate. Histological features show that the tadpoles exposed to the plasma had a higher level of cellular proliferation and microvasculature in blastema. In situ staining for NO indicated its increased endogenous production compared to the control. These findings suggest that accelerated wound healing and tail regeneration following exposure to the plasma may be due to its direct effect on cell proliferation and increased NO production which may be involved in microvascularization. This study was supported, in part, by the NSF Grant 1040108

  19. Microfluidic platform for electrophysiological studies on Xenopus laevis oocytes under varying gravity levels.

    PubMed

    Schaffhauser, Daniel F; Andrini, Olga; Ghezzi, Chiara; Forster, Ian C; Franco-Obregón, Alfredo; Egli, Marcel; Dittrich, Petra S

    2011-10-21

    Voltage clamp measurements reveal important insights into the activity of membrane ion channels. While conventional voltage clamp systems are available for laboratory studies, these instruments are generally unsuitable for more rugged operating environments. In this study, we present a non-invasive microfluidic voltage clamp system developed for the use under varying gravity levels. The core component is a multilayer microfluidic device that provides an immobilisation site for Xenopus laevis oocytes on an intermediate layer, and fluid and electrical connections from either side of the cell. The configuration that we term the asymmetrical transoocyte voltage clamp (ATOVC) also permits electrical access to the cytosol of the oocyte without physical introduction of electrodes by permeabilisation of a large region of the oocyte membrane so that a defined membrane patch can be voltage clamped. The constant low level air pressure applied to the oocyte ensures stable immobilisation, which is essential for keeping the leak resistance constant even under varying gravitational forces. The ease of oocyte mounting and immobilisation combined with the robustness and complete enclosure of the fluidics system allow the use of the ATOVC under extreme environmental conditions, without the need for intervention by a human operator. Results for oocytes over-expressing the epithelial sodium channel (ENaC) obtained under laboratory conditions as well as under conditions of micro- and hypergravity demonstrate the high reproducibility and stability of the ATOVC system under distinct mechanical scenarios.

  20. Male-Male Clasping May Be Part of an Alternative Reproductive Tactic in Xenopus laevis

    PubMed Central

    Rhodes, Heather J.; Stevenson, Rachel J.; Ego, Courtney L.

    2014-01-01

    Male Xenopus laevis frogs have been observed to clasp other males in a sustained, amplectant position, the purpose of which is unknown. We examined three possible hypotheses for this counter-intuitive behavior: 1) clasping males fail to discriminate the sex of the frogs they clasp; 2) male-male clasping is an aggressive or dominant behavior; or 3) that males clasp other males to gain proximity to breeding events and possibly engage in sperm competition. Our data, gathered through a series of behavioral experiments in the laboratory, refute the first two hypotheses. We found that males did not clasp indiscriminately, but showed a sex preference, with most males preferentially clasping a female, but a proportion preferentially clasping another male. Males that clasped another male when there was no female present were less likely to “win” reproductive access in a male-male-female triad, indicating that they did not establish dominance through clasping. However, those males did gain proximity to oviposition by continued male-male clasping in the presence of the female. Thus, our findings are consistent with, but cannot confirm, the third hypothesis of male-male clasping as an alternative reproductive tactic. PMID:24849114

  1. Metabolic cost of osmoregulation in a hypertonic environment in the invasive African clawed frog Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Peña-Villalobos, Isaac; Narváez, Cristóbal; Sabat, Pablo

    2016-01-01

    Studies of aquatic invertebrates reveal that salinity affects feeding and growth rates, reproduction, survival, and diversity. Little is known, however, about how salinity impacts the energy budget of vertebrates and amphibians in particular. The few studies focused on this topic in vertebrates suggest that the ingestion of salts and the resulting osmoregulatory activity is energetically expensive. We analyzed the effect of saline acclimation on standard metabolic rates (SMR) and the activities of metabolic enzymes of internal organs and osmoregulatory variables (plasma osmolality and urea plasma level) in females of Xenopus laevis by means of acclimating individuals to an isosmotic (235 mOsm NaCl; ISO group) and hyper-osmotic (340 mOsm NaCl; HYP group) environment for 40 days. After acclimation, we found that total and mass-specific SMR was approximately 80% higher in the HYP group than those found in the ISO group. These changes were accompanied by higher citrate synthase activities in liver and heart in the HYP group than in the ISO group. Furthermore, we found a significant and positive correlation between metabolic rates and plasma urea, and citrate synthase activity in liver and heart. These results support the notion that the cost of osmoregulation is probably common in most animal species and suggest the existence of a functional association between metabolic rates and the adjustments in osmoregulatory physiology, such as blood distribution and urea synthesis. PMID:27334694

  2. Live-cell Imaging and Quantitative Analysis of Embryonic Epithelial Cells in Xenopus laevis

    PubMed Central

    Joshi, Sagar D.; Davidson, Lance A.

    2010-01-01

    Embryonic epithelial cells serve as an ideal model to study morphogenesis where multi-cellular tissues undergo changes in their geometry, such as changes in cell surface area and cell height, and where cells undergo mitosis and migrate. Furthermore, epithelial cells can also regulate morphogenetic movements in adjacent tissues1. A traditional method to study epithelial cells and tissues involve chemical fixation and histological methods to determine cell morphology or localization of particular proteins of interest. These approaches continue to be useful and provide "snapshots" of cell shapes and tissue architecture, however, much remains to be understood about how cells acquire specific shapes, how various proteins move or localize to specific positions, and what paths cells follow toward their final differentiated fate. High resolution live imaging complements traditional methods and also allows more direct investigation into the dynamic cellular processes involved in the formation, maintenance, and morphogenesis of multicellular epithelial sheets. Here we demonstrate experimental methods from the isolation of animal cap tissues from Xenopus laevis embryos to confocal imaging of epithelial cells and simple measurement approaches that together can augment molecular and cellular studies of epithelial morphogenesis. PMID:20498627

  3. Responses of young Xenopus laevis tadpoles to light dimming: possible roles for the pineal eye.

    PubMed

    Jamieson, D; Roberts, A

    2000-06-01

    When the light is dimmed, the pineal eye of hatchling Xenopus laevis tadpoles excites the central pattern generator for swimming, but the behavioural significance of pineal excitation is unclear. We show that tadpoles spend 99 % of their time hanging from the surface meniscus or solid objects using mucus secreted by a cement gland on the head. Attachment inhibits swimming, but unattached tadpoles swim spontaneously. Provided that their pineal eye is intact, they attach closer to the water surface in the dark than in the light and attach preferentially to the underside of floating objects that cast shadows. Dimming causes tadpoles swimming horizontally to turn upwards and is very effective in initiating upward swimming in unattached tadpoles. Similar pineal-dependent responses during swimming are present up to stage 44. Pinealectomy blocks responses to dimming at all stages. Recordings from immobilised tadpoles reveal that light dimming induces faster fictive swimming and that pineal activity is increased for up to 20 min during sustained light dimming. We suggest that the increase in pineal discharge during dimming increases the probability of upward swimming and, in this way, increases the probability of tadpoles attaching to objects higher in the water column that cast shadows.

  4. Platanna (Xenopus laevis) as a test organism for determining the embryotoxic effects of environmental chemicals

    SciTech Connect

    Dumpert, K.; Zietz, E.

    1984-02-01

    It has been successfully demonstrated that platanna (Xenopus laevis) allows the artificial induction of spawning at any time during the year. The number of eggs collected from a female ranged between 500 and 2400, the fertilization rate varying between 10 and 85%. When unaffected by chemicals, the embryonic development of the larvae took between 8 and 30 weeks. Di(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate (DEHP), methylmercury chloride, and the thalidomide analog EM 12 were used for the experiments described. DEHP at a concentration of 2 ppm retarded the development of the larvae and caused reduced pigmentation of the tadpoles. Methylmercury chloride has been found to have teratogenic and embryolethal effects at a concentration as low as 0.01 ppm. The following teratogenic effects have been determined: bent tails of the larvae, retarded development of the filter system, disturbed osmotic regulation, deranged positional and spatial orientation. EM 12 has been proven to have embryolethal effects at concentrations around 100 ppm. At lower concentrations this substance has teratogenic effects, i.e., it interferes in various ways with the development of the limbs.

  5. Gonadal development of larval male Xenopus laevis exposed to atrazine in outdoor microcosms.

    PubMed

    Jooste, Alarik M; Du Preez, Louis H; Carr, James A; Giesy, John P; Gross, Timothy S; Kendall, Ronald J; Smith, Ernest E; Van der Kraak, Glen L; Solomon, Keith R

    2005-07-15

    The potential effects of atrazine on gonadal development in metamorphs and subadults of the African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis) were studied under conditions of natural photoperiod and temperatures in outdoor microcosms from August 2002 to June 2003 in South Africa. Triplicate 1100 L microcosms for each nominal concentration of 0.0, 1, 10, and 25 microg of atrazine/L were used. Measured atrazine concentrations varied <25% throughout the study, and no atrazine was detected in the control microcosms. Tadpoles developed well at all concentrations. On the basis of histological examination of testes of recently metamorphosed stage 66 frogs, 57% of the individuals in the reference group exhibited testicular oocytes as compared with 57, 59, and 39% of the 1, 10, and 25 microg/L atrazine groups, respectively. The average prevalence of testicular oocytes for all of the treatments including the controls was 54% in a single testis, while, in 35% of individuals, testicular oocytes were observed in both testes. The number of testicular oocytes per individual ranged from 0 to 58 with means of 9.5, 9.8, 8.5, and 11.1 forthe 0.0, 1, 10, and 25 microg of atrazine/L groups, respectively. Ten months after metamorphosis, another subset of juveniles was examined, and the maximum number of testicular oocytes observed was five in one animal. The presence of testicular oocytes was not related to exposure to atrazine and may be a natural phenomenon during ontogeny.

  6. Purification of Human and Mammalian Membrane Proteins Expressed in Xenopus laevis Frog Oocytes for Structural Studies.

    PubMed

    Boggavarapu, Rajendra; Hirschi, Stephan; Harder, Daniel; Meury, Marcel; Ucurum, Zöhre; Bergeron, Marc J; Fotiadis, Dimitrios

    2016-01-01

    This protocol describes the isolation of recombinant human and mammalian membrane proteins expressed in Xenopus laevis frog oocytes for structural studies. The cDNA-derived cRNA of the desired genes is injected into several hundreds of oocytes, which are incubated for several days to allow protein expression. Recombinant proteins are then purified via affinity chromatography. The novelty of this method comes from the design of a plasmid that produces multi-tagged proteins and, most importantly, the development of a protocol for efficiently discarding lipids, phospholipids, and lipoproteins from the oocyte egg yolk, which represent the major contaminants in protein purifications. Thus, the high protein purity and good yield obtained from this method allows protein structure determination by transmission electron microscopy of single detergent-solubilized protein particles and of 2D crystals of membrane protein embedded in lipid bilayers. Additionally, a radiotracer assay for functional analysis of the expressed target proteins in oocytes is described. Overall, this method is a valuable option for structural studies of mammalian and particularly human proteins, for which other expression systems often fail. PMID:27485339

  7. Metabolic cost of osmoregulation in a hypertonic environment in the invasive African clawed frog Xenopus laevis

    PubMed Central

    Peña-Villalobos, Isaac; Narváez, Cristóbal

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Studies of aquatic invertebrates reveal that salinity affects feeding and growth rates, reproduction, survival, and diversity. Little is known, however, about how salinity impacts the energy budget of vertebrates and amphibians in particular. The few studies focused on this topic in vertebrates suggest that the ingestion of salts and the resulting osmoregulatory activity is energetically expensive. We analyzed the effect of saline acclimation on standard metabolic rates (SMR) and the activities of metabolic enzymes of internal organs and osmoregulatory variables (plasma osmolality and urea plasma level) in females of Xenopus laevis by means of acclimating individuals to an isosmotic (235 mOsm NaCl; ISO group) and hyper-osmotic (340 mOsm NaCl; HYP group) environment for 40 days. After acclimation, we found that total and mass-specific SMR was approximately 80% higher in the HYP group than those found in the ISO group. These changes were accompanied by higher citrate synthase activities in liver and heart in the HYP group than in the ISO group. Furthermore, we found a significant and positive correlation between metabolic rates and plasma urea, and citrate synthase activity in liver and heart. These results support the notion that the cost of osmoregulation is probably common in most animal species and suggest the existence of a functional association between metabolic rates and the adjustments in osmoregulatory physiology, such as blood distribution and urea synthesis. PMID:27334694

  8. The Effect of Plasma Exposure on Tail Regeneration of Tadpoles Xenopus Laevis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    June, Joyce; Rivie, Adonis; Ezuduemoih, Raphael; Menon, Jaishri; Martus, Kevin

    2014-03-01

    Wound healing requires a balanced combination of nutrients and growth factors for healing and tissue regeneration. The effect of plasma exposure on tail regeneration of tadpoles, Xenopus laevis is investigated. The exposure of the wound to the helium plasma immediately followed the amputation of 40% of the tail. Amputation of the tail initiates regeneration of spinal cord, muscle, notochord, skin and connective tissues. By 24 h, the wound was covered by wound epithelium and blastema was formed by day 5. There was increased angiogenesis in plasma exposed tail regenerate compared to the control following 5 d post amputation. Observed was an increase in NO production in the regenerate of plasma exposed tadpoles was derived from increased activity of nNOS and iNOS. Western blot analysis for vascular endothelial growth factor showed stronger bands for the protein in amputated tadpoles of both the groups. Analysis of the composition and characteristics of the plasma using optical emission spectroscopy indicates excited state species consisting of N2, N2+,and OH is present in the plasma. This study was supported, in part, by the NSF Grant 1040108.

  9. Examination of an amphibian-based assay using the larvae of Xenopus laevis and Ambystoma mexicanum.

    PubMed

    Saka, Masahiro

    2003-05-01

    Semistatic acute toxicity tests of amphibian larvae (Xenopus laevis and Ambystoma mexicanum) were conducted at different developmental stages and by different methods to establish a simple amphibian-based assay. Test substance was pentachlorophenol sodium salt (PCP-Na). The endpoint was mortality and the 24-, 48-, 72-, and 96-h LC50 values were calculated by probit analysis. Interspecific differences in larval responses were not clear. Larval sensitivity tended to increase with larval age. Newly hatched larvae were most resistant to PCP-Na. During the tests of well-developed larvae, concentrations of dissolved oxygen and PCP-Na in the test solutions greatly dropped owing to uptake by the larvae. Therefore, middle-developed (2-week-old) larvae were most suitable for the test. Toxicity tests for volatile substances would be also possible using 2-week-old larvae in closed vessels. Test individuals should be kept individually to avoid the effects of poisonous skin secretions released from dead larvae. PMID:12706392

  10. Anxa4 Genes are Expressed in Distinct Organ Systems in Xenopus laevis and tropicalis But are Functionally Conserved

    PubMed Central

    Massé, Karine L; Collins, Robert J; Bhamra, Surinder; Seville, Rachel A

    2007-01-01

    Anxa4 belongs to the multigenic annexin family of proteins which are characterized by their ability to interact with membranes in a calcium-dependent manner. Defined as a marker for polarized epithelial cells, Anxa4 is believed to be involved in many cellular processes but its functions in vivo are still poorly understood. Previously, we cloned Xanx4 in Xenopus laevis (now referred to as anxa4a) and demonstrated its role during organogenesis of the pronephros, providing the first evidence of a specific function for this protein during the development of a vertebrate. Here, we describe the strict conservation of protein sequence and functional domains of anxa4 during vertebrate evolution. We also identify the paralog of anxa4a, anxa4b and show its specific temporal and spatial expression pattern is different from anxa4a. We show that anxa4 orthologs in X. laevis and tropicalis display expression domains in different organ systems. Whilst the anxa4a gene is mainly expressed in the kidney, Xt anxa4 is expressed in the liver. Finally, we demonstrate Xt anxa4 and anxa4a can display conserved function during kidney organogenesis, despite the fact that Xt anxa4 transcripts are not expressed in this domain. This study highlights the divergence of expression of homologous genes during Xenopus evolution and raises the potential problems of using X. tropicalis promoters in X. laevis. PMID:19279706

  11. Purification and partial characterization of Xenopus laevis tenascin from the XTC cell line.

    PubMed

    Riou, J F; Alfandari, D; Eppe, M; Tacchetti, C; Chiquet, M; Boucaut, J C; Thiery, J P; Levi, G

    1991-02-25

    We report here the purification of tenascin, an extracellular matrix molecule involved in the control of morphogenesis, from the conditioned medium of the Xenopus XTC cell line. Tenascin was purified by affinity chromatography on a column of the monoclonal antibody mAb TnM1; the molecule eluted from this column has a relative molecular mass of 210 kDa after reduction. Electrophoretic analysis under non-reducing conditions shows that the purified components are oligomeric disulfide-linked complexes which barely enter a 4% polyacrylamide gel. Upon rotary shadowing these molecules appear to possess a central globular domain to which pairs or triplets of arms are attached. Polyclonal antibodies have been raised against purified Xenopus tenascin. They recognise specifically the antigen on Western blots of XTC conditioned medium and adult brain, by immunofluorescence, these antibodies reveal large amounts of tenascin in the secretory vesicles as well as in the extracellular matrix of XTC cells. In the Xenopus tadpole, they stain the developing cartilage, the basal lamina of skin epidermis, myotendinous ligaments and restricted regions of the central nervous system.

  12. Natural variation in embryo mechanics: gastrulation in Xenopus laevis is highly robust to variation in tissue stiffness

    PubMed Central

    von Dassow, Michelangelo; Davidson, Lance A.

    2009-01-01

    How sensitive is morphogenesis to the mechanical properties of embryos? To estimate an upper bound on the sensitivity of early morphogenetic movements to tissue mechanical properties, we assessed natural variability in the apparent stiffness among gastrula-stage Xenopus laevis embryos. We adapted micro-aspiration methods to make repeated, non-destructive measurements of apparent tissue stiffness in whole embryos. Stiffness varied by close to a factor of 2 among embryos within a single clutch. Variation between clutches was of similar magnitude. On the other hand, the direction of change in stiffness over the course of gastrulation was the same in all embryos and in all clutches. Neither pH nor salinity – two environmental factors we predicted could affect variability in nature – affected tissue stiffness. Our results indicate that gastrulation in X. laevis is robust to at least two-fold variation in tissue stiffness. PMID:19097119

  13. Prolonged vestibular stimulation induces homeostatic plasticity of the vestibulo-ocular reflex in larval Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Dietrich, Haike; Straka, Hans

    2016-07-01

    Vestibulo-ocular reflexes (VOR) stabilise retinal images during head/body motion in vertebrates by generating spatio-temporally precise extraocular motor commands for corrective eye movements. While VOR performance is generally robust with a relatively stable gain, cerebellar circuits are capable of adapting the underlying sensory-motor transformation. Here, we studied cerebellum-dependent VOR plasticity by recording head motion-induced lateral rectus and superior oblique extraocular motor discharge in semi-intact preparations of Xenopus laevis tadpoles. In the absence of visual feedback, prolonged sinusoidal rotation caused either an increase or decrease of the VOR gain depending on the motion stimulus amplitude. The observed changes in extraocular motor discharge gradually saturated after 20 min of constant rotation and returned to baseline in the absence of motion stimulation. Furthermore, plastic changes in lateral rectus and superior oblique motor commands were plane-specific for horizontal and vertical rotations, respectively, suggesting that alterations are restricted to principal VOR connections. Comparison of multi- and single-unit activity indicated that plasticity occurs in all recorded units of a given extraocular motor nucleus. Ablation of the cerebellum abolished motoneuronal gain changes and prevented the induction of plasticity, thus demonstrating that both acquisition and retention of this type of plasticity require an intact cerebellar circuitry. In conclusion, the plane-specific and stimulus intensity-dependent modification of the VOR gain through the feed-forward cerebellar circuitry represents a homeostatic plasticity that likely maintains an optimal working range for the underlying sensory-motor transformation.

  14. Low concentrations of metal mixture exposures have adverse effects on selected biomarkers of Xenopus laevis tadpoles.

    PubMed

    Yologlu, Ertan; Ozmen, Murat

    2015-11-01

    Polluted ecosystems may contain mixtures of metals, such that the combinations of metals, even in low concentrations, may cause adverse effects. In the present study, we focused on toxic effects of mixtures of selected metals, the LC50 values, and also their safety limit in aquatic systems imposed by the European legislation using a model organism. Xenopus laevis tadpoles were used as test organisms. They were exposed to metals or their combinations due to 96-h LC50 values. Glutathione S-transferase (GST), glutathione reductase (GR), acetylcholinesterase (AChE), carboxylesterase (CaE), glutathione peroxidase (GPx), and catalase (CAT) levels were evaluated. Metallothionein concentrations were also determined. The LC50s for Cd, Pb, and Cu were calculated as 5.81mg AI/L, 123.05mg AI/L, and 0.85mg AI/L, respectively. Low lethality ratios were observed with unary exposure of each metal in lower concentrations. Double or triple combinations of LC50 and LC50/2 concentrations caused 100% lethality with Cd+Cu and Pb+Cd+Cu mixtures, while the Pb+Cu mixture also caused high lethal ratios. The selected enzyme activities were significantly affected by metals or mixtures, and dose-related effects were determined. The metallothionein levels generally increased as related to concentration in unary metals and mixtures. Acceptable limit values of unary metals and mixtures did not significantly change metallothionein levels. The results suggest that oxidative stress-related mechanisms are involved in the toxicity induced by selected metals with combinations of very low concentrations.

  15. Characterization of the hypothalamus of Xenopus laevis during development. II. The basal regions.

    PubMed

    Domínguez, Laura; González, Agustín; Moreno, Nerea

    2014-04-01

    The expression patterns of conserved developmental regulatory transcription factors and neuronal markers were analyzed in the basal hypothalamus of Xenopus laevis throughout development by means of combined immunohistochemical and in situ hybridization techniques. The connectivity of the main subdivisions was investigated by in vitro tracing techniques with dextran amines. The basal hypothalamic region is topologically rostral to the basal diencephalon and is composed of the tuberal (rostral) and mammillary (caudal) subdivisions, according to the prosomeric model. It is dorsally bounded by the optic chiasm and the alar hypothalamus, and caudally by the diencephalic prosomere p3. The tuberal hypothalamus is defined by the expression of Nkx2.1, xShh, and Isl1, and rostral and caudal portions can be distinguished by the distinct expression of Otp rostrally and Nkx2.2 caudally. In the mammillary region the xShh/Nkx2.1 combination defined the rostral mammillary area, expressing Nkx2.1, and the caudal retromammillary area, expressing xShh. The expression of xLhx1, xDll4, and Otp in the mammillary area and Isl1 in the tuberal region highlights the boundary between the two basal hypothalamic territories. Both regions are strongly connected with subpallial regions, especially those conveying olfactory/vomeronasal information, and also possess abundant intrahypothalamic connections. They show reciprocal connections with the diencephalon (mainly the thalamus), project to the midbrain tectum, and are bidirectionally related to the rhombencephalon. These results illustrate that the basal hypothalamus of anurans shares many features of specification, regionalization, and hodology with amniotes, reinforcing the idea of a basic bauplan in the organization of this prosencephalic region in all tetrapods.

  16. Chronic sublethal exposure to silver nanoparticles disrupts thyroid hormone signaling during Xenopus laevis metamorphosis.

    PubMed

    Carew, Amanda C; Hoque, M Ehsanul; Metcalfe, Chris D; Peyrot, Caroline; Wilkinson, Kevin J; Helbing, Caren C

    2015-02-01

    Nanoparticles (NPs) are engineered in the nanoscale (<100 nm) to have unique physico-chemical properties from their bulk counterparts. Nanosilver particles (AgNPs) are the most prevalent NPs in consumer products due to their strong antimicrobial action. While AgNP toxicity at high concentrations has been thoroughly investigated, the sublethal effects at or below regulatory guidelines are relatively unknown. Amphibian metamorphosis is mediated by thyroid hormone (TH), and initial studies with bullfrogs (Rana catesbeiana) indicate that low concentrations of AgNPs disrupt TH-dependent responses in premetamorphic tadpole tailfin tissue. The present study examined the effects of low, non-lethal, environmentally-relevant AgNP concentrations (0.018, 0.18 or 1.8 μg/L Ag; ∼10 nm particle size) on naturally metamorphosing Xenopus laevis tadpoles in two-28 day chronic exposures beginning with either pre- or prometamorphic developmental stages. Asymmetric flow field flow fractionation with online inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry and nanoparticle tracking analysis indicated a mixture of single AgNPs with homo-agglomerates in the exposure water with a significant portion (∼30-40%) found as dissolved Ag. Tadpoles bioaccumulated AgNPs and displayed transient alterations in snout/vent and hindlimb length with AgNP exposure. Using MAGEX microarray and quantitative real time polymerase chain reaction transcript analyses, AgNP-induced disruption of five TH-responsive targets was observed. The increased mRNA abundance of two peroxidase genes by AgNP exposure suggests the presence of reactive oxygen species even at low, environmentally-relevant concentrations. Furthermore, differential responsiveness to AgNPs was observed at each developmental stage. Therefore, low concentrations of AgNPs had developmental stage-specific endocrine disrupting effects during TH-dependent metamorphosis.

  17. Long-range gap junctional signaling controls oncogene-mediated tumorigenesis in Xenopus laevis embryos.

    PubMed

    Chernet, Brook T; Fields, Chris; Levin, Michael

    2014-01-01

    In addition to the immediate microenvironment, long-range signaling may be an important component of cancer. Molecular-genetic analyses have implicated gap junctions-key mediators of cell-cell communication-in carcinogenesis. We recently showed that the resting voltage potential of distant cell groups is a key determinant of metastatic transformation and tumor induction. Here, we show in the Xenopus laevis model that gap junctional communication (GJC) is a modulator of the long-range bioelectric signaling that regulates tumor formation. Genetic disruption of GJC taking place within tumors, within remote host tissues, or between the host and tumors significantly lowers the incidence of tumors induced by KRAS mutations. The most pronounced suppression of tumor incidence was observed upon GJC disruption taking place farther away from oncogene-expressing cells, revealing a role for GJC in distant cells in the control of tumor growth. In contrast, enhanced GJC communication through the overexpression of wild-type connexin Cx26 increased tumor incidence. Our data confirm a role for GJC in tumorigenesis, and reveal that this effect is non-local. Based on these results and on published data on movement of ions through GJs, we present a quantitative model linking the GJC coupling and bioelectrical state of cells to the ability of oncogenes to initiate tumorigenesis. When integrated with data on endogenous bioelectric signaling during left-right patterning, the model predicts differential tumor incidence outcomes depending on the spatial configurations of gap junction paths relative to tumor location and major anatomical body axes. Testing these predictions, we found that the strongest influence of GJ modulation on tumor suppression by hyperpolarization occurred along the embryonic left-right axis. Together, these data reveal new, long-range aspects of cancer control by the host's physiological parameters. PMID:25646081

  18. CFTR channel in oocytes from Xenopus laevis and its regulation by xShroom1 protein.

    PubMed

    Palma, Alejandra G; Galizia, Luciano; Kotsias, Basilio A; Marino, Gabriela I

    2016-05-01

    Shroom is a family of related proteins linked to the actin cytoskeleton. xShroom1 is constitutively expressed in Xenopus laevis oocytes, and it is required for the expression of the epithelial sodium channel (ENaC). As there is a close relationship between ENaC and the cystic fibrosis transmembrane regulator (CFTR), we examined the action of xShroom1 on CFTR expression and activity. Biotinylation was used to measure CFTR surface expression, and currents were registered with voltage clamp when stimulated with forskolin and 3-isobutyl-1-methylxanthine. Oocytes were coinjected with CFTR complementary RNAs (cRNAs) and xShroom1 sense or antisense oligonucleotides. We observed an increment in CFTR currents and CFTR surface expression in oocytes coinjected with CFTR and xShroom1 antisense oligonucleotides. MG-132, a proteasome inhibitor, did not prevent the increment in currents when xShroom1 was suppressed by antisense oligonucleotides. In addition, we inhibited the delivery of newly synthesized proteins to the plasma membrane with BFA and we found that the half-life of plasma membrane CFTR was prolonged when coinjected with the xShroom1 antisense oligonucleotides. Chloroquine, an inhibitor of the late endosome/lysosome, did not significantly increase CFTR currents when xShroom1 expression was inhibited. The higher expression of CFTR when xShroom1 is suppressed is in concordance with the functional studies suggesting that the suppression of the xShroom1 protein resulted in an increment in CFTR currents by promoting the increase of the half-life of CFTR in the plasma membrane. The role of xShroom1 in regulating CFTR expression could be relevant in the understanding of the channel malfunction in several diseases.

  19. Embryotoxic effects of environmental chemicals: tests with the South African clawed toad (Xenopus laevis)

    SciTech Connect

    Dumpert, K.

    1987-06-01

    In the course of the investigations reported below, it was shown that p-chloroaniline has a lethal effect on the embryos of Xenopus laevis at a concentration of 100 ppm and is development inhibiting (teratogenic) at concentrations of 1 and 10 ppm, respectively. In the case of aniline, a significant development-inhibiting effect was observed at a concentration as low as 1 ppm. A toxic effect was caused by concentrations between 30 and 40 ppm during embryogenesis and by concentrations above 40 ppm during larval development. A very conspicuous finding was an inhibiting effect of 20 to 40 ppm aniline on pigmentation during embryogenesis and of a concentration as low as 1 ppm on the body size of the young toads. In the case of potassium dichromate, it was possible to barely detect a weak development-inhibiting effect during embryogenesis but no development-retarding effect during larval development. Toxic effects of potassium dichromate occurred during embryogenesis at concentrations of 5 and 7.5 ppm and during the larval development at concentrations above 10 ppm. Sodium dodecylbenzenesulfonic acid at a concentration of 50 ppm was found to have such a strong embryolethal effect that 80% of the eggs showed no cell division at all and the remaining 20% developed to only the bicellular stage. A teratogenic effect of this substance was not observed. Phenol, too, was found to be toxic at a concentration of 50 ppm; in contrast to sodium dodecylbenzenesulfonic acid, however, it did not show any lethal effect on the embryos but it did on the tadpoles, mainly in the first stages of larval development. Lower concentrations of phenol (5 and 10 ppm) had a nonsignificant inhibiting effect on the growth of the larvae. A teratogenic effect of phenol was not detected.

  20. Expression of the hepatocellular chloride-dependent sulfobromophthalein uptake system in Xenopus laevis oocytes.

    PubMed Central

    Jacquemin, E; Hagenbuch, B; Stieger, B; Wolkoff, A W; Meier, P J

    1991-01-01

    The expression of the basolateral chloride-activated organic anion uptake system of rat hepatocytes has been studied in Xenopus laevis oocytes. Injection of oocytes with rat liver poly(A)+RNA resulted in the functional expression of chloride-dependent sulfobromophthalein (BSP) uptake within 3-5 d. This expressed chloride-dependent BSP uptake system exhibited saturation kinetics (apparent Km approximately 6.2 microM) and efficiently extracted BSP from its binding sites on BSA. Furthermore, the chloride-activated portion of BSP uptake was inhibited by bilirubin (10 microM; inhibition 53%), 4,4'-diisothiocyano-2,2-disulfonic acid stilbene (DIDS, 100 microM; 80%), taurocholate (100 microM; 80%), and cholate (200 microM; 95%). In contrast to results with total rat liver mRNA, injection of mRNA derived from the Na+/bile acid cotransporter cDNA (Hagenbuch, B., B. Stieger, M. Foguet, H. Lübbert, and P. J. Meier. 1991. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA. In press.) had no effect on BSP uptake into oocytes. Size fractionation of total rat liver mRNA revealed that a 2.0- to 3.5-kb size-class mRNA was sufficient to express the hepatic chloride-dependent BSP uptake system. These data indicate that "expression cloning" in oocytes represents a promising approach to ultimately clone the cDNA coding for the hepatocyte high affinity, chloride-dependent organic anion uptake system. Furthermore, the results confirm that the Na+/bile acid cotransport system does not mediate BSP uptake. PMID:1752967

  1. Distribution and morphology of sacral spinal cord neurons innervating pelvic structures in Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Campbell, H L; Beattie, M S; Bresnahan, J C

    1994-09-22

    Relatively little is known about the organization of neural input to pelvic viscera in amphibia. In this study, sacral spinal efferent neurons were labeled in Xenopus laevis frogs by application of horseradish peroxidase (HRP) to the tenth spinal nerve, to pelvic musculature, or to the pelvic nerve. DiI was applied to the pelvic nerve with similar results. Labeled spinal neurons were located in the intermediate gray or in the ventral horn. Neurons in the tenth dorsal root ganglion, but not in the spinal cord, were labeled after application of HRP or DiI to the pudendal nerve. The labeled neurons in the spinal cord intermediate gray were in a position comparable to that of the mammalian sacral parasympathetic nucleus (SPN). Two apparent subdivisions included 1) a medial cluster of cells with mediolaterally oriented dendrites and 2) a lateral group with dorsoventrally oriented dendrites. An intermediate group, not clearly classed with the other two, was also identifiable. In some cases, labeled tenth nerve primary afferents were seen in contact with efferent neurons of the intermediate gray. Labeled neurons in the ventral horn medial to the lateral motor column were small, with dendrites oriented mediolaterally, in a position comparable to that of the mammalian Onuf's nucleus. The peripheral targets of DiI-labeled pelvic nerve axons were the compressor cloaca muscle, cloaca, and bladder. DiI-labeled pudendal nerve axons distributed peripherally to cloacal lip and medial thigh integument. These data suggest that the pudendal nerve in amphibians is purely sensory and that both somatic and autonomic motor axons traverse the pelvic nerve.

  2. Prolonged vestibular stimulation induces homeostatic plasticity of the vestibulo-ocular reflex in larval Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Dietrich, Haike; Straka, Hans

    2016-07-01

    Vestibulo-ocular reflexes (VOR) stabilise retinal images during head/body motion in vertebrates by generating spatio-temporally precise extraocular motor commands for corrective eye movements. While VOR performance is generally robust with a relatively stable gain, cerebellar circuits are capable of adapting the underlying sensory-motor transformation. Here, we studied cerebellum-dependent VOR plasticity by recording head motion-induced lateral rectus and superior oblique extraocular motor discharge in semi-intact preparations of Xenopus laevis tadpoles. In the absence of visual feedback, prolonged sinusoidal rotation caused either an increase or decrease of the VOR gain depending on the motion stimulus amplitude. The observed changes in extraocular motor discharge gradually saturated after 20 min of constant rotation and returned to baseline in the absence of motion stimulation. Furthermore, plastic changes in lateral rectus and superior oblique motor commands were plane-specific for horizontal and vertical rotations, respectively, suggesting that alterations are restricted to principal VOR connections. Comparison of multi- and single-unit activity indicated that plasticity occurs in all recorded units of a given extraocular motor nucleus. Ablation of the cerebellum abolished motoneuronal gain changes and prevented the induction of plasticity, thus demonstrating that both acquisition and retention of this type of plasticity require an intact cerebellar circuitry. In conclusion, the plane-specific and stimulus intensity-dependent modification of the VOR gain through the feed-forward cerebellar circuitry represents a homeostatic plasticity that likely maintains an optimal working range for the underlying sensory-motor transformation. PMID:27152983

  3. Long-range gap junctional signaling controls oncogene-mediated tumorigenesis in Xenopus laevis embryos

    PubMed Central

    Chernet, Brook T.; Fields, Chris; Levin, Michael

    2015-01-01

    In addition to the immediate microenvironment, long-range signaling may be an important component of cancer. Molecular-genetic analyses have implicated gap junctions—key mediators of cell-cell communication—in carcinogenesis. We recently showed that the resting voltage potential of distant cell groups is a key determinant of metastatic transformation and tumor induction. Here, we show in the Xenopus laevis model that gap junctional communication (GJC) is a modulator of the long-range bioelectric signaling that regulates tumor formation. Genetic disruption of GJC taking place within tumors, within remote host tissues, or between the host and tumors significantly lowers the incidence of tumors induced by KRAS mutations. The most pronounced suppression of tumor incidence was observed upon GJC disruption taking place farther away from oncogene-expressing cells, revealing a role for GJC in distant cells in the control of tumor growth. In contrast, enhanced GJC communication through the overexpression of wild-type connexin Cx26 increased tumor incidence. Our data confirm a role for GJC in tumorigenesis, and reveal that this effect is non-local. Based on these results and on published data on movement of ions through GJs, we present a quantitative model linking the GJC coupling and bioelectrical state of cells to the ability of oncogenes to initiate tumorigenesis. When integrated with data on endogenous bioelectric signaling during left-right patterning, the model predicts differential tumor incidence outcomes depending on the spatial configurations of gap junction paths relative to tumor location and major anatomical body axes. Testing these predictions, we found that the strongest influence of GJ modulation on tumor suppression by hyperpolarization occurred along the embryonic left-right axis. Together, these data reveal new, long-range aspects of cancer control by the host's physiological parameters. PMID:25646081

  4. Williams Syndrome Transcription Factor is critical for neural crest cell function in Xenopus laevis

    PubMed Central

    Barnett, Chris; Yazgan, Oya; Kuo, Hui-Ching; Malakar, Sreepurna; Thomas, Trevor; Fitzgerald, Amanda; Harbour, Billy; Henry, Jonathan J.; Krebs, Jocelyn E.

    2012-01-01

    Williams Syndrome Transcription Factor (WSTF) is one of ~25 haplodeficient genes in patients with the complex developmental disorder Williams Syndrome (WS). WS results in visual/spatial processing defects, cognitive impairment, unique behavioral phenotypes, characteristic “elfin” facial features, low muscle tone and heart defects. WSTF exists in several chromatin remodeling complexes and has roles in transcription, replication, and repair. Chromatin remodeling is essential during embryogenesis, but WSTF’s role in vertebrate development is poorly characterized. To investigate the developmental role of WSTF, we knocked down WSTF in Xenopus laevis embryos using a morpholino that targets WSTF mRNA. BMP4 shows markedly increased and spatially aberrant expression in WSTF-deficient embryos, while SHH, MRF4, PAX2, EPHA4 and SOX2 expression are severely reduced, coupled with defects in a number of developing embryonic structures and organs. WSTF-deficient embryos display defects in anterior neural development. Induction of the neural crest, measured by expression of the neural crest-specific genes SNAIL and SLUG, is unaffected by WSTF depletion. However, at subsequent stages WSTF knockdown results in a severe defect in neural crest migration and/or maintenance. Consistent with a maintenance defect, WSTF knockdowns display a specific pattern of increased apoptosis at the tailbud stage in regions corresponding to the path of cranial neural crest migration. Our work is the first to describe a role for WSTF in proper neural crest function, and suggests that neural crest defects resulting from WSTF haploinsufficiency may be a major contributor to the pathoembryology of WS. PMID:22691402

  5. Bacteriophage φC31 Integrase Mediated Transgenesis in Xenopus laevis for Protein Expression at Endogenous Levels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Allen, Bryan G.; Weeks, Daniel L.

    Bacteriophage φC31 inserts its genome into that of its host bacterium via the integrase enzyme which catalyzes recombination between a phage attachment site (attP) and a bacterial attachment site (attB). Integrase requires no accessory factors, has a high efficiency of recombination, and does not need perfect sequence fidelity for recognition and recombination between these attachment sites. These imperfect attachment sites, or pseudo-attachment sites, are present in many organisms and have been used to insert transgenes in a variety of species. Here we describe the φC31 integrase approach to make transgenic Xenopus laevis embryos.

  6. Intracellular microRNA profiles form in the Xenopus laevis oocyte that may contribute to asymmetric cell division

    PubMed Central

    Sidova, Monika; Sindelka, Radek; Castoldi, Mirco; Benes, Vladimir; Kubista, Mikael

    2015-01-01

    Asymmetric distribution of fate determinants within cells is an essential biological strategy to prepare them for asymmetric division. In this work we measure the intracellular distribution of 12 maternal microRNAs (miRNA) along the animal-vegetal axis of the Xenopus laevis oocyte using qPCR tomography. We find the miRNAs have distinct intracellular profiles that resemble two out of the three profiles we previously observed for mRNAs. Our results suggest that miRNAs in addition to proteins and mRNAs may have asymmetric distribution within the oocyte and may contribute to asymmetric cell division as cell fate determinants. PMID:26059897

  7. Comparative acid phosphatase distribution in the suprarenal gland of Discoglossus pictus, Xenopus laevis and Bufo bufo (Anurans, Amphibia).

    PubMed

    Manelli, H; Mastrolia, L; Arizzi, M

    1981-01-01

    Acid phosphatase activity was found to have a similar distribution in the suprarenal glands of Discoglossus pictus, Xenopus laevis and Bufo Bufo (Anurans, Amphibia) as determined by light and electron histochemical localization. The enzymatic activity is localized in the lysosomes of both the interrenal cells and the chromaffin cells. It is, moreover, positive on the granule membranes of the adrenaline cells whereas it appears only occasionally on the granule membranes of the noradrenaline cells. Some precipitates can also be seen occasionally at the level of the Golgi membranes.

  8. Plasma sex steroid concentrations and gonadal aromatase activities in African clawed frogs (Xenopus laevis) from South Africa.

    PubMed

    Hecker, Markus; Giesy, John P; Jones, Paul D; Jooste, Alarik M; Carr, James A; Solomon, Keith R; Smith, Ernest E; Van der Kraak, Glen; Kendall, Ronald J; Du Preez, Louis

    2004-08-01

    Adult African clawed frogs (Xenopus laevis) were collected from a corn-growing region (CGR) and a non-corn-growing region (NCGR) with different exposure profiles for atrazine and related triazines. Physical, chemical, and biological parameters from the catchment areas were also measured. Frogs were surveyed for possible effects of exposure to triazine herbicides on plasma testosterone (T) and estradiol (E2) titers, gonadal aromatase activity, and gonad growth (GSI). Concentrations of both T and E2 varied among locations and were correlated to some accessory factors, such as pH, several ions, and metals. Greatest median plasma T concentrations (males: 19 ng/ml; females: 16 ng/ml) occurred in frogs inhabiting NCGR as compared to those from the CGR (males: 4 ng/ml; females: 1 ng/ml). Median E2 concentrations were also greater in frogs collected from the NCGR (males: 3 ng/ml; females: 28 ng/ml) than those in frogs from the CGR (males: 2 ng/ml; females: 5 ng/ml). Because some exposure to agricultural chemicals at both regions occurred, as did simultaneous exposures to multiple chemicals, a regression analysis was employed. Negative correlations were observed between plasma T concentrations and concentrations of atrazine, deisopropylatrazine, deethylatrazine, and tertbuthylazine in females and between T and diaminochlorotriazine in males. Estradiol in females exhibited a significant negative correlation with atrazine and deethylatrazine. No correlations were observed between gonadal aromatase activity or GSI and any of the agricultural chemicals measured. Median aromatase activities in ovaries varied among sampling sites ranging from 7 to >3000 times greater than those in males when measurable. Testicular aromatase activity was below the detection limit of the assay in male frogs at most of the sites. Although exposure to agricultural inputs did not affect aromatase activities, effects of atrazine or coapplied pesticides on sex steroid homeostasis cannot be excluded at

  9. Transcription factor COUP-TFII is indispensable for venous and lymphatic development in zebrafish and Xenopus laevis

    SciTech Connect

    Aranguren, Xabier L.; Beerens, Manu; Vandevelde, Wouter; Dewerchin, Mieke; Carmeliet, Peter; Luttun, Aernout

    2011-06-24

    Highlights: {yields} COUP-TFII deficiency in zebrafish affects arterio-venous EC specification. {yields} COUP-TFII is indispensable for lymphatic development in zebrafish. {yields} COUP-TFII knockdown in Xenopus disrupts lymphatic EC differentiation and migration. {yields} COUP-TFII's role in EC fate decisions is evolutionary conserved. -- Abstract: Transcription factors play a central role in cell fate determination. Gene targeting in mice revealed that Chicken Ovalbumin Upstream Promoter-Transcription Factor II (COUP-TFII, also known as Nuclear Receptor 2F2 or NR2F2) induces a venous phenotype in endothelial cells (ECs). More recently, NR2F2 was shown to be required for initiating the expression of Prox1, responsible for lymphatic commitment of venous ECs. Small animal models like zebrafish embryos and Xenopus laevis tadpoles have been very useful to elucidate mechanisms of (lymph) vascular development. Therefore, the role of NR2F2 in (lymph) vascular development was studied by eliminating its expression in these models. Like in mice, absence of NR2F2 in zebrafish resulted in distinct vascular defects including loss of venous marker expression, major trunk vessel fusion and vascular leakage. Both in zebrafish and Xenopus the development of the main lymphatic structures was severely hampered. NR2F2 knockdown significantly decreased prox1 expression in zebrafish ECs and the same manipulation affected lymphatic (L)EC commitment, migration and function in Xenopus tadpoles. Therefore, the role of NR2F2 in EC fate determination is evolutionary conserved.

  10. De novo Transcriptome Assemblies of Rana (Lithobates) catesbeiana and Xenopus laevis Tadpole Livers for Comparative Genomics without Reference Genomes.

    PubMed

    Birol, Inanc; Behsaz, Bahar; Hammond, S Austin; Kucuk, Erdi; Veldhoen, Nik; Helbing, Caren C

    2015-01-01

    In this work we studied the liver transcriptomes of two frog species, the American bullfrog (Rana (Lithobates) catesbeiana) and the African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis). We used high throughput RNA sequencing (RNA-seq) data to assemble and annotate these transcriptomes, and compared how their baseline expression profiles change when tadpoles of the two species are exposed to thyroid hormone. We generated more than 1.5 billion RNA-seq reads in total for the two species under two conditions as treatment/control pairs. We de novo assembled these reads using Trans-ABySS to reconstruct reference transcriptomes, obtaining over 350,000 and 130,000 putative transcripts for R. catesbeiana and X. laevis, respectively. Using available genomics resources for X. laevis, we annotated over 97% of our X. laevis transcriptome contigs, demonstrating the utility and efficacy of our methodology. Leveraging this validated analysis pipeline, we also annotated the assembled R. catesbeiana transcriptome. We used the expression profiles of the annotated genes of the two species to examine the similarities and differences between the tadpole liver transcriptomes. We also compared the gene ontology terms of expressed genes to measure how the animals react to a challenge by thyroid hormone. Our study reports three main conclusions. First, de novo assembly of RNA-seq data is a powerful method for annotating and establishing transcriptomes of non-model organisms. Second, the liver transcriptomes of the two frog species, R. catesbeiana and X. laevis, show many common features, and the distribution of their gene ontology profiles are statistically indistinguishable. Third, although they broadly respond the same way to the presence of thyroid hormone in their environment, their receptor/signal transduction pathways display marked differences. PMID:26121473

  11. De novo Transcriptome Assemblies of Rana (Lithobates) catesbeiana and Xenopus laevis Tadpole Livers for Comparative Genomics without Reference Genomes

    PubMed Central

    Birol, Inanc; Behsaz, Bahar; Hammond, S. Austin; Kucuk, Erdi; Veldhoen, Nik; Helbing, Caren C.

    2015-01-01

    In this work we studied the liver transcriptomes of two frog species, the American bullfrog (Rana (Lithobates) catesbeiana) and the African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis). We used high throughput RNA sequencing (RNA-seq) data to assemble and annotate these transcriptomes, and compared how their baseline expression profiles change when tadpoles of the two species are exposed to thyroid hormone. We generated more than 1.5 billion RNA-seq reads in total for the two species under two conditions as treatment/control pairs. We de novo assembled these reads using Trans-ABySS to reconstruct reference transcriptomes, obtaining over 350,000 and 130,000 putative transcripts for R. catesbeiana and X. laevis, respectively. Using available genomics resources for X. laevis, we annotated over 97% of our X. laevis transcriptome contigs, demonstrating the utility and efficacy of our methodology. Leveraging this validated analysis pipeline, we also annotated the assembled R. catesbeiana transcriptome. We used the expression profiles of the annotated genes of the two species to examine the similarities and differences between the tadpole liver transcriptomes. We also compared the gene ontology terms of expressed genes to measure how the animals react to a challenge by thyroid hormone. Our study reports three main conclusions. First, de novo assembly of RNA-seq data is a powerful method for annotating and establishing transcriptomes of non-model organisms. Second, the liver transcriptomes of the two frog species, R. catesbeiana and X. laevis, show many common features, and the distribution of their gene ontology profiles are statistically indistinguishable. Third, although they broadly respond the same way to the presence of thyroid hormone in their environment, their receptor/signal transduction pathways display marked differences. PMID:26121473

  12. De novo Transcriptome Assemblies of Rana (Lithobates) catesbeiana and Xenopus laevis Tadpole Livers for Comparative Genomics without Reference Genomes.

    PubMed

    Birol, Inanc; Behsaz, Bahar; Hammond, S Austin; Kucuk, Erdi; Veldhoen, Nik; Helbing, Caren C

    2015-01-01

    In this work we studied the liver transcriptomes of two frog species, the American bullfrog (Rana (Lithobates) catesbeiana) and the African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis). We used high throughput RNA sequencing (RNA-seq) data to assemble and annotate these transcriptomes, and compared how their baseline expression profiles change when tadpoles of the two species are exposed to thyroid hormone. We generated more than 1.5 billion RNA-seq reads in total for the two species under two conditions as treatment/control pairs. We de novo assembled these reads using Trans-ABySS to reconstruct reference transcriptomes, obtaining over 350,000 and 130,000 putative transcripts for R. catesbeiana and X. laevis, respectively. Using available genomics resources for X. laevis, we annotated over 97% of our X. laevis transcriptome contigs, demonstrating the utility and efficacy of our methodology. Leveraging this validated analysis pipeline, we also annotated the assembled R. catesbeiana transcriptome. We used the expression profiles of the annotated genes of the two species to examine the similarities and differences between the tadpole liver transcriptomes. We also compared the gene ontology terms of expressed genes to measure how the animals react to a challenge by thyroid hormone. Our study reports three main conclusions. First, de novo assembly of RNA-seq data is a powerful method for annotating and establishing transcriptomes of non-model organisms. Second, the liver transcriptomes of the two frog species, R. catesbeiana and X. laevis, show many common features, and the distribution of their gene ontology profiles are statistically indistinguishable. Third, although they broadly respond the same way to the presence of thyroid hormone in their environment, their receptor/signal transduction pathways display marked differences.

  13. Characteristics of a thyroid hormone responsive reporter gene transduced into a Xenopus laevis cell line using lentivirus vector.

    PubMed

    Sugiyama, Shin-Ichiro; Miyoshi, Hiroyuki; Yamauchi, Kiyoshi

    2005-12-01

    We introduced a self-inactivation (SIN) lentivirus vector (LV) into Xenopus laevis cell lines and established a permanent cell line expressing a reporter gene in a 3,5,3'-l-triiodothyronine (T(3)) dependent manner. The SIN LV contained the luciferase gene downstream from the X. laevis T(3)-response elements (TREs) and the SV40 promoter, and the enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) gene downstream from the cytomegalovirus (CMV) promoter. It was integrated into the genome of X. laevis XL58, XTC2, and KR cells. The SIN LV transduced the X. laevis cells as efficiently as mammalian cells; however, the expression of EGFP in the transgene decreased with increasing culture time. A cell clone exhibiting the highest TH-dependent luciferase gene expression (XL58-TRE-Luc clone) was isolated from the EGFP-positive XL58 cell pool and characterized. The minimum effective concentration of T(3) that significantly induced the luciferase gene expression was 10(-11)M in the XL58-TRE-Luc clone. The application of the luciferase gene assay using the permanent XL58-TRE-Luc clone for the screening of thyroid-disrupting chemicals revealed that tetrachlorobisphenol A, at 10(-6)M, had a weak T(3)-agonist activity, whereas trichlorobisphenol A, at 10(-8) - 10(-6)M had a weak T(3)-antagonist activity. Our results indicated that the permanent X. laevis cell line containing a T(3)-response transgene could be used as a bioassay, with small intra-assay variation, for the rapid screening, identification, and characterization of the thyroid-disrupting chemicals. PMID:16102758

  14. Electron microscopy of the amphibian model systems Xenopus laevis and Ambystoma mexicanum.

    PubMed

    Kurth, Thomas; Berger, Jürgen; Wilsch-Bräuninger, Michaela; Kretschmar, Susanne; Cerny, Robert; Schwarz, Heinz; Löfberg, Jan; Piendl, Thomas; Epperlein, Hans H

    2010-01-01

    In this chapter we provide a set of different protocols for the ultrastructural analysis of amphibian (Xenopus, axolotl) tissues, mostly of embryonic origin. For Xenopus these methods include: (1) embedding gastrulae and tailbud embryos into Spurr's resin for TEM, (2) post-embedding labeling of methacrylate (K4M) and cryosections through adult and embryonic epithelia for correlative LM and TEM, and (3) pre-embedding labeling of embryonic tissues with silver-enhanced nanogold. For the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) we present the following methods: (1) SEM of migrating neural crest (NC) cells; (2) SEM and TEM of extracellular matrix (ECM) material; (3) Cryo-SEM of extracellular matrix (ECM) material after cryoimmobilization; and (4) TEM analysis of hyaluronan using high-pressure freezing and HABP labeling. These methods provide exemplary approaches for a variety of questions in the field of amphibian development and regeneration, and focus on cell biological issues that can only be answered with fine structural imaging methods, such as electron microscopy. PMID:20869532

  15. Immune defenses against Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis, a fungus linked to global amphibian declines, in the South African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Ramsey, Jeremy P; Reinert, Laura K; Harper, Laura K; Woodhams, Douglas C; Rollins-Smith, Louise A

    2010-09-01

    Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis is a chytrid fungus that causes the lethal skin disease chytridiomycosis in amphibians. It is regarded as an emerging infectious disease affecting diverse amphibian populations in many parts of the world. Because there are few model amphibian species for immunological studies, little is known about immune defenses against B. dendrobatidis. We show here that the South African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis, is a suitable model for investigating immunity to this pathogen. After an experimental exposure, a mild infection developed over 20 to 30 days and declined by 45 days postexposure. Either purified antimicrobial peptides or mixtures of peptides in the skin mucus inhibited B. dendrobatidis growth in vitro. Skin peptide secretion was maximally induced by injection of norepinephrine, and this treatment resulted in sustained skin peptide depletion and increased susceptibility to infection. Sublethal X-irradiation of frogs decreased leukocyte numbers in the spleen and resulted in greater susceptibility to infection. Immunization against B. dendrobatidis induced elevated pathogen-specific IgM and IgY serum antibodies. Mucus secretions from X. laevis previously exposed to B. dendrobatidis contained significant amounts of IgM, IgY, and IgX antibodies that bind to B. dendrobatidis. These data strongly suggest that both innate and adaptive immune defenses are involved in the resistance of X. laevis to lethal B. dendrobatidis infections.

  16. RNS60, a charge-stabilized nanostructure saline alters Xenopus Laevis oocyte biophysical membrane properties by enhancing mitochondrial ATP production

    PubMed Central

    Choi, Soonwook; Yu, Eunah; Kim, Duk-Soo; Sugimori, Mutsuyuki; Llinás, Rodolfo R

    2015-01-01

    We have examined the effects of RNS60, a 0.9% saline containing charge-stabilized oxygen nanobubble-based structures. RNS60 is generated by subjecting normal saline to Taylor–Couette–Poiseuille (TCP) flow under elevated oxygen pressure. This study, implemented in Xenopus laevis oocytes, addresses both the electrophysiological membrane properties and parallel biological processes in the cytoplasm. Intracellular recordings from defolliculated X. laevis oocytes were implemented in: (1) air oxygenated standard Ringer's solution, (2) RNS60-based Ringer's solution, (3) RNS10.3 (TCP-modified saline without excess oxygen)-based Ringer's, and (4) ONS60 (saline containing high pressure oxygen without TCP modification)-based Ringer's. RNS60-based Ringer's solution induced membrane hyperpolarization from the resting membrane potential. This effect was prevented by: (1) ouabain (a blocker of the sodium/potassium ATPase), (2) rotenone (a mitochondrial electron transfer chain inhibitor preventing usable ATP synthesis), and (3) oligomycin A (an inhibitor of ATP synthase) indicating that RNS60 effects intracellular ATP levels. Increased intracellular ATP levels following RNS60 treatment were directly demonstrated using luciferin/luciferase photon emission. These results indicate that RNS60 alters intrinsic the electrophysiological properties of the X. laevis oocyte membrane by increasing mitochondrial-based ATP synthesis. Ultrastructural analysis of the oocyte cytoplasm demonstrated increased mitochondrial length in the presence of RNS60-based Ringer's solution. It is concluded that the biological properties of RNS60 relate to its ability to optimize ATP synthesis. PMID:25742953

  17. RNS60, a charge-stabilized nanostructure saline alters Xenopus Laevis oocyte biophysical membrane properties by enhancing mitochondrial ATP production.

    PubMed

    Choi, Soonwook; Yu, Eunah; Kim, Duk-Soo; Sugimori, Mutsuyuki; Llinás, Rodolfo R

    2015-03-01

    We have examined the effects of RNS60, a 0.9% saline containing charge-stabilized oxygen nanobubble-based structures. RNS60 is generated by subjecting normal saline to Taylor-Couette-Poiseuille (TCP) flow under elevated oxygen pressure. This study, implemented in Xenopus laevis oocytes, addresses both the electrophysiological membrane properties and parallel biological processes in the cytoplasm. Intracellular recordings from defolliculated X. laevis oocytes were implemented in: (1) air oxygenated standard Ringer's solution, (2) RNS60-based Ringer's solution, (3) RNS10.3 (TCP-modified saline without excess oxygen)-based Ringer's, and (4) ONS60 (saline containing high pressure oxygen without TCP modification)-based Ringer's. RNS60-based Ringer's solution induced membrane hyperpolarization from the resting membrane potential. This effect was prevented by: (1) ouabain (a blocker of the sodium/potassium ATPase), (2) rotenone (a mitochondrial electron transfer chain inhibitor preventing usable ATP synthesis), and (3) oligomycin A (an inhibitor of ATP synthase) indicating that RNS60 effects intracellular ATP levels. Increased intracellular ATP levels following RNS60 treatment were directly demonstrated using luciferin/luciferase photon emission. These results indicate that RNS60 alters intrinsic the electrophysiological properties of the X. laevis oocyte membrane by increasing mitochondrial-based ATP synthesis. Ultrastructural analysis of the oocyte cytoplasm demonstrated increased mitochondrial length in the presence of RNS60-based Ringer's solution. It is concluded that the biological properties of RNS60 relate to its ability to optimize ATP synthesis.

  18. A Cell-Free Assay Using Xenopus laevis Embryo Extracts to Study Mechanisms of Nuclear Size Regulation.

    PubMed

    Edens, Lisa J; Levy, Daniel L

    2016-08-08

    A fundamental question in cell biology is how cell and organelle sizes are regulated. It has long been recognized that the size of the nucleus generally scales with the size of the cell, notably during embryogenesis when dramatic reductions in both cell and nuclear sizes occur. Mechanisms of nuclear size regulation are largely unknown and may be relevant to cancer where altered nuclear size is a key diagnostic and prognostic parameter. In vivo approaches to identifying nuclear size regulators are complicated by the essential and complex nature of nuclear function. The in vitro approach described here to study nuclear size control takes advantage of the normal reductions in nuclear size that occur during Xenopus laevis development. First, nuclei are assembled in X. laevis egg extract. Then, these nuclei are isolated and resuspended in cytoplasm from late stage embryos. After a 30 - 90 min incubation period, nuclear surface area decreases by 20 - 60%, providing a useful assay to identify cytoplasmic components present in late stage embryos that contribute to developmental nuclear size scaling. A major advantage of this approach is the relative facility with which the egg and embryo extracts can be biochemically manipulated, allowing for the identification of novel proteins and activities that regulate nuclear size. As with any in vitro approach, validation of results in an in vivo system is important, and microinjection of X. laevis embryos is particularly appropriate for these studies.

  19. Continued Studies on the Effects of Simazine on the Liver Histological Structure and Metamorphosis in the Developing Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Sai, Linlin; Qu, Binpeng; Li, Yan; Jia, Qiang; Bo, Cunxiang; Liu, Yanzhong; Yu, Gongchang; Xie, Lin; Li, Ling; Ng, Jack C; Peng, Cheng

    2016-10-01

    This study continued our previous work (Sai et al. in Bull Environ Contam Toxicol 95:157-163, 2015a) by analysing the effects of simazine on the liver histological structure and metamorphosis in the developing Xenopus laevis. Tadpoles (Nieuwkoop-Faber stage 46) were exposed to simazine at 0.1, 1.2, 11.0 and 100.9 μg/L for 100 days. When tadpoles were exposed to simazine at 11.0 and 100.9 µg/L, an increased mortality and damaged liver tissues were observed together with significant inhibition of percent of X. laevis completing metamorphosis on days 80 and 90 and prolonged time of completing metamorphosis. On the other hand, we found that simazine has no significant effects on liver weight and altered hepatosomatic index. Results of this study may be considered to inform risk assessment of the effects of simazine on the development of X. laevis. PMID:27485009

  20. A Cell-Free Assay Using Xenopus laevis Embryo Extracts to Study Mechanisms of Nuclear Size Regulation.

    PubMed

    Edens, Lisa J; Levy, Daniel L

    2016-01-01

    A fundamental question in cell biology is how cell and organelle sizes are regulated. It has long been recognized that the size of the nucleus generally scales with the size of the cell, notably during embryogenesis when dramatic reductions in both cell and nuclear sizes occur. Mechanisms of nuclear size regulation are largely unknown and may be relevant to cancer where altered nuclear size is a key diagnostic and prognostic parameter. In vivo approaches to identifying nuclear size regulators are complicated by the essential and complex nature of nuclear function. The in vitro approach described here to study nuclear size control takes advantage of the normal reductions in nuclear size that occur during Xenopus laevis development. First, nuclei are assembled in X. laevis egg extract. Then, these nuclei are isolated and resuspended in cytoplasm from late stage embryos. After a 30 - 90 min incubation period, nuclear surface area decreases by 20 - 60%, providing a useful assay to identify cytoplasmic components present in late stage embryos that contribute to developmental nuclear size scaling. A major advantage of this approach is the relative facility with which the egg and embryo extracts can be biochemically manipulated, allowing for the identification of novel proteins and activities that regulate nuclear size. As with any in vitro approach, validation of results in an in vivo system is important, and microinjection of X. laevis embryos is particularly appropriate for these studies. PMID:27584618

  1. Changes in contractile properties by androgen hormones in sexually dimorphic muscles of male frogs (Xenopus laevis).

    PubMed Central

    Regnier, M; Herrera, A A

    1993-01-01

    1. Male frogs (Xenopus laevis) were castrated then given either empty or testosterone-filled implants to produce animals with low or high levels of circulating testosterone. Eight weeks later the contractile properties of an androgen-sensitive forelimb flexor, the flexor carpi radialis muscle (FCR), were measured in vitro. Another forelimb flexor muscle, the coracoradialis, and a hindlimb muscle, the iliofibularis, were analysed similarly. 2. Plasma testosterone levels were 0.9 +/- 0.3 ng/ml (+/- S.E.M.) in castrated frogs with blank implants (C) and 61.3 +/- 4.7 ng/ml in castrates with testosterone implants (CT). Unoperated males, sampled at various times of the year, ranged between 10.8 and 51.0 ng/ml. 3. With direct electrical stimulation of the FCR, contraction time of the isometric twitch was not affected by testosterone levels. Relaxation times were affected, however. Half- and 90% relaxation times were 27 and 42% longer, respectively, for CT compared to C muscles. 4. Testosterone also had no effect on the contraction time of twitches elicited by stimulation of the FCR nerve. Half- and 90% relaxation times were 51 and 76% longer, respectively, for CT compared to C muscles. 5. Tetanus tension, elicited by direct stimulation of the FCR at 50 Hz, was 86% greater in CT compared to C muscles. The average cross-sectional area of FCR muscle fibres was 84% greater in CT muscles. These results implied that testosterone treatment had no effect on specific muscle tension. 6. Stimulation of the FCR nerve at 50 Hz resulted in 53% less tension than the same stimulus applied directly to CT muscles. In C muscles the difference was only 14%. This suggested that testosterone treatment reduced synaptic efficacy. 7. In CT muscles, direct or nerve stimulation of fibres in the shoulder region of the FCR elicited twitches that contracted and relaxed more slowly than fibres in the elbow region. In C muscles there was no difference in contraction or relaxation time between fibres in

  2. Changes in acetyl CoA levels during the early embryonic development of Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Tsuchiya, Yugo; Pham, Uyen; Hu, Wanzhou; Ohnuma, Shin-Ichi; Gout, Ivan

    2014-01-01

    Coenzyme A (CoA) is a ubiquitous and fundamental intracellular cofactor. CoA acts as a carrier of metabolically important carboxylic acids in the form of CoA thioesters and is an obligatory component of a multitude of catabolic and anabolic reactions. Acetyl CoA is a CoA thioester derived from catabolism of all major carbon fuels. This metabolite is at a metabolic crossroads, either being further metabolised as an energy source or used as a building block for biosynthesis of lipids and cholesterol. In addition, acetyl CoA serves as the acetyl donor in protein acetylation reactions, linking metabolism to protein post-translational modifications. Recent studies in yeast and cultured mammalian cells have suggested that the intracellular level of acetyl CoA may play a role in the regulation of cell growth, proliferation and apoptosis, by affecting protein acetylation reactions. Yet, how the levels of this metabolite change in vivo during the development of a vertebrate is not known. We measured levels of acetyl CoA, free CoA and total short chain CoA esters during the early embryonic development of Xenopus laevis using HPLC. Acetyl CoA and total short chain CoA esters start to increase around midblastula transition (MBT) and continue to increase through stages of gastrulation, neurulation and early organogenesis. Pre-MBT embryos contain more free CoA relative to acetyl CoA but there is a shift in the ratio of acetyl CoA to CoA after MBT, suggesting a metabolic transition that results in net accumulation of acetyl CoA. At the whole-embryo level, there is an apparent correlation between the levels of acetyl CoA and levels of acetylation of a number of proteins including histones H3 and H2B. This suggests the level of acetyl CoA may be a factor, which determines the degree of acetylation of these proteins, hence may play a role in the regulation of embryogenesis. PMID:24831956

  3. Stoichiometry of the rat kidney Na+-HCO3- cotransporter expressed in Xenopus laevis oocytes.

    PubMed

    Heyer, M; Müller-Berger, S; Romero, M F; Boron, W F; Frömter, E

    1999-08-01

    The rat kidney Na+-HCO3- cotransporter (rkNBC) was expressed in Xenopus laevis oocytes and transport via rkNBC was studied with the patch-clamp technique in giant inside/out (i/o) or outside/out (o/o) membrane patches. The current/voltage (I/V) relation(s) of individual patches was(were) determined in solutions containing only Na+ and HCO3- as permeable ions. The current carried by rkNBC (INBC) was identified by its response to changing bath Na+ concentration(s) and quantified as the current blocked by 4, 4'-diisothiocyanatostilbene disulfonate (DIDS). The stoichiometric ratio (q) of HCO3- to Na+ transport was determined from zero-current (reversal) potentials. The results and conclusions are as follows. First, DIDS (250 micromol/l) blocks INBC irreversibly from both the extracellular and the intracellular surface. Second, in the presence of Na+ and HCO3- concentration gradients similar to those which rkNBC usually encounters in tubular cells, q was close to 2. The same value was also observed when the HCO3- concentration was 25 mmol/l throughout, but the Na+ concentration was either high (100 mmol/l) or low (10 mmol/l) on the extracellular or intracellular surface of the patch. These data demonstrate that in the oocyte cell membrane rkNBC works with q=2 as previously observed in a study of isolated microperfused tubules (Seki et al., Pflügers Arch 425:409, 1993), however, they do not exclude the possibility that in a different membrane and cytoplasmic environment rkNBC may operate with a different stoichiometry. Third, in most experiments bath application of up to 2 mmol/l ATP increased the DIDS-inhibitable conductance of i/o patches by up to twofold with a half saturation constant near 0.5 mmol/l. This increase was not associated with a change in q, nor with a shift in the I/V relationship which would suggest induction of active transport (pump current). Since the effect persisted after ATP removal and was not observed with the non-hydrolysable ATP analogue AMP

  4. Effects of cyanobacterial biomass and purified microcystins on malformations in Xenopus laevis: teratogenesis assay (FETAX).

    PubMed

    Dvoráková, Dagmar; Dvoráková, Katerina; Bláha, Ludek; Marsálek, Blahoslav; Knotková, Zora

    2002-12-01

    Xenopus laevis (African clawed frog) embryos in a 96-h teratogenesis assay (FETAX) were exposed to 0-250 microg/L and 500 microg/L of purified microcystin-LR (MCYST-LR) for the estimation of lethality, as well as to equivalent concentrations of biomass containing MCYST-LR (natural water bloom dominated by Microcystis aeruginosa) and biomass without MCYST-LR (bloom dominated by Microcystis wesenbergii). The highest tested concentrations of purified MCYST-LR caused up to 30% lethality after a 96-h exposure, corresponding to a LC(25) of 380 microg/L. Cyanobacterial biomass containing MCYST-LR caused significant lethality up to 50% at the highest tested concentrations (300 mg/L, i.e., 250 microg/L of MCYST-LR). The estimated 96-h LC(25) values varied from 125 mg/L (biomass containing MCYST-LR) up to 232 mg/L (biomass without MCYST-LR). A statistically significant increase in the number of malformed embryos was observed after exposure to cyanobacterial samples. Purified MCYST-LR at and above 25 microg/L significantly increased the number of malformations, with 53% of surviving embryos malformed in the highest tested concentration, 250 microg/L (EC(25) = 27 microg/L). Exposure to the highest concentration of MCYST-LR containing biomass resulted in more than 60% of the embryos being malformed and an EC(25) of 52 mg/L (i.e., 43 microg of MCYST-LR/L). Cyanobacterial biomass with no natural microcystin also induced substantial malformations-about 50% aberrant embryos at the highest concentration, 300 mg/L (EC(25) = 75 mg/L). External additions of purified MCYST-LR to the biomass that was originally without microcystins resulted in a slight additional increase in the rate of malformations (80% at the highest concentration, 300 mg of biomass plus 250 microg of MCYST-LR per liter). A comparison of lethality and effects on malformations (teratogenic index, TI = LC(25)/EC(25)) showed that all samples had significant teratogenic potential in the FETAX assay (TI(MCYST-LR) = 14; TI

  5. Atrazine exposure affects growth, body condition and liver health in Xenopus laevis tadpoles.

    PubMed

    Zaya, Renee M; Amini, Zakariya; Whitaker, Ashley S; Kohler, Steven L; Ide, Charles F

    2011-08-01

    Six studies were performed regarding the effects of atrazine, the most frequently detected pesticide in fresh water in the US, on developing Xenopus laevis tadpoles exposed 5 days post-hatch through Nieuwkoop Faber Stage 62. The levels of atrazine tested included those potentially found in puddles, vernal ponds and runoff soon after application (200 and 400 μg/L) and a low level studied by a number of other investigators (25 μg/L). One study tested 0, 25 and 200 μg/L, another tested 0, 200 and 400 μg/L, while the remaining four studies tested 0 and 400 μg/L. During all exposures, mortality, growth, metamorphosis, sex ratio, fat body (a lipid storage organ) size and liver weights, both relative to body weight, were evaluated. In selected studies, feeding behavior was recorded, livers and fat bodies were histologically evaluated, liver glycogen and lipid content were determined by image analysis, and immunohistochemical detection of activated caspase-3 in hepatocytes was performed. The NOEC was 25 μg/L. None of these exposure levels changed sex ratios nor were intersex gonads noted, however, no definitive histological evaluation of the gonads was performed. Although a marginal increase in mortality at the 200 μg/L level was noted, this was not statistically significant. Nor was there an increase in mortality at 400 μg/L versus controls. At the 400 μg/L level, tadpoles were smaller than controls by 72 h of exposure and remained smaller throughout the entire exposure. Appetite was not decreased at any exposure level. Slowed metamorphosis was noted only at 400 μg/L in two of five studies. Livers were significantly smaller in the study that tested both 200 and 400 μg/L, yet no pathological changes or differences in glycogen or lipid stores were noted. However, livers from 400 μg/L exposed tadpoles had higher numbers of activated caspase-3 immunopositive cells suggesting increased rates of apoptosis. Fat body size decreased significantly after exposure to 200

  6. Multiple noggins in vertebrate genome: cloning and expression of noggin2 and noggin4 in Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Eroshkin, Fedor M; Ermakova, Galina V; Bayramov, Andrey V; Zaraisky, Andrey G

    2006-01-01

    Noggin is a neural inducer secreted by cells of the Spemann organizer. A single noggin gene was identified until very recently in all tested vertebrates. The only exception was zebrafish, in which two close homologs of noggin, named noggin1 and noggin3, and one gene more diverged from them, noggin2, were cloned. Nevertheless, finding of three zebrafish noggins was attributed exclusively to specific genomic duplications in the fish evolutionary branch. However, very recently it was shown that Xenopus tropicalis have additional noggin homolog, called noggin2 [Fletcher, R.B., Watson, A.L., Harland, R.M. (2004). Expression of Xenopus tropicalis noggin1 and noggin2 in early development: two noggin genes in a tetrapod. Gene Expr. Patterns 5, 225-230], which indicates at least two independent noggin genes in vertebrate phylum. Now we report identification of two novel noggin homologs in each of so evolutionary distant species as Xenopus laevis, chicken and fugu. One of these noggins is ortholog of the X. tropicalis and zebrafish noggin2, whereas another, named noggin4, was not known previously. In the X. laevis embryos, the expression of noggin2 very resembles that of its counterpart in X. tropicalis: it begins with neurulation at the anterior margin of the neural plate and, afterward, continues mainly in the forebrain and dorsal hindbrain. At the same time, noggin4 is expressed starting from the beginning of gastrulation, throughout the ectoderm, with a local expression maximum in the prospective anterior neurectoderm. Later, it is widely expressed on the dorsal side of embryo, including neural tube, eyes, otic vesicles, cranial placodes, branchial arches, and somites. The data presented here demonstrate that the vertebrate phylum contains at least three distinct noggin genes.

  7. In vivo Assessment and Potential Diagnosis of Xenobiotics that Perturb the Thyroid Pathway: Proteomic Analysis of Xenopus laevis Brain Tissue following Exposure to Model T4 Inhibitors

    EPA Science Inventory

    As part of a multi-endpoint systems approach to develop comprehensive methods for assessing endocrine stressors in vertebrates, differential protein profiling was used to investigate expression profiles in the brain of an amphibian model (Xenopus laevis) following in vivo exposur...

  8. Effects of cell heterogeneity on production of polypeptide growth factors and mesoderm-inducing activity by Xenopus laevis XTC cells.

    PubMed

    Snoek, G T; Koster, C H; de Laat, S W; Heideveld, M; Durston, A J; van Zoelen, E J

    1990-04-01

    The Xenopus laevis XTC cell line has been analyzed for the production of polypeptide growth factors and mesoderm-inducing activity. By the use of specific biological assays, it is shown that XTC cells produce a growth factor functionally related to the platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF) and two transforming growth factor (TGF) beta-like activities. Mesoderm-inducing activity, as measured on X. laevis ectodermal explants from stage 10 embryos, was found to coelute on a Bio-Gel P-100 column with one of the TGF beta-like activities at an apparent molecular weight of 6-10 kDa. Analysis of the DNA content from XTC cells by flow cytometry demonstrated that the cell line is heterogeneous and consists of both tetraploid and diploid cells. Cloning of the XTC cells and selecting single-cell colonies on the basis of their ability to grow in soft agar resulted in the isolation of several homogeneous, morphologically different clonal derivatives. Analysis of conditioned medium from these clonal derivatives showed that only one of them, the only diploid line among six investigated, produced a strong heat- and acid-stable mesoderm-inducing activity that induced notochord and muscle formation in stage 10 X. laevis ectodermal explants. The relation between this activity and a recently described TGF beta-like mesoderm-inducing factor obtained from XTC-conditioned medium will be discussed. In conclusion, a clonal cell line derived from X. laevis XTC cells which provides a good source for further characterization of mesoderm-inducing factors has been established.

  9. The finger motif defines a multigene family represented in the maternal mRNA of Xenopus laevis oocytes.

    PubMed Central

    Köster, M; Pieler, T; Pöting, A; Knöchel, W

    1988-01-01

    We have screened Xenopus laevis cDNA and genomic libraries for finger motif encoding sequences by use of a synthetic oligonucleotide probe coding for a stretch of conserved amino acids, the H/C-link, which joins individual finger loops in several multi-fingered proteins. Our studies reveal that a large number of different cDNA clones encode amino acid sequences predicting multiple units of the metal-coordinating finger structure. Derived proteins are different from each other as well as from the two examples of Xenopus finger proteins reported to date, TFIIIA and X.fin. The 109 finger repeats characterized are derived from 14 different cDNA clones and have been analysed for the presence of conserved and highly variable amino acids, revealing a close structural relatedness among each other as well as with a few selected finger domains from Drosophila and mouse proteins. The results from this comparative sequence analysis are also discussed in terms of the existing models for DNA binding. All sequences are identified in an ovary cDNA library but the patterns of mRNA level for individual finger clones vary greatly during early development. The prevalence of these structures in the oocyte suggests that part of the maternal information for the realization of the developmental program utilized in Xenopus embryogenesis might be transmitted in the form of regulatory, nucleic-acid-binding proteins. Images PMID:3139407

  10. Extracts from plants used in Mexican traditional medicine activate Ca(2+)-dependent chloride channels in Xenopus laevis oocytes.

    PubMed

    Rojas, A; Mendoza, S; Moreno, J; Arellano, R O

    2003-01-01

    The two-electrode voltage-clamp technique was employed to investigate the effects of chloroform-methanol (1:1) extracts derived from five medicinal plants on Xenopus laevis oocytes. When evaluated at concentrations of 1 to 500 microg/ml, the extracts prepared from the aerial parts of Baccharis heterophylla H.B.K (Asteraceae), Chenopodium murale L. (Chenopodiaceae), Desmodium grahami Gray (Leguminosae) and Solanum rostratum Dun (Solanaceae) produced concentration-dependent oscillatory inward currents in the oocytes, while the extract of Gentiana spathacea did not induce any response. The reversal potential of the currents elicited by the active extracts was -17 +/- 2 mV and was similar to the chloride equilibrium potential in oocytes. These ionic responses were independent of extracellular calcium. However, they were eliminated by overnight incubation with BAPTA-AM (10 microM), suggesting that the currents were dependent on intracellular Ca2+ increase. Thus the plant extracts activate the typical oscillatory Ca(2+)-dependent Cl- currents generated in the Xenopus oocyte membrane more probably via a mechanism that involves release of Ca2+ from intracellular reservoirs. These observations suggest that Xenopus oocyte electrophysiological recording constitutes a suitable assay for the study of the mechanisms of action of herbal medicines.

  11. Assessing differences in toxicity and teratogenicity of three phthalates, Diethyl phthalate, Di-n-propyl phthalate, and Di-n-butyl phthalate, using Xenopus laevis embryos.

    PubMed

    Gardner, Steven T; Wood, Andrew T; Lester, Rachel; Onkst, Paitra E; Burnham, Nathaniel; Perygin, Donna H; Rayburn, James

    2016-01-01

    Phthalates, compounds used to add flexibility to plastics, are ubiquitous in the environment. In particular, the diethyl (DEP), di-n-propyl (DnPP), and di-n-butyl (DBP) phthalates were found to exert detrimental effects in both mammalian and non-mammalian studies, with toxic effects varying according to alkyl chain length. Embryos of Xenopus laevis, the African clawed frog, have been used to assess toxicity and teratogenicity of several compounds and serves as a model for assessing adverse and teratogenic effects of ortho-phthalate esters. The purpose of this study was to develop a model for comparison of developmentally toxic effects of ortho-phthalate esters using Xenopus embryos. In this study developing Xenopus laevis embryos were exposed to increasing concentrations of DEP, DnPP, and DBP using the 96-h Frog Embryo Teratogenesis Assay-Xenopus (FETAX), with 96-h lethal concentrations, effective concentrations to induce malformations, teratogenic indices, and concentrations to inhibit growth determined. DEP, DnPP, and DBP showed enhanced toxicity with increasing ester length. Developing Xenopus laevis exposed to DEP, DnPP, and DBP showed similar malformations that also occurred at lower concentrations with increasing alkyl chain length. Teratogenic risk did not change markedly with alkyl chain length, with data showing only DBP to be teratogenic.

  12. Friend of GATA (FOG) interacts with the nucleosome remodeling and deacetylase complex (NuRD) to support primitive erythropoiesis in Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Mimoto, Mizuho S; Christian, Jan L

    2012-01-01

    Friend of GATA (FOG) plays many diverse roles in adult and embryonic hematopoiesis, however the mechanisms by which it functions and the roles of potential interaction partners are not completely understood. Previous work has shown that overexpression of FOG in Xenopus laevis causes loss of blood suggesting that in contrast to its role in mammals, FOG might normally function to repress erythropoiesis in this species. Using loss-of-function analysis, we demonstrate that FOG is essential to support primitive red blood cell (RBC) development in Xenopus. Moreover, we show that it is specifically required to prevent excess apoptosis of circulating primitive RBCs and that in the absence of FOG, the pro-apoptotic gene Bim-1 is strongly upregulated. To identify domains of FOG that are essential for blood development and, conversely, to begin to understand the mechanism by which overexpressed FOG represses primitive erythropoiesis, we asked whether FOG mutants that are unable to interact with known co-factors retain their ability to rescue blood formation in FOG morphants and whether they repress erythropoiesis when overexpressed in wild type embryos. We find that interaction of FOG with the Nucleosome Remodeling and Deacetylase complex (NuRD), but not with C-terminal Binding Protein, is essential for normal primitive RBC development. In contrast, overexpression of all mutant and wild type constructs causes a comparable repression of primitive erythropoiesis. Together, our data suggest that a requirement for FOG and its interaction with NuRD during primitive erythropoiesis are conserved in Xenopus and that loss of blood upon FOG overexpression is due to a dominant-interfering effect.

  13. Microtubule-based endoplasmic reticulum motility in Xenopus laevis: activation of membrane-associated kinesin during development.

    PubMed

    Lane, J D; Allan, V J

    1999-06-01

    The endoplasmic reticulum (ER) in animal cells uses microtubule motor proteins to adopt and maintain its extended, reticular organization. Although the orientation of microtubules in many somatic cell types predicts that the ER should move toward microtubule plus ends, motor-dependent ER motility reconstituted in extracts of Xenopus laevis eggs is exclusively a minus end-directed, cytoplasmic dynein-driven process. We have used Xenopus egg, embryo, and somatic Xenopus tissue culture cell (XTC) extracts to study ER motility during embryonic development in Xenopus by video-enhanced differential interference contrast microscopy. Our results demonstrate that cytoplasmic dynein is the sole motor for microtubule-based ER motility throughout the early stages of development (up to at least the fifth embryonic interphase). When egg-derived ER membranes were incubated in somatic XTC cytosol, however, ER tubules moved in both directions along microtubules. Data from directionality assays suggest that plus end-directed ER tubule extensions contribute approximately 19% of the total microtubule-based ER motility under these conditions. In XTC extracts, the rate of ER tubule extensions toward microtubule plus ends is lower ( approximately 0.4 microm/s) than minus end-directed motility ( approximately 1.3 microm/s), and plus end-directed motility is eliminated by a function-blocking anti-conventional kinesin heavy chain antibody (SUK4). In addition, we provide evidence that the initiation of plus end-directed ER motility in somatic cytosol is likely to occur via activation of membrane-associated kinesin.

  14. Synthesis of bunyavirus-specific proteins in a continuous cell line (XTC-2) derived from Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Watret, G E; Pringle, C R; Elliott, R M

    1985-03-01

    The XTC-2 cell line, derived from Xenopus laevis, supported the replication of representative viruses from each of the four genera in the family Bunyaviridae. Generally, viral titres were higher in XTC-2 cells than in other susceptible cell lines, and for some viruses plaques were detected earlier in XTC-2 cells. The XTC-2 cell line permitted comparative analyses of bunyavirus-specific protein synthesis. The patterns of synthesis of viral proteins, characteristic of each of the genera, were observed with representative viruses. These studies provided biochemical characterization of two Scottish isolates, which support the inclusion of Clo Mor virus in the Nairovirus genus and St Abb's Head (M349) virus in the Uukuvirus genus.

  15. Fertilization and development of eggs of the South African clawed toad, Xenopus laevis, on sounding rockets in space

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ubbels, Geertje A.; Berendsen, Willem; Kerkvliet, Sonja; Narraway, Jenny

    Egg rotation and centrifugation experiments strongly suggest a role for gravity in the determination of the spatial structure of amphibian embryos. Decisive experiments can only be made in Space. Eggs of Xenopus laevis, the South African clawed toad, were the first vertebrate eggs which were successfully fertilized on Sounding Rockets in Space. Unfixed, newly fertilized eggs survived reentry, and a reasonable number showed a seemingly normal gastrulation but died between gastrulation and neurulation. Only a few reached the larval stage, but these developed abnormally. In the future, we inted to test whether this abnormal morphogenesis is due to reentry perturbations, or due to a real microgravity effect, through perturbation of the reinitiation of meiosis and other processes, or started by later sperm penetration.

  16. Noggin4 is a long-range inhibitor of Wnt8 signalling that regulates head development in Xenopus laevis

    PubMed Central

    Eroshkin, Fedor M.; Nesterenko, Alexey M.; Borodulin, Alexander V.; Martynova, Natalia Yu.; Ermakova, Galina V.; Gyoeva, Fatima K.; Orlov, Eugeny E.; Belogurov, Alexey A.; Lukyanov, Konstantin A.; Bayramov, Andrey V.; Zaraisky, Andrey G.

    2016-01-01

    Noggin4 is a Noggin family secreted protein whose molecular and physiological functions remain unknown. In this study, we demonstrate that in contrast to other Noggins, Xenopus laevis Noggin4 cannot antagonise BMP signalling; instead, it specifically binds to Wnt8 and inhibits the Wnt/β -catenin pathway. Live imaging demonstrated that Noggin4 diffusivity in embryonic tissues significantly exceeded that of other Noggins. Using the Fluorescence Recovery After Photobleaching (FRAP) assay and mathematical modelling, we directly estimated the affinity of Noggin4 for Wnt8 in living embryos and determined that Noggin4 fine-tune the Wnt8 posterior-to-anterior gradient. Our results suggest a role for Noggin4 as a unique, freely diffusing, long-range inhibitor of canonical Wnt signalling, thus explaining its ability to promote head development. PMID:26973133

  17. Leptin (ob gene) of the South African clawed frog Xenopus laevis

    PubMed Central

    Crespi, Erica J.; Denver, Robert J.

    2006-01-01

    Leptin, the protein product of the obese (ob) gene, is a type-I cytokine hormone secreted by fat that is integral to food intake regulation and influences almost every physiological system in juvenile and adult mammals. Since the identification of leptin in the mouse in 1994, biologists have searched for orthologous genes in other species with limited success. In this article, we report the identification and functional characterization of leptin and leptin receptor (LR) in Xenopus. Despite low amino acid sequence similarity to mammalian leptins (≈35%) the frog protein has a nearly identical predicted tertiary structure and can activate the frog and mouse LRs in vitro. We showed that recombinant frog leptin (rxLeptin) is a potent anorexigen in frogs, as it is in mammals, but this response does not develop until midprometamorphosis. However, during early prometamorphosis, exogenous rxLeptin induced growth and development of the hind limb, where LR mRNA is expressed. The rxLeptin also stimulated cell proliferation in cultured hind limbs from early prometamorphic tadpoles, as measured by [3H]thymidine uptake. These findings are evidence that leptin can influence limb growth and differentiation during early development. Furthermore, the isolation and characterization of leptin and its receptor in a nonamniote provides an essential foundation for elucidating the structural and functional evolution of this important hormone. PMID:16782821

  18. Effects of low dose endosulfan exposure on brain neurotransmitter levels in the African clawed frog Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Preud'homme, Valérie; Milla, Sylvain; Gillardin, Virginie; De Pauw, Edwin; Denoël, Mathieu; Kestemont, Patrick

    2015-02-01

    Understanding the impact of pesticides in amphibians is of growing concern to assess the causes of their decline. Among pesticides, endosulfan belongs to one of the potential sources of danger because of its wide use and known effects, particularly neurotoxic, on a variety of organisms. However, the effect of endosulfan was not yet evaluated on amphibians at levels encompassing simultaneously brain neurotransmitters and behavioural endpoints. In this context, tadpoles of the African clawed frog Xenopus laevis were submitted to four treatments during 27 d: one control, one ethanol control, and two low environmental concentrations of endosulfan (0.1 and 1 μg L(-1)). Endosulfan induced a significant increase of brain serotonin level at both concentrations and a significant increase of brain dopamine and GABA levels at the lower exposure but acetylcholinesterase activity was not modified by the treatment. The gene coding for the GABA transporter 1 was up-regulated in endosulfan contaminated tadpoles while the expression of other genes coding for the neurotransmitter receptors or for the enzymes involved in their metabolic pathways was not significantly modified by endosulfan exposure. Endosulfan also affected foraging, and locomotion in links with the results of the physiological assays, but no effects were seen on growth. These results show that low environmental concentrations of endosulfan can induce adverse responses in X. laevis tadpoles. At a broader perspective, this suggests that more research using and linking multiple markers should be used to understand the complex mode of action of pollutants.

  19. Endocrine effects of 2,2{prime},4,4{prime}-tetrachlorobiphenyl in the African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis)

    SciTech Connect

    Diana, S.; Hansen, L.; Foley, G.; Beasley, V.

    1995-12-31

    Ortho-substituted polychlorinated biphenyls are known to exhibit estrogenic activity and, in some cases, to enhance excretion of tetraiodothyronine (T4), resulting in hypothyroxinemia in mammals. Since thyroxine activity is essential for amphibian metamorphosis, and amphibian sex determination can be altered or reversed by exposure to exogenous estrogens or androgens, the effects of exposure of larvae of the African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis) to 2,2{prime},4,4{prime}-tetrachlorobiphenyl (CB 47) were investigated. Eggs and larvae of X. laevis were exposed to nominal concentrations of CB 47 of 0.05 or 0.25 ppm (1 ppm was found to result in 100% mortality) throughout the period of larval development, and effects on rates of metamorphosis and body growth and on gonad morphology were determined. Stage of metamorphosis, body length and body weight did not differ between treatment and control groups, following exposure to these sub-lethal concentrations, at any time during larval development. Effects of exposure on gonad morphology will be discussed. The failure of CB 47 to delay or prevent metamorphosis under these conditions may be due to poor responsiveness of hepatic UDP-glucuronyl transferases to induction, or novel systems of thyroxine and/or PCB transport, metabolism and excretion in larval amphibians.

  20. The colloidal thyroxine (T4) ring as a novel biomarker of perchlorate exposure in the African clawed frog Xenopus laevis

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hu, F.; Sharma, Bibek; Mukhi, S.; Patino, R.; Carr, J.A.

    2006-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to determine if changes in colloidal thyroxine (T4) immunoreactivity can be used as a biomarker of perchlorate exposure in amphibian thyroid tissue. Larval African clawed frogs (Xenopus laevis) were exposed to 0, 1, 8, 93, and 1131 ??g perchlorate/l for 38 and 69 days to cover the normal period of larval development and metamorphosis. The results of this study confirmed the presence of an immunoreactive colloidal T4 ring in thyroid follicles of X. laevis and demonstrated that the intensity of this ring is reduced in a concentration-dependent manner by perchlorate exposure. The smallest effective concentration of perchlorate capable of significantly reducing colloidal T4 ring intensity was 8 ??g perchlorate/l. The intensity of the immunoreactive colloidal T4 ring is a more sensitive biomarker of perchlorate exposure than changes in hind limb length, forelimb emergence, tail resorption, thyrocyte hypertrophy, or colloid depletion. We conclude that the colloidal T4 ring can be used as a sensitive biomarker of perchlorate-induced thyroid disruption in amphibians. ?? Copyright 2006 Oxford University Press.

  1. Purification of Xenopus laevis mitochondrial RNA polymerase and identification of a dissociable factor required for specific transcription.

    PubMed Central

    Bogenhagen, D F; Insdorf, N F

    1988-01-01

    The Xenopus laevis mitochondrial RNA (mtRNA) polymerase was purified to near homogeneity with an overall yield approaching 50%. The major polypeptides in the final fraction were a doublet of proteins of approximately 140 kilodaltons that copurified with the mtRNA polymerase activity. It appeared likely that the smaller polypeptide is a breakdown product of the larger one. The highly purified polymerase was active in nonspecific transcription but required a dissociable factor for specific transcription of X. laevis mtDNA. The factor could be resolved from mtRNA polymerase by hydrophobic chromatography and had a sedimentation coefficient of 3.0 S. The transcription factor eluted from both the hydrophobic column and a Mono Q anion-exchange column as a single symmetrical peak. The mtRNA polymerase and this factor together are necessary and sufficient for active transcription from four promoters located in a noncoding region of the mtDNA genome between the gene for tRNA(Phe) and the displacement loop. Images PMID:2457154

  2. Spatiotemporal lipid profiling during early embryo development of Xenopus laevis using dynamic ToF-SIMS imaging

    PubMed Central

    Tian, Hua; Fletcher, John S.; Thuret, Raphael; Henderson, Alex; Papalopulu, Nancy; Vickerman, John C.; Lockyer, Nicholas P.

    2014-01-01

    Time-of-flight secondary ion mass spectrometry (ToF-SIMS) imaging has been used for the direct analysis of single intact Xenopus laevis embryo surfaces, locating multiple lipids during fertilization and the early embryo development stages with subcellular lateral resolution (∼4 μm). The method avoids the complicated sample preparation for lipid analysis of the embryos, which requires selective chemical extraction of a pool of samples and chromatographic separation, while preserving the spatial distribution of biological species. The results show ToF-SIMS is capable of profiling multiple components (e.g., glycerophosphocholine, SM, cholesterol, vitamin E, diacylglycerol, and triacylglycerol) in a single X. laevis embryo. We observe lipid remodeling during fertilization and early embryo development via time course sampling. The study also reveals the lipid distribution on the gamete fusion site. The methodology used in the study opens the possibility of studying developmental biology using high resolution imaging MS and of understanding the functional role of the biological molecules. PMID:24852167

  3. Population-specific incidence of testicular ovarian follicles in Xenopus laevis from South Africa: a potential issue in endocrine testing.

    PubMed

    Du Preez, Louis H; Kunene, Nisile; Hanner, Robert; Giesy, John P; Solomon, Keith R; Hosmer, Alan; Van Der Kraak, Glen J

    2009-10-19

    The African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis) has been identified as an appropriate sentinel for testing endocrine activity of existing chemicals in North America and Europe. Some reports suggest that the herbicide, atrazine (CAS Number [1912-24-9]) causes ovarian follicles to form in the testes of this frog. X. laevis collected from North East (NE) sites in South Africa had testicular ovarian follicles, irrespective of exposure to atrazine, while frogs from Southwest Western (SW) Cape region sites had none. Phylogenetic analysis of mitochondrial and nuclear genes indicates that frogs from the SW Cape are evolutionarily divergent from those from NE South Africa and the rest of sub-Saharan Africa. These findings provide a possible explanation for why conflicting results have been reported concerning the impact of atrazine on amphibian sexual differentiation and highlight the importance of understanding taxonomic status of the experimental animal. Even in common laboratory animals, there is a need for their correct taxonomic characterization before their use in tests for endocrine disruption.

  4. Effects of atrazine on metamorphosis, growth, laryngeal and gonadal development, aromatase activity, and sex steroid concentrations in Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Coady, Katherine K; Murphy, Margaret B; Villeneuve, Daniel L; Hecker, Markus; Jones, Paul D; Carr, James A; Solomon, Keith R; Smith, Ernest E; Van Der Kraak, Glen; Kendall, Ronald J; Giesy, John P

    2005-10-01

    African clawed frogs (Xenopus laevis) were exposed to one of eight nominal waterborne concentrations including 0, 0.1, 1.0, 10, or 25 microg/L atrazine, 0.005% ethanol (EtOH), or 0.1mg/L estradiol (E2) or dihydrotestosterone (DHT) containing 0.005% EtOH. Frogs were exposed from 72 h posthatch until 2--3 months postmetamorphosis via a 3-day static renewal exposure regimen. Atrazine at concentrations between 0.1 and 25 microg/L did not significantly affect mortality, growth, gonad development, laryngeal muscle size, or aromatase activity in juvenile X. laevis. Male frogs exposed to 1.0 microg/L atrazine had lower E2 levels compared to controls, but this response was not consistent among other concentrations of atrazine. Male and female frogs exposed to DHT had larger laryngeal dilator muscle areas compared to controls. E2-exposed female frogs had decreased gonadal aromatase activity, and E2-exposed male frogs had statistically greater plasma concentrations of E2 compared to controls.

  5. Comparative molecular phylogeography of two Xenopus species, X. gilli and X. laevis, in the south-western Cape Province, South Africa.

    PubMed

    Evans, B J; Morales, J C; Picker, M D; Kelley, D B; Melnick, D J

    1997-04-01

    Xenopus gilli is a vulnerable anuran with a patchy distribution along the south-western coast of the Cape Province, South Africa. This species is sympatric with Xenopus laevis laevis, a widespread relative found over much of southern Africa. We examined the molecular phylogeography and population structure of the contact zone between these species to obtain information about historical biogeography and conservation management of this region. Analyses of the distribution, frequency, and cladistic and phenetic relationships among mitochondrial DNA haplotypes indicate that population subdivision is present in both taxa but that long-term isolation of sets of populations has occurred in X. gilli only. Haplotype and nucleotide diversity are also considerably higher within and among X. gilli ponds than X. l. laevis ponds in this region. We attribute the genetic segregation of X. gilli populations to ancient habitat fragmentation by ocean transgression into X. gilli habitat and to continued habitat alteration by human activity. The lower level of genetic diversity in X. L. laevis in this region is likely a result of a recent arrival of this taxon to the south-western Cape region relative to X. gilli. Population structure in X. l. laevis may be a result of isolation by distance. Clear evidence exists for at least two management units within X. gilli and strongly supports the establishment of protective measures east of False Bay in order to conserve a substantial portion of this species' extant genetic diversity.

  6. Divergent antiviral roles of amphibian (Xenopus laevis) macrophages elicited by colony-stimulating factor-1 and interleukin-34

    PubMed Central

    Grayfer, Leon; Robert, Jacques

    2014-01-01

    Macrophages are integral to amphibian immunity against RVs, as well as to the infection strategies of these pathogens. Although CSF-1 was considered to be the principal mediator of macrophage development, the IL-34 cytokine, which shares no sequence identity with CSF-1, is now believed to contribute to vertebrate monopoiesis. However, the respective roles of CSF-1- and IL-34-derived macrophages are still poorly understood. To delineate the contribution of these macrophage populations to amphibian immunity against the RV FV3, we identified the Xenopus laevis IL-34 and transcriptionally and functionally compared this cytokine with the previously identified X. laevis CSF-1. The X. laevis CSF-1 and IL-34 displayed strikingly nonoverlapping developmental and tissue-specific gene-expression patterns. Furthermore, only CSF-1 but not IL-34 was up-regulated in the kidneys of FV3-challenged tadpoles. Intriguingly, recombinant forms of these cytokines (rXlCSF-1, rXlIL-34) elicited morphologically distinct tadpole macrophages, and whereas rXlCSF-1 pretreatment decreased the survival of FV3-infected tadpoles, rXlIL-34 administration significantly prolonged FV3-challenged animal survival. Compared with rXlIL-34-elicited macrophages, macrophages derived by rXlCSF-1 were more phagocytic but also significantly more susceptible to in vitro FV3 infections. By contrast, rXlIL-34-derived macrophages exhibited significantly greater in vitro antiranaviral activity and displayed substantially more robust gene expression of the NADPH oxidase components (p67phox, gp91phox) and type I IFN. Moreover, FV3-challenged, rXlIL-34-derived macrophages exhibited several orders of magnitude greater up-regulation of the type I IFN gene expression. This marks the first report of the disparate roles of CSF-1 and IL-34 in vertebrate antiviral immunity. PMID:25190077

  7. Divergent antiviral roles of amphibian (Xenopus laevis) macrophages elicited by colony-stimulating factor-1 and interleukin-34.

    PubMed

    Grayfer, Leon; Robert, Jacques

    2014-12-01

    Macrophages are integral to amphibian immunity against RVs, as well as to the infection strategies of these pathogens. Although CSF-1 was considered to be the principal mediator of macrophage development, the IL-34 cytokine, which shares no sequence identity with CSF-1, is now believed to contribute to vertebrate monopoiesis. However, the respective roles of CSF-1- and IL-34-derived macrophages are still poorly understood. To delineate the contribution of these macrophage populations to amphibian immunity against the RV FV3, we identified the Xenopus laevis IL-34 and transcriptionally and functionally compared this cytokine with the previously identified X. laevis CSF-1. The X. laevis CSF-1 and IL-34 displayed strikingly nonoverlapping developmental and tissue-specific gene-expression patterns. Furthermore, only CSF-1 but not IL-34 was up-regulated in the kidneys of FV3-challenged tadpoles. Intriguingly, recombinant forms of these cytokines (rXlCSF-1, rXlIL-34) elicited morphologically distinct tadpole macrophages, and whereas rXlCSF-1 pretreatment decreased the survival of FV3-infected tadpoles, rXlIL-34 administration significantly prolonged FV3-challenged animal survival. Compared with rXlIL-34-elicited macrophages, macrophages derived by rXlCSF-1 were more phagocytic but also significantly more susceptible to in vitro FV3 infections. By contrast, rXlIL-34-derived macrophages exhibited significantly greater in vitro antiranaviral activity and displayed substantially more robust gene expression of the NADPH oxidase components (p67(phox), gp91(phox)) and type I IFN. Moreover, FV3-challenged, rXlIL-34-derived macrophages exhibited several orders of magnitude greater up-regulation of the type I IFN gene expression. This marks the first report of the disparate roles of CSF-1 and IL-34 in vertebrate antiviral immunity.

  8. The Influence of Artificially Introduced N-Glycosylation Sites on the In Vitro Activity of Xenopus laevis Erythropoietin

    PubMed Central

    Nagasawa, Kazumichi; Meguro, Mizue; Sato, Kei; Tanizaki, Yuta; Nogawa-Kosaka, Nami; Kato, Takashi

    2015-01-01

    Erythropoietin (EPO), the primary regulator of erythropoiesis, is a heavily glycosylated protein found in humans and several other mammals. Intriguingly, we have previously found that EPO in Xenopus laevis (xlEPO) has no N-glycosylation sites, and cross-reacts with the human EPO (huEPO) receptor despite low homology with huEPO. In this study, we introduced N-glycosylation sites into wild-type xlEPO at the positions homologous to those in huEPO, and tested whether the glycosylated mutein retained its biological activity. Seven xlEPO muteins, containing 1–3 additional N-linked carbohydrates at positions 24, 38, and/or 83, were expressed in COS-1 cells. The muteins exhibited lower secretion efficiency, higher hydrophilicity, and stronger acidic properties than the wild type. All muteins stimulated the proliferation of both cell lines, xlEPO receptor-expressing xlEPOR-FDC/P2 cells and huEPO receptor-expressing UT-7/EPO cells, in a dose-dependent manner. Thus, the muteins retained their in vitro biological activities. The maximum effect on xlEPOR-FDC/P2 proliferation was decreased by the addition of N-linked carbohydrates, but that on UT-7/EPO proliferation was not changed, indicating that the muteins act as partial agonists to the xlEPO receptor, and near-full agonists to the huEPO receptor. Hence, the EPO-EPOR binding site in X. laevis locates the distal region of artificially introduced three N-glycosylation sites, demonstrating that the vital conformation to exert biological activity is conserved between humans and X. laevis, despite the low similarity in primary structures of EPO and EPOR. PMID:25898205

  9. Toxicity of cadmium, endosulfan, and atrazine in adrenal steroidogenic cells of two amphibian species, Xenopus laevis and Rana catesbeiana.

    PubMed

    Goulet, Benoît N; Hontela, Alice

    2003-09-01

    The effects of cadmium, endosulfan, and atrazine on corticosterone secretion and viability of adrenal cells of African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis) and bullfrog (Rana catesbeiana) were assessed in vitro using a new bioassay. The bioassay relies on stimulation with adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH), the endogenous secretagogue for corticosterone secretion, and with dibutyryl cyclic adenosine monophosphate (dbcAMP), an analogue of cAMP, to pinpoint the site of action of the xenobiotics within the steroidogenic cell. To compare the test toxicants according to their endocrine-disrupting potential, the lethal concentration needed to kill 50% of the cells:effective concentration of 50% (LC50:EC50) ratio was calculated, with LC50 as the concentration that kills 50% of the steroidogenic cells and the EC50 as the concentration that impairs corticosterone secretion by 50%. The higher the ratio, the higher the potential for endocrine disruption. Atrazine had no affect on cell viability and on corticosterone secretion in X. laevis, but its endocrine-disrupting potential was high in R. catesbeiana. The LC50:EC50 ratio for cadmium and endosulfan in X. laevis was 26.07 and 1.23, respectively, and for atrazine, cadmium, and endosulfan in R. catesbeiana it was 909, 41, and 3, respectively. The dbcAMP did not restore corticosterone secretion in the cells exposed to the test toxicants in both species. Our study suggests that the secretory capacity of adrenal cells of amphibians can be impaired by environmental chemicals, especially atrazine in the bullfrog, and that these adrenotoxicants disrupt the enzymatic pathways leading to corticosterone secretion downstream from the step-generating cAMP.

  10. Sequence-specific minor groove binding ligands as potential regulators of gene expression in Xenopus laevis oocytes.

    PubMed

    Belikov, S V; Grokhovsky, S L; Isaguliants, M G; Surovaya, A N; Gursky, G V

    2005-10-01

    The mouse mammary tumor virus (MMTV) promoter is induced by glucocorticoid hormone. A robust hormone- and receptor-dependent gene activation could be reproduced in Xenopus laevis oocytes. The homogeneous response in this system allowed a detailed analysis of the DNA-protein interactions following hormone activation. The strategy of artificial regulating of gene activity by sequence-specific minor groove binding ligands is very attractive. We have synthesized and studied the interaction with DNA of bis-linked netropsin derivatives in which two monomers are attached via short linkers in head-to-head and tail-to-tail manners. We have found that cis-diammine-platinum bridged bis-netropsin added to Xenopus oocytes media penetrates cellular and nuclear membrane and binds selectively to the MMTV promoter at the DNA segment that partly overlaps with the site recognized by glucocorticoid receptor. DNase I footprinting studies demonstrate that there are more stronger binding sites for cis-diammine-platinum bridged bis-netropsin on the naked MMTV DNA which are found to be inaccessible for its binding in oocytes. PMID:16060693

  11. Activation of frog (Xenopus laevis) eggs by inositol trisphosphate. I. Characterization of Ca2+ release from intracellular stores

    PubMed Central

    1985-01-01

    Iontophoresis of inositol 1, 4, 5-triphosphate into frog (Xenopus laevis) eggs activated early developmental events such as membrane depolarization, cortical contraction, cortical granule exocytosis, and abortive cleavage furrow formation (pseudocleavage). Inositol 1, 4- bisphosphate also triggered these events, but only at doses approximately 100-fold higher, whereas no level of fructose-1, 6- bisphosphate tested activated eggs. Using Ca2+-selective microelectrodes, we observed that activating doses of inositol 1, 4, 5- trisphosphate triggered a Ca2+ release from intracellular stores that was indistinguishable from that previously observed at fertilization (Busa, W. B., and R. Nuccitelli, 1985, J. Cell Biol., 100:1325-1329), whereas subthreshold doses triggered only a localized Ca2+ release at the site of injection. The subthreshold IP3 response could be distinguished from the major Ca2+ release at activation with respect to their dose-response characteristics, relative timing, sensitivity to external Ca2+ levels, additivity, and behavior in the activated egg, suggesting that the Xenopus egg may possess two functionally distinct Ca2+ pools mobilized by different effectors. In light of these differences, we suggest a model for intracellular Ca2+ mobilization by sperm-egg interaction. PMID:3874873

  12. Effect of low-level copper and pentachlorophenol exposure on various early life stages of Xenopus laevis

    SciTech Connect

    Fort, D.J.; Stover, E.L.

    1996-12-31

    An evaluation of the effects of low-level copper and pentachlorophenol exposure on various early life stages of the South African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis, was performed using stage-specific and long-term continuous exposures. Stage-specific exposure experiments were conducted such that separate subsets of embryos and larvae from the same clutch were exposed to two toxicants, copper and pentachlorphenol, from 0 d to 4 d (standard Frog Embryo Teratogenesis Assay--Xenopus [FETAX]), 4 d to 8 d, 8 d to 12 d, and 12 d to 16 d. Results from two separate concentration-response experiments indicated that sensitivity to either toxicant increased in each successive time period. Longer-term exposure studies conducted for 60 to 75 days indicated that copper, but not pentachlorophenol induced reduction deficiency malformations of the hind limb at concentrations as low as 0.05 mg/L. Pentachlorophenol concentrations as low as 0.5 {micro}g/L inhibited tail resorption. However, copper did not adversely affect the process of tail resorption. These results indicated that studies evaluating longer-term developmental processes are important in ecological hazard evaluation.

  13. Toxicity of nitromusks in early lifestages of South African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis) and zebrafish (Danio rerio).

    PubMed

    Chou, Y J; Dietrich, D R

    1999-12-20

    Musk xylene (MX), musk ketone (MK) and musk moskene (MM) are synthetic nitro-containing fragrances. Due to their inherent lipophilicity and environmental persistence, they are frequently detected in environmental samples and especially in aquatic ecosystems. Despite this, the current environmental toxicity database of nitromusks is limited. Although nitromusks have been shown to accumulate in aquatic organisms, little is known about their potential developmental effects in the respective aquatic species. To investigate the developmental toxicity of these compounds to amphibians and fish, early lifestages of xenopus (Xenopus laevis) and zebrafish (Danio rerio) were exposed to three nitromusks for 96 h to examine the developmental effects of these compounds in the two species. Nitromusk body concentration measurements were carried out in parallel for correlation with potential developmental effects. No increased mortality, malformation or growth inhibition was observed in either species following 96-h exposure to 400 microg/l MX, MK and MM. However, an approximately 20% reduced viability was observed in xenopus larvae when exposed to 400 microg/l MX, MK and MM for 11 days. Xenopus and zebrafish exposed to 10, 153, 871 and 1637 microg/l 14C-MX for 96 h resulted in whole-body concentrations of 0.7 +/- 0.1, 11.1 +/- 1.1, 38.7 +/- 1.9 and 76.3 +/- 18.3 microg/g, and 4.3 +/- 0.6, 73.3 +/- 11.8, 440.0 +/- 72.7 and 664.0 +/- 47.7 microg/g wet body weight, respectively. Exposure of xenopus larvae to 400 microg/l MX, MK and MM for 11 days, resulted in whole body concentrations (extrapolated from gas chromatographic determinations) of 4700 +/- 5000, 1300 + 300 and 4600 + 4800 microg/g wet weight for MX, MK and MM, respectively. The latter toxicity results, in conjunction with the fact that the concentrations used for the above experiments were between 400- and 10000-fold higher than those detected in the environment, suggest that environmental concentrations of nitromusks are

  14. Presence of inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate receptor, calreticulin, and calsequestrin in eggs of sea urchins and Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Parys, J B; McPherson, S M; Mathews, L; Campbell, K P; Longo, F J

    1994-02-01

    The presence of inositol 1,4,5-triphosphate receptor (InsP3R), calreticulin, and calsequestrin was demonstrated in eggs of sea urchins (Lytechinus pictus, Lytechinus variegatus, and Strongylocentroutus purpuratus) and Xenopus laevis. Binding of inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate (InsP3) to microsomes of L. pictus eggs was inhibited by heparin and NaCl. An affinity-purified antibody against the C-terminal of the type I InsP3R, which recognizes InsP3R isoforms of rabbit brain (273 kDa) and Xenopus oocytes and eggs (256 kDa), reacted with a 373-kDa protein in sea urchin eggs. The 373-kDa protein was tentatively identified as the sea urchin egg InsP3R. Observations with fluorescence microscopy indicated that the InsP3R is present throughout the cytoplasm of sea urchin eggs in a pattern consistent with the distribution of endoplasmic reticulum. Small differences in the relative amount of reaction deposits in cortex vs subcortex were noted among the species of sea urchins examined. Reaction product was also localized to the periphery of female pronuclei in eggs of all three sea urchins. InsP3R reactivity was present in the perinuclear region, along the periphery of the germinal vesicle, and throughout the animal and vegetal hemispheres of Xenopus oocytes. A similar cytoplasmic staining pattern was also observed in eggs, although islands of reactivity, much larger than those in oocytes, were present in the animal hemisphere of eggs. Calreticulin and calsequestrin in sea urchin eggs had the same molecular mass as in rabbit brain (56 and 60 kDa, respectively), but differed from those present in Xenopus oocytes/eggs (61 and 57 kDa, respectively). The distribution of calreticulin and calsequestrin in both sea urchin and Xenopus oocytes and eggs was similar to that observed for the InsP3R. These results are discussed in relation to previous studies of Ca2+ regulation during egg development and fertilization and suggest that in the oocytes and eggs of the species examined, InsP3

  15. Identification of positive and negative regulatory regions controlling expression of the Xenopus laevis betaTrCP gene.

    PubMed

    Ballarino, Monica; Fruscalzo, Alberto; Marchioni, Marcella; Carnevali, Francesca

    2004-07-21

    betaTrCP mediates the ubiquitination and subsequent degradation of several key molecules thereby playing a relevant role in different cellular processes during development and in the adult. In Xenopus embryo, betaTrCP acts as a negative regulator of Wnt signaling by interacting with beta-catenin. In this paper, we report results of the study on expression and regulation of the Xenopus betaTrCP gene. We found that xbetaTrCP is expressed in Xenopus oocytes as three transcripts, which very likely correspond to the previously identified localized mRNAs, and four isoforms. The xbetaTrCP promoter functional and structural analysis showed the presence of elements target of positive transcriptional control. Among them, we have identified a beta-catenin/Tcf signaling responsive region and a 45-bp element containing a sequence motif conforming to the SRF binding site, closer to the transcription initiation sites. There are also elements of transcriptional negative control.

  16. Effects of cadmium on growth, metamorphosis and gonadal sex differentiation in tadpoles of the African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sharma, Bibek; Patino, Reynaldo

    2009-01-01

    Xenopus laevis larvae were exposed to cadmium (Cd) at 0, 1, 8. 85 or 860 mu g L(-1) in FETAX medium from 0 to 86 d postfertilization. Premetamorphic tadpoles were sampled on day 3 1; pre and prometamorphic tadpoles on day 49; and frogs (NF stage 66) between days 50 and 86. Survival, snout-vent length (SVL), tail length, total length, hindlimb length (HLL), initiation of metamorphic climax, size at and completion of metamorphosis, and gonadal condition and sex ratio (assessed histologically) were determined. Survival was unaffected by Cd until day 49, but increased mortality was observed after day 49 at 860 mu g Cd L(-1). On day 31, when tadpoles were in early premetamorphosis, inhibitory effects on tadpole growth were observed only at 860 mu g Cd L(-1). On day 49, when most tadpoles where in late premetamorphosis/early prometamorphosis, reductions in SVL, HLL and total length were observed at 8 and 860 but not 85 mu g L(-1), thus creating a U-shaped size distribution at 0-85 mu g Cd L(-1). However, this U-shaped size pattern was not evident in postmetamorphic individuals. In fact, frog size at completion of metamorphosis was slightly smaller at 85 mu g Cd L(-1) relative to control animals. These observations confirmed a recent report of a Cd concentration-dependent bimodal growth pattern in late-premetamorphic Xenopus tadpoles, but also showed that growth responses to varying Cd concentrations change with development. The fraction of animals initiating or completing metamorphosis during days 50-86 was reduced in a Cd concentration-dependent manner. Testicular histology and population sex ratios were unaffected by Cd suggesting that, unlike mammals, Cd is not strongly estrogenic in Xenopus tadpoles.

  17. Effects of cadmium on growth, metamorphosis and gonadal sex differentiation in tadpoles of the African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sharma, Bibek; Patino, R.

    2009-01-01

    Xenopus laevis larvae were exposed to cadmium (Cd) at 0, 1, 8, 85 or 860 ??g L-1 in FETAX medium from 0 to 86 d postfertilization. Premetamorphic tadpoles were sampled on day 31; pre and prometamorphic tadpoles on day 49; and frogs (NF stage 66) between days 50 and 86. Survival, snout-vent length (SVL), tail length, total length, hindlimb length (HLL), initiation of metamorphic climax, size at and completion of metamorphosis, and gonadal condition and sex ratio (assessed histologically) were determined. Survival was unaffected by Cd until day 49, but increased mortality was observed after day 49 at 860 ??g Cd L-1. On day 31, when tadpoles were in early premetamorphosis, inhibitory effects on tadpole growth were observed only at 860 ??g Cd L-1. On day 49, when most tadpoles where in late premetamorphosis/early prometamorphosis, reductions in SVL, HLL and total length were observed at 8 and 860 but not 85 ??g L-1, thus creating a U-shaped size distribution at 0-85 ??g Cd L-1. However, this U-shaped size pattern was not evident in postmetamorphic individuals. In fact, frog size at completion of metamorphosis was slightly smaller at 85 ??g Cd L-1relative to control animals. These observations confirmed a recent report of a Cd concentration-dependent bimodal growth pattern in late-premetamorphic Xenopus tadpoles, but also showed that growth responses to varying Cd concentrations change with development. The fraction of animals initiating or completing metamorphosis during days 50-86 was reduced in a Cd concentration-dependent manner. Testicular histology and population sex ratios were unaffected by Cd suggesting that, unlike mammals, Cd is not strongly estrogenic in Xenopus tadpoles. ?? 2009 Elsevier Ltd.

  18. Induction of mortality and malformation in Xenopus laevis embryos by water sources associated with field frog deformities.

    PubMed Central

    Burkhart, J G; Helgen, J C; Fort, D J; Gallagher, K; Bowers, D; Propst, T L; Gernes, M; Magner, J; Shelby, M D; Lucier, G

    1998-01-01

    Water samples from several ponds in Minnesota were evaluated for their capacity to induce malformations in embryos of Xenopus laevis. The FETAX assay was used to assess the occurrence of malformations following a 96-hr period of exposure to water samples. These studies were conducted following reports of high incidences of malformation in natural populations of frogs in Minnesota wetlands. The purpose of these studies was to determine if a biologically active agent(s) was present in the waters and could be detected using the FETAX assay. Water samples from ponds with high incidences of frog malformations (affected sites), along with water samples from ponds with unaffected frog populations (reference sites), were studied. Initial experiments clearly showed that water from affected sites induced mortality and malformation in Xenopus embryos, while water from reference sites had little or no effect. Induction of malformation was dose dependent and highly reproducible, both with stored samples and with samples taken at different times throughout the summer. The biological activity of the samples was reduced or eliminated when samples were passed through activated carbon. Limited evidence from these samples indicates that the causal factor(s) is not an infectious organism nor are ion concentrations or metals responsible for the effects observed. Results do indicate that the water matrix has a significant effect on the severity of toxicity. Based on the FETAX results and the occurrence of frog malformations observed in the field, these studies suggest that water in the affected sites contains one or more unknown agents that induce developmental abnormalities in Xenopus. These same factors may contribute to the increased incidence of malformation in native species. Images Figure 1 Figure 2 Figure 3 Figure 4 Figure 5 Figure 6 Figure 7 Figure 8 PMID:9831545

  19. Plasma concentrations of estradiol and testosterone, gonadal aromatase activity and ultrastructure of the testis in Xenopus laevis exposed to estradiol or atrazine.

    PubMed

    Hecker, Markus; Kim, Wan Jong; Park, June-Woo; Murphy, Margaret B; Villeneuve, Daniel; Coady, Katherine K; Jones, Paul D; Solomon, Keith R; Van Der Kraak, Glen; Carr, James A; Smith, Ernest E; du Preez, Louis; Kendall, Ronald J; Giesy, John P

    2005-05-15

    The ultrastructure of testicular cells of adult male African clawed frogs (Xenopus laevis) exposed to either estradiol (0.1 microg/L) or 2-chloro-4-ethylamino-6-isopropyl-amino-s-triazine (atrazine; 10 or 100 microg/L) was examined by electron microscopy and compared to plasma concentrations of the steroid hormones, testosterone (T) and estradiol (E2), testicular aromatase activity and gonad growth expressed as the gonado-somatic index (GSI). Exposure to E2 caused significant changes both at the sub-cellular and biochemical levels. Exposure to E2 resulted in significantly fewer sperm cells, inhibition of meiotic division of germ cells, more lipid droplets that are storage compartments for the sex steroid hormone precursor cholesterol, and lesser plasma T concentrations. Although not statistically significant, frogs exposed to E2 had slightly smaller GSI values. These results may be indicative of an inhibition of gonad growth and disrupted germ cell development by E2. Concentrations of E2 in plasma were greater in frogs exposed to E2 in water. Exposure to neither concentration of atrazine caused effects on germ cell development, testicular aromatase activity or plasma hormone concentrations. These results suggest that atrazine does not affect testicular function. In contrast, exposure of male X. laevis to E2 led to sub-cellular events that are indicative of disruption of testicular development, and demasculinization processes (decrease of androgen hormone titers). These results indicate that atrazine does not cause responses that are similar to those caused by exposure to E2.

  20. Xenopus laevis as a novel model to study long bone critical-size defect repair by growth factor-mediated regeneration.

    PubMed

    Feng, Liang; Milner, Derek J; Xia, Chunguang; Nye, Holly L D; Redwood, Patrick; Cameron, Jo Ann; Stocum, David L; Fang, Nick; Jasiuk, Iwona

    2011-03-01

    We used the tarsus of an adult Xenopus laevis frog as an in vivo load-bearing model to study the regeneration of critical-size defects (CSD) in long bones. We found the CSD for this bone to be about 35% of the tarsus length. To promote regeneration, we implanted biocompatible 1,6 hexanediol diacrylate scaffolds soaked with bone morphogenetic proteins-4 and vascular endothelial growth factors. In contrast to studies that use scaffolds as templates for bone formation, we used scaffolds as a growth factor delivery vehicle to promote cartilage-to-bone regeneration. Defects in control frogs were filled with scaffolds lacking growth factors. The limbs were harvested at a series of time points ranging from 3 weeks to 6 months after implantation and evaluated using micro-computed tomography and histology. In frogs treated with growth factor-loaded scaffolds, we observed a cartilage-to-bone regeneration in the skeletal defect. Five out of eight defects were completely filled with cartilage by 6 weeks. Blood vessels had invaded the cartilage, and bone was beginning to form in ossifying centers. By 3 months, these processes were well advanced, and extensive ossification was observed in 6-month samples. In contrast, the defects in control frogs showed only formation of fibrous scar tissue. This study demonstrates the utility of a Xenopus model system for tissue engineering research and that the normal in vivo mechanism of endochondral bone development and fracture repair can be mimicked in the repair of CSD with scaffolds used as growth factor delivery mechanisms.

  1. Cloning of noggin gene from hydra and analysis of its functional conservation using Xenopus laevis embryos.

    PubMed

    Chandramore, Kalpana; Ito, Yuzuro; Takahashi, Shuji; Asashima, Makoto; Ghaskadbi, Surendra

    2010-01-01

    Hydra, a member of phylum Cnidaria that arose early in evolution, is endowed with a defined axis, organized nervous system, and active behavior. It is a powerful model system for the elucidation of evolution of developmental mechanisms in animals. Here, we describe the identification and cloning of noggin-like gene from hydra. Noggin is a secreted protein involved at multiple stages of vertebrate embryonic development including neural induction and is known to exert its effects by inhibiting the bone morphogenetic protein (BMP)-signaling pathway. Sequence analysis revealed that hydra Noggin shows considerable similarity with its orthologs at the amino acid level. When microinjected in the early Xenopus embryos, hydra noggin mRNA induced a secondary axis in 100% of the injected embryos, demonstrating functional conservation of hydra noggin in vertebrates. This was further confirmed by the partial rescue of Xenopus embryos by hydra noggin mRNA from UV-induced ventralization. By using animal cap assay in Xenopus embryos, we demonstrate that these effects of hydra noggin in Xenopus embryos are because of inhibition of BMP signaling by Noggin. Our data indicate that BMP/Noggin antagonism predates the bilaterian divergence and is conserved during the evolution. PMID:20565537

  2. Population structure of the African Clawed Frog (Xenopus laevis) in maize-growing areas with atrazine application versus non-maize-growing areas in South Africa

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Du Preez, L.H.; Solomon, K.R.; Carr, J.A.; Giesy, J.P.; Gross, T.S.; Kendall, R.J.; Smith, E.E.; Van Der Kraak, G. L.; Weldon, C.

    2005-01-01

    The herbicide atrazine has been suggested to cause gonadal deformities in frogs and could possibly impact on reproduction. Since the early 1960s, atrazine has been used in large amounts in maize production areas of South Africa. These areas overlap with populations of the African Clawed Frog (Xenopus laevis) that has a wide distribution in southern Africa and is found in most water-bodies including those where atrazine residues are detected. The aim of this study was to compare various attributes of individual- and population-level responses of X. laevis from maize-growing and non-maize-growing areas. Xenopus laevis were studied in three reference and five maize-growing sites. Sex ratio, snout-vent length, body-mass and age profiles were found to be similar for populations in maize-growing and non-maize-growing areas. Our mark-recapture data indicated that all sites had robust populations. There were no significant relationships between exposure to atrazine and any of the parameters investigated in populations of X. laevis.

  3. The synthetic gestagen levonorgestrel directly affects gene expression in thyroid and pituitary glands of Xenopus laevis tadpoles.

    PubMed

    Lorenz, Claudia; Opitz, Robert; Trubiroha, Achim; Lutz, Ilka; Zikova, Andrea; Kloas, Werner

    2016-08-01

    The synthetic gestagen levonorgestrel (LNG) was previously shown to perturb thyroid hormone-dependent metamorphosis in Xenopus laevis. However, so far the mechanisms underlying the anti-metamorphic effects of LNG remained unknown. Therefore, a series of in vivo and ex vivo experiments was performed to identify potential target sites of LNG action along the pituitary-thyroid axis of X. laevis tadpoles. Prometamorphic tadpoles were treated in vivo with LNG (0.01-10nM) for 72h and brain-pituitary and thyroid tissue was analyzed for marker gene expression. While no treatment-related changes were observed in brain-pituitary tissue, LNG treatment readily affected thyroidal gene expression in tadpoles including decreased slc5a5 and iyd mRNA expression and a strong induction of dio2 and dio3 expression. When using an ex vivo organ explant culture approach, direct effects of LNG on both pituitary and thyroid gland gene expression were detecTable Specifically, treatment of pituitary explants with 10nM LNG strongly stimulated dio2 expression and concurrently suppressed tshb expression. In thyroid glands, ex vivo LNG treatment induced dio2 and dio3 mRNA expression in a thyrotropin-independent manner. When thyroid explants were cultured in thyrotropin-containing media, LNG caused similar gene expression changes as seen after 72h in vivo treatment including a very strong repression of thyrotropin-induced slc5a5 expression. Concerning the anti-thyroidal activity of LNG as seen under in vivo conditions, our ex vivo data provide clear evidence that LNG directly affects expression of genes important for thyroidal iodide handling as well as genes involved in negative feedback regulation of pituitary tshb expression. PMID:27262936

  4. Recording Temperature-induced Neuronal Activity through Monitoring Calcium Changes in the Olfactory Bulb of Xenopus laevis

    PubMed Central

    Kludt, Eugen; Schild, Detlev

    2016-01-01

    The olfactory system, specialized in the detection, integration and processing of chemical molecules is likely the most thoroughly studied sensory system. However, there is piling evidence that olfaction is not solely limited to chemical sensitivity, but also includes temperature sensitivity. Premetamorphic Xenopus laevis are translucent animals, with protruding nasal cavities deprived of the cribriform plate separating the nose and the olfactory bulb. These characteristics make them well suited for studying olfaction, and particularly thermosensitivity. The present article describes the complete procedure for measuring temperature responses in the olfactory bulb of X. laevis larvae. Firstly, the electroporation of olfactory receptor neurons (ORNs) is performed with spectrally distinct dyes loaded into the nasal cavities in order to stain their axon terminals in the bulbar neuropil. The differential staining between left and right receptor neurons serves to identify the γ-glomerulus as the only structure innervated by contralateral presynaptic afferents. Secondly, the electroporation is combined with focal bolus loading in the olfactory bulb in order to stain mitral cells and their dendrites. The 3D brain volume is then scanned under line-illumination microscopy for the acquisition of fast calcium imaging data while small temperature drops are induced at the olfactory epithelium. Lastly, the post-acquisition analysis allows the morphological reconstruction of the thermosensitive network comprising the γ-glomerulus and its innervating mitral cells, based on specific temperature-induced Ca2+ traces. Using chemical odorants as stimuli in addition to temperature jumps enables the comparison between thermosensitive and chemosensitive networks in the olfactory bulb. PMID:27286501

  5. Expression of rat liver Na+/L-alanine co-transport in Xenopus laevis oocytes. Effect of glucagon in vivo.

    PubMed Central

    Palacin, M; Werner, A; Dittmer, J; Murer, H; Biber, J

    1990-01-01

    Poly(A)+ RNA (mRNA) isolated from rat liver was injected into Xenopus laevis oocytes, and expression of Na+/L-alanine transport was assayed by measuring Na(+)-dependent uptake of L-[3H]alanine. Expression of Na+/L-alanine transport was detected 3-7 days after mRNA injection, and was due to an increment of the Na(+)-dependent component. After injection of 40 ng of total mRNA, Na(+)-dependent uptake of L-alanine was 2.5-fold higher than in water-injected oocytes. In contrast with Na+/L-alanine transport by water-injected oocytes, expressed Na+/L-alanine transport was inhibited by N-methylaminoisobutyric acid, was inhibited by an extracellular pH of 6.5 and was saturated at approx. 1 mM-L-alanine. After sucrose-density-gradient fractionation, highest expression of Na+/L-alanine uptake was observed with mRNA of 1.9-2.5 kb in length. Compared with mRNA isolated from control rats, mRNA isolated from glucagon-treated rats showed a approx. 2-fold higher expression of Na+/L-alanine transport. The results demonstrate that both liver Na+/L-alanine transport systems (A and ASC) can be expressed in X. laevis oocytes. Furthermore, the data obtained with mRNA isolated from glucagon-treated rats suggest that glucagon regulates liver Na+/L-alanine transport (at least in part) via the availability of the corresponding mRNA. Images Fig. 6. PMID:2396979

  6. Recording Temperature-induced Neuronal Activity through Monitoring Calcium Changes in the Olfactory Bulb of Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Brinkmann, Alexander; Okom, Camille; Kludt, Eugen; Schild, Detlev

    2016-01-01

    The olfactory system, specialized in the detection, integration and processing of chemical molecules is likely the most thoroughly studied sensory system. However, there is piling evidence that olfaction is not solely limited to chemical sensitivity, but also includes temperature sensitivity. Premetamorphic Xenopus laevis are translucent animals, with protruding nasal cavities deprived of the cribriform plate separating the nose and the olfactory bulb. These characteristics make them well suited for studying olfaction, and particularly thermosensitivity. The present article describes the complete procedure for measuring temperature responses in the olfactory bulb of X. laevis larvae. Firstly, the electroporation of olfactory receptor neurons (ORNs) is performed with spectrally distinct dyes loaded into the nasal cavities in order to stain their axon terminals in the bulbar neuropil. The differential staining between left and right receptor neurons serves to identify the γ-glomerulus as the only structure innervated by contralateral presynaptic afferents. Secondly, the electroporation is combined with focal bolus loading in the olfactory bulb in order to stain mitral cells and their dendrites. The 3D brain volume is then scanned under line-illumination microscopy for the acquisition of fast calcium imaging data while small temperature drops are induced at the olfactory epithelium. Lastly, the post-acquisition analysis allows the morphological reconstruction of the thermosensitive network comprising the γ-glomerulus and its innervating mitral cells, based on specific temperature-induced Ca(2+) traces. Using chemical odorants as stimuli in addition to temperature jumps enables the comparison between thermosensitive and chemosensitive networks in the olfactory bulb. PMID:27286501

  7. Triclosan and thyroid-mediated metamorphosis in anurans: differentiating growth effects from thyroid-driven metamorphosis in Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Fort, Douglas J; Mathis, Michael B; Hanson, Warren; Fort, Chelsea E; Navarro, Lisa T; Peter, Robert; Büche, Claudia; Unger, Sabine; Pawlowski, Sascha; Plautz, James R

    2011-06-01

    In a previously reported study, we used a standard metamorphosis anuran model to assess potential effect of the antibacterial agent triclosan (TCS) on normal prometamorphic Xenopus laevis. Results indicated that environmentally relevant TCS concentrations did not alter the normal course of thyroid-mediated metamorphosis in this standard anuran model. However, to examine potential effects of TCS exposure during premetamorphosis and to distinguish between effects on metamorphosis and effects on growth, a longer term TCS exposure study was conducted. Standard Nieuwkoop and Faber (NF) stage 47 X. laevis larvae were exposed for 32 days (ca. NF stage 59-60) via flow-through to four different concentrations of TCS: < 0.2 (control), 0.8, 3.1, 12.5, or 50.0 μg TCS/l. Primary endpoints were survival, hind limb length, body length (whole; snout-to-vent), developmental stage, wet whole body weight, thyroid histology, plasma thyroid hormone (TH) concentrations, TH receptor beta (TRβ), and type II and III deiodinase (DI-2 and DI-3) expression. Endpoints measured to evaluate effects on thyroid-mediated metamorphosis including developmental stage, thyroid histology, TRβ expression, DI-2 and DI-3 expression, and thyroid gland 3,5,3',5'-tetraiodothyronine (T4) and plasma T4 and 3,5,3'-triiodothyronine (T3) levels were not affected by TCS exposure. However, increased larval growth based on whole body length (0.78, 12.5, and 50 μg TCS/l), snout-vent length (3.1 and 12.5 μg TCS/l), and whole body weight (0.8, 12.5, and 50.0 μg TCS/l) was observed following 32-day TCS exposure. These results indicated that TCS exposure during pre- and prometamorphosis increased larval growth but did not alter the normal course of metamorphosis in X. laevis. The increased growth associated with TCS exposure was not unexpected and is generally consistent with the presence of reduced bacterial stressors in culture.

  8. A gene expression map of the larval Xenopus laevis head reveals developmental changes underlying the evolution of new skeletal elements.

    PubMed

    Square, Tyler; Jandzik, David; Cattell, Maria; Coe, Alex; Doherty, Jacob; Medeiros, Daniel Meulemans

    2015-01-15

    The morphology of the vertebrate head skeleton is highly plastic, with the number, size, shape, and position of its components varying dramatically between groups. While this evolutionary flexibility has been key to vertebrate success, its developmental and genetic bases are poorly understood. The larval head skeleton of the frog Xenopus laevis possesses a unique combination of ancestral tetrapod features and anuran-specific novelties. We built a detailed gene expression map of the head mesenchyme in X. laevis during early larval development, focusing on transcription factor families with known functions in vertebrate head skeleton development. This map was then compared to homologous gene expression in zebrafish, mouse, and shark embryos to identify conserved and evolutionarily flexible aspects of vertebrate head skeleton development. While we observed broad conservation of gene expression between X. laevis and other gnathostomes, we also identified several divergent features that correlate to lineage-specific novelties. We noted a conspicuous change in dlx1/2 and emx2 expression in the second pharyngeal arch, presaging the differentiation of the reduced dorsal hyoid arch skeletal element typical of modern anamniote tetrapods. In the first pharyngeal arch we observed a shift in the expression of the joint inhibitor barx1, and new expression of the joint marker gdf5, shortly before skeletal differentiation. This suggests that the anuran-specific infrarostral cartilage evolved by partitioning of Meckel's cartilage with a new paired joint. Taken together, these comparisons support a model in which early patterning mechanisms divide the vertebrate head mesenchyme into a highly conserved set of skeletal precursor populations. While subtle changes in this early patterning system can affect skeletal element size, they do not appear to underlie the evolution of new joints or cartilages. In contrast, later expression of the genes that regulate skeletal element

  9. Crystal structure of a Xenopus laevis skin proto-type galectin, close to but distinct from galectin-1.

    PubMed

    Nonaka, Yasuhiro; Ogawa, Takashi; Yoshida, Hiromi; Shoji, Hiroki; Nishi, Nozomu; Kamitori, Shigehiro; Nakamura, Takanori

    2015-07-01

    Xenopus laevis (African clawed frog) has two types of proto-type galectins that are similar to mammalian galectin-1 in amino acid sequence. One type, comprising xgalectin-Ia and -Ib, is regarded as being equivalent to galectin-1, and the other type, comprising xgalectin-Va and -Vb, is expected to be a unique galectin subgroup. The latter is considerably abundant in frog skin; however, its biological function remains unclear. We determined the crystal structures of two proto-type galectins, xgalectin-Ib and -Va. The structures showed that both galectins formed a mammalian galectin-1-like homodimer, and furthermore, xgalectin-Va formed a homotetramer. This tetramer structure has not been reported for other galectins. Gel filtration and other experiments indicated that xgalectin-Va was in a dimer-tetramer equilibrium in solution, and lactose binding enhanced the tetramer formation. The residues involved in the dimer-dimer association were conserved in xgalectin-Va and -Vb, and one of the Xenopus (Silurana) tropicalis proto-type galectins, but not in xgalectin-Ia and -Ib, and other galectin-1-equivalent proteins. Xgalectin-Va preferred Galβ1-3GalNAc and not Galβ1-4GlcNAc, while xgalectin-Ib preferred Galβ1-4GlcNAc as well as human galectin-1. Xgalectin-Va/Vb would have diverged from the galectin-1 group with accompanying acquisition of the higher oligomer formation and altered ligand selectivity. PMID:25804418

  10. Blastomeres show differential fate changes in 8-cell Xenopus laevis embryos that are rotated 90 degrees before first cleavage

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Huang, S.; Johnson, K. E.; Wang, H. Z.

    1998-01-01

    To study the mechanisms of dorsal axis specification, the alteration in dorsal cell fate of cleavage stage blastomeres in axis-respecified Xenopus laevis embryos was investigated. Fertilized eggs were rotated 90 degrees with the sperm entry point up or down with respect to the gravitational field. At the 8-cell stage, blastomeres were injected with the lineage tracers, Texas Red- or FITC-Dextran Amines. The distribution of the labeled progeny was mapped at the tail-bud stages (stages 35-38) and compared with the fate map of an 8-cell embryo raised in a normal orientation. As in the normal embryos, each blastomere in the rotated embryos has a characteristic and predictable cell fate. After 90 degrees rotation the blastomeres in the 8-cell stage embryo roughly switched their position by 90 degrees, but the fate of the blastomeres did not simply show a 90 degrees switch appropriate for their new location. Four types of fate change were observed: (i) the normal fate of the blastomere is conserved with little change; (ii) the normal fate is completely changed and a new fate is adopted according to the blastomere's new position: (iii) the normal fate is completely changed, but the new fate is not appropriate for its new position; and (4) the blastomere partially changed its fate and the new fate is a combination of its original fate and a fate appropriate to its new location. According to the changed fates, the blastomeres that adopt dorsal fates were identified in rotated embryos. This identification of dorsal blastomeres provides basic important information for further study of dorsal signaling in Xenopus embryos.

  11. Recombinant plasmids containing Xenopus laevis globin structural genes derived from complementary DNA.

    PubMed Central

    Humphries, P; Old, R; Coggins, L W; McShane, T; Watson, C; Paul, J

    1978-01-01

    Details are presented of the in vitro synthesis of double-stranded DNA complementary to purified Xenopus globin messenger RNA, using a combination of reverse transcriptase, fragment 'A' of E. coli DNA polymerase 1 and S1 endonuclease. After selection of duplex DNA molecules approaching the length of Xenopus globin messenger RNA by sedimentation of the DNA through neutral sucrose gradients, the 3'-OH termini of the synthetic globin gene sequences were extended with short tracts of oligo dGMP using terminal transferase. This material was integrated into oligo dCMP-extended linear pCR1 plasmid DNA and amplified by transfection of E. coli. Plasmids carrying globin sequences were identified by hybridization of 32P-labelled globin mRNA to total cellular DNA in situ, by hybridization of purified plasmids to globin cDNA in solution, by analysis of recombinant DNA on polyacrylamide and agarose gels, and by heteroduplex mapping. The results show that extensive DNA copies of Xenopus globin mRNA have been integrated into recombinant plasmids. Images PMID:347404

  12. Determining the optimal developmental stages of Xenopus laevis for initiating exposures to chemicals for sensitively detecting their feminizing effects on gonadal differentiation.

    PubMed

    Li, Yuan-Yuan; Chen, Juan; Qin, Zhan-Fen

    2016-10-01

    Xenopus laevis is an important model for detecting feminizing effects of endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) on amphibians because its genetic males can be induced to phenotypic females by estrogenic chemicals. It is crucial that chemical exposures begin at sensitive developmental stages for gonadal sex-reversal in X. laevis. To determine the optimal stages for initiating exposures, we investigated gonadal sex-reversal induced by low concentrations of 17α-ethinylestradiol (EE2) when exposures were initiated at different stages (3/4, 45/46, 48 and 50) until stage 58. We found that 0.1nM EE2 resulted in 85%, 86%, 43%, and 19% intersex, whereas 1nM EE2 caused 77%, 81%, 17%, and 8% phenotypic females, when genetic male tadpoles were exposed from stages 3/4, 45/46, 48 and 50, respectively. The data show the sensitivity of X. laevis gonads to EE2 at stages 45/46 is similar with that at stages 3/4, but the sensitivity decreases at stage 48 and stage 50, displaying a developmental stage-dependent manner. In another experiment using the offspring of another pair of frogs, we confirmed high sensitivity of X. laevis gonads at stages 45/46 to low concentrations of EE2. Considering that stages 45/46 tadpoles are easier to manipulate and have higher survival rates than earlier embryos, we propose that stages 45/46 are the optimal stages for initiating exposure for detecting feminizing effects of EDCs on gonadal differentiation in X. laevis. The developmental stages for initiating exposures we determined will guarantee the high sensitivity for detecting feminizing effects of EDCs with low estrogenic activities on gonadal differentiation in X. laevis. Also, our study suggests that gonadal differentiation in X. laevis possibly begins at stages 45/46, but not at later stages.

  13. Expression and localization of the Xenopus laevis small heat shock protein, HSPB6 (HSP20), in A6 kidney epithelial cells.

    PubMed

    Khamis, Imran; Chan, Daniel W; Shirriff, Cody S; Campbell, James H; Heikkila, John J

    2016-11-01

    Small heat shock proteins (sHSPs) are molecular chaperones that bind to unfolded protein, inhibit the formation of toxic aggregates and facilitate their refolding and/or degradation. Previously, the only sHSPs that have been studied in detail in the model frog system, Xenopus laevis, were members of the HSP30 family and HSPB1 (HSP27). We now report the analysis of X. laevis HSPB6, an ortholog of mammalian HSPB6. X. laevis HSPB6 cDNA encodes a 168 aa protein that contains an α-crystallin domain, a polar C-terminal extension and some possible phosphorylation sites. X. laevis HSPB6 shares 94% identity with a X. tropicalis HSPB6, 65% with turtle, 59% with humans, 49% with zebrafish and only 50% and 43% with X. laevis HSPB1 and HSP30C, respectively. Phylogenetic analysis revealed that X. laevis HSPB6 grouped more closely with mammalian and reptilian HSPB6s than with fish HSPB6. X. laevis recombinant HSPB6 displayed molecular chaperone properties since it had the ability to inhibit heat-induced aggregation of citrate synthase. Immunoblot analysis determined that HSPB6 was present constitutively in kidney epithelial cells and that heat shock treatment did not upregulate HSPB6 levels. While treatment with the proteasomal inhibitor, MG132, resulted in a 2-fold increase in HSPB6 levels, exposure to cadmium chloride produced a slight increase in HSPB6. These findings were in contrast to HSP70, which was enhanced in response to all three stressors. Finally, immunocytochemical analysis revealed that HSPB6 was present in the cytoplasm in the perinuclear region with some in the nucleus.

  14. Determining the optimal developmental stages of Xenopus laevis for initiating exposures to chemicals for sensitively detecting their feminizing effects on gonadal differentiation.

    PubMed

    Li, Yuan-Yuan; Chen, Juan; Qin, Zhan-Fen

    2016-10-01

    Xenopus laevis is an important model for detecting feminizing effects of endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) on amphibians because its genetic males can be induced to phenotypic females by estrogenic chemicals. It is crucial that chemical exposures begin at sensitive developmental stages for gonadal sex-reversal in X. laevis. To determine the optimal stages for initiating exposures, we investigated gonadal sex-reversal induced by low concentrations of 17α-ethinylestradiol (EE2) when exposures were initiated at different stages (3/4, 45/46, 48 and 50) until stage 58. We found that 0.1nM EE2 resulted in 85%, 86%, 43%, and 19% intersex, whereas 1nM EE2 caused 77%, 81%, 17%, and 8% phenotypic females, when genetic male tadpoles were exposed from stages 3/4, 45/46, 48 and 50, respectively. The data show the sensitivity of X. laevis gonads to EE2 at stages 45/46 is similar with that at stages 3/4, but the sensitivity decreases at stage 48 and stage 50, displaying a developmental stage-dependent manner. In another experiment using the offspring of another pair of frogs, we confirmed high sensitivity of X. laevis gonads at stages 45/46 to low concentrations of EE2. Considering that stages 45/46 tadpoles are easier to manipulate and have higher survival rates than earlier embryos, we propose that stages 45/46 are the optimal stages for initiating exposure for detecting feminizing effects of EDCs on gonadal differentiation in X. laevis. The developmental stages for initiating exposures we determined will guarantee the high sensitivity for detecting feminizing effects of EDCs with low estrogenic activities on gonadal differentiation in X. laevis. Also, our study suggests that gonadal differentiation in X. laevis possibly begins at stages 45/46, but not at later stages. PMID:27611864

  15. Urotensin II upregulates migration and cytokine gene expression in leukocytes of the African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Tomiyama, Shiori; Nakamachi, Tomoya; Uchiyama, Minoru; Matsuda, Kouhei; Konno, Norifumi

    2015-05-15

    Urotensin II (UII) exhibits diverse physiological actions including vasoconstriction, locomotor activity, osmoregulation, and immune response via the UII receptor (UTR) in mammals. However, in amphibians the function of the UII-UTR system remains unknown. In the present study, we investigated the potential immune function of UII using leukocytes isolated from the African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis. Stimulation of male frogs with lipopolysaccharide increased mRNA expression of UII and UTR in leukocytes, suggesting that inflammatory stimuli induce activation of the UII-UTR system. Migration assays showed that both UII and UII-related peptide enhanced migration of leukocytes in a dose-dependent manner, and that UII effect was inhibited by the UTR antagonist urantide. Inhibition of Rho kinase with Y-27632 abolished UII-induced migration, suggesting that it depends on the activation of RhoA/Rho kinase. Treatment of isolated leukocytes with UII increased the expression of several cytokine genes including tumor necrosis factor-α, interleukin-1β, and macrophage migration inhibitory factor, and the effects were abolished by urantide. These results suggest that in amphibian leukocytes the UII-UTR system is involved in the activation of leukocyte migration and cytokine gene expression in response to inflammatory stimuli.

  16. Gene expression responses for detecting sublethal effects of xenobiotics and whole effluents on a Xenopus laevis embryo assay.

    PubMed

    San Segundo, Laura; Martini, Federica; Pablos, M Victoria

    2013-09-01

    In the present study, the authors investigated the effects of bisphenol A, chlorpyrifos, methylparaben, and 2 effluent samples from wastewater treatment plants located in the province of Madrid, Spain, on the messenger RNA expression of specific genes involved in early development (ESR1, pax6, bmp4, and myf5) and a gene involved in the general stress response (hsp70) during Xenopus laevis embryo development. Gene expression was analyzed after 4 h, 24 h, and 96 h of exposure by semiquantitative reverse-transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction. Concentration ranges of the compounds and dilutions for the samples were selected to cause morphological alterations in embryos after 96 h of exposure. Transcript levels of ESR1, pax6, and hsp70 were differentially altered at early developmental stages with patterns specific to the contaminant and the exposure time. However, further studies are needed to establish transcript levels of specific genes as biomarkers of sublethal effects in an environmental risk-assessment framework. Besides, studies including more generic responses, such as genes encoding antioxidant enzymes, together with genes related to embryonic development have to be developed to look for a battery of mechanistic endpoints for the evaluation of chemical exposure at the molecular level in a first-tier assessment. PMID:23637088

  17. Trpc2 is expressed in two olfactory subsystems, the main and the vomeronasal system of larval Xenopus laevis

    PubMed Central

    Sansone, Alfredo; Syed, Adnan S.; Tantalaki, Evangelia; Korsching, Sigrun I.; Manzini, Ivan

    2014-01-01

    Complete segregation of the main olfactory epithelium (MOE) and the vomeronasal epithelium is first observed in amphibians. In contrast, teleost fishes possess a single olfactory surface, in which genetic components of the main and vomeronasal olfactory systems are intermingled. The transient receptor potential channel TRPC2, a marker of vomeronasal neurons, is present in the single fish sensory surface, but is already restricted to the vomeronasal epithelium in a terrestrial amphibian, the red-legged salamander (Plethodon shermani). Here we examined the localization of TRPC2 in an aquatic amphibian and cloned the Xenopus laevis trpc2 gene. We show that it is expressed in both the MOE and the vomeronasal epithelium. This is the first description of a broad trpc2 expression in the MOE of a tetrapod. The expression pattern of trpc2 in the MOE is virtually undistinguishable from that of MOE-specific v2rs, indicating that they are co-expressed in the same neuronal subpopulation. PMID:24737764

  18. Manipulation and In Vitro Maturation of Xenopus laevis Oocytes, Followed by Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection, to Study Embryonic Development

    PubMed Central

    Miyamoto, Kei; Simpson, David; Gurdon, John B.

    2015-01-01

    Amphibian eggs have been widely used to study embryonic development. Early embryonic development is driven by maternally stored factors accumulated during oogenesis. In order to study roles of such maternal factors in early embryonic development, it is desirable to manipulate their functions from the very beginning of embryonic development. Conventional ways of gene interference are achieved by injection of antisense oligonucleotides (oligos) or mRNA into fertilized eggs, enabling under- or over-expression of specific proteins, respectively. However, these methods normally require more than several hours until protein expression is affected, and, hence, the interference of gene functions is not effective during early embryonic stages. Here, we introduce an experimental system in which expression levels of maternal proteins can be altered before fertilization. Xenopus laevis oocytes obtained from ovaries are defolliculated by incubating with enzymes. Antisense oligos or mRNAs are injected into defolliculated oocytes at the germinal vesicle (GV) stage. These oocytes are in vitro matured to eggs at the metaphase II (MII) stage, followed by intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI). By this way, up to 10% of ICSI embryos can reach the swimming tadpole stage, thus allowing functional tests of specific gene knockdown or overexpression. This approach can be a useful way to study roles of maternally stored factors in early embryonic development. PMID:25742326

  19. Do Nanoparticle Physico-Chemical Properties and Developmental Exposure Window Influence Nano ZnO Embryotoxicity in Xenopus laevis?

    PubMed

    Bonfanti, Patrizia; Moschini, Elisa; Saibene, Melissa; Bacchetta, Renato; Rettighieri, Leonardo; Calabri, Lorenzo; Colombo, Anita; Mantecca, Paride

    2015-08-01

    The growing global production of zinc oxide nanoparticles (ZnONPs) suggests a realistic increase in the environmental exposure to such a nanomaterial, making the knowledge of its biological reactivity and its safe-by-design synthesis mandatory. In this study, the embryotoxicity of ZnONPs (1-100 mg/L) specifically synthesized for industrial purposes with different sizes, shapes (round, rod) and surface coatings (PEG, PVP) was tested using the frog embryo teratogenesis assay-Xenopus (FETAX) to identify potential target tissues and the most sensitive developmental stages. The ZnONPs did not cause embryolethality, but induced a high incidence of malformations, in particular misfolded gut and abdominal edema. Smaller, round NPs were more effective than the bigger, rod ones, and PEGylation determined a reduction in embryotoxicity. Ingestion appeared to be the most relevant exposure route. Only the embryos exposed from the stomodeum opening showed anatomical and histological lesions to the intestine, mainly referable to a swelling of paracellular spaces among enterocytes. In conclusion, ZnONPs differing in shape and surface coating displayed similar toxicity in X. laevis embryos and shared the same target organ. Nevertheless, we cannot exclude that the physico-chemical characteristics may influence the severity of such effects. Further research efforts are mandatory to ensure the synthesis of safer nano-ZnO-containing products. PMID:26225989

  20. Distinct functional roles of amphibian (Xenopus laevis) colony-stimulating factor-1- and interleukin-34-derived macrophages

    PubMed Central

    Grayfer, Leon; Robert, Jacques

    2015-01-01

    Although Mϕ represent the most primordial immune cell subsets, the mechanisms governing their functional heterogeneity remain poorly defined. However, it is well established that the CSF-1 cytokine contributes to monopoiesis and to this heterogeneity, whereas the unrelated IL-34 also binds the CSF-1R toward poorly understood immunologic roles. To delineate the molecular and evolutionary basis behind vertebrate Mϕ functional heterogeneity, we performed comprehensive transcriptional and functional studies of amphibian (Xenopus laevis) BM (in vitro) and PER (in vivo) Mϕ derived by rXlCSF-1 and rXlIL-34. Our findings indicate that these amphibian cytokines promote morphologically and functionally distinct Mϕ populations. Mϕ induced by rXlCSF-1 possess more robust iNOS gene expression, are substantially more phagocytic, display greater NO responses, and exhibit enhanced bactericidal capacities. By contrast, rXlIL-34-derived Mϕ express greater levels of Arg-1 and NADPH oxidase components and possess greater respiratory burst responses. Most notably, whereas CSF-1 Mϕ are highly susceptible to the emerging FV3 ranavirus, rXlIL-34 Mϕ exhibit potent antiviral activity against this pathogen, which is dependent on reactive oxygen production. This work marks an advance in our understanding of the possible mechanisms governing vertebrate Mϕ functional heterogeneity. PMID:26136505

  1. Do Nanoparticle Physico-Chemical Properties and Developmental Exposure Window Influence Nano ZnO Embryotoxicity in Xenopus laevis?

    PubMed Central

    Bonfanti, Patrizia; Moschini, Elisa; Saibene, Melissa; Bacchetta, Renato; Rettighieri, Leonardo; Calabri, Lorenzo; Colombo, Anita; Mantecca, Paride

    2015-01-01

    The growing global production of zinc oxide nanoparticles (ZnONPs) suggests a realistic increase in the environmental exposure to such a nanomaterial, making the knowledge of its biological reactivity and its safe-by-design synthesis mandatory. In this study, the embryotoxicity of ZnONPs (1–100 mg/L) specifically synthesized for industrial purposes with different sizes, shapes (round, rod) and surface coatings (PEG, PVP) was tested using the frog embryo teratogenesis assay-Xenopus (FETAX) to identify potential target tissues and the most sensitive developmental stages. The ZnONPs did not cause embryolethality, but induced a high incidence of malformations, in particular misfolded gut and abdominal edema. Smaller, round NPs were more effective than the bigger, rod ones, and PEGylation determined a reduction in embryotoxicity. Ingestion appeared to be the most relevant exposure route. Only the embryos exposed from the stomodeum opening showed anatomical and histological lesions to the intestine, mainly referable to a swelling of paracellular spaces among enterocytes. In conclusion, ZnONPs differing in shape and surface coating displayed similar toxicity in X. laevis embryos and shared the same target organ. Nevertheless, we cannot exclude that the physico-chemical characteristics may influence the severity of such effects. Further research efforts are mandatory to ensure the synthesis of safer nano-ZnO-containing products. PMID:26225989

  2. Exposure to the herbicide acetochlor alters thyroid hormone-dependent gene expression and metamorphosis in Xenopus Laevis.

    PubMed Central

    Crump, Doug; Werry, Kate; Veldhoen, Nik; Van Aggelen, Graham; Helbing, Caren C

    2002-01-01

    A growing number of substances released into the environment disrupt normal endocrine mechanisms in a wide range of vertebrates. Little is known about the effects and identities of endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs) that target thyroid hormone (TH) action, particularly at the cellular level. Frog tadpole metamorphosis depends completely on TH, which has led to the suggestion of a metamorphosis-based assay for screening potential EDCs. A major mechanism of TH action is the alteration of gene expression via hormone-bound nuclear receptors. To assess the gene expression profiles in the frog model, we designed a novel multispecies frog cDNA microarray. Recently, the preemergent herbicide acetochlor was shown to accelerate 3,5,3 -triiodothyronine (T3)-induced forelimb emergence and increase mRNA expression of thyroid hormone ss receptors in ranid tadpoles. Here we show that T3-induced metamorphosis of Xenopus laevis, a species commonly used in the laboratory, is accelerated upon acute exposure to an environmentally relevant level of acetochlor. The morphologic changes observed are preceded by alterations in gene expression profiles detected in the tadpole tail, and the nature of these profiles suggest a novel mechanism of action for acetochlor. PMID:12460798

  3. 3'-end-dependent formation of U6 small nuclear ribonucleoprotein particles in Xenopus laevis oocyte nuclei.

    PubMed

    Terns, M P; Lund, E; Dahlberg, J E

    1992-07-01

    We have identified and characterized a U6 small nuclear (sn) ribonucleoprotein particle (RNP) present in the nuclei of Xenopus laevis oocytes. The structure of this U6 snRNP was investigated by native gel shift analysis and a combination of RNA-protein UV cross-linking, RNase T1 fingerprinting, and immunoprecipitation assays. These analyses demonstrate that certain forms of U6 snRNA associate with the 50-kDa nuclear antigen La both in vivo and in vitro. The La protein binds the stretch of uridylates at the 3' hydroxyl end of newly synthesized U6 snRNA. La does not bind to mature U6 snRNAs that have 2',3'-cyclic phosphate (greater than p) groups at their 3' ends (E. Lund and J. E. Dahlberg, Science 255:327-330, 1992) or to U6 snRNAs in anti-Sm-precipitable U4/U6 snRNPs. We propose that 3'-end modification, including posttranscriptional UMP addition, modulates the binding of La protein to U6 snRNA which, in turn, may affect the function of this RNA. PMID:1535684

  4. Effects of Roundup and glyphosate formulations on intracellular transport, microtubules and actin filaments in Xenopus laevis melanophores.

    PubMed

    Hedberg, Daniel; Wallin, Margareta

    2010-04-01

    Glyphosate containing herbicides, such as Roundup, are commonly used and generally considered to be safe. However, some toxic effects are found on amphibians in vivo and human and mouse cells in vitro. In this study the effects of Roundup, glyphosate, glyphosateisopropylamine and isopropylamine were studied on intracellular transport by measuring aggregation capacity in Xenopus laevis melanophores. The chemicals inhibited retrograde transport of melanosomes in the range of 0.5-5mM. Cellular morphology and localization of microtubules and actin filaments were affected as determined by immunocytochemistry. Both glyphosate and Roundup decreased pH in the media. Acidic pH inhibited melanosome transport and altered microtubule and actin morphology in the absence of chemicals, while transport inhibiting concentrations of glyphosate, Roundup and glyphosateisopropylamine disassembled both microtubules and actin filaments. At physiological pH the effects of Roundup decreased whereas glyphosate failed to inhibit transport. Physiological pH decreases glyphosate lipophilicity and its diffusion into the cytoplasm. The Roundup formulation contains surfactants, such as POEA (polyetylated tallow amine) that increases membrane permeability allowing cellular uptake at physiological pH. Our results show that the effects of glyphosate containing compounds are pH-dependent and that they inhibit intracellular transport through disassembly of the cytoskeleton possibly by interfering with intracellular Ca(2+)-balance.

  5. Characterization of recombination intermediates from DNA injected into Xenopus laevis oocytes: evidence for a nonconservative mechanism of homologous recombination.

    PubMed Central

    Maryon, E; Carroll, D

    1991-01-01

    Homologous recombination between DNA molecules injected into Xenopus laevis oocyte nuclei is extremely efficient if injected molecules have overlapping homologous ends. Earlier work demonstrated that ends of linear molecules are degraded by a 5'----3' exonuclease activity, yielding 3' tails that participate in recombination. Here, we have characterized intermediates further advanced along the recombination pathway. The intermediates were identified by their unique electrophoretic and kinetic properties. Two-dimensional gel electrophoresis and hybridization with oligonucleotide probes showed that the intermediates had heteroduplex junctions within their homologous overlaps in which strands ending 3' were full length and those ending 5' were shortened. Additional characterization suggested that these intermediates had formed by the annealing of complementary 3' tails. Annealed junctions made in vitro were rapidly processed to products, indicating that they are on the normal recombination pathway. These results support a nonconservative, single-strand annealing mode of recombination. This recombination mechanism appears to be shared by many organisms, including bacteria, fungi, plants, and mammals. Images PMID:2038331

  6. Involvement of single-stranded tails in homologous recombination of DNA injected into Xenopus laevis oocyte nuclei.

    PubMed Central

    Maryon, E; Carroll, D

    1991-01-01

    Homologous recombination of DNA molecules injected into Xenopus laevis oocyte nuclei is extremely efficient when those molecules are linear and have overlapping homologous ends. It was previously shown that a 5'----3' exonuclease activity in oocytes attacks injected linear DNAs and leaves them with single-stranded 3' tails. We tested the hypothesis that such tailed molecules are early intermediates on the pathway to recombination products. Substrates with 3' tails were made in vitro and injected into oocytes, where they recombined rapidly and efficiently. In experiments with mixed substrates, molecules with 3' tails entered recombination intermediates and products more rapidly than did molecules with flush ends. Molecules endowed in vitro with 5' tails also recombined efficiently in oocytes, but their rate was not faster than for flush-ended substrates. In most cases, the 5' tails served as templates for resynthesis of the 3' strands, regenerating duplex ends which then entered the normal recombination pathway. In oocytes from one animal, some of the 5' tails were removed, and this was exacerbated when resynthesis was partially blocked. Analysis by two-dimensional gel electrophoresis of recombination intermediates from 5'-tailed substrates confirmed that they had acquired 3' tails as a result of the action of the 5'----3' exonuclease. These results demonstrate that homologous recombination in oocytes proceeds via a pathway that involves single-stranded 3' tails. Molecular models incorporating this feature are discussed. Images PMID:2038330

  7. Do Nanoparticle Physico-Chemical Properties and Developmental Exposure Window Influence Nano ZnO Embryotoxicity in Xenopus laevis?

    PubMed

    Bonfanti, Patrizia; Moschini, Elisa; Saibene, Melissa; Bacchetta, Renato; Rettighieri, Leonardo; Calabri, Lorenzo; Colombo, Anita; Mantecca, Paride

    2015-08-01

    The growing global production of zinc oxide nanoparticles (ZnONPs) suggests a realistic increase in the environmental exposure to such a nanomaterial, making the knowledge of its biological reactivity and its safe-by-design synthesis mandatory. In this study, the embryotoxicity of ZnONPs (1-100 mg/L) specifically synthesized for industrial purposes with different sizes, shapes (round, rod) and surface coatings (PEG, PVP) was tested using the frog embryo teratogenesis assay-Xenopus (FETAX) to identify potential target tissues and the most sensitive developmental stages. The ZnONPs did not cause embryolethality, but induced a high incidence of malformations, in particular misfolded gut and abdominal edema. Smaller, round NPs were more effective than the bigger, rod ones, and PEGylation determined a reduction in embryotoxicity. Ingestion appeared to be the most relevant exposure route. Only the embryos exposed from the stomodeum opening showed anatomical and histological lesions to the intestine, mainly referable to a swelling of paracellular spaces among enterocytes. In conclusion, ZnONPs differing in shape and surface coating displayed similar toxicity in X. laevis embryos and shared the same target organ. Nevertheless, we cannot exclude that the physico-chemical characteristics may influence the severity of such effects. Further research efforts are mandatory to ensure the synthesis of safer nano-ZnO-containing products.

  8. Tone and call responses of units in the auditory nerve and dorsal medullary nucleus of Xenopus laevis

    PubMed Central

    Christensen-Dalsgaard, Jakob; Kelley, Darcy B.

    2012-01-01

    The clawed frog Xenopus laevis produces vocalizations consisting of distinct patterns of clicks. This study provides the first description of spontaneous, pure-tone and communication-signal evoked discharge properties of auditory nerve (n.VIII) fibers and dorsal medullary nucleus (DMN) cells in an obligatorily aquatic anuran. Responses of 297 n.VIII and 253 DMN units are analyzed for spontaneous rates (SR), frequency tuning, rate-intensity functions, and firing rate adaptation, with a view to how these basic characteristics shape responses to recorded call stimuli. Response properties generally resemble those in partially terrestrial anurans. Broad tuning exists across characteristic frequencies (CFs). Threshold minima are −101 dB re 1 mm/s at 675 Hz; −87 dB at 1,600 Hz; and −61 dB at 3,000 Hz (−90, −77, and −44 dB re 1 Pa, respectively), paralleling the peak frequency of vocalizations at 1.2–1.6 kHz with ~500 Hz in 3 dB bandwidth. SRs range from 0 to 80 (n.VIII) and 0 to 73 spikes/s (DMN). Nerve and DMN units of all CFs follow click rates in natural calls, ≤67 clicks/s and faster. Units encode clicks with a single spike, double spikes, or bursts. Spike times correlate closely with click envelopes. No temporal filtering for communicative click rates occurs in either n.VIII or the DMN. PMID:17989982

  9. Neurogenic development of the auditory areas of the midbrain and diencephalon in the Xenopus laevis and evolutionary implications.

    PubMed

    Zeng, Shao Ju; Tian, CuiPing; Zhang, XinWen; Zuo, Ming Xue

    2008-04-24

    To study whether the core-versus-shell pattern of neurogenesis occurred in the mesencephalic and diencephalic auditory areas of amniotes also appears in the amphibian, [(3)H]-thymidine was injected into tadpoles at serial developmental stages of Xenopus laevis. Towards the end of metamorphism, [(3)H]-thymidine labeling was examined and led to two main observations: 1) neuron generation in the principal nucleus (Tp) started at stage 50, and peaked at stage 53, whereas it began at stage 48.5, and peaked around stage 49 in the other two mesencephalic auditory areas, the laminar nucleus (Tl) and the magnocellular nucleus (Tmc). 2) Neuron generation appeared at stage 40, and peaked around stage 52 in the posterior thalamic nucleus (P) and the central thalamic nucleus (C). Our study revealed that, like the cores of mesencephalic auditory nuclei in amniotes, Tp showed differences from Tl and Tmc in the onset and the peak of neurogenesis. However, such differences did not occur in the P and C. Our neurogenetic data were consistent with anatomical and physiological reports indicating a clear distinction between the mesencephalic, but not the diencephalic auditory areas of the amphibian. Our data are helpful to get insights into the organization of auditory nuclei and its evolution in vertebrates. PMID:18346715

  10. Perfluoroalkylated Substance Effects in Xenopus laevis A6 Kidney Epithelial Cells Determined by ATR-FTIR Spectroscopy and Chemometric Analysis

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    The effects of four perfluoroalkylated substances (PFASs), namely, perfluorobutanesulfonate (PFBS), perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA), perfluorooctanesulfonate (PFOS), and perfluorononanoic acid (PFNA) were assessed in Xenopus laevis A6 kidney epithelial cells by attenuated total reflection Fourier-transform infrared (ATR-FTIR) spectroscopy and chemometric analysis. Principal component analysis–linear discriminant analysis (PCA-LDA) was used to visualize wavenumber-related alterations and ANOVA-simultaneous component analysis (ASCA) allowed data processing considering the underlying experimental design. Both analyses evidenced a higher impact of low-dose PFAS-treatments (10–9 M) on A6 cells forming monolayers, while there was a larger influence of high-dose PFAS-treatments (10–5 M) on A6 cells differentiated into dome structures. The observed dose–response PFAS-induced effects were to some extent related to their cytotoxicity: the EC50-values of most influential PFAS-treatments increased (PFOS < PFNA < PFOA ≪ PFBS), and higher-doses of these chemicals induced a larger impact. Major spectral alterations were mainly attributed to DNA/RNA, secondary protein structure, lipids, and fatty acids. Finally, PFOS and PFOA caused a decrease in A6 cell numbers compared to controls, whereas PFBS and PFNA did not significantly change cell population levels. Overall, this work highlights the ability of PFASs to alter A6 cells, whether forming monolayers or differentiated into dome structures, and the potential of PFOS and PFOA to induce cell death. PMID:27078751

  11. Extensions to In Silico Bioactivity Predictions Using Pathway Annotations and Differential Pharmacology Analysis: Application to Xenopus laevis Phenotypic Readouts.

    PubMed

    Liggi, Sonia; Drakakis, Georgios; Hendry, Adam E; Hanson, Kimberley M; Brewerton, Suzanne C; Wheeler, Grant N; Bodkin, Michael J; Evans, David A; Bender, Andreas

    2013-12-01

    The simultaneous increase of computational power and the availability of chemical and biological data have contributed to the recent popularity of in silico bioactivity prediction algorithms. Such methods are commonly used to infer the 'Mechanism of Action' of small molecules and they can also be employed in cases where full bioactivity profiles have not been established experimentally. However, protein target predictions by themselves do not necessarily capture information about the effect of a compound on a biological system, and hence merging their output with a systems biology approach can help to better understand the complex network modulation which leads to a particular phenotype. In this work, we review approaches and applications of target prediction, as well as their shortcomings, and demonstrate two extensions of this concept which are exemplified using phenotypic readouts from a chemical genetic screen in Xenopus laevis. In particular, the experimental observations are linked to their predicted bioactivity profiles. Predicted targets are annotated with pathways, which lead to further biological insight. Moreover, we subject the prediction to further machine learning algorithms, namely decision trees, to capture the differential pharmacology of ligand-target interactions in biological systems. Both methodologies hence provide new insight into understanding the Mechanism of Action of compound activities from phenotypic screens.

  12. Frog Virus 3 dissemination in the brain of tadpoles, but not in adult Xenopus, involves blood brain barrier dysfunction

    PubMed Central

    De Jesús Andino, Francisco; Jones, Letitia; Maggirwar, Sanjay B.; Robert, Jacques

    2016-01-01

    While increasing evidence points to a key role of monocytes in amphibian host defenses, monocytes are also thought to be important in the dissemination and persistent infection caused by ranavirus. However, little is known about the fate of infected macrophages or if ranavirus exploits immune privileged organs, such as the brain, in order to establish a reservoir. The amphibian Xenopus laevis and Frog Virus 3 (FV3) were established as an experimental platform for investigating in vivo whether ranavirus could disseminate to the brain. Our data show that the FV3 infection alters the BBB integrity, possibly mediated by an inflammatory response, which leads to viral dissemination into the central nervous system in X. laevis tadpole but not adult. Furthermore, our data suggest that the macrophages play a major role in viral dissemination by carrying the virus into the neural tissues. PMID:26931458

  13. Extra- and intra-cellular ice formation in Stage I and II Xenopus laevis oocytes.

    PubMed

    Guenther, James F; Seki, Shinsuke; Kleinhans, F W; Edashige, Keisuke; Roberts, Daniel M; Mazur, Peter

    2006-06-01

    We are currently investigating factors that influence intracellular ice formation (IIF) in mouse oocytes and oocytes of the frog Xenopus. A major reason for choosing these two species is that while their eggs normally do not possess aquaporin channels in their plasma membranes, these channels can be made to express. We wish to see whether IIF is affected by the presence of these channels. The present Xenopus study deals with control eggs not expressing aquaporins. The main factor studied has been the effect of a cryoprotective agent [ethylene glycol (EG) or glycerol] and its concentration. The general procedure was to (a) cool the oocytes on a cryostage to slightly below the temperatures at which extracellular ice formation occurs, (b) warm them to just below the melting point, and (c) then re-cool them to -50 degrees C at 10 degrees C/min. In the majority of cases, IIF occurs well into step (c), but a sizeable minority undergo IIF in steps (a) or (b). The former group we refer to as low-temperature flashers; the latter as high-temperature flashers. IIF is manifested as abrupt blackening of the egg, which we refer to as "flashing." Observations on the Linkam cryostage are restricted to Stage I and II oocytes, which have diameters of 200 300 microm. In the absence of a cryoprotective agent, that is in frog Ringers, the mean flash temperature for the low-temperature freezers is -11.4 degrees C, although a sizeable percentage flash at temperatures much closer to that of the EIF (-3.9 degrees C). When EG is present, the flash temperature for the low-temperatures freezers drops significantly to approximately -20 degrees C for EG concentrations ranging from 0.5 to 1.5 M. The presence of 1.5 M glycerol also substantially reduces the IIF temperature of the low-temperature freezers; namely, to -29 degrees C, but 0.5 and 1 M glycerol exert little or no effect. The IIF temperatures observed using the Linkam cryostage agree well with those estimated by calorimetry [F

  14. The effect of 900 and 1800 MHz GSM-like radiofrequency irradiation and nicotine sulfate administration on the embryonic development of Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Boga, Ayper; Emre, Mustafa; Sertdemir, Yasar; Akillioglu, Kubra; Binokay, Secil; Demirhan, Osman

    2015-03-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of GSM-like radiofrequency electromagnetic radiation (RF EMR) and nicotine sulfate (NS) exposure on Xenopus embryonic development.The developmental effects of GSM-like RF-EMR (900-1800 MHz, at a SAR value of 1W/kg and NS on Xenopus laevis embryos were investigated). Following the application of radiofrequency radiation and/or NS administration, the embryos were closely examined in order to determine their possible teratogenic effects. Xenopus frogs obtained from the Department of Physiology of the Cukurova University, in accordance described by the Standard Guide of the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM). Following the exposure of Xenopus embryos to RF-EMR at 900 and 1800 MHz (1.0W/kg) for 4, 6 and 8h; the whole body specific energy absorption rate (SAR) of the embryos was calculated. With the exception of irradiation at 1800 MHz no dramatic developmental anomalies were observed in the Xenopus embryos in association with RF-EMR applications. Combined RF-EMR and NS applications resulted in dramatic abnormalities and death among the Xenopus embryos. The study results indicated that GSM-like RF-EMR (e.g. radiation from cell phones) was not as harmful to Xenopus embryos as might have been expected. However, the combined effects of GSM-like RF-EMR and NS on Xenopus embryos were more severe than the effect of RF-EMR or NS alone. In conclusion, the study results appear to suggest that the combined use of nicotine and cell phones might result in more pronounced detrimental effects on the health of smokers.

  15. Mesoderm induction and the control of gastrulation in Xenopus laevis: the roles of fibronectin and integrins.

    PubMed

    Smith, J C; Symes, K; Hynes, R O; DeSimone, D

    1990-02-01

    Exposure of isolated Xenopus animal pole ectoderm to the XTC mesoderm-inducing factor (XTC-MIF) causes the tissue to undergo gastrulation-like movements. In this paper, we take advantage of this observation to investigate the control of various aspects of gastrulation in Xenopus. Blastomeres derived from induced animal pole regions are able, like marginal zone cells, but unlike control animal pole blastomeres, to spread and migrate on a fibronectin-coated surface. Dispersed animal pole cells are also able to respond to XTC-MIF in this way; this is one of the few mesoderm-specific responses to induction that has been observed in single cells. The ability of induced animal pole cells to spread on fibronectin is abolished by the peptide GRGDSP. However, the elongation of intact explants is unaffected by this peptide. This may indicate that fibronectin-mediated cell migration is not required for convergent extension. We have investigated the molecular basis of XTC-MIF-induced gastrulation-like movements by measuring rates of synthesis of fibronectin and of the integrin beta 1 chain in induced and control explants. No significant differences were observed, and this suggests that gastrulation is not initiated simply by control of synthesis of these molecules. In future work, we intend to investigate synthesis of other integrin subunits and to examine possible post-translational modifications to fibronectin and the integrins.

  16. Lens induction in axolotls: comparison with inductive signaling mechanisms in Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Servetnick, M D; Cook, T L; Grainger, R M

    1996-08-01

    Amphibian lens induction is an embryonic process whose broad outlines are conserved between anurans and urodeles; however, it has been argued that some aspects of this process differ significantly between even closely related species. Classical embryologists concluded that in some species direct contact between the optic vesicle and ectoderm was both necessary and sufficient to induce the ectoderm to form a lens, while in other species tissues other than the optic vesicle induce lens formation. Recent studies of lens induction in Xenopus have argued that lens induction may be more conserved evolutionarily than was previously thought and that the different conclusions reached in the classical literature may be due more to experimental methodology than to actual differences in the process of lens induction. We have tested this hypothesis by examining the timing of lens induction in the axolotl and the ability of various tissues to induce lenses in explant cultures. We find that, despite the evolutionary divergence between Xenopus and Ambystoma, the mechanism of lens specification is substantially similar in the two species. These results support the hypothesis that the mechanism of lens induction is evolutionarily conserved among amphibians. PMID:8877449

  17. The thyroid hormone receptor gene (c-erbA alpha) is expressed in advance of thyroid gland maturation during the early embryonic development of Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed Central

    Banker, D E; Bigler, J; Eisenman, R N

    1991-01-01

    The c-erbA proto-oncogene encodes the thyroid hormone receptor, a ligand-dependent transcription factor which plays an important role in vertebrate growth and development. To define the role of the thyroid hormone receptor in developmental processes, we have begun studying c-erbA gene expression during the ontogeny of Xenopus laevis, an organism in which thyroid hormone has well-documented effects on morphogenesis. Using polymerase chain reactions (PCR) as a sensitive assay of specific gene expression, we found that polyadenylated erbA alpha RNA is present in Xenopus cells at early developmental stages, including the fertilized egg, blastula, gastrula, and neurula. By performing erbA alpha-specific PCR on reverse-transcribed RNAs from high-density sucrose gradient fractions prepared from early-stage embryos, we have demonstrated that these erbA transcripts are recruited to polysomes. Therefore, erbA is expressed in Xenopus development prior to the appearance of the thyroid gland anlage in tailbud-stage embryos. This implies that erbA alpha/thyroid hormone receptors may play ligand-independent roles during the early development of X. laevis. Quantitative PCR revealed a greater than 25-fold range in the steady-state levels of polyadenylated erbA alpha RNA across early stages of development, as expressed relative to equimolar amounts of total embryonic RNA. Substantial increases in the levels of erbA alpha RNA were noted at stages well after the onset of zygotic transcription at the mid-blastula transition, with accumulation of erbA alpha transcripts reaching a relative maximum in advance of metamorphosis. We also show that erbA alpha RNAs are expressed unequally across Xenopus neural tube embryos. This differential expression continues through later stages of development, including metamorphosis. This finding suggests that erbA alpha/thyroid hormone receptors may play roles in tissue-specific processes across all of Xenopus development. Images PMID:1656222

  18. Atomic force microscope imaging of chromatin assembled in Xenopus laevis egg extract.

    PubMed

    Fu, Hongxia; Freedman, Benjamin S; Lim, Chwee Teck; Heald, Rebecca; Yan, Jie

    2011-06-01

    Gaps persist in our understanding of chromatin lower- and higher-order structures. Xenopus egg extracts provide a way to study essential chromatin components which are difficult to manipulate in living cells, but nanoscale imaging of chromatin assembled in extracts poses a challenge. We describe a method for preparing chromatin assembled in extracts for atomic force microscopy (AFM) utilizing restriction enzyme digestion followed by transferring to a mica surface. Using this method, we find that buffer dilution of the chromatin assembly extract or incubation of chromatin in solutions of low ionic strength results in loosely compacted chromatin fibers that are prone to unraveling into naked DNA. We also describe a method for direct AFM imaging of chromatin which does not utilize restriction enzymes and reveals higher-order fibers of varying widths. Due to the capability of controlling chromatin assembly conditions, we believe these methods have broad potential for studying physiologically relevant chromatin structures. PMID:21369955

  19. E-cadherin is required for cranial neural crest migration in Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Huang, Chaolie; Kratzer, Marie-Claire; Wedlich, Doris; Kashef, Jubin

    2016-03-15

    The cranial neural crest (CNC) is a highly motile and multipotent embryonic cell population, which migrates directionally on defined routes throughout the embryo, contributing to facial structures including cartilage, bone and ganglia. Cadherin-mediated cell-cell adhesion is known to play a crucial role in the directional migration of CNC cells. However, migrating CNC co-express different cadherin subtypes, and their individual roles have yet to be fully explored. In previous studies, the expression of individual cadherin subtypes has been analysed using different methods with varying sensitivities, preventing the direct comparison of expression levels. Here, we provide the first comprehensive and comparative analysis of the expression of six cadherin superfamily members during different phases of CNC cell migration in Xenopus. By applying a quantitative RT-qPCR approach, we can determine the copy number and abundance of each expressed cadherin through different phases of CNC migration. Using this approach, we show for the first time expression of E-cadherin and XB/C-cadherin in CNC cells, adding them as two new members of cadherins co-expressed during CNC migration. Cadherin co-expression during CNC migration in Xenopus, in particular the constant expression of E-cadherin, contradicts the classical epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) model postulating a switch in cadherin expression. Loss-of-function experiments further show that E-cadherin is required for proper CNC cell migration in vivo and also for cell protrusion formation in vitro. Knockdown of E-cadherin is not rescued by co-injection of other classical cadherins, pointing to a specific function of E-cadherin in mediating CNC cell migration. Finally, through reconstitution experiments with different E-cadherin deletion mutants in E-cadherin morphant embryos, we demonstrate that the extracellular domain, but not the cytoplasmic domain, of E-cadherin is sufficient to rescue CNC cell migration in vivo.

  20. E-cadherin is required for cranial neural crest migration in Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Huang, Chaolie; Kratzer, Marie-Claire; Wedlich, Doris; Kashef, Jubin

    2016-03-15

    The cranial neural crest (CNC) is a highly motile and multipotent embryonic cell population, which migrates directionally on defined routes throughout the embryo, contributing to facial structures including cartilage, bone and ganglia. Cadherin-mediated cell-cell adhesion is known to play a crucial role in the directional migration of CNC cells. However, migrating CNC co-express different cadherin subtypes, and their individual roles have yet to be fully explored. In previous studies, the expression of individual cadherin subtypes has been analysed using different methods with varying sensitivities, preventing the direct comparison of expression levels. Here, we provide the first comprehensive and comparative analysis of the expression of six cadherin superfamily members during different phases of CNC cell migration in Xenopus. By applying a quantitative RT-qPCR approach, we can determine the copy number and abundance of each expressed cadherin through different phases of CNC migration. Using this approach, we show for the first time expression of E-cadherin and XB/C-cadherin in CNC cells, adding them as two new members of cadherins co-expressed during CNC migration. Cadherin co-expression during CNC migration in Xenopus, in particular the constant expression of E-cadherin, contradicts the classical epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) model postulating a switch in cadherin expression. Loss-of-function experiments further show that E-cadherin is required for proper CNC cell migration in vivo and also for cell protrusion formation in vitro. Knockdown of E-cadherin is not rescued by co-injection of other classical cadherins, pointing to a specific function of E-cadherin in mediating CNC cell migration. Finally, through reconstitution experiments with different E-cadherin deletion mutants in E-cadherin morphant embryos, we demonstrate that the extracellular domain, but not the cytoplasmic domain, of E-cadherin is sufficient to rescue CNC cell migration in vivo

  1. The developmental expression of the gene for TFIIIA in Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Taylor, W; Jackson, I J; Siegel, N; Kumar, A; Brown, D D

    1986-08-11

    The sequence of the trans-acting positive transcription factor TFIIIA has been deduced by sequencing cDNA and genomic DNA clones. Using DNA from a homozygous diploid animal we show that there is one gene for TFIIIA per haploid genome of X. laevis. Protein sequencing of proteolytic fragments of TFIIIA orients the protein in its interaction with the internal control region (ICR) of the 5S RNA gene. The protein lies along the DNA with its carboxyl terminus at the 5' end of the ICR and its amino terminus at the 3' end. The developmental pattern of TFIIIA and its mRNA during oogenesis and embryogenesis are consistent with the idea that the abundance of TFIIIA plays an essential role in the developmental change in 5S RNA gene expression. The change to almost exclusive somatic 5S RNA gene expression by gastrulation occurs using either the TFIIIA that was synthesized by oocyte and/or TFIIIA synthesized from maternal mRNA.

  2. Molecular characterization of myelin protein zero in Xenopus laevis peripheral nerve

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xie, Bo; Luo, Xiaoyang; Zhao, Cheng; Priest, Christina Marie; Chan, Shiu-Yung; O'Connor, Peter B.; Kirschner, Daniel A.; Costello, Catherine E.

    2007-12-01

    Myelin protein zero (P0), a glycosylated single-pass transmembrane protein, is essential in the formation and maintenance of peripheral nervous system (PNS) compact myelin. P0 in Xenopus (xP0) exists primarily as a dimeric form that remains stable after various physical and chemical treatments. In exploring the nature of the interactions underlying the dimer stability, we found that xP0 dimer dissociated into monomer during continuous elution gel electrophoresis and conventional SDS-PAGE, indicating that the dimer is stabilized by non-covalent interactions. Furthermore, as some of the gel-purified monomer re-associated into dimer on SDS-PAGE gels, there is likely a dynamic equilibrium between xP0 dimer and monomer in vivo. Because the carbohydrate and fatty acyl moieties may be crucial for the adhesion role of P0, we used sensitive mass spectrometry approaches to elucidate the detailed N-glycosylation and S-acylation profiles of xP0. Asn92 was determined to be the single, fully-occupied glycosylation site of xP0, and a total of 12 glycans was detected that exhibited new structural features compared with those observed from P0 in other species: (1) the neutral glycans were composed mainly of high mannose and hybrid types; (2) 5 of 12 were acidic glycans, among which three were sialylated and the other two were sulfated; (3) none of the glycans had core fucosylation; and (4) no glucuronic acid, hence no HNK-1 epitope, was detected. The drastically different carbohydrate structures observed here support the concept of the species-specific variation in N-glycosylation of P0. Cys152 was found to be acylated with stearoyl (C18:0), whereas palmitoyl (C16:0) is the corresponding predominant fatty acyl group on P0 from higher vertebrates. We propose that the unique glycosylation and acylation patterns of Xenopus P0 may underlie its unusual dimerization behavior. Our results should shed light on the understanding of the phylogenetic development of P0's adhesion role in PNS

  3. Ontogeny of hypoxic modulation of cardiac performance and its allometry in the African clawed frog Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Pan, T-C Francis; Burggren, Warren W

    2013-01-01

    The ontogeny of cardiac hypoxic responses, and how such responses may be modified by rearing environment, are poorly understood in amphibians. In this study, cardiac performance was investigated in Xenopus laevis from 2 to 25 days post-fertilization (dpf). Larvae were reared under either normoxia or moderate hypoxia (PO₂ = 110 mmHg), and each population was assessed in both normoxia and acute hypoxia. Heart rate (f(H)) of normoxic-reared larvae exhibited an early increase from 77 ± 1 beats min⁻¹ at 2 dpf to 153 ± 1 beats min⁻¹ at 4 dpf, followed by gradual decreases to 123 ± 3 beats min⁻¹ at 25 dpf. Stroke volume (SV), 6 ± 1 nl, and cardiac output (CO), 0.8 ± 0.1 μl min⁻¹, at 5 dpf both increased by more than 40-fold to 25 dpf with rapid larval growth (~30-fold increase in body mass). When exposed to acute hypoxia, normoxic-reared larvae increased f(H) and CO between 5 and 25 dpf. Increased SV in acute hypoxia, produced by increased end-diastolic volume (EDV), only occurred before 10 dpf. Hypoxic-reared larvae showed decreased acute hypoxic responses of EDV, SV and CO at 7 and 10 dpf. Over the period of 2-25 dpf, cardiac scaling with mass showed scaling coefficients of -0.04 (f(H)), 1.23 (SV) and 1.19 (CO), contrary to the cardiac scaling relationships described in birds and mammals. In addition, f(H) scaling in hypoxic-reared larvae was altered to a shallower slope of -0.01. Collectively, these results indicate that acute cardiac hypoxic responses develop before 5 dpf. Chronic hypoxia at a moderate level can not only modulate this cardiac reflex, but also changes cardiac scaling relationship with mass.

  4. Different forms of soluble cytoplasmic mRNA binding proteins and particles in Xenopus laevis oocytes and embryos

    SciTech Connect

    Murray, M.T.; Krohne, G.; Franke, W.W. )

    1991-01-01

    To gain insight into the mechanisms involved in the formation of maternally stored mRNPs during Xenopus laevis development, we searched for soluble cytoplasmic proteins of the oocyte that are able to selectively bind mRNAs, using as substrate radiolabeled mRNA. In vitro mRNP assembly in solution was followed by UV-cross-linking and RNase digestion, resulting in covalent tagging of polypeptides by nucleotide transfer. Five polypeptides of approximately 54, 56 60, 70, and 100 kD (p54, p56, p60, p70, and p100) have been found to selectively bind mRNA and assemble into mRNPs. These polypeptides, which correspond to previously described native mRNP components, occur in three different particle classes of approximately 4.5S, approximately 6S, and approximately 15S, as also determined by their reactions with antibodies against p54 and p56. Whereas the approximately 4.5S class contains p42, p60, and p70, probably each in the form of individual molecules or small complexes, the approximately 6S particles appears to consist only of p54 and p56, which occur in a near-stoichiometric ratio suggestive of a heterodimer complex. The approximately 15S particles contain, in addition to p54 and p56, p60 and p100 and this is the single occurring form of RNA-binding p100. We have also observed changes in the in vitro mRNA binding properties of these polypeptides during oogenesis and early embryonic development, in relation to their phosphorylation state and to the activity of an approximately 15S particle-associated protein kinase, suggesting that these proteins are involved in the developmental translational regulation of maternal mRNAs.

  5. Optomotor behaviour in Xenopus laevis tadpoles as a measure of the effect of gravity on visual and vestibular neural integration

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pronych, S. P.; Souza, K. A.; Neff, A. W.; Wassersug, R. J.

    1996-01-01

    The ability of aquatic vertebrates to maintain their position requires integration of visual and vestibular sensory information. To understand better how aquatic animals integrate such information, we measured the optomotor behaviour of Xenopus laevis tadpoles raised in growth chambers in microgravity (< 10(-3)g), normal gravity (1 g), hypergravity (3 g) and on a slowly rotating clinostat (simulated microgravity). The goal of this research was to determine how development in an altered gravitational force field affects the visual- and vestibular-dependent behaviour of tadpoles. This research represents the first time that the optomotor behaviour of an organism raised from fertilization in microgravity has been tested. Significant differences were observed in the optomotor behaviour among the four gravity treatments. When first exposed to normal gravity, the microgravity-raised tadpoles exhibited the strongest (or most positive) optomotor behaviour, while the 3 g centrifuge tadpoles showed no optomotor response. Some abnormal behaviours (such as erratic swimming, lying motionless and abnormal swimming posture) were observed in the tadpoles raised in altered gravity on the initial day of testing. One day later, the tadpoles raised in hypergravity did not differ significantly in their optomotor behaviour from control tadpoles raised in normal gravity. However, tadpoles raised in microgravity still displayed an exaggerated optomotor response. One week after the tadpoles had been introduced to normal gravity, there was no longer a significant difference in optomotor behaviour among the different gravity treatments. This convergence of optomotor behaviour by tadpoles from the different treatment reflects the acclimation of their vestibular systems to normal gravity.

  6. Automated higher-throughput compound screening on ion channel targets based on the Xenopus laevis oocyte expression system.

    PubMed

    Pehl, Ulrich; Leisgen, Christine; Gampe, Kristine; Guenther, Elke

    2004-10-01

    As numerous diseases have been shown to be related to dysfunction of ion channels and neurotransmitter receptors and to affect regulatory pathways, ion channels have attracted increasing attention as a target class for drug discovery. The concomitant demand of the pharmaceutical industry for adequate electrophysiological methods to investigate drug effects on specific ion channels in secondary and safety screening has resulted in the development of electrophysiological instrumentation that allows automated monitoring of ion channel function with a higher throughput. Here we tested a fully automated screening system based on the Xenopus laevis oocyte expression system. We addressed the questions of data quality and reproducibility obtained by automated oocyte injection and two-electrode voltage-clamp (TEVC) recording using the Roboocyte (Multi Channel Systems GmbH, Reutlingen, Germany) technology compared to conventional oocyte recording. A gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA)A-receptor subtype (alpha(1)beta(2)) was chosen as an example for a ligand-gated ion channel, and the slowly activating potassium current I(Ks) as a voltage-activated ion channel. Oocytes were injected with cDNA or cRNA via the Roboocyte injection stage. Ion channel currents were successfully recorded after 2-7 days in about 40% of the oocytes injected with GABA(A) receptor cDNA, and after 2-4 days in about 60% of the oocytes injected with KCNE1 cRNA. EC(50) values for the GABA(A) receptor and IC(50) values for blockers of I(Ks) were comparable to values obtained with conventional TEVC recording techniques. In conclusion, our results show that the Roboocyte is a valuable automated tool for oocyte injection and TEVC recording that can be used in drug screening and target validation to enhance the number of compounds and oocytes tested per day.

  7. (NDRG2) stimulates amiloride-sensitive Na+ currents in Xenopus laevis oocytes and fisher rat thyroid cells.

    PubMed

    Wielpütz, Mark O; Lee, Il-Ha; Dinudom, Anuwat; Boulkroun, Sheerazed; Farman, Nicolette; Cook, David I; Korbmacher, Christoph; Rauh, Robert

    2007-09-21

    Regulation of the epithelial sodium channel (ENaC) is highly complex and may involve several aldosterone-induced regulatory proteins. The N-Myc downstream-regulated gene 2 (NDRG2) has been identified as an early aldosterone-induced gene. Therefore, we hypothesized that NDRG2 may affect ENaC function. To test this hypothesis we measured the amiloride-sensitive (2 microm) whole cell current (DeltaI(ami)) in Xenopus laevis oocytes expressing ENaC alone or co-expressing ENaC and NDRG2. Co-expression of NDRG2 significantly increased DeltaI(ami) in some, but not, all batches of oocytes tested. An inhibitory effect of NDRG2 was never observed. Using a chemiluminescence assay we demonstrated that the NDRG2-induced increase in ENaC currents was accompanied by a similar increase in channel surface expression. The stimulatory effect of NDRG2 was preserved in oocytes maintained in a low sodium bath solution to prevent sodium feedback inhibition. These findings suggest that the stimulatory effect of NDRG2 is independent of sodium feedback regulation. Furthermore, the stimulatory effect of NDRG2 on ENaC was at least in part additive to that of Sgk1. A short isoform of NDRG2 also stimulated DeltaI(ami). Overexpression of NDRG2 and ENaC in Fisher rat thyroid cells confirmed the stimulatory effect of NDRG2 on ENaC-mediated short-circuit current (I(SC-ami)). In addition, small interference RNA against NDRG2 largely reduced I(SC-ami) in Fisher rat thyroid cells. Our results indicate that NDRG2 is a likely candidate to contribute to aldosterone-mediated ENaC regulation. PMID:17652085

  8. Efficacy of Tricaine Methanesulfonate (MS-222) as an Anesthetic Agent for Blocking Sensory-Motor Responses in Xenopus laevis Tadpoles

    PubMed Central

    Ramlochansingh, Carlana; Branoner, Francisco; Chagnaud, Boris P.; Straka, Hans

    2014-01-01

    Anesthetics are drugs that reversibly relieve pain, decrease body movements and suppress neuronal activity. Most drugs only cover one of these effects; for instance, analgesics relieve pain but fail to block primary fiber responses to noxious stimuli. Alternately, paralytic drugs block synaptic transmission at neuromuscular junctions, thereby effectively paralyzing skeletal muscles. Thus, both analgesics and paralytics each accomplish one effect, but fail to singularly account for all three. Tricaine methanesulfonate (MS-222) is structurally similar to benzocaine, a typical anesthetic for anamniote vertebrates, but contains a sulfate moiety rendering this drug more hydrophilic. MS-222 is used as anesthetic in poikilothermic animals such as fish and amphibians. However, it is often argued that MS-222 is only a hypnotic drug and its ability to block neural activity has been questioned. This prompted us to evaluate the potency and dynamics of MS-222-induced effects on neuronal firing of sensory and motor nerves alongside a defined motor behavior in semi-intact in vitro preparations of Xenopus laevis tadpoles. Electrophysiological recordings of extraocular motor discharge and both spontaneous and evoked mechanosensory nerve activity were measured before, during and after administration of MS-222, then compared to benzocaine and a known paralytic, pancuronium. Both MS-222 and benzocaine, but not pancuronium caused a dose-dependent, reversible blockade of extraocular motor and sensory nerve activity. These results indicate that MS-222 as benzocaine blocks the activity of both sensory and motor nerves compatible with the mechanistic action of effective anesthetics, indicating that both caine-derivates are effective as single-drug anesthetics for surgical interventions in anamniotes. PMID:24984086

  9. Neural tube closure in Xenopus laevis involves medial migration, directed protrusive activity, cell intercalation and convergent extension.

    PubMed

    Davidson, L A; Keller, R E

    1999-10-01

    We have characterized the cell movements and prospective cell identities as neural folds fuse during neural tube formation in Xenopus laevis. A newly developed whole-mount, two-color fluorescent RNA in situ hybridization method, visualized with confocal microscopy, shows that the dorsal neural tube gene xpax3 and the neural-crest-specific gene xslug are expressed far lateral to the medial site of neural fold fusion and that expression moves medially after fusion. To determine whether cell movements or dynamic changes in gene expression are responsible, we used low-light videomicroscopy followed by fluorescent in situ and confocal microscopy. These methods revealed that populations of prospective neural crest and dorsal neural tube cells near the lateral margin of the neural plate at the start of neurulation move to the dorsal midline using distinctive forms of motility. Before fold fusion, superficial neural cells apically contract, roll the neural plate into a trough and appear to pull the superficial epidermal cell sheet medially. After neural fold fusion, lateral deep neural cells move medially by radially intercalating between other neural cells using two types of motility. The neural crest cells migrate as individual cells toward the dorsal midline using medially directed monopolar protrusions. These movements combine the two lateral populations of neural crest into a single medial population that form the roof of the neural tube. The remaining cells of the dorsal neural tube extend protrusions both medially and laterally bringing about radial intercalation of deep and superficial cells to form a single-cell-layered, pseudostratified neural tube. While ours is the first description of medially directed cell migration during neural fold fusion and re-establishment of the neural tube, these complex cell behaviors may be involved during cavitation of the zebrafish neural keel and secondary neurulation in the posterior axis of chicken and mouse.

  10. Protein Expression Profiling in the African Clawed Frog Xenopus laevis Tadpoles Exposed to the Polychlorinated Biphenyl Mixture Aroclor 1254S⃞

    PubMed Central

    Gillardin, Virginie; Silvestre, Frédéric; Dieu, Marc; Delaive, Edouard; Raes, Martine; Thomé, Jean-Pierre; Kestemont, Patrick

    2009-01-01

    Exposure to environmental pollutants such as polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) is now taken into account to partly explain the worldwide decline of amphibians. PCBs induce deleterious effects on developing amphibians including deformities and delays in metamorphosis. However, the molecular mechanisms by which they express their toxicity during the development of tadpoles are still largely unknown. A proteomics analysis was performed on developing Xenopus laevis tadpoles exposed from 2 to 5 days postfertilization to either 0.1 or 1 ppm Aroclor 1254, a PCB mixture. Two-dimensional DIGE with a minimal labeling method coupled to nanoflow liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry was used to detect and identify proteins differentially expressed under PCBs conditions. Results showed that 59 spots from the 0.1 ppm Aroclor 1254 condition and 57 spots from the 1 ppm Aroclor 1254 condition displayed a significant increase or decrease of abundance compared with the control. In total, 28 proteins were identified. The results suggest that PCBs induce mechanisms against oxidative stress (peroxiredoxins 1 and 2), adaptative changes in the energetic metabolism (enolase 1, glycerol-3-phosphate dehydrogenase, and creatine kinase muscle and brain types), and the implication of the unfolded protein response system (glucose-regulated protein, 58 kDa). They also affect, at least at the highest concentration tested, the synthesis of proteins involved in normal cytogenesis (α-tropomyosin, myosin heavy chain, and α-actin). For the first time, proteins such as aldehyde dehydrogenase 7A1, CArG binding factor-A, prolyl 4-hydroxylase β, and nuclear matrix protein 200 were also shown to be up-regulated by PCBs in developing amphibians. These data argue that protein expression reorganization should be taken into account while estimating the toxicological hazard of wild amphibian populations exposed to PCBs. PMID:19011258

  11. Rohon-Beard sensory neurons are induced by BMP4 expressing non-neural ectoderm in Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed Central

    Rossi, Christy Cortez; Hernandez-Lagunas, Laura; Zhang, Chi; Choi, Irene F.; Kwok, Letitia; Klymkowsky, Michael; Artinger, Kristin Bruk

    2008-01-01

    Rohon-Beard mechanosensory neurons (RBs), neural crest cells, and neurogenic placodes arise at the border of the neural- and non-neural ectoderm during anamniote vertebrate development. Neural crest cells require BMP expressing non-neural ectoderm for their induction. To determine if epidermal ectoderm-derived BMP signaling is also involved in the induction of RB sensory neurons, the medial region of the neural plate from donor Xenopus laevis embryos was transplanted into the non-neural ventral ectoderm of host embryos at the same developmental stage. The neural plate border and RBs were induced at the transplant sites, as shown by expression of Xblimp1, and XHox11L2 and XN-tubulin, respectively. Transplantation studies between pigmented donors and albino hosts showed that neurons are induced both in donor neural and host epidermal tissue. Because an intermediate level of BMP4 signaling is required to induce neural plate border fates, we directly tested BMP4's ability to induce RBs; beads soaked in either 1 or 10 ng/ml were able to induce RBs in cultured neural plate tissue. Conversely, RBs fail to form when neural plate tissue from embryos with decreased BMP activity, either from injection of noggin or a dominant negative BMP receptor, was transplanted into the non-neural ectoderm of un-manipulated hosts. We conclude that contact between neural and non-neural ectoderm is capable of inducing RBs, that BMP4 can induce RB markers, and that BMP activity is required for induction of ectopic RB sensory neurons. PMID:18191829

  12. Characterization and subcellular localization of ribonuclease H activities from Xenopus laevis oocytes.

    PubMed

    Cazenave, C; Frank, P; Toulme, J J; Büsen, W

    1994-10-01

    Ribonuclease H activities present in fully grown Xenopus oocytes were investigated by using either liquid assays or renaturation gel assays. Whereas the test in solution detected an apparently unique class I ribonuclease H activity, the activity gels did not detect this enzyme but another one with the molecular weight expected for a class II ribonuclease H. The ribonuclease HI was found to be primarily concentrated in the germinal vesicle, but around 5% of this activity was detectged in the cytoplasm and may correspond to the activity involved in antisense oligonucleotide-mediated destruction of messenger RNAs. The concentration of this class I ribonuclease H in oocytes is similar to that in somatic cells. The class II ribonuclease H remained undetectable by the test in solution because its activity was cryptic. On activity gel, a polypeptide with the apparent molecular mass of 32 kDa, expected for a ribonuclease HII, was found to be concentrated in mitochondria although no RNase H activity could be detected by using the liquid assay. Based on sedimentation studies, we hypothesize that the apparent absence of RNase H activity in solution could be the result of the association of this 32-kDa polypeptide with other polypeptides, or possibly nucleic acids, to form a multimer of, until now, unknown function.

  13. Dicalcin Inhibits Fertilization through Its Binding to a Glycoprotein in the Egg Envelope in Xenopus laevis*

    PubMed Central

    Miwa, Naofumi; Ogawa, Motoyuki; Shinmyo, Yukiko; Hiraoka, Yoshiki; Takamatsu, Ken; Kawamura, Satoru

    2010-01-01

    Fertilization comprises oligosaccharide-mediated sperm-egg interactions, including sperm binding to an extracellular egg envelope, sperm penetration through the envelope, and fusion with an egg plasma membrane. We show that Xenopus dicalcin, an S100-like Ca2+-binding protein, present in the extracellular egg envelope (vitelline envelope (VE)), is a suppressive mediator of sperm-egg interaction. Preincubation with specific antibody greatly increased the efficiency of in vitro fertilization, whereas prior application of exogenous dicalcin substantially inhibited fertilization as well as sperm binding to an egg and in vitro sperm penetration through the VE protein layer. Dicalcin showed binding to protein cores of gp41 and gp37, constituents of VE, in a Ca2+-dependent manner and increased in vivo reactivity of VE with a lectin, Ricinus communis agglutinin I, which was accounted for by increased binding ability of gp41 to the lectin and greater exposure of gp41 to an external environment. Our findings strongly suggest that dicalcin regulates the distribution of oligosaccharides within the VE through its binding to the protein core of gp41, probably by modulating configuration of oligosaccharides on gp41 and the three-dimensional structure of VE framework, and thereby plays a pivotal role in sperm-egg interactions during fertilization. PMID:20299459

  14. Label-free real-time imaging of myelination in the Xenopus laevis tadpole by in vivo stimulated Raman scattering microscopy

    PubMed Central

    Hu, Chun-Rui; Zhang, Delong; Slipchenko, Mikhail N.; Cheng, Ji-Xin; Hu, Bing

    2014-01-01

    Abstract. The myelin sheath plays an important role as the axon in the functioning of the neural system, and myelin degradation is a hallmark pathology of multiple sclerosis and spinal cord injury. Electron microscopy, fluorescent microscopy, and magnetic resonance imaging are three major techniques used for myelin visualization. However, microscopic observation of myelin in living organisms remains a challenge. Using a newly developed stimulated Raman scattering microscopy approach, we report noninvasive, label-free, real-time in vivo imaging of myelination by a single-Schwann cell, maturation of a single node of Ranvier, and myelin degradation in the transparent body of the Xenopus laevis tadpole. PMID:25104411

  15. Label-free real-time imaging of myelination in the Xenopus laevis tadpole by in vivo stimulated Raman scattering microscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hu, Chun-Rui; Zhang, Delong; Slipchenko, Mikhail N.; Cheng, Ji-Xin; Hu, Bing

    2014-08-01

    The myelin sheath plays an important role as the axon in the functioning of the neural system, and myelin degradation is a hallmark pathology of multiple sclerosis and spinal cord injury. Electron microscopy, fluorescent microscopy, and magnetic resonance imaging are three major techniques used for myelin visualization. However, microscopic observation of myelin in living organisms remains a challenge. Using a newly developed stimulated Raman scattering microscopy approach, we report noninvasive, label-free, real-time in vivo imaging of myelination by a single-Schwann cell, maturation of a single node of Ranvier, and myelin degradation in the transparent body of the Xenopus laevis tadpole.

  16. Complement components C1r/C1s, bone morphogenic protein 1 and Xenopus laevis developmentally regulated protein UVS.2 share common repeats.

    PubMed

    Bork, P

    1991-04-22

    Property patterns were constructed, based on an alignment of related domains in human complement subcomponents C1r and C1s as well as in the sea urchin protein uEGF. This kind of consensus pattern was able to identify similar domains in a human bone morphogenic protein, in a Xenopus laevis embryonal protein involved in dorsoanterior development and in a calcium-dependent serine protease secreted from malignant hamster embryo fibroblast cells. Because of the high level of overall sequence homology this protease may be the hamsters' equivalent of the human complement subcomponent C1s. The resulting multiple alignment of all studied domains suggests functionally and structurally important regions.

  17. Effects of endocrine-disrupting contaminants on amphibian oogenesis: methoxychlor inhibits progesterone-induced maturation of Xenopus laevis oocytes in vitro.

    PubMed Central

    Pickford, D B; Morris, I D

    1999-01-01

    There is currently little evidence of pollution-induced endocrine dysfunction in amphibia, in spite of widespread concern over global declines in this ecologically diverse group. Data regarding the potential effects of endocrine-disrupting contaminants (EDCs) on reproductive function in amphibia are particularly lacking. We hypothesized that estrogenic EDCs may disrupt progesterone-induced oocyte maturation in the adult amphibian ovary, and tested this with an in vitro germinal vesicle breakdown assay using defolliculated oocytes from the African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis. While a variety of natural and synthetic estrogens and xenoestrogens were inactive in this system, the proestrogenic pesticide methoxychlor was a surprisingly potent inhibitor of progesterone-induced oocyte maturation (median inhibitive concentration, 72 nM). This inhibitory activity was specific to methoxychlor, rather than to its estrogenic contaminants or metabolites, and was not antagonized by the estrogen receptor antagonist ICI 182,780, suggesting that this activity is not estrogenic per se. The inhibitory activity of methoxychlor was dose dependent, reversible, and early acting. However, washout was unable to reverse the effect of short methoxychlor exposure, and methoxychlor did not competitively displace [3H]progesterone from a specific binding site in the oocyte plasma membrane. Therefore, methoxychlor may exert its action not directly at the site of progesterone action, but downstream on early events in maturational signaling, although the precise mechanism of action is unclear. The activity of methoxychlor in this system indicates that xenobiotics may exert endocrine-disrupting effects through interference with progestin-regulated processes and through mechanisms other than receptor antagonism. Images Figure 1 Figure 2 Figure 3 Figure 4 Figure 5 Figure 6 Figure 7 Figure 8 Figure 9 PMID:10090707

  18. Mass-spectrometric identification of binding proteins of Mr 25,000 protein, a part of vitellogenin B1, detected in particulate fraction of Xenopus laevis oocytes.

    PubMed

    Sugimoto, Isamu; Li, Zhijun; Yoshitome, Satoshi; Ito, Susumu; Hashimoto, Eikichi

    2004-10-01

    A phosphorylated protein with molecular mass of 25,000 (pp25) is a component of Xenopus laevis vitellogenin B1. Our previous report showed the existence of several binding proteins of pp25 in the particulate fraction of Xenopus oocytes. In an attempt to elucidate the function of pp25, two of these binding proteins were purified, analyzed by mass-spectrometry, and identified as ribosomal proteins S13 and S14. Other binding proteins in the particulate fraction mostly corresponded to those derived from purified 40S and 60S ribosomal subunits, as shown by the overlay assay method. However, pp25 did not show any effect on protein synthesis in the rabbit reticulocyte lysate system. A model in which pp25 connects a type of serpin (serine protease inhibitor), the only pp25-binding protein detected in the cytoplasm, to the endoplasmic reticulum through two serine clusters is proposed to explain a possible function of this protein.

  19. Genome-wide expression profile of the response to spinal cord injury in Xenopus laevis reveals extensive differences between regenerative and non-regenerative stages

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Xenopus laevis has regenerative and non-regenerative stages. As a tadpole, it is fully capable of functional recovery after a spinal cord injury, while its juvenile form (froglet) loses this capability during metamorphosis. We envision that comparative studies between regenerative and non-regenerative stages in Xenopus could aid in understanding why spinal cord regeneration fails in human beings. Results To identify the mechanisms that allow the tadpole to regenerate and inhibit regeneration in the froglet, we obtained a transcriptome-wide profile of the response to spinal cord injury in Xenopus regenerative and non-regenerative stages. We found extensive transcriptome changes in regenerative tadpoles at 1 day after injury, while this was only observed by 6 days after injury in non-regenerative froglets. In addition, when comparing both stages, we found that they deployed a very different repertoire of transcripts, with more than 80% of them regulated in only one stage, including previously unannotated transcripts. This was supported by gene ontology enrichment analysis and validated by RT-qPCR, which showed that transcripts involved in metabolism, response to stress, cell cycle, development, immune response and inflammation, neurogenesis, and axonal regeneration were regulated differentially between regenerative and non-regenerative stages. Conclusions We identified differences in the timing of the transcriptional response and in the inventory of regulated transcripts and biological processes activated in response to spinal cord injury when comparing regenerative and non-regenerative stages. These genes and biological processes provide an entry point to understand why regeneration fails in mammals. Furthermore, our results introduce Xenopus laevis as a genetic model organism to study spinal cord regeneration. PMID:24885550

  20. A prominent role for invariant T cells in the amphibian Xenopus laevis tadpoles.

    PubMed

    Robert, Jacques; Edholm, Eva-Stina

    2014-10-01

    Invariant T (iT) cells expressing an invariant or semi-invariant T cell receptor (TCR) repertoire have gained attention in recent years because of their potential as specialized regulators of immune function. These iT cells are typically restricted by nonclassical MHC class I molecules (e.g., CD1d and MR1) and undergo differentiation pathways distinct from conventional T cells. While the benefit of a limited TCR repertoire may appear counterintuitive in regard to the advantage of the diversified repertoire of conventional T cells allowing for exquisite specificity to antigens, the full biological importance and evolutionary conservation of iT cells are just starting to emerge. It is generally considered that iT cells are specialized to recognize conserved antigens equivalent to pathogen-associated molecular pattern. Until recently, little was known about the evolution of iT cells. The identification of class Ib and class I-like genes in nonmammalian vertebrates, despite the heterogeneity and variable numbers of these genes among species, suggests that iT cells are also present in ectothermic vertebrates. Indeed, recent studies in the amphibian Xenopus have revealed a drastic overrepresentation of several invariant TCRs in tadpoles and identified a prominent nonclassical MHC class I-restricted iT cell subset critical for tadpole antiviral immunity. This suggests an important and perhaps even dominant role of multiple nonclassical MHC class I-restricted iT cell populations in tadpoles and, by extension, other aquatic vertebrates with rapid external development that are under pressure to produce a functional lymphocyte repertoire with small numbers of cells.

  1. Erythrocyte Lysis and Xenopus laevis Oocyte Rupture by Recombinant Plasmodium falciparum Hemolysin III

    PubMed Central

    Moonah, Shannon; Sanders, Natalie G.; Persichetti, Jason K.

    2014-01-01

    Malaria kills more than 1 million people per year worldwide, with severe malaria anemia accounting for the majority of the deaths. Malaria anemia is multifactorial in etiology, including infected erythrocyte destruction and decrease in erythrocyte production, as well as destruction or clearance of noninfected erythrocytes. We identified a panspecies Plasmodium hemolysin type III related to bacterial hemolysins. The identification of a hemolysin III homologue in Plasmodium suggests a potential role in host erythrocyte lysis. Here, we report the first characterization of Plasmodium falciparum hemolysin III, showing that the soluble recombinant P. falciparum hemolysin III is a pore-forming protein capable of lysing human erythrocytes in a dose-, time-, and temperature-dependent fashion. The recombinant P. falciparum hemolysin III-induced hemolysis was partially inhibited by glibenclamide, a known channel antagonist. Studies with polyethylene glycol molecules of different molecular weights indicated a pore size of approximately 3.2 nm. Heterologous expression of recombinant P. falciparum hemolysin III in Xenopus oocytes demonstrated early hypotonic lysis similar to that of the pore-forming aquaporin control. Live fluorescence microscopy localized transfected recombinant green fluorescent protein (GFP)-tagged P. falciparum hemolysin III to the essential digestive vacuole of the P. falciparum parasite. These transfected trophozoites also possessed a swollen digestive vacuole phenotype. Native Plasmodium hemolysin III in the digestive vacuole may contribute to lysis of the parasitophorous vacuole membrane derived from the host erythrocyte. After merozoite egress from infected erythrocytes, remnant P. falciparum hemolysin III released from digestive vacuoles could potentially contribute to lysis of uninfected erythrocytes to contribute to severe life-threatening anemia. PMID:25148832

  2. Erythrocyte lysis and Xenopus laevis oocyte rupture by recombinant Plasmodium falciparum hemolysin III.

    PubMed

    Moonah, Shannon; Sanders, Natalie G; Persichetti, Jason K; Sullivan, David J

    2014-10-01

    Malaria kills more than 1 million people per year worldwide, with severe malaria anemia accounting for the majority of the deaths. Malaria anemia is multifactorial in etiology, including infected erythrocyte destruction and decrease in erythrocyte production, as well as destruction or clearance of noninfected erythrocytes. We identified a panspecies Plasmodium hemolysin type III related to bacterial hemolysins. The identification of a hemolysin III homologue in Plasmodium suggests a potential role in host erythrocyte lysis. Here, we report the first characterization of Plasmodium falciparum hemolysin III, showing that the soluble recombinant P. falciparum hemolysin III is a pore-forming protein capable of lysing human erythrocytes in a dose-, time-, and temperature-dependent fashion. The recombinant P. falciparum hemolysin III-induced hemolysis was partially inhibited by glibenclamide, a known channel antagonist. Studies with polyethylene glycol molecules of different molecular weights indicated a pore size of approximately 3.2 nm. Heterologous expression of recombinant P. falciparum hemolysin III in Xenopus oocytes demonstrated early hypotonic lysis similar to that of the pore-forming aquaporin control. Live fluorescence microscopy localized transfected recombinant green fluorescent protein (GFP)-tagged P. falciparum hemolysin III to the essential digestive vacuole of the P. falciparum parasite. These transfected trophozoites also possessed a swollen digestive vacuole phenotype. Native Plasmodium hemolysin III in the digestive vacuole may contribute to lysis of the parasitophorous vacuole membrane derived from the host erythrocyte. After merozoite egress from infected erythrocytes, remnant P. falciparum hemolysin III released from digestive vacuoles could potentially contribute to lysis of uninfected erythrocytes to contribute to severe life-threatening anemia.

  3. Comparative evaluation of genotoxicity of captan in amphibian larvae (Xenopus laevis and Pleurodeles waltl) using the comet assay and the micronucleus test.

    PubMed

    Mouchet, F; Gauthier, L; Mailhes, C; Ferrier, V; Devaux, A

    2006-06-01

    Captan (N-trichloromethylthio-4-cyclohexene-1,2-dicarboximide) is a fungicide used to inhibit the growth of many types of fungi on plants used as foodstuffs. The toxic and genotoxic potentials of captan were evaluated with the micronucleus test (MNT; AFNOR,2000) and the comet assay (CA) using amphibian larvae (Xenopus laevis and Pleurodeles waltl). Acute toxicity results showed that captan was toxic (1) to Xenopus larvae exposed to from 2 mg/L to 125 or 62.5 microg/L, depending on the nature of the water [reconstituted water containing mineral salts or mineral water (MW; Volvic, Danone, France)] and (2) to Pleurodeles exposed to from 2 mg/L to 125 microg/L in both types of water. The MNT results obtained in MW showed that captan (62.5 microg/L) was genotoxic to Xenopus but not genotoxic to Pleurodeles at all concentrations tested. CA established that the genotoxicity of captan to Xenopus and Pleurodeles larvae depended on the concentration, the exposure times, and the comet parameters (tail DNA, TEM, OTM, and TL). The CA and MNT results were compared for their ability to detect DNA damage at the concentrations of captan and the exposure times applied. CA showed captan to be genotoxic from the first day of exposure. In amphibians, CA appears to be a sensitive and suitable method for detecting genotoxicity such as that caused by captan.

  4. Characterization of the endogenous carnitine transport and expression of a rat renal Na(+)-dependent carnitine transport system in Xenopus laevis oocytes.

    PubMed Central

    Berardi, S; Hagenbuch, B; Carafoli, E; Krähenbühl, S

    1995-01-01

    L-Carnitine transport was characterized in Xenopus laevis oocytes before and after injection of mRNA isolated from rat renal cortex. Non-injected oocytes revealed endogenous Na(+)-dependent transport of L-carnitine. After injection of 15 ng of rat kidney mRNA, the Na(+)-dependent L-carnitine transport increased 2-3-fold, reaching maximal activity after 5-6 days. The expressed carnitine transport was maximal at pH 7.5, whereas the endogenous transport showed no clear maximum between pH 6.0 and 8.5. Kinetic analysis revealed apparent Km values for L-carnitine of 66 microM for the endogenous and 149 microM for the expressed transport. Trimethyl-lysine and D-carnitine inhibited both the endogenous and the expressed transport. In contrast, L-acetylcarnitine, L-isovalerylcarnitine, L-palmitoylcarnitine and butyrobetaine inhibited predominantly the expressed transport, whereas glycinebetaine had no inhibitory effect on either transport system. Size-fractionated rat renal-cortex mRNA (median size 2 kb) induced a 3-fold higher L-carnitine transport than did unfractionated mRNA. These studies demonstrate that Xenopus laevis oocytes exhibit Na(+)-dependent L-carnitine transport and provide the basis for expression-cloning of a rat renal Na(+)-dependent L-carnitine transport system. PMID:7626001

  5. Colony-Stimulating Factor-1-Responsive Macrophage Precursors Reside in the Amphibian (Xenopus laevis) Bone Marrow Rather than the Hematopoietic Sub-Capsular Liver

    PubMed Central

    Grayfer, Leon; Robert, Jacques

    2013-01-01

    Macrophage precursors originate from, and undergo lineage commitment within designated sites of hematopoiesis, such as the mammalian bone marrow. These cells subsequently differentiate in response to stimulation with macrophage colony-stimulating factor (CSF-1). The amphibian bone marrow, unlike that of mammals, has been overlooked as a source of leukocyte precursors in favor of the liver sub-capsular region, where hematopoiesis occurs in anurans. Here we report that the bone marrow rather than the liver periphery provides macrophage progenitors to the amphibian Xenopus laevis. We identified the amphibian CSF-1, examined its gene expression in developing and virally infected X. laevis and produce it in recombinant form (rXlCSF-1). This rXlCSF-1 did not bind or elicit proliferation/differentiation of sub-cortical liver cells. Surprisingly, a sub-population of bone marrow cells engaged this growth factor and formed rXlCSF-1-concentration-dependant colonies in semi-solid medium. Furthermore, rXlCSF-1-treated bone marrow (but not liver) cultures comprised of cells with characteristic macrophage morphology and high gene expression of the macrophage marker, colony stimulating factor-1 receptor (CSF-1R). Together, our findings indicate that in contrast to all other vertebrates studied to date, Xenopus committed macrophage precursors populations are not present in the central site of hematopoiesis, but reside in the bone marrow. PMID:23485675

  6. DEVELOPMENT TOXICITY OF METHOPRENE AND ITS DEGRADATION PRODUCTS IN XENOPUS LAEVIS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Methoprene is an insect growth regulator which is used for the control of mosquitos and other insects. It acts by mimicking natural juvenile hormone, which inhibits pupae from molting and developing to adult stages. Methoprene and methoprene acid have been shown to be transcript...

  7. Atrazine induces complete feminization and chemical castration in male African clawed frogs (Xenopus laevis)

    PubMed Central

    Hayes, Tyrone B.; Khoury, Vicky; Narayan, Anne; Nazir, Mariam; Park, Andrew; Brown, Travis; Adame, Lillian; Chan, Elton; Buchholz, Daniel; Stueve, Theresa; Gallipeau, Sherrie

    2010-01-01

    The herbicide atrazine is one of the most commonly applied pesticides in the world. As a result, atrazine is the most commonly detected pesticide contaminant of ground, surface, and drinking water. Atrazine is also a potent endocrine disruptor that is active at low, ecologically relevant concentrations. Previous studies showed that atrazine adversely affects amphibian larval development. The present study demonstrates the reproductive consequences of atrazine exposure in adult amphibians. Atrazine-exposed males were both demasculinized (chemically castrated) and completely feminized as adults. Ten percent of the exposed genetic males developed into functional females that copulated with unexposed males and produced viable eggs. Atrazine-exposed males suffered from depressed testosterone, decreased breeding gland size, demasculinized/feminized laryngeal development, suppressed mating behavior, reduced spermatogenesis, and decreased fertility. These data are consistent with effects of atrazine observed in other vertebrate classes. The present findings exemplify the role that atrazine and other endocrine-disrupting pesticides likely play in global amphibian declines. PMID:20194757

  8. Atrazine induces complete feminization and chemical castration in male African clawed frogs (Xenopus laevis).

    PubMed

    Hayes, Tyrone B; Khoury, Vicky; Narayan, Anne; Nazir, Mariam; Park, Andrew; Brown, Travis; Adame, Lillian; Chan, Elton; Buchholz, Daniel; Stueve, Theresa; Gallipeau, Sherrie

    2010-03-01

    The herbicide atrazine is one of the most commonly applied pesticides in the world. As a result, atrazine is the most commonly detected pesticide contaminant of ground, surface, and drinking water. Atrazine is also a potent endocrine disruptor that is active at low, ecologically relevant concentrations. Previous studies showed that atrazine adversely affects amphibian larval development. The present study demonstrates the reproductive consequences of atrazine exposure in adult amphibians. Atrazine-exposed males were both demasculinized (chemically castrated) and completely feminized as adults. Ten percent of the exposed genetic males developed into functional females that copulated with unexposed males and produced viable eggs. Atrazine-exposed males suffered from depressed testosterone, decreased breeding gland size, demasculinized/feminized laryngeal development, suppressed mating behavior, reduced spermatogenesis, and decreased fertility. These data are consistent with effects of atrazine observed in other vertebrate classes. The present findings exemplify the role that atrazine and other endocrine-disrupting pesticides likely play in global amphibian declines. PMID:20194757

  9. Atrazine induces complete feminization and chemical castration in male African clawed frogs (Xenopus laevis).

    PubMed

    Hayes, Tyrone B; Khoury, Vicky; Narayan, Anne; Nazir, Mariam; Park, Andrew; Brown, Travis; Adame, Lillian; Chan, Elton; Buchholz, Daniel; Stueve, Theresa; Gallipeau, Sherrie

    2010-03-01

    The herbicide atrazine is one of the most commonly applied pesticides in the world. As a result, atrazine is the most commonly detected pesticide contaminant of ground, surface, and drinking water. Atrazine is also a potent endocrine disruptor that is active at low, ecologically relevant concentrations. Previous studies showed that atrazine adversely affects amphibian larval development. The present study demonstrates the reproductive consequences of atrazine exposure in adult amphibians. Atrazine-exposed males were both demasculinized (chemically castrated) and completely feminized as adults. Ten percent of the exposed genetic males developed into functional females that copulated with unexposed males and produced viable eggs. Atrazine-exposed males suffered from depressed testosterone, decreased breeding gland size, demasculinized/feminized laryngeal development, suppressed mating behavior, reduced spermatogenesis, and decreased fertility. These data are consistent with effects of atrazine observed in other vertebrate classes. The present findings exemplify the role that atrazine and other endocrine-disrupting pesticides likely play in global amphibian declines.

  10. Exposure to atrazine affects the expression of key genes in metabolic pathways integral to energy homeostasis in Xenopus laevis tadpoles.

    PubMed

    Zaya, Renee M; Amini, Zakariya; Whitaker, Ashley S; Ide, Charles F

    2011-08-01

    In our laboratory, Xenopus laevis tadpoles exposed throughout development to 200 or 400 μg/L atrazine, concentrations reported to periodically occur in puddles, vernal ponds and runoff soon after application, were smaller and had smaller fat bodies (the tadpole's lipid storage organ) than controls. It was hypothesized that these changes were due to atrazine-related perturbations of energy homeostasis. To investigate this hypothesis, selected metabolic responses to exposure at the transcriptional and biochemical levels in atrazine-exposed tadpoles were measured. DNA microarray technology was used to determine which metabolic pathways were affected after developmental exposure to 400 μg/L atrazine. From these data, genes representative of the affected pathways were selected for assay using quantitative real time polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR) to measure changes in expression during a 2-week exposure to 400 μg/L. Finally, ATP levels were measured from tadpoles both early in and at termination of exposure to 200 and 400 μg/L. Microarray analysis revealed significant differential gene expression in metabolic pathways involved with energy homeostasis. Pathways with increased transcription were associated with the conversion of lipids and proteins into energy. Pathways with decreased transcription were associated with carbohydrate metabolism, fat storage, and protein synthesis. Using qRT-PCR, changes in gene expression indicative of an early stress response to atrazine were noted. Exposed tadpoles had significant decreases in acyl-CoA dehydrogenase (AD) and glucocorticoid receptor protein (GR) mRNA after 24 h of exposure, and near-significant (p=0.07) increases in peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor β (PPAR-β) mRNA by 72 h. Decreases in AD suggested decreases in fatty acid β-oxidation while decreases in GR may have been a receptor desensitization response to a glucocorticoid surge. Involvement of PPAR-β, an energy homeostasis regulatory molecule, also

  11. Activation of ADF/cofilin by phosphorylation-regulated Slingshot phosphatase is required for the meiotic spindle assembly in Xenopus laevis oocytes

    PubMed Central

    Iwase, Shohei; Sato, Ryuhei; De Bock, Pieter-Jan; Gevaert, Kris; Fujiki, Saburo; Tawada, Toshinobu; Kuchitsu, Miyako; Yamagishi, Yuka; Ono, Shoichiro; Abe, Hiroshi

    2013-01-01

    We identify Xenopus ADF/cofilin (XAC) and its activator, Slingshot phosphatase (XSSH), as key regulators of actin dynamics essential for spindle microtubule assembly during Xenopus oocyte maturation. Phosphorylation of XSSH at multiple sites within the tail domain occurs just after germinal vesicle breakdown (GVBD) and is accompanied by dephosphorylation of XAC, which was mostly phosphorylated in immature oocytes. This XAC dephosphorylation after GVBD is completely suppressed by latrunculin B, an actin monomer–sequestering drug. On the other hand, jasplakinolide, an F-actin–stabilizing drug, induces dephosphorylation of XAC. Effects of latrunculin B and jasplakinolide are reconstituted in cytostatic factor–arrested extracts (CSF extracts), and XAC dephosphorylation is abolished by depletion of XSSH from CSF extracts, suggesting that XSSH functions as an actin filament sensor to facilitate actin filament dynamics via XAC activation. Injection of anti-XSSH antibody, which blocks full phosphorylation of XSSH after GVBD, inhibits both meiotic spindle formation and XAC dephosphorylation. Coinjection of constitutively active XAC with the antibody suppresses this phenotype. Treatment of oocytes with jasplakinolide also impairs spindle formation. These results strongly suggest that elevation of actin dynamics by XAC activation through XSSH phosphorylation is required for meiotic spindle assembly in Xenopus laevis. PMID:23615437

  12. A Xenopus laevis gene encoding EF-1 alpha S, the somatic form of elongation factor 1 alpha: sequence, structure, and identification of regulatory elements required for embryonic transcription.

    PubMed

    Johnson, A D; Krieg, P A

    1995-01-01

    Transcription of the Xenopus laevis EF-1 alpha S gene commences at the mid-blastula stage of embryonic development and then continues constitutively in all somatic tissues. The EF-1 alpha S promoter is extremely active in the early Xenopus embryo where EF-1 alpha S transcripts account for as much as 40% of all new polyadenylated transcripts. We have isolated the Xenopus EF-1 alpha S gene and used microinjection techniques to identify promoter elements responsible for embryonic transcription. These in vivo expression studies have identified an enhancer fragment, located approximately 4.4 kb upstream of the transcription start site, that is required for maximum expression from the EF-1 alpha S promoter. The enhancer fragment contains both an octamer and a G/C box sequence, but mutation studies indicate that the octamer plays no significant role in regulation of EF-1 alpha S expression in the embryo. The presence of a G/C element in the enhancer and of multiple G/C boxes in the proximal promoter region suggests that the G/C box binding protein, Sp1, plays a major role in the developmental regulation of EF-1 alpha S promoter activity. PMID:8565334

  13. A flk-1 promoter/enhancer reporter transgenic Xenopus laevis generated using the Sleeping Beauty transposon system: an in vivo model for vascular studies.

    PubMed

    Doherty, Joanne R; Johnson Hamlet, Michelle R; Kuliyev, Emin; Mead, Paul E

    2007-10-01

    We have used the Sleeping Beauty (SB) transposable element to generate transgenic Xenopus laevis with expression of green fluorescent protein (GFP) in vascular endothelial cells using the frog flk-1 promoter. This is the first characterization of a SB-generated transgenic Xenopus that has tissue-restricted expression. We demonstrate that the transgene integrated into single genomic loci in two independent founder lines and is transmitted through the germline at the expected Mendelian frequencies. Transgene integration occurred through a noncanonical transposition process possibly reflecting Xenopus-specific interactions with the SB system. The transgenic animals express GFP in the same spatial and temporal pattern as the endogenous flk-1 gene throughout development and into adulthood. Overexpression of xVEGF122 in the transgenic animals disrupts vascular development that is visualized by fluorescent microscopy. These studies demonstrate the convenience of the SB system for generating transgenic animals and the utility of the xflk-1:GFP transgenic line for in vivo studies of vascular development.

  14. Different Requirement for Wnt/β-Catenin Signaling in Limb Regeneration of Larval and Adult Xenopus

    PubMed Central

    Yokoyama, Hitoshi; Maruoka, Tamae; Ochi, Haruki; Aruga, Akio; Ohgo, Shiro; Ogino, Hajime; Tamura, Koji

    2011-01-01

    Background In limb regeneration of amphibians, the early steps leading to blastema formation are critical for the success of regeneration, and the initiation of regeneration in an adult limb requires the presence of nerves. Xenopus laevis tadpoles can completely regenerate an amputated limb at the early limb bud stage, and the metamorphosed young adult also regenerates a limb by a nerve-dependent process that results in a spike-like structure. Blockage of Wnt/β-catenin signaling inhibits the initiation of tadpole limb regeneration, but it remains unclear whether limb regeneration in young adults also requires Wnt/β-catenin signaling. Methodology/Principal Findings We expressed heat-shock-inducible (hs) Dkk1, a Wnt antagonist, in transgenic Xenopus to block Wnt/β-catenin signaling during forelimb regeneration in young adults. hsDkk1 did not inhibit limb regeneration in any of the young adult frogs, though it suppressed Wnt-dependent expression of genes (fgf-8 and cyclin D1). When nerve supply to the limbs was partially removed, however, hsDkk1 expression blocked limb regeneration in young adult frogs. Conversely, activation of Wnt/β-catenin signaling by a GSK-3 inhibitor rescued failure of limb-spike regeneration in young adult frogs after total removal of nerve supply. Conclusions/Significance In contrast to its essential role in tadpole limb regeneration, our results suggest that Wnt/β-catenin signaling is not absolutely essential for limb regeneration in young adults. The different requirement for Wnt/β-catenin signaling in tadpoles and young adults appears to be due to the projection of nerve axons into the limb field. Our observations suggest that nerve-derived signals and Wnt/β-catenin signaling have redundant roles in the initiation of limb regeneration. Our results demonstrate for the first time the different mechanisms of limb regeneration initiation in limb buds (tadpoles) and developed limbs (young adults) with reference to nerve-derived signals

  15. Direct Activation of Amidohydrolase Domain-Containing 1 Gene by Thyroid Hormone Implicates a Role in the Formation of Adult Intestinal Stem Cells During Xenopus Metamorphosis.

    PubMed

    Okada, Morihiro; Miller, Thomas C; Fu, Liezhen; Shi, Yun-Bo

    2015-09-01

    The T3-dependent anuran metamorphosis resembles postembryonic development in mammals, the period around birth when plasma T3 levels peak. In particular, the remodeling of the intestine during metamorphosis mimics neonatal intestinal maturation in mammals when the adult intestinal epithelial self-renewing system is established. We have been using intestinal metamorphosis to investigate how the organ-specific adult stem cells are formed during vertebrate development. Early studies in Xenopus laevis have shown that this process involves complete degeneration of the larval epithelium and de novo formation of adult stem cells. A tissue-specific microarray analysis of intestinal gene expression during Xenopus laevis metamorphosis has identified a number of candidate stem cell genes. Here we have carried out detailed analyses of one such gene, amidohydrolase domain containing 1 (AMDHD1) gene, which encodes an enzyme in the histidine catabolic pathway. We show that AMDHD1 is exclusively expressed in the proliferating adult epithelial stem cells during metamorphosis with little expression in other intestinal tissues. We further provide evidence that T3 activates AMDHD1 gene expression directly at the transcription level through T3 receptor binding to the AMDHD1 gene in the intestine. In addition, we have reported earlier that histidine ammonia-lyase gene, another gene in histidine catabolic pathway, is similarly regulated by T3 in the intestine. These results together suggest that histidine catabolism plays a critical role in the formation and/or proliferation of adult intestinal stem cells during metamorphosis.

  16. In vitro chromatin assembly promoted by the Xenopus laevis S-150 cell-free extract is enhanced by treatment with RNase A.

    PubMed

    Sekiguchi, J M; Kmiec, E B

    1992-02-25

    Cell-free extracts employed as chromatin assembly systems contain a myriad of proteins, polyanions and nucleic acids. The roles of ATP, MgCl2 and other cofactors in the catalysis of nucleosome formation by the Xenopus laevis oocyte S-150 have yet to be established unequivocally. In this study we examine the influence of RNA in the assembly process. Under reaction conditions that inhibit nucleosome formation (+ EDTA), pretreatment of the extract with RNase A revives the chromatin assembly machinery while the rate of DNA supercoiling is stimulated significantly. Addition of purified RNA blocks DNA supercoiling. Taken together, these data suggest that the parameters surrounding in vitro chromatin assembly are variable and subject to modulation by endogenous factors.

  17. Growth and fatbody cycles in feral populations of the African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis (Pipidae), in California with comments on reproduction

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    McCoid, M.J.; Fritts, T.H.

    1989-01-01

    Feral populations of the African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis) exist in several areas of southern California. By following the first cohort of progeny produced by African clawed frogs at a recently colonized site, data on the growth rates and age at first maturity were obtained in field conditions. Females reached maturity at an earlier age than males, grew faster than males, and attained body lengths up to 25% larger than males. Larger females were capable of producing larger numbers of eggs than small females and, therefore, had greater reproductive potential. The relatively stable ambient temperatures of southern California contributed to the possibility of reproduction of clawed frogs during all but the coolest periods of the year. Cycles detected in the mass of fatbodies suggested that nutrients were mobilized from fat prior to and during ovulation. The amount of fat in females varied widely, but fat in males tended to accumulate as the males grew during the study period.

  18. Photoactivation of the flavin cofactor in Xenopus laevis (6–4) photolyase: Observation of a transient tyrosyl radical by time-resolved electron paramagnetic resonance

    PubMed Central

    Weber, Stefan; Kay, Christopher W. M.; Mögling, Heike; Möbius, Klaus; Hitomi, Kenichi; Todo, Takeshi

    2002-01-01

    The light-induced electron transfer reaction of flavin cofactor photoactivation in Xenopus laevis (6–4) photolyase has been studied by continuous-wave and time-resolved electron paramagnetic resonance spectroscopy. When the photoactivation is initiated from the fully oxidized form of the flavin, a neutral flavin radical is observed as a long-lived paramagnetic intermediate of two consecutive single-electron reductions under participation of redox-active amino acid residues. By time-resolved electron paramagnetic resonance, a spin-polarized transient radical-pair signal was detected that shows remarkable differences to the signals observed in the related cyclobutane pyrimidine dimer photolyase enzyme. In (6–4) photolyase, a neutral tyrosine radical has been identified as the final electron donor, on the basis of the characteristic line width, hyperfine splitting pattern, and resonance magnetic field position of the tyrosine resonances of the transient radical pair. PMID:11805294

  19. Growth and fat-body cycles in feral populations of the African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis (Pipidae), in California with comments on reproduction

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    McCoid, Michael J.; Fritts, Thomas H.

    1989-01-01

    Feral populations of the African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis) exist in several areas of southern California. By following the first cohort of progeny produced by African clawed frogs at a recently colonized site, data on the growth rates and age at first maturity were obtained in field conditions. Females reached maturity at an earlier age than males, grew faster than males, and attained body lengths up to 25% larger than males. Larger females were capable of producing larger numbers of eggs than small females and, therefore, had greater reproductive potential. The relatively stable ambient temperatures of southern California contributed to the possibility of reproduction of clawed frogs during all but the coolest periods of the year. Cycles detected in the mass of fatbodies suggested that nutrients were mobilized from fat prior to and during ovulation. The amount of fat in females varies widely, but fat in males tended to accumulate as the males grew during the study period.

  20. Identification of nuclear factors which interact with the 5' flanking region of the EF-1 alpha O gene in Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Olesen, O F; Frydenberg, J

    1992-11-30

    The EF-1 alpha O gene of Xenopus laevis is a stage-specific gene, being transcribed in oogonia and oocytes, but not in postmeiotic germ cells and terminally differentiated cells. We found that two trans-acting factors from oocyte nuclear extract are able to interact with a DNA sequence in the 5'-upstream region of the EF-1 alpha O gene. Methylation interference experiments suggested that the two factors recognised the same DNA element. Gel retardation assays indicated that part of the protein binding site could be confined to a 21 bp sequence, located between -51 and -72, relative to the cap site. Interestingly, this region shares great homology to a negative regulatory segment in the promoter of the TFIIIA gene, another developmentally regulated gene. PMID:1446735

  1. The B-subdomain of the Xenopus laevis XFIN KRAB-AB domain is responsible for its weaker transcriptional repressor activity compared to human ZNF10/Kox1.

    PubMed

    Born, Nadine; Thiesen, Hans-Jürgen; Lorenz, Peter

    2014-01-01

    The Krüppel-associated box (KRAB) domain interacts with the nuclear hub protein TRIM28 to initiate or mediate chromatin-dependent processes like transcriptional repression, imprinting or suppression of endogenous retroviruses. The prototype KRAB domain initially identified in ZNF10/KOX1 encompasses two subdomains A and B that are found in hundreds of zinc finger transcription factors studied in human and murine genomes. Here we demonstrate for the first time transcriptional repressor activity of an amphibian KRAB domain. After sequence correction, the updated KRAB-AB domain of zinc finger protein XFIN from the frog Xenopus laevis was found to confer transcriptional repression in reporter assays in Xenopus laevis A6 kidney cells as well as in human HeLa, but not in the minnow Pimephales promelas fish cell line EPC. Binding of the XFIN KRAB-AB domain to human TRIM28 was demonstrated in a classical co-immunoprecipitation approach and visualized in a single-cell compartmentalization assay. XFIN-AB displayed reduced potency in repression as well as lower strength of interaction with TRIM28 compared to ZNF10 KRAB-AB. KRAB-B subdomain swapping between the two KRAB domains indicated that it was mainly the KRAB-B subdomain of XFIN that was responsible for its lower capacity in repression and binding to human TRIM28. In EPC fish cells, ZNF10 and XFIN KRAB repressor activity could be partially restored to low levels by adding exogenous human TRIM28. In contrast to XFIN, we did not find any transcriptional repression activity for the KRAB-like domain of human PRDM9 in HeLa cells. PRDM9 is thought to harbor an evolutionary older domain related to KRAB whose homologs even occur in invertebrates. Our results support the notion that functional bona fide KRAB domains which confer transcriptional repression and interact with TRIM28 most likely co-evolved together with TRIM28 at the beginning of tetrapode evolution.

  2. Inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate-induced calcium release in the organelle layers of the stratified, intact egg of Xenopus laevis

    PubMed Central

    1990-01-01

    Using double-barreled, Ca2(+)-sensitive microelectrodes, we have examined the characteristics of the Ca2+ release by inositol 1,4,5- trisphosphate (Ins(1,4,5)P3) in the various layers of Xenopus laevis eggs in which the organelles had been stratified by centrifugation. Centrifugation of living eggs stratifies the organelles yet retains them in the normal cytoplasmic milieu. The local increase in intracellular free Ca2+ in each layer was directly measured under physiological conditions using theta-tubing, double-barreled, Ca2(+)- sensitive microelectrodes in which one barrel was filled with the Ca2+ sensor and the other was filled with Ins(1,4,5)P3 for microinjection. The two tips of these electrodes were very close to each other (3 microns apart) enabling us to measure the kinetics of both the highly localized intracellular Ca2+ release and its subsequent removal in response to Ins(1,4,5)P3 injection. Upon Ins(1,4,5)P3 injection, the ER- enriched layer exhibited the largest release of Ca2+ in a dosage- dependent manner, whereas the other layers, mitochondria, lipid, and yolk, released 10-fold less Ca2+ in a dosage-independent manner. The removal of released Ca2+ took place within approximately 1 min. The sensitivity to Ins(1,4,5)P3 and the time course of intracellular Ca2+ release in the unstratified (unactivated) egg is nearly identical to that observed in the ER layer of the stratified egg. Our data suggest that the ER is the major organelle of the Ins(1,4,5)P3-sensitive Ca2+ store in the egg of Xenopus laevis. PMID:2324195

  3. Sexually dimorphic expression of Dmrt1 and γH2AX in germ stem cells during gonadal development in Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Fujitani, Kazuko; Otomo, Asako; Wada, Mikako; Takamatsu, Nobuhiko; Ito, Michihiko

    2016-04-01

    In many animals, primordial germ cells (PGCs) migrate into developing gonads. There, they proliferate and differentiate into female and male germ stem cells (GSCs), oogonia and spermatogonia, respectively. Few studies have focused on the molecular mechanisms underlying the development of GSC sex determination. Here, we investigated the expression of the transcription factor Dmrt1 and a phosphorylated form of the histone variant H2AX (γH2AX) during gonadal development in Xenopus laevis. During early sexual differentiation, Dmrt1 was expressed in the GSCs of the ZW (female) and ZZ (male) gonads as well as somatic cells of the ZZ gonads. Notably, the PGCs and primary GSCs contained large, unstructured nuclei, whereas condensed, rounder nuclei appeared only in primary oogonia during tadpole development. After metamorphosis, Dmrt1 showed its expression in secondary spermatogonia, but not in secondary oogonia. Like Dmrt1, γH2AX was expressed in the nuclei of primary GSCs in early developing gonads. However, after metamorphosis, γH2AX expression continued in primary and secondary spermatogonia, but was barely detected in the condensed nuclei of primary oogonia. Taken together, these observations indicate that spermatogonia tend to retain PGC characteristics, compared to oogonia, which undergo substantial changes during gonadal differentiation in X. laevis. Our findings suggest that Dmrt1 and γH2AX may contribute to the maintenance of stem cell identity by controlling gene expression and epigenetic changes, respectively. PMID:27239441

  4. Semi-solid tumor model in Xenopus laevis/gilli cloned tadpoles for intravital study of neovascularization, immune cells and melanophore infiltration.

    PubMed

    Haynes-Gimore, Nikesha; Banach, Maureen; Brown, Edward; Dawes, Ryan; Edholm, Eva-Stina; Kim, Minsoo; Robert, Jacques

    2015-12-15

    Tumors have the ability to grow as a self-sustaining entity within the body. This autonomy is in part accomplished by the tumor cells ability to induce the formation of new blood vessels (angiogenesis) and by controlling cell trafficking inside the tumor mass. These abilities greatly reduce the efficacy of many cancer therapies and pose challenges for the development of more effective cancer treatments. Hence, there is a need for animal models suitable for direct microscopy observation of blood vessel formation and cell trafficking, especially during early stages of tumor establishment. Here, we have developed a reliable and cost effective tumor model system in tadpoles of the amphibian Xenopus laevis. Tadpoles are ideally suited for direct microscopy observation because of their small size and transparency. Using the thymic lymphoid tumor line 15/0 derived from, and transplantable into, the X. laevis/gilli isogenic clone LG-15, we have adapted a system that consists in transplanting 15/0 tumor cells embedded into rat collagen under the dorsal skin of LG-15 tadpole recipients. This system recapitulates many facets of mammalian tumorigenesis and permits real time visualization of the active formation of the tumor microenvironment induced by 15/0 tumor cells including neovascularization, collagen rearrangements as well as infiltration of immune cells and melanophores.

  5. Protein Arginine Methyltransferase Prmt5-Mep50 Methylates Histones H2A and H4 and the Histone Chaperone Nucleoplasmin in Xenopus laevis Eggs*

    PubMed Central

    Wilczek, Carola; Chitta, Raghu; Woo, Eileen; Shabanowitz, Jeffrey; Chait, Brian T.; Hunt, Donald F.; Shechter, David

    2011-01-01

    Histone proteins carry information contained in post-translational modifications. Eukaryotic cells utilize this histone code to regulate the usage of the underlying DNA. In the maturing oocytes and eggs of the frog Xenopus laevis, histones are synthesized in bulk in preparation for deposition during the rapid early developmental cell cycles. During this key developmental time frame, embryonic pluripotent chromatin is established. In the egg, non-chromatin-bound histones are complexed with storage chaperone proteins, including nucleoplasmin. Here we describe the identification and characterization of a complex of the protein arginine methyltransferase 5 (Prmt5) and the methylosome protein 50 (Mep50) isolated from Xenopus eggs that specifically methylates predeposition histones H2A/H2A.X-F and H4 and the histone chaperone nucleoplasmin on a conserved motif (GRGXK). We demonstrate that nucleoplasmin (Npm), an exceedingly abundant maternally deposited protein, is a potent substrate for Prmt5-Mep50 and is monomethylated and symmetrically dimethylated at Arg-187. Furthermore, Npm modulates Prmt5-Mep50 activity directed toward histones, consistent with a regulatory role for Npm in vivo. We show that H2A and nucleoplasmin methylation appears late in oogenesis and is most abundant in the laid egg. We hypothesize that these very abundant arginine methylations are constrained to pre-mid blastula transition events in the embryo and therefore may be involved in the global transcriptional repression found in this developmental time frame. PMID:22009756

  6. Synthesis of heterogeneous mRNA-like RNA and low-molecular-weight RNA before the midblastula transition in embryos of Xenopus laevis

    SciTech Connect

    Nakakura, N.; Miura, T.; Yamana, K.; Ito, A.; Shiokawa, K.

    1987-10-01

    It has been proposed and is now widely accepted that in Xenopus laevis embryogenesis RNA synthesis starts only at and after 12 rounds of cleavage, at the time of the midblastula transition (MBT). In this report, however, we provide evidence that RNA synthesis takes place prior to the MBT stage in normally developing Xenopus embryos. In the present experiments, we cultured fertilized eggs in 80 mM phosphate buffer and loosened the adhesion between blastomeres, so that (/sup 3/H)uridine could be incorporated into blastomeres from the surrounding medium. By this method and also by microinjection of (/sup 3/H)GTP, we found that embryos synthesize heterogeneous, nonribosomal, high-molecular-weight RNAs and a relatively small amount of low-molecular-weight RNA as early as the sixth cleavage. RNAs synthesized were not of mitochondrial origin, and the synthesis was sensitive to actinomycin D and alpha-amanitin. From these results we conclude that mRNA-like RNA and low-molecular-weight RNA start to be synthesized during the cleavage stage.

  7. Protein arginine methyltransferase Prmt5-Mep50 methylates histones H2A and H4 and the histone chaperone nucleoplasmin in Xenopus laevis eggs.

    PubMed

    Wilczek, Carola; Chitta, Raghu; Woo, Eileen; Shabanowitz, Jeffrey; Chait, Brian T; Hunt, Donald F; Shechter, David

    2011-12-01

    Histone proteins carry information contained in post-translational modifications. Eukaryotic cells utilize this histone code to regulate the usage of the underlying DNA. In the maturing oocytes and eggs of the frog Xenopus laevis, histones are synthesized in bulk in preparation for deposition during the rapid early developmental cell cycles. During this key developmental time frame, embryonic pluripotent chromatin is established. In the egg, non-chromatin-bound histones are complexed with storage chaperone proteins, including nucleoplasmin. Here we describe the identification and characterization of a complex of the protein arginine methyltransferase 5 (Prmt5) and the methylosome protein 50 (Mep50) isolated from Xenopus eggs that specifically methylates predeposition histones H2A/H2A.X-F and H4 and the histone chaperone nucleoplasmin on a conserved motif (GRGXK). We demonstrate that nucleoplasmin (Npm), an exceedingly abundant maternally deposited protein, is a potent substrate for Prmt5-Mep50 and is monomethylated and symmetrically dimethylated at Arg-187. Furthermore, Npm modulates Prmt5-Mep50 activity directed toward histones, consistent with a regulatory role for Npm in vivo. We show that H2A and nucleoplasmin methylation appears late in oogenesis and is most abundant in the laid egg. We hypothesize that these very abundant arginine methylations are constrained to pre-mid blastula transition events in the embryo and therefore may be involved in the global transcriptional repression found in this developmental time frame.

  8. NSF- and SNARE-mediated membrane fusion is required for nuclear envelope formation and completion of nuclear pore complex assembly in Xenopus laevis egg extracts.

    PubMed

    Baur, Tina; Ramadan, Kristijan; Schlundt, Andreas; Kartenbeck, Jürgen; Meyer, Hemmo H

    2007-08-15

    Despite the progress in understanding nuclear envelope (NE) reformation after mitosis, it has remained unclear what drives the required membrane fusion and how exactly this is coordinated with nuclear pore complex (NPC) assembly. Here, we show that, like other intracellular fusion reactions, NE fusion in Xenopus laevis egg extracts is mediated by SNARE proteins that require activation by NSF. Antibodies against Xenopus NSF, depletion of NSF or the dominant-negative NSF(E329Q) variant specifically inhibited NE formation. Staging experiments further revealed that NSF was required until sealing of the envelope was completed. Moreover, excess exogenous alpha-SNAP that blocks SNARE function prevented membrane fusion and caused accumulation of non-flattened vesicles on the chromatin surface. Under these conditions, the nucleoporins Nup107 and gp210 were fully recruited, whereas assembly of FxFG-repeat-containing nucleoporins was blocked. Together, we define NSF- and SNARE-mediated membrane fusion events as essential steps during NE formation downstream of Nup107 recruitment, and upstream of membrane flattening and completion of NPC assembly.

  9. The interaction of general anaesthetics with recombinant GABAA and glycine receptors expressed in Xenopus laevis oocytes: a comparative study

    PubMed Central

    Pistis, Marco; Belelli, Delia; Peters, John A; Lambert, Jeremy J

    1997-01-01

    The effects of five structurally dissimilar general anaesthetics were examined in voltage-clamp recordings of agonist-evoked currents mediated by recombinant γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA)A receptors composed of human α1β1 and γ2L subunits expressed in Xenopus laevis oocytes. A quantitative comparison of the effects of these agents was made upon recombinant glycine receptors expressed as a homo-oligomer of human α1 subunits, or as a hetero-oligomer of human α1 and rat β subunits. Complementary RNA-injected oocytes expressing GABAA receptors responded to bath applied GABA with an EC50 of 158±34 μM. Oocytes expressing α1 and α1β glycine receptors subsequent to cDNA injection displayed EC50 values of 76±2 μM and 66±2 μM, respectively, in response to bath applied glycine. Picrotoxin antagonized responses mediated by homo-oligomeric α1 glycine receptors with an IC50 of 4.2±0.8 μM. Hetero-oligomeric α1β glycine receptors were at least 100-fold less sensitive to blockade by picrotoxin. With the appropriate agonist EC10, propofol enhanced GABA and glycine-evoked currents to approximately the maximal response produced by a saturating concentration of either agonist (i.e. Imax). The calculated EC50 values were 2.3±0.2 μM, 16±3 μM and 27±2 μM, for GABAA α1β1γ2L, glycine α1 and α1β receptors, respectively. At relatively high concentrations, propofol was observed to activate directly both GABAA and glycine receptors. Pentobarbitone potentiated GABA-evoked currents to 117±8.5% of Imax with an EC50 of 65±3 μM. The barbiturate also produced a substantial enhancement of the glycine-evoked currents, Imax and EC50 values being 71±2% and 845±66 μM and 51±10% and 757±30 μM for homomeric α1 and heteromeric α1β glycine receptors respectively. At high concentrations, pentobarbitone directly activated GABAA, but not glycine, receptors. The potentiation by propofol or pentobarbitone of currents mediated by α1 homo

  10. Investigation of Blood Flow and the Effect of Vasoactive Substances in Cutaneous Blood Vessels of "Xenopus Laevis"

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Škorjanc, Aleš; Belušic, Gregor

    2015-01-01

    In the present study, a preparation of frog skin was presented, which can be used to demonstrate the basic concepts of blood flow regulation in a very clear and attractive way to high school and university students. In a freshly euthanized "Xenopus," a patch of abdominal skin was exposed from the internal side and viewed with a USB…

  11. DEVELOPMENT OF A GENE-EXPRESSION ARRAY FOCUSING ON THE HYPOTHALAMUS-PITUITARY-THYROID AXIS IN XENOPUS LAEVIS

    EPA Science Inventory

    As recommended by the Endocrine Disruptor Screening and Testing Program Advisory Committee (EDSTAC), the USEPA has been developing a screening test capable of detecting effects of Endocrine Disrupting Chemicals (EDCs) on the hypothalamus-pituitary-thyroid (HPT) axis in Xenopus la...

  12. DEVELOPMENT OF A GENE-EXPRESSION ARRAY FOCUSING ON THE HYPOTHALAMUS-PITUATARY-THYROID AXIS IN XENOPUS LAEVIS

    EPA Science Inventory

    As recommended by the Endocrine Disruptor Screening and Testing Program Advisory Committee (EDSTAC), the USEPA has been developing a screening test capable of detecting effects of Endocrine Disrupting Chemicals (EDCs) on the hypothalamus-pituitary-thyroid (HPT) axis in Xenopus la...

  13. Proteomic analysis of fibroblastema formation in regenerating hind limbs of Xenopus laevis froglets and comparison to axolotl

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background To gain insight into what differences might restrict the capacity for limb regeneration in Xenopus froglets, we used High Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC)/double mass spectrometry to characterize protein expression during fibroblastema formation in the amputated froglet hindlimb, and compared the results to those obtained previously for blastema formation in the axolotl limb. Results Comparison of the Xenopus fibroblastema and axolotl blastema revealed several similarities and significant differences in proteomic profiles. The most significant similarity was the strong parallel down regulation of muscle proteins and enzymes involved in carbohydrate metabolism. Regenerating Xenopus limbs differed significantly from axolotl regenerating limbs in several ways: deficiency in the inositol phosphate/diacylglycerol signaling pathway, down regulation of Wnt signaling, up regulation of extracellular matrix (ECM) proteins and proteins involved in chondrocyte differentiation, lack of expression of a key cell cycle protein, ecotropic viral integration site 5 (EVI5), that blocks mitosis in the axolotl, and the expression of several patterning proteins not seen in the axolotl that may dorsalize the fibroblastema. Conclusions We have characterized global protein expression during fibroblastema formation after amputation of the Xenopus froglet hindlimb and identified several differences that lead to signaling deficiency, failure to retard mitosis, premature chondrocyte differentiation, and failure of dorsoventral axial asymmetry. These differences point to possible interventions to improve blastema formation and pattern formation in the froglet limb. PMID:25063185

  14. Binding of adrenergic ligands to liver plasma membrane preparations from the axolotl, Ambystoma mexicanum; the toad, Xenopus laevis; and the Australian lungfish, Neoceratodus forsteri.

    PubMed

    Janssens, P A; Grigg, J A

    1988-09-01

    The beta-adrenergic ligand iodocyanopindolol (ICP) bound specifically to hepatic plasma membrane preparations from the axolotl, Ambystoma mexicanum (Bmax, 40 fmol/mg protein (P) at free concentration above 140 pM; KD, 42 pM); the toad, Xenopus laevis (Bmax, 200 fmol/mg P at 1 nM; KD, 300 pM); and the Australian lungfish, Neoceratodus forsteri (Bmax, 100 fmol/mg P at 5 nM). For the lungfish, the Scatchard plot was curved showing two classes of binding site with KD's of 20 and 500 pM. Neither the alpha 1-adrenergic ligand prazosin nor the alpha 2-adrenergic ligand yohimbine bound specifically to hepatic membrane preparations from any of the three species. Several adrenergic ligands displaced ICP from hepatic membrane preparations of all three species with KD's of Axolotl--propranolol, 50 nM; isoprenaline, 600 nM; adrenaline, 10 microM; phenylephrine, 20 microM; noradrenaline, 40 microM; and phentolamine, greater than 100 microM; X. laevis--propranolol, 30 nM; isoprenaline, 100 microM; adrenaline, 200 microM; noradrenaline, 300 microM; phenylephrine, 1 mM; and phentolamine, greater than 1 mM; N. forsteri,--propranolol, 25 nM; isoprenaline, 1 microM; adrenaline, 20 microM; phenylephrine, 35 microM; noradrenaline, 600 microM; and phentolamine, 400 microM. These findings suggest that alpha-adrenergic receptors are not present in hepatic plasma membrane preparations from these three species and that the hepatic actions of catecholamines are mediated via beta-adrenergic receptors. The order of binding of the beta-adrenergic ligands suggests that the receptors are of the beta 2 type.

  15. 4-Bromo-2,5-dimethoxyphenethylamine (2C-B) and structurally related phenylethylamines are potent 5-HT2A receptor antagonists in Xenopus laevis oocytes

    PubMed Central

    Villalobos, Claudio A; Bull, Paulina; Sáez, Patricio; Cassels, Bruce K; Huidobro-Toro, J Pablo

    2004-01-01

    We recently described that several 2-(2,5-dimethoxy-4-substituted phenyl)ethylamines (PEAs), including 4-I=2C-I, 4-Br=2C-B, and 4-CH3=2C-D analogs, are partial agonists at 5-HT2C receptors, and show low or even negligible intrinsic efficacy at 5-HT2A receptors. These results raised the proposal that these drugs may act as 5-HT2 antagonists. To test this hypothesis, Xenopus laevis oocytes were microinjected with the rat clones for 5-HT2A or 5-HT2C receptors. The above-mentioned PEAs and its 4-H analog (2C-H) blocked the 5-HT-induced currents at 5-HT2A, but not at the 5-HT2C receptor, revealing 5-HT2 receptor subtype selectivity. The 5-HT2A receptor antagonism required a 2-min preincubation to attain maximum inhibition. All PEAs tested shifted the 5-HT concentration–response curves to the right and downward. Their potencies varied with the nature of the C(4) substituent; the relative rank order of their 5-HT2A receptor antagonist potency was 2C-I>2C-B>2C-D>2C-H. The present results demonstrate that in X. laevis oocytes, a series of 2,5-dimethoxy-4-substituted PEAs blocked the 5-HT2A but not the 5-HT2C receptor-mediated responses. As an alternative hypothesis, we suggest that the psychostimulant activity of the PEAs may not be exclusively associated with partial or full 5-HT2A receptor agonism. PMID:15006903

  16. Asymmetri Distribution of Metals in the Xenopus Laevis Oocyte: a Synchrotron X-Ray Fluorescence Microprobe Study

    SciTech Connect

    Popescu, B.F.G.; Belak, Z.R.; Ignatyev, K.; Ovsenek, N.; Nichol, H.; /Saskatchewan U. /SLAC, SSRL

    2009-04-29

    The asymmetric distribution of many components of the Xenopus oocyte, including RNA, proteins, and pigment, provides a framework for cellular specialization during development. During maturation, Xenopus oocytes also acquire metals needed for development, but apart from zinc, little is known about their distribution. Synchrotron X-ray fluorescence microprobe was used to map iron, copper, and zinc and the metalloid selenium in a whole oocyte. Iron, zinc, and copper were asymmetrically distributed in the cytoplasm, while selenium and copper were more abundant in the nucleus. A zone of high copper and zinc was seen in the animal pole cytoplasm. Iron was also concentrated in the animal pole but did not colocalize with zinc, copper, or pigment accumulations. This asymmetry of metal deposition may be important for normal development. Synchrotron X-ray fluorescence microprobe will be a useful tool to examine how metals accumulate and redistribute during fertilization and embryonic development.

  17. Asymmetric Distribution of Metals in the Xenopus Laevis Oocyte: a Synchrotron X-Ray Fluorescence Microprobe Study

    SciTech Connect

    Popescu, B.F.Gh.; Belak, Z.R.; Ignatyev, K.; Ovsenek, N.; Nichol, H.

    2009-06-04

    The asymmetric distribution of many components of the Xenopus oocyte, including RNA, proteins, and pigment, provides a framework for cellular specialization during development. During maturation, Xenopus oocytes also acquire metals needed for development, but apart from zinc, little is known about their distribution. Synchrotron X-ray fluorescence microprobe was used to map iron, copper, and zinc and the metalloid selenium in a whole oocyte. Iron, zinc, and copper were asymmetrically distributed in the cytoplasm, while selenium and copper were more abundant in the nucleus. A zone of high copper and zinc was seen in the animal pole cytoplasm. Iron was also concentrated in the animal pole but did not colocalize with zinc, copper, or pigment accumulations. This asymmetry of metal deposition may be important for normal development. Synchrotron X-ray fluorescence microprobe will be a useful tool to examine how metals accumulate and redistribute during fertilization and embryonic development.

  18. Effects of cadmium, estradiol-17beta and their interaction on gonadal condition and metamorphosis of male and female African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sharma, Bibek; Patino, Reynaldo

    2010-01-01

    To assess interaction effects between cadmium (Cd, a putative xenoestrogen) and estradiol-17beta (E(2)) on sex differentiation and metamorphosis, Xenopus laevis were exposed to solvent-control (0.005% ethanol), Cd (10microgL(-1)), E(2) (1microgL(-1)), or Cd and E(2) (Cd+E(2)) in FETAX medium from fertilization to 75d postfertilization. Each treatment was applied to four aquaria, each with 30 fertilized eggs. Mortality was recorded and animals were sampled as they completed metamorphosis (Nieuwkoop and Faber stage 66). Gonadal sex of individuals (including >or= tadpoles NF stage 55 at day 75) was determined gross-morphologically and used to compute sex ratios. Time course and percent completion of metamorphosis, snout-vent length (SVL), hindlimb length (HLL) and weight were analyzed for each gender separately. Survival rates did not differ among treatments. The E(2) and Cd+E(2) treatments significantly skewed sex ratios towards females; however, no sex-ratio differences were observed between the control and Cd treatments or between the E(2) and Cd+E(2) treatments. Time course of metamorphosis was generally delayed and percent completion of metamorphosis was generally reduced in males and females exposed to Cd, E(2) or their combination compared to control animals. In males, but not females, the effect of Cd+E(2) was greater than that of individual chemicals. Weight at completion of metamorphosis was reduced only in females and only by the Cd+E(2) treatment. In conclusion, although Cd at an environmentally relevant concentration did not exhibit direct or indirect feminizing effects in Xenopus tadpoles, the metal and E(2) both had similar inhibitory effects on metamorphosis that were of greater magnitude in males than females.

  19. Effects of cadmium, estradiol-17β and their interaction on gonadal condition and metamorphosis of male and female African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sharma, Bibek; Patino, Reynaldo

    2010-01-01

    To assess interaction effects between cadmium (Cd, a putative xenoestrogen) and estradiol-17?? (E2) on sex differentiation and metamorphosis, Xenopus laevis were exposed to solvent-control (0.005% ethanol), Cd (10 ??g L-1), E2 (1 ??g L-1), or Cd and E2 (Cd + E2) in FETAX medium from fertilization to 75 d postfertilization. Each treatment was applied to four aquaria, each with 30 fertilized eggs. Mortality was recorded and animals were sampled as they completed metamorphosis (Nieuwkoop and Faber stage 66). Gonadal sex of individuals (including tadpoles ???NF stage 55 at day 75) was determined gross-morphologically and used to compute sex ratios. Time course and percent completion of metamorphosis, snout-vent length (SVL), hindlimb length (HLL) and weight were analyzed for each gender separately. Survival rates did not differ among treatments. The E2 and Cd + E2 treatments significantly skewed sex ratios towards females; however, no sex-ratio differences were observed between the control and Cd treatments or between the E2 and Cd + E2 treatments. Time course of metamorphosis was generally delayed and percent completion of metamorphosis was generally reduced in males and females exposed to Cd, E2 or their combination compared to control animals. In males, but not females, the effect of Cd + E2 was greater than that of individual chemicals. Weight at completion of metamorphosis was reduced only in females and only by the Cd + E2 treatment. In conclusion, although Cd at an environmentally relevant concentration did not exhibit direct or indirect feminizing effects in Xenopus tadpoles, the metal and E2 both had similar inhibitory effects on metamorphosis that were of greater magnitude in males than females.

  20. Effects of cadmium, estradiol-17beta and their interaction on gonadal condition and metamorphosis of male and female African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Sharma, Bibek; Patiño, Reynaldo

    2010-04-01

    To assess interaction effects between cadmium (Cd, a putative xenoestrogen) and estradiol-17beta (E(2)) on sex differentiation and metamorphosis, Xenopus laevis were exposed to solvent-control (0.005% ethanol), Cd (10microgL(-1)), E(2) (1microgL(-1)), or Cd and E(2) (Cd+E(2)) in FETAX medium from fertilization to 75d postfertilization. Each treatment was applied to four aquaria, each with 30 fertilized eggs. Mortality was recorded and animals were sampled as they completed metamorphosis (Nieuwkoop and Faber stage 66). Gonadal sex of individuals (including >or= tadpoles NF stage 55 at day 75) was determined gross-morphologically and used to compute sex ratios. Time course and percent completion of metamorphosis, snout-vent length (SVL), hindlimb length (HLL) and weight were analyzed for each gender separately. Survival rates did not differ among treatments. The E(2) and Cd+E(2) treatments significantly skewed sex ratios towards females; however, no sex-ratio differences were observed between the control and Cd treatments or between the E(2) and Cd+E(2) treatments. Time course of metamorphosis was generally delayed and percent completion of metamorphosis was generally reduced in males and females exposed to Cd, E(2) or their combination compared to control animals. In males, but not females, the effect of Cd+E(2) was greater than that of individual chemicals. Weight at completion of metamorphosis was reduced only in females and only by the Cd+E(2) treatment. In conclusion, although Cd at an environmentally relevant concentration did not exhibit direct or indirect feminizing effects in Xenopus tadpoles, the metal and E(2) both had similar inhibitory effects on metamorphosis that were of greater magnitude in males than females.

  1. Survey of the vestibulum, and behavior of Xenopus laevis larvae developed during a 7-days space flight.

    PubMed

    Briegleb, W; Neubert, J; Schatz, A; Klein, T; Kruse, B

    1986-01-01

    Aquatic animals have almost no body weight related proprioception for spatial orientation. Xenopus larvae, like fish, maintain their attitude in water by continuous correction with their fin(s). For these reasons a special performance of the equilibrium system compared to terrestrial animals is necessary. Evidently fish therefore have more compact (dense) otoliths; Xenopus larvae have less dense otolith (membranes) similar to land vertebrates; but their sacculus-otoliths are vertically positioned, which also may lead to a higher g-sensitivity. For plausibility reasons gravity should influence the embryonic development of gravity receptors. Yet, evaluations of photographs taken from the surface of cut deep-frozen objects by incident light show no aberration of the shape of the whole vestibulum and of the shape, density, size and position of the otolith membrane in larvae developed under near-zero g (NEXPA-BW-STATEX in D-1-Mission). The further evaluation of the "weightless-larvae" revealed a probably not yet described statolith-like formation in the dorsal wall of the vestibulum. In the weightless larvae this formation outnumbers, also qualitatively, strongly the l-g controls. An extra result is the lack of striking effects of cosmic radiation on the embryonic development of the flown Xenopus eggs. The swimming behavior of the larvae which was observed about one hour after landing of the Space Shuttle showed a typical anomaly (loop swimming), which is known from larvae developed on the clinostat or from fish flown aboard Apollo capsules.

  2. Survey of the vestibulum, and behavior of Xenopus laevis larvae developed during a 7-days space flight.

    PubMed

    Briegleb, W; Neubert, J; Schatz, A; Klein, T; Kruse, B

    1986-01-01

    Aquatic animals have almost no body weight related proprioception for spatial orientation. Xenopus larvae, like fish, maintain their attitude in water by continuous correction with their fin(s). For these reasons a special performance of the equilibrium system compared to terrestrial animals is necessary. Evidently fish therefore have more compact (dense) otoliths; Xenopus larvae have less dense otolith (membranes) similar to land vertebrates; but their sacculus-otoliths are vertically positioned, which also may lead to a higher g-sensitivity. For plausibility reasons gravity should influence the embryonic development of gravity receptors. Yet, evaluations of photographs taken from the surface of cut deep-frozen objects by incident light show no aberration of the shape of the whole vestibulum and of the shape, density, size and position of the otolith membrane in larvae developed under near-zero g (NEXPA-BW-STATEX in D-1-Mission). The further evaluation of the "weightless-larvae" revealed a probably not yet described statolith-like formation in the dorsal wall of the vestibulum. In the weightless larvae this formation outnumbers, also qualitatively, strongly the l-g controls. An extra result is the lack of striking effects of cosmic radiation on the embryonic development of the flown Xenopus eggs. The swimming behavior of the larvae which was observed about one hour after landing of the Space Shuttle showed a typical anomaly (loop swimming), which is known from larvae developed on the clinostat or from fish flown aboard Apollo capsules. PMID:11537815

  3. Distinct abscisic acid signaling pathways for modulation of guard cell versus mesophyll cell potassium channels revealed by expression studies in Xenopus laevis oocytes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sutton, F.; Paul, S. S.; Wang, X. Q.; Assmann, S. M.; Evans, M. L. (Principal Investigator)

    2000-01-01

    Regulation of guard cell ion transport by abscisic acid (ABA) and in particular ABA inhibition of a guard cell inward K(+) current (I(Kin)) is well documented. However, little is known concerning ABA effects on ion transport in other plant cell types. Here we applied patch clamp techniques to mesophyll cell protoplasts of fava bean (Vicia faba cv Long Pod) plants and demonstrated ABA inhibition of an outward K(+) current (I(Kout)). When mesophyll cell protoplast mRNA (mesophyll mRNA) was expressed in Xenopus laevis oocytes, I(Kout) was generated that displayed similar properties to I(Kout) observed from direct analysis of mesophyll cell protoplasts. I(Kout) expressed by mesophyll mRNA-injected oocytes was inhibited by ABA, indicating that the ABA signal transduction pathway observed in mesophyll cells was preserved in the frog oocytes. Co-injection of oocytes with guard cell protoplast mRNA and cRNA for KAT1, an inward K(+) channel expressed in guard cells, resulted in I(Kin) that was similarly inhibited by ABA. However, oocytes co-injected with mesophyll mRNA and KAT1 cRNA produced I(Kin) that was not inhibited by ABA. These results demonstrate that the mesophyll-encoded signaling mechanism could not substitute for the guard cell pathway. These findings indicate that mesophyll cells and guard cells use distinct and different receptor types and/or signal transduction pathways in ABA regulation of K(+) channels.

  4. The polarization of the G-protein activated potassium channel GIRK5 to the vegetal pole of Xenopus laevis oocytes is driven by a di-leucine motif.

    PubMed

    Díaz-Bello, Beatriz; Rangel-García, Claudia I; Salvador, Carolina; Carrisoza-Gaytán, Rolando; Escobar, Laura I

    2013-01-01

    The G protein-coupled inwardly-rectifying potassium channels (known as GIRK or Kir3) form functional heterotetramers gated by G-βγ subunits. GIRK channels participate in heart rate modulation and neuronal postsynaptic inhibition in mammals. In Xenopus laevis oocytes, GIRK5 is a functional homomultimer. Previously, we found that phosphorylation of a tyrosine (Y16) at its N-terminus downregulates the surface expression of GIRK5. In this work, we elucidated the subcellular localization and trafficking of GIRK5 in oocytes. Several EGFP-GIRK5 chimeras were produced and an ECFP construct was used to identify the endoplasmic reticulum (ER). Whereas GIRK5-WT was retained in the ER at the animal pole, the phospho-null GIRK5-Y16A was localized to the vegetal pole. Interestingly, a construct with an N-terminal Δ25 deletion produced an even distribution of the channel in the whole oocyte. Through an alanine-scan, we identified an acidic cluster/di-leucine sorting-signal recognition motif between E17 and I22. We quantified the effect of each amino acid residue within this di-leucine motif in determining the distribution of GIRK5 to the animal and vegetal poles. We found that Y16 and I22 contributed to functional expression and were dominant in the polarization of GIRK5. We thus conclude that the N-terminal acidic di-leucine motif of GIRK5 determines its retention and polarized trafficking within Xl oocytes.

  5. The Polarization of the G-Protein Activated Potassium Channel GIRK5 to the Vegetal Pole of Xenopus laevis Oocytes Is Driven by a Di-Leucine Motif

    PubMed Central

    Díaz-Bello, Beatriz; Rangel-García, Claudia I.; Salvador, Carolina; Carrisoza-Gaytán, Rolando; Escobar, Laura I.

    2013-01-01

    The G protein-coupled inwardly-rectifying potassium channels (known as GIRK or Kir3) form functional heterotetramers gated by G-βγ subunits. GIRK channels participate in heart rate modulation and neuronal postsynaptic inhibition in mammals. In Xenopus laevis oocytes, GIRK5 is a functional homomultimer. Previously, we found that phosphorylation of a tyrosine (Y16) at its N-terminus downregulates the surface expression of GIRK5. In this work, we elucidated the subcellular localization and trafficking of GIRK5 in oocytes. Several EGFP-GIRK5 chimeras were produced and an ECFP construct was used to identify the endoplasmic reticulum (ER). Whereas GIRK5-WT was retained in the ER at the animal pole, the phospho-null GIRK5-Y16A was localized to the vegetal pole. Interestingly, a construct with an N-terminal Δ25 deletion produced an even distribution of the channel in the whole oocyte. Through an alanine-scan, we identified an acidic cluster/di-leucine sorting-signal recognition motif between E17 and I22. We quantified the effect of each amino acid residue within this di-leucine motif in determining the distribution of GIRK5 to the animal and vegetal poles. We found that Y16 and I22 contributed to functional expression and were dominant in the polarization of GIRK5. We thus conclude that the N-terminal acidic di-leucine motif of GIRK5 determines its retention and polarized trafficking within Xl oocytes. PMID:23717539

  6. Readaptation of the vestibuloocular reflex to 1g-Condition in immature lower vertebrates ( Xenopus laevis) after micro- or hypergravity exposure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sebastian, C.; Horn, E.; Eβeling, K.; Neubert, J.

    The effects of altered gravitational conditions (AGC) on the development of the static vestibulo-ocular reflex (VOR) and readaptation to 1g were investigated in the amphibian Xenopus laevis. Tadpoles were exposed to microgravity (μg) during the German Space Mission D-2 for 10 days, using the STATEX closed survival system, or to 3g for 9 days during earth-bound experiments. At the beginning of AGC, the tadpoles had not yet developed the static VOR. The main results were: (i) Tadpoles with ug- or 3g-experience had a lower gain of the static VOR than the 1g-controls during the 2nd and 5th post-AGC days, (ii) Readaptation to response levels of 1g-reared controls usually occurred during the following weeks, except in slowly developing tadpoles with 3g-experience. Readaptation was less pronounced if, during the acute VOR test, tadpoles were rolled from the inclined to the normal posture than in the opposite test situation. It is postulated that (i) gravity is necessarily involved in the development of the static VOR, but only during a period including the time before onset of the first behavioural response; and (ii) readaptation which is superimposed by the processes of VOR development depends on many factors including the velocity of development, the actual excitation level of the vestibular systems and the neuroplastic properties of its specific pathways.

  7. Fertilization competence of the egg-coating envelope is regulated by direct interaction of dicalcin and gp41, the Xenopus laevis ZP3.

    PubMed

    Miwa, Naofumi; Ogawa, Motoyuki; Hanaue, Mayu; Takamatsu, Ken

    2015-08-05

    Fertilization begins with species-restricted interaction of sperm and the egg-coating envelope, which includes a three-dimensional meshwork of filaments composed of glycoproteins (called ZP proteins). Growing evidence has unveiled the molecular nature of ZP proteins; however, the structural property conferring fertilization competence to the egg-coating envelope remains unknown. Here, we show the molecular mechanism that mediates direct interaction between dicalcin, a novel fertilization-suppressive ZP protein-associated protein, and gp41, a Xenopus laevis ortholog of mammalian ZP3, and subsequently demonstrate the structural basis of the envelope for fertilization competence. The interactive regions between dicalcin and gp41 comprised five and nine amino acid residues within dicalcin and twenty-three within gp41 [corrected]. Synthetic peptides corresponding to these regions dramatically affected fertilization: treatment with dicalcin- or gp41-derived peptides decreased or increased fertilization rates, respectively. Prior application of these peptides caused distinct alterations in the in vivo lectin-staining pattern of the envelope as well. Transmission electron microscopy analysis revealed that the dicalcin-derived peptide induced the formation of a well-organized meshwork, whereas the gp41-derived peptide caused the formation of a significantly disorganized meshwork. These findings indicated that the fertilization competence of the egg-coating envelope is crucially regulated by the direct interaction between dicalcin and gp41.

  8. The RNA-binding protein xCIRP2 is involved in apoptotic tail regression during metamorphosis in Xenopus laevis tadpoles.

    PubMed

    Eto, Ko; Iwama, Tomoyuki; Tajima, Tatsuya; Abe, Shin-ichi

    2012-10-01

    Frog metamorphosis induced by thyroid hormone (TH) involves not only cell proliferation and differentiation in reconstituted organs such as limbs, but also apoptotic cell death in degenerated organs such as tails. However, the molecular mechanisms directing the TH-dependent cell fate determination remain unclear. We have previously identified from newts an RNA-binding protein (nRBP) acting as the regulator governing survival and death in germ cells during spermatogenesis. To investigate the molecular events leading the tail resorption during metamorphosis, we analyzed the expression, the functional role in apoptosis, and the regulation of xCIRP2, a frog homolog of nRBP, in tails of Xenopus laevis tadpoles. At the prometamorphic stage, xCIRP2 protein is expressed in fibroblast, epidermal, nerve, and muscular cells and localized in their cytoplasm. When spontaneous metamorphosis progressed, the level of xCIRP2 mRNA remained unchanged but the amount of the protein decreased. In organ cultures of tails at the prometamorphic stage, xCIRP2 protein decreased before their lengths shortened during TH-dependent metamorphosis. The inhibition of calpain or proteasome attenuated the TH-induced decrease of xCIRP2 protein in tails, impairing their regression. These results suggest that xCIRP2 protein is downregulated through calpain- and proteasome-mediated proteolysis in response to TH at the onset of metamorphosis, inducing apoptosis in tails and thereby degenerating them.

  9. A 31P NMR spectroscopy study of Xenopus laevis heart perfused in vitro with creatinol-O-phosphate, phosphocreatine, adenosine triphosphate, fructose diphosphate and ouabain.

    PubMed

    Olsen, J I; Rossini, P; Schweizer, M P; Bernardi, M; Moretti, V; Re, L; Rossini, L

    1993-09-01

    Xenopus laevis heart was studied by 31P NMR using a 200 MHz proton spectrometer; hearts were perfused, at pH 7.35 and room temperature, with normal oxygenated or K(+)-enriched Ringer. Solution was later added with creatinol-O-phosphate (COP), phosphocreatine (PCr), adenosine triphosphate (ATP), fructose-1,6-diphosphate (FDP) and ouabain. NMR spectra of the heart show organic phosphomono- and phosphodi-esters, inorganic phosphate, PCr, overlapping alpha-ATP/ADP and gamma-ATP/beta-ADP, and beta-ATP signals. Their chemical shift positions and areas showed no significant changes in the course of 1.5 h perfusions with either solution, except in a few preparations, whether the heart was beating or reversibly arrested. While COP reduced the signals in beating hearts, the same spectra exhibited no consistent, substantial changes under PCr, ATP and FDP 1 to 10 mM, pH 7.35 perfusion with either solution, nor when ouabain mumol was added. The spectra are briefly discussed in comparison with those observed in the perfused heart of mammals (mostly rat), and particularly with those obtained in the frog (Rana temporaria) heart, both by analysing the bioenergetic equilibria on the basis of total tissue substrate levels measured in extracts of freeze-clamped tissue, and by evaluating cytochrome-b, flavin and pyridine nucleotide in vitro oxido-reduction read-outs in separate, similar experimental settings.

  10. UVB dose-toxicity thresholds and steady-state DNA-photoproduct levels during chronic irradiation of inbred Xenopus laevis tadpoles.

    PubMed

    Pandelova, Iovanna; Hewitt, Stephen R; Rollins-Smith, Louise A; Hays, John B

    2006-01-01

    Environmental stressors that severely impact some species more than others can alter ecosystems and threaten biodiversity. Genotoxic stress, such as solar UV-B irradiance, may induce levels of DNA damage at rates that exceed repair capacities in some species but remain below repair capacities in other species. Repair rates would seem to establish toxicity thresholds. We used inbred Xenopus laevis tadpoles in the laboratory to test the hypothesis that balances between rates of induction of cyclobutane pyrimidine dimers (CPDs; the major UV-B photoproduct in DNA) and rates of CPD removal (repair) can determine UV-B toxicity thresholds. As rates of chronic UV-B irradiance were progressively increased by decreased shielding of lamps, survival decreased sharply over a relatively narrow range of dose rates. Apparent toxicity thresholds were associated with large increases in steady-state CPD levels. Induction at twice the measured removal (repair) rate produced sustained high CPDs and 100% mortality. Induction at one-half the removal rate resulted in negligible CPD levels and low mortality. Increased intensity of visible radiation available to drive CPD photoreactivation, mimicking interspecies variation in DNA repair capacity, reduced steady-state CPD levels and increased survival at UV-B dose rates that were previously toxic, resulting in increased thresholds of apparent toxicity. We suggest that threshold effects due to DNA repair should generally be considered in assessments of effects of genotoxic agents on species-specific population decreases and human health risks. PMID:17205633

  11. Ca2+-recruitment in tachykinin-induced contractions of gut smooth muscle from African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis and rainbow trout, Oncorhynchus mykiss.

    PubMed

    Johansson, Agot; Holmgren, Susanne

    2003-04-01

    Changes in intracellular Ca(2+) concentration control many essential cellular functions like the contraction of smooth muscle cells. The aim of this study was to investigate if the tachykinin substance P (SP) engages external Ca(2+)-sources, internal Ca(2+)-sources, or both in the contraction of the gastrointestinal smooth muscle of rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) and the African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis). Strip preparations made of either longitudinal smooth muscle of proximal intestine or circular smooth muscle of cardiac stomach were mounted in organ baths and the tension was recorded via force transducers. Ca(2+)-free Ringer's solution containing the Ca(2+) chelating agent EGTA (2mM) abolished all spontaneous contractions. Exposure to SP in Ca(2+)-free solution decreased the response. Preparations were also treated with the Ca(2+)-ATPase inhibitor thapsigargin (10 microM) during 30 min. Thapsigargin reduced the effect of SP on intestinal longitudinal smooth muscle in rainbow trout and on stomach circular smooth muscle in the African clawed frog and to a less extent in the intestinal longitudinal smooth muscle. The results show that external Ca(2+) is of great importance, but is not the only source of Ca(2+) recruitment in SP-activation of gastrointestinal smooth muscle in rainbow trout and the African clawed frog. PMID:12679095

  12. Are fish and standardized FETAX assays protective enough for amphibians? A case study on Xenopus laevis larvae assay with biologically active substances present in livestock wastes.

    PubMed

    Martini, Federica; Tarazona, José V; Pablos, M Victoria

    2012-01-01

    Biologically active substances could reach the aquatic compartment when livestock wastes are considered for recycling. Recently, the standardized FETAX assay has been questioned, and some researchers have considered that the risk assessment performed on fish could not be protective enough to cover amphibians. In the present study a Xenopus laevis acute assay was developed in order to compare the sensitivity of larvae relative to fish or FETAX assays; veterinary medicines (ivermectin, oxytetracycline, tetracycline, sulfamethoxazole, and trimethoprim) and essential metals (zinc, copper, manganese, and selenium) that may be found in livestock wastes were used for the larvae exposure. Lethal (LC(50)) and sublethal effects were estimated. Available data in both, fish and FETAX studies, were in general more protective than values found out in the current study, but not in all cases. Moreover, the presence of nonlethal effects, caused by ivermectin, zinc, and copper, suggested that several physiological mechanisms could be affected. Thus, this kind of effects should be deeply investigated. The results obtained in the present study could expand the information about micropollutants from livestock wastes on amphibians. PMID:22629159

  13. Distinct abscisic acid signaling pathways for modulation of guard cell versus mesophyll cell potassium channels revealed by expression studies in Xenopus laevis oocytes.

    PubMed

    Sutton, F; Paul, S S; Wang, X Q; Assmann, S M

    2000-09-01

    Regulation of guard cell ion transport by abscisic acid (ABA) and in particular ABA inhibition of a guard cell inward K(+) current (I(Kin)) is well documented. However, little is known concerning ABA effects on ion transport in other plant cell types. Here we applied patch clamp techniques to mesophyll cell protoplasts of fava bean (Vicia faba cv Long Pod) plants and demonstrated ABA inhibition of an outward K(+) current (I(Kout)). When mesophyll cell protoplast mRNA (mesophyll mRNA) was expressed in Xenopus laevis oocytes, I(Kout) was generated that displayed similar properties to I(Kout) observed from direct analysis of mesophyll cell protoplasts. I(Kout) expressed by mesophyll mRNA-injected oocytes was inhibited by ABA, indicating that the ABA signal transduction pathway observed in mesophyll cells was preserved in the frog oocytes. Co-injection of oocytes with guard cell protoplast mRNA and cRNA for KAT1, an inward K(+) channel expressed in guard cells, resulted in I(Kin) that was similarly inhibited by ABA. However, oocytes co-injected with mesophyll mRNA and KAT1 cRNA produced I(Kin) that was not inhibited by ABA. These results demonstrate that the mesophyll-encoded signaling mechanism could not substitute for the guard cell pathway. These findings indicate that mesophyll cells and guard cells use distinct and different receptor types and/or signal transduction pathways in ABA regulation of K(+) channels. PMID:10982437

  14. Are Fish and Standardized FETAX Assays Protective Enough for Amphibians? A Case Study on Xenopus laevis Larvae Assay with Biologically Active Substances Present in Livestock Wastes

    PubMed Central

    Martini, Federica; Tarazona, José V.; Pablos, M. Victoria

    2012-01-01

    Biologically active substances could reach the aquatic compartment when livestock wastes are considered for recycling. Recently, the standardized FETAX assay has been questioned, and some researchers have considered that the risk assessment performed on fish could not be protective enough to cover amphibians. In the present study a Xenopus laevis acute assay was developed in order to compare the sensitivity of larvae relative to fish or FETAX assays; veterinary medicines (ivermectin, oxytetracycline, tetracycline, sulfamethoxazole, and trimethoprim) and essential metals (zinc, copper, manganese, and selenium) that may be found in livestock wastes were used for the larvae exposure. Lethal (LC50) and sublethal effects were estimated. Available data in both, fish and FETAX studies, were in general more protective than values found out in the current study, but not in all cases. Moreover, the presence of nonlethal effects, caused by ivermectin, zinc, and copper, suggested that several physiological mechanisms could be affected. Thus, this kind of effects should be deeply investigated. The results obtained in the present study could expand the information about micropollutants from livestock wastes on amphibians. PMID:22629159

  15. Elucidating the origins of the vascular system: a fate map of the vascular endothelial and red blood cell lineages in Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Mills, K R; Kruep, D; Saha, M S

    1999-05-15

    Required to supply nutrients and oxygen to the growing embryo, the vascular system is the first functional organ system to develop during vertebrate embryogenesis. Although there has been substantial progress in identifying the genetic cascade regulating vascular development, the initial stages of vasculogenesis, namely, the origin of vascular endothelial cells within the early embryo, remain unclear. To address this issue we constructed a fate map for specific vascular structures, including the aortic arches, endocardium, dorsal aorta, cardinal veins, and lateral abdominal veins, as well as for the red blood cells at the 16-cell stage and the 32-cell stage of Xenopus laevis. Using genetic markers to identify these cell types, our results suggest that vascular endothelial cells can arise from virtually every blastomere of the 16-cell-stage and the 32-cell-stage embryo, with different blastomeres preferentially, though not exclusively, giving rise to specific vascular structures. Similarly, but more surprisingly, every blastomere in the 16-cell-stage embryo and all but those in the most animal tier of the 32-cell-stage embryo serve as progenitors for red blood cells. Taken together, our results suggest that during normal development, both dorsal and ventral blastomeres contribute significantly to the vascular endothelial and red blood cell lineages.

  16. Protein-Carbohydrate Interaction between Sperm and the Egg-Coating Envelope and Its Regulation by Dicalcin, a Xenopus laevis Zona Pellucida Protein-Associated Protein.

    PubMed

    Miwa, Naofumi

    2015-05-22

    Protein-carbohydrate interaction regulates multiple important processes during fertilization, an essential biological event where individual gametes undergo intercellular recognition to fuse and generate a zygote. In the mammalian female reproductive tract, sperm temporarily adhere to the oviductal epithelium via the complementary interaction between carbohydrate-binding proteins on the sperm membrane and carbohydrates on the oviductal cells. After detachment from the oviductal epithelium at the appropriate time point following ovulation, sperm migrate and occasionally bind to the extracellular matrix, called the zona pellucida (ZP), which surrounds the egg, thereafter undergoing the exocytotic acrosomal reaction to penetrate the envelope and to reach the egg plasma membrane. This sperm-ZP interaction also involves the direct interaction between sperm carbohydrate-binding proteins and carbohydrates within the ZP, most of which have been conserved across divergent species from mammals to amphibians and echinoderms. This review focuses on the carbohydrate-mediated interaction of sperm with the female reproductive tract, mainly the interaction between sperm and the ZP, and introduces the fertilization-suppressive action of dicalcin, a Xenopus laevis ZP protein-associated protein. The action of dicalcin correlates significantly with a dicalcin-dependent change in the lectin-staining pattern within the ZP, suggesting a unique role of dicalcin as an inherent protein that is capable of regulating the affinity between the lectin and oligosaccharides attached on its target glycoprotein.

  17. Pharmacologic Parameters of MS222 and Physiologic Changes in Frogs (Xenopus laevis) After Immersion at Anesthetic Doses

    PubMed Central

    Lalonde-Robert, Vanessa; Beaudry, Francis; Vachon, Pascal

    2012-01-01

    We evaluated the anesthetic efficacy of MS222 (dose, 1 or 2 g/L; pH 7) administered as an immersion bath (duration, 20 min) for nonbreeding female Xenopus leavis frogs (n = 33; average body weight, 103 ± 16 g). The acid acetic test, the withdrawal reflex, righting behavior, heart rate, respiratory frequency, and blood oxygen saturation were used to evaluate the level of anesthesia. Acetic acid and withdrawal reflex responses were present at 30 and 60 min following immersion for the 1- and 2-g/L doses, respectively. MS222 had no effect on heart rate or oxygen saturation, but caused pronounced respiratory depression, as expected. Microscopic observations of selected tissues (heart, lung, liver, kidneys, and skin) showed no evidence of lesions at 24 h after immersion. In addition, we calculated the pharmacokinetics of MS222 in plasma and analyzed the drug by HPLC–tandem mass spectrometry. The calculated half-life of MS222 is 3.2 h. We conclude that MS222 administered at 1 or 2 g/mL via immersion bath for 20 min is an effective anesthetic that can be used for surgical procedures of less than 30 or 60 min, respectively, in Xenopus leavis. PMID:23043812

  18. Involvement of the eukaryotic initiation factor 6 and kermit2/gipc2 in Xenopus laevis pronephros formation.

    PubMed

    Tussellino, Margherita; De Marco, Nadia; Campanella, Chiara; Carotenuto, Rosa

    2012-01-01

    The translation initiation factor Eif6 has been implicated as a regulator of ribosome assembly, selective mRNA translation and apoptosis. Many of these activities depend upon the phosphorylation of eif6 Serine 235 by protein kinase C (PKC). Eif6-60S is probably part of the RNA-induced silencing complex (RISC). eif6 over-expression in Xenopus embryos causes aberrant eye development. kermit2/gipc2 morphants have an eye phenotype similar to that of the eif6 overexpressors. Eye formation is regulated by insulin growth factor (IGF) signalling. eif6 interacts with the IGF receptor (IGFR) and kermit2/gipc2, which also binds to igfr. eif6 over-expression in Xenopus causes also the formation of antero-ventral oedema, suggesting a malfunction of the excretory system. Here we evaluated the pronephros phenotype. The oedema grows into the nephrocoel, expanding its boundary and is accompanied by a strong reduction of the pronephros. The three main components of the pronephros are severely impaired in eif6 over-expressors, while are not affected in eif6 morphants. Conversely, gipc2 depletion induces the oedema phenotype and reduction of the pronephros, while gipc2 overexpression does not. p110*, a constitutively active p110 subunit of the PI3 kinase partially recovers the oedema phenotype. We also determined that PKC-dependent phosphorylation of Ser235 in eif6 is not required to produce defective pronephroi. These results indicate that the levels of eif6 are highly regulated during development and instrumental for proper morphogenesis of the pronephros. Moreover, it appears that for proper pronephros development the gipc2 level should be kept within or over the physiological range and that the oedema phenotype is partly due to the inhibition of IGF signalling. PMID:22689378

  19. Analysis of thyroid hormone receptor {beta}A mRNA expression in Xenopus laevis tadpoles as a means to detect agonism and antagonism of thyroid hormone action

    SciTech Connect

    Opitz, Robert . E-mail: r.opitz@igb-berlin.de; Lutz, Ilka; Nguyen, Ngoc-Ha; Scanlan, Thomas S.; Kloas, Werner

    2006-04-01

    Amphibian metamorphosis represents a unique biological model to study thyroid hormone (TH) action in vivo. In this study, we examined the utility of thyroid hormone receptors {alpha} (TR{alpha}) and {beta}A (TR{beta}A) mRNA expression patterns in Xenopus laevis tadpoles as molecular markers indicating modulation of TH action. During spontaneous metamorphosis, only moderate changes were evident for TR{alpha} gene expression whereas a marked up-regulation of TR{beta}A mRNA occurred in hind limbs (prometamorphosis), head (late prometamorphosis), and tail tissue (metamorphic climax). Treatment of premetamorphic tadpoles with 1 nM 3,5,3'-triiodothyronine (T3) caused a rapid induction of TR{beta}A mRNA in head and tail tissue within 6 to 12 h which was maintained for at least 72 h after initiation of T3 treatment. Developmental stage had a strong influence on the responsiveness of tadpole tissues to induce TR{beta}A mRNA during 24 h treatment with thyroxine (0, 1, 5, 10 nM T4) or T3 (0, 1, 5, 10 nM). Premetamorphic tadpoles were highly sensitive in their response to T4 and T3 treatments, whereas sensitivity to TH was decreased in early prometamorphic tadpoles and strongly diminished in late prometamorphic tadpoles. To examine the utility of TR{beta}A gene expression analysis for detection of agonistic and antagonistic effects on T3 action, mRNA expression was assessed in premetamorphic tadpoles after 48 h of treatment with the synthetic agonist GC-1 (0, 10, 50, 250 nM), the synthetic antagonist NH-3 (0, 40, 200, 1000 nM), and binary combinations of NH-3 (0, 40, 200, 1000 nM) and T3 (1 nM). All tested concentrations of GC-1 as well as the highest concentration of NH-3 caused an up-regulation of TR{beta}A expression. Co-treatment with NH-3 and T3 revealed strong antagonistic effects by NH-3 on T3-induced TR{beta}A mRNA up-regulation. Results of this study suggest that TR{beta}A mRNA expression analysis could serve as a sensitive molecular testing approach to study effects

  20. Interactive effects of ultraviolet-B radiation and pesticide exposure on DNA photo-adduct accumulation and expression of DNA damage and repair genes in Xenopus laevis embryos.

    PubMed

    Yu, Shuangying; Tang, Song; Mayer, Gregory D; Cobb, George P; Maul, Jonathan D

    2015-02-01

    Pesticide use and ultraviolet-B (UVB) radiation have both been suggested to adversely affect amphibians; however, little is known about their interactive effects. One potential adverse interaction could involve pesticide-induced dysregulation of DNA repair pathways, resulting in greater numbers of DNA photo-adducts from UVB exposure. In the present study, we investigated the interactive effects of UVB radiation and two common pesticides (endosulfan and α-cypermethrin) on induction of DNA photo-adducts and expression of DNA damage and repair related genes in African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis) embryos. We examined 13 genes that are, collectively, involved in stress defense, cell cycle arrest, nucleotide excision repair (NER), base excision repair, mismatch repair, DNA repair regulation, and apoptosis. We exposed X. laevis embryos to 0, 25, and 50 μg/L endosulfan or 0, 2.5, and 5.0 μg/L α-cypermethrin for 96 h, with environmentally relevant exposures of UVB radiation during the last 7 h of the 96 h exposure. We measured the amount of cyclobutane pyrimidine dimers (CPDs) and mRNA abundance of the 13 genes among treatments including control, pesticide only, UVB only, and UVB and pesticide co-exposures. Each of the co-exposure scenarios resulted in elevated CPD levels compared to UVB exposure alone, suggesting an inhibitory effect of endosulfan and α-cypermethrin on CPD repair. This is attributed to results indicating that α-cypermethrin and endosulfan reduced mRNA abundance of XPA and HR23B, respectively, to levels that may affect the initial recognition of DNA lesions. In contrast, both pesticides increased transcript abundance of CSA and MUTL. In addition, mRNA abundance of HSP70 and GADD45α were increased by endosulfan and mRNA abundance of XPG was increased by α-cypermethrin. XPC, HR23B, XPG, and GADD45α exhibited elevated mRNA concentrations whereas there was a reduction in MUTL transcript concentrations in UVB-alone treatments. It appeared that even

  1. Developmental toxicity of p,p'-dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane, 2,4,6-trinitrotoluene, their metabolites, and benzo[a]pyrene in Xenopus laevis embryos.

    PubMed

    Saka, Masahiro

    2004-04-01

    Since 1995, high incidences of deformed frogs have been documented in Kitakyushu, Japan. In this area, relatively high concentrations of DDT, trinitrotoluene (TNT), their metabolites (p,p'-dichlorodiphenyldichloroethylene [DDE], p,p'-dichlorodiphenyldichloroethane [DDD], 2-amino-4,6-dinitrotoluene [2ADNT], and 4-amino-2,6-dinitrotoluene [4ADNT]), and benzo[a]pyrene [BaP]) have been identified from field samples. I used a standardized assay with Xenopus laevis embryos (frog embryo teratogenesis assay--Xenopus, FETAX) to examine the developmental toxicity of these compounds. Both DDE and BaP were considered nearly nontoxic in embryonic development because they induced low (< 10%) mortality and malformation incidence even at the highest concentrations tested (DDE, 393 microM; BaP, 13.2 microM). The DDD (96-h median lethal concentration [LC50] = 44.1 microM, 96-h median effective concentration [EC50] for malformation = 14.9 microM) was more lethal and teratogenic than its parent compound, DDT (96-h LC50 = 101 microM, 96-h EC50 = 41.5 microM). Predominant symptoms observed were axial malformations (DDT and DDD) and irregular gut coiling (DDT). However, DDT and DDD should not act as major lethal or teratogenic toxicants in the aquatic environment within a short-term exposure via water because their 96-h LC50 and 96-h EC50 values were extremely high, considering their low solubility in water. The TNT (96-h LC50 = 16.7 microM) was more lethal than 2ADNT (96-h LC50 = 166 microM) or 4ADNT (96-h LC50 = 115 microM). Although 4ADNT (96-h EC50 = 85.8 microM) induced various tadpole malformations, it was a weak teratogen compared with TNT (96-h EC50 = 9.78 microM) and 2ADNT (96-h EC50 = 16.9 microM). The most typical malformations observed were axial malformations, eye abnormalities (TNT), edema, and irregular gut coiling (2ADNT and 4ADNT). The 96-h LC50 and 96-h EC50 values of TNT, 2ADNT, and 4ADNT were lower than their saturated concentrations in water. Therefore, these

  2. A Cell-Free Assay System for β-Catenin Signaling That Recapitulates Direct Inductive Events in the Early Xenopus laevis Embryo

    PubMed Central

    Nelson, Richard W.; Gumbiner, Barry M.

    1999-01-01

    In vertebrate embryos, signaling via the β-catenin protein is known to play an essential role in the induction of the dorsal axis. In its signaling capacity, β-catenin acts directly to affect target gene transcription, in concert with transcription factors of the TCF/LEF family. We have developed a cell-free in vitro assay for β-catenin signaling activity that utilizes transcriptionally active nuclei and cytoplasm from cleavage-blocked Xenopus laevis embryos. Under these assay conditions, we demonstrate that either addition of β-catenin protein or upstream activation of the β-catenin signaling pathway can induce the expression of developmentally relevant target genes. Addition of exogenous β-catenin protein induced expression of Siamois, XTwin, Xnr3, and Cerberus mRNAs in a protein synthesis independent manner, whereas a panel of other Spemann organizer-specific genes did not respond to β-catenin. Lithium induction of the β-catenin signaling pathway, which is thought to cause β-catenin accumulation by inhibiting its proteasome-dependent degradation, caused increased expression of Siamois in a protein synthesis independent fashion. This result suggests that β-catenin derived from a preexisting pool can be activated to signal, and that accumulation of this activated form does not require ongoing synthesis. Furthermore, activation of the signaling pathway with lithium did not detectably alter cytoplasmic β-catenin levels and was insensitive to inhibition of the proteasome- dependent degradation pathway. Taken together, these results suggest that activation of β-catenin signaling by lithium in this system may occur through a distinct activation mechanism that does not require modulation of levels through regulation of proteasomal degradation. PMID:10525541

  3. Molecular cloning of growth hormone-releasing hormone/pituitary adenylyl cyclase-activating polypeptide in the frog Xenopus laevis: brain distribution and regulation after castration.

    PubMed

    Hu, Z; Lelievre, V; Tam, J; Cheng, J W; Fuenzalida, G; Zhou, X; Waschek, J A

    2000-09-01

    Pituitary adenylyl cyclase-activating peptide (PACAP) appears to regulate several neuroendocrine functions in the frog, but its messenger RNA (mRNA) structure and brain distribution are unknown. To understand the potential role of PACAP in the male frog hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal axis, we cloned the frog Xenopus laevis PACAP mRNA and determined its distribution in the brain. We then analyzed the castration-induced alterations of mRNA expression for PACAP and its selective type I receptor (PAC1) in the hypothalamic anterior preoptic area, a region known to regulate reproductive function. The PACAP mRNA encodes a peptide precursor predicted to give rise to both GH-releasing hormone and PACAP. The deduced peptide sequence of PACAP-38 was nearly identical to that of human PACAP with one amino acid substitution. Abundant PACAP mRNA was detected in the brain, but not several other tissues, including the testis. In situ hybridization revealed strong expression of the PACAP gene in the dorsal pallium, ventral hypothalamus, and nuclei of cerebellum. PACAP mRNA signals were weak to moderate in the hypothalamic anterior preoptic area and were absent in the pituitary. Castration induced an increase in the expression of PACAP and PAC1 receptor mRNAs in the hypothalamic anterior preoptic area after 3 days. Replacement with testosterone prevented the castration-induced changes. These results provide a molecular basis for studying the physiological functions of PACAP in frog brain and suggest that PACAP may be involved in the feedback regulation of hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal axis.

  4. Exposure of xenopus laevis tadpoles to cadmium reveals concentration-dependent bimodal effects on growth and monotonic effects on development and thyroid gland activity

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sharma, Bibek; Patino, R.

    2008-01-01

    Xenopus laevis were exposed to 0-855 ??g cadmium (Cd)/l (measured concentrations) in FETAX medium from fertilization to 47 days postfertilization. Measurements included embryonic survival and, at 47 days, tadpole survival, snout-vent length, tail length, total length, hindlimb length, weight, Nieuwkoop-Faber (NF) stage of development, initiation of metamorphic climax (??? NF 58), and thyroid follicle cell height. Embryonic and larval survival were unaffected by Cd. Relative to control tadpoles, reduced tail and total length were observed at 0.1- 8 and at 855 ??g Cd/l; and reduced snout-vent length, hindlimb length, and weight were observed at 0.1-1 and at 855 ??g Cd/l. Mean stage of development and rate of initiation of climax were unaffected by Cd at 0-84 ??g/l; however, none of the tadpoles exposed to 855 ??g Cd/l progressed beyond mid-premetamorphosis (NF 51). Thyroid glands with fully formed follicles were observed in all tadpoles ??? NF 49 examined. Follicle cell height was unaffected by Cd at 0-84 ??g/l but it was reduced at 855 ??g/l; in the latter, cell height was reduced even when compared with NF 49-51 tadpoles pooled from the 0 to 84 ??g Cd/l groups. In conclusion, (1) Cd affected tadpole growth in a bimodal pattern with the first and second inhibitory modes at concentrations below and above 84 ??g Cd/l, respectively; (2) exposure to high Cd concentrations (855 ??g/l) reduced thyroid activity and arrested tadpole development at mid-premetamorphosis; and (3) unlike its effect on growth, Cd inhibited tadpole development and thyroid function in a seemingly monotonic pattern.

  5. Light Induces Ultrastructural Changes in Rod Outer and Inner Segments, Including Autophagy, in a Transgenic Xenopus laevis P23H Rhodopsin Model of Retinitis Pigmentosa

    PubMed Central

    Bogéa, Tami H.; Wen, Runxia H.; Moritz, Orson L.

    2015-01-01

    Purpose We previously reported a transgenic Xenopus laevis model of retinitis pigmentosa in which tadpoles express the bovine form of P23H rhodopsin (bP23H) in rod photoreceptors. In this model, retinal degeneration was dependent on light exposure. Here, we investigated ultrastructural changes that occurred in the rod photoreceptors of these retinas when exposed to light. Methods Tadpoles expressing bP23H in rods were transferred from constant darkness to a 12-hour light:12-hour dark (12L:12D) regimen. For comparison, transgenic tadpoles expressing an inducible form of caspase 9 (iCasp9) were reared in a 12L:12D regimen, and retinal degeneration was induced by administration of the drug AP20187. Tadpoles were euthanized at various time points, and eyes were processed for confocal light and transmission electron microscopy. Results We observed defects in outer and inner segments of rods expressing bP23H that were aggravated by light exposure. Rod outer segments exhibited vesiculations throughout and were rapidly phagocytosed by the retinal pigment epithelium. In rod inner segments, we observed autophagic compartments adjacent to the endoplasmic reticulum and extensive vesiculation at later time points. These defects were not found in rods expressing iCasp9, which completely degenerated within 36 hours after drug administration. Conclusions Our results indicate that ultrastructural defects in outer and inner segment membranes of bP23H expressing rods differ from those observed in drug-induced apoptosis. We suggest that light-induced retinal degeneration caused by P23H rhodopsin occurs via cell death with autophagy, which may represent an attempt to eliminate the mutant rhodopsin and/or damaged cellular compartments from the secretory pathway. PMID:26720441

  6. Changes in the control of gastric motor activity during metamorphosis in the amphibian Xenopus laevis, with special emphasis on purinergic mechanisms.

    PubMed

    Sundqvist, Monika; Holmgren, Susanne

    2008-04-01

    The stomach of the amphibian Xenopus laevis is subject to extensive remodelling during metamorphosis. We investigated the changes in gastric activity control during this period using in vitro circular smooth muscle preparations mounted in organ baths. The nitric oxide synthase inhibitor L-NAME increased mean force in metamorphic and juvenile frogs but not in prometamorphic tadpoles. Serotonin (5-HT) relaxed stomach muscle prior to metamorphosis but elicited a biphasic response in juveniles consisting of contraction at low concentrations and relaxation at high concentrations. The effects of 5-HT were blocked by methysergide. In the prometamorphic tadpole, ATP elicited relaxation that was blocked by the ectonucleotidase inhibitor ARL67156 and the adenosine A(1) receptor antagonist 1,3-dipropyl-8-cyclopentylxanthine (DPCPX), suggesting adenosine as the mediator. Exogenous adenosine and the A(1) receptor agonist N(6)-cyclopentyladenosine (CPA) induced relaxation at all stages. After metamorphosis, the potency of ATP decreased and neither DPCPX nor ARL67156 could block ATP-induced relaxation. Uridine 5'-triphosphate (UTP) induced relaxation prior to metamorphosis, but caused contraction of muscle strips from metamorphosing tadpoles. Single doses of UTP blocked phasic contractions in juveniles in a tetrodotoxin (TTX)-sensitive manner while the simultaneous increase in muscle tension was TTX insensitive. The P2X(1)/P2X(3) receptor agonist alpha-beta-MeATP elicited pyridoxalphosphate-6-azophenyl-2',4'-disulphonic acid (PPADS)-sensitive contractions at all stages investigated. These results indicate the development of an inhibitory nitrergic tonus during metamorphosis and a 5-HT receptor involved in muscle contraction. Also, the development of UTP receptors mediating increased tension and neural UTP receptors decreasing contraction frequency in juveniles is indicated. An adenosine A(1)-like receptor mediating relaxation and a P2X-like receptor mediating contraction is

  7. Xenopus laevis nucleotide binding protein 1 (xNubp1) is important for convergent extension movements and controls ciliogenesis via regulation of the actin cytoskeleton.

    PubMed

    Ioannou, Andriani; Santama, Niovi; Skourides, Paris A

    2013-08-15

    Nucleotide binding protein 1 (Nubp1) is a highly conserved phosphate loop (P-loop) ATPase involved in diverse processes including iron-sulfur protein assembly, centrosome duplication and lung development. Here, we report the cloning, expression and functional characterization of Xenopus laevis Nubp1. We show that xNubp1 is expressed maternally, displays elevated expression in neural tissues and is required for convergent extension movements and neural tube closure. In addition, xNubp1knockdown leads to defective ciliogenesis of the multi-ciliated cells of the epidermis as well as the monociliated cells of the gastrocoel roof plate. Specifically, xNubp1 is required for basal body migration, spacing and docking in multi-ciliated cells and basal body positioning and axoneme elongation in monociliated gastrocoel roof plate cells. Live imaging of the different pools of actin and basal body migration during the process of ciliated cell intercalation revealed that two independent pools of actin are present from the onset of cell intercalation; an internal network surrounding the basal bodies, anchoring them to the cell cortex and an apical pool of punctate actin which eventually matures into the characteristic apical actin network. We show that xNubp1 colocalizes with the apical actin network of multiciliated cells and that problems in basal body transport in xNubp1 morphants are associated with defects of the internal network of actin, while spacing and polarity issues are due to a failure of the apical and sub-apical actin pools to mature into a network. Effects of xNubp1 knockdown on the actin cytoskeleton are independent of RhoA localization and activation, suggesting that xNubp1 may have a direct role in the regulation of the actin cytoskeleton.

  8. Investigation of blood flow and the effect of vasoactive substances in cutaneous blood vessels of Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Škorjanc, Aleš; Belušič, Gregor

    2015-06-01

    In the present study, a preparation of frog skin was presented, which can be used to demonstrate the basic concepts of blood flow regulation in a very clear and attractive way to high school and university students. In a freshly euthanized Xenopus, a patch of abdominal skin was exposed from the internal side and viewed with a USB microscope while it remained connected to a functioning circulatory system. In this way, it was possible to obtain sharp images of arteries and veins and to visualize blood flow. This allows students to learn about the functional differences between arteries and veins and about the complexity of hemodynamics as well as the particularities of the amphibian pulmocutaneous circulation. Students can then quantitatively estimate the effect of norepinephrine and epinephrine on the diameter of blood vessels by simply superfusing the skin patch with a series of solutions of the two substances. They can also test the effect of α-adrenergic receptor blockers, used to treat high blood pressure, on the norepinephrine-induced muscle tonus of blood vessels.

  9. Acute effects of Fe₂O₃, TiO₂, ZnO and CuO nanomaterials on Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Nations, Shawna; Wages, Mike; Cañas, Jaclyn E; Maul, Jonathan; Theodorakis, Chris; Cobb, George P

    2011-05-01

    Metal oxide nanomaterials have exhibited toxicity to a variety of aquatic organisms, especially microbes and invertebrates. To date, few studies have evaluated the toxicity of metal oxide nanomaterials on aquatic vertebrates. Therefore, this study examined effects of ZnO, TiO(2), Fe(2)O(3), and CuO nanomaterials (20-100 nm) on amphibians utilizing the Frog Embryo Teratogenesis Assay Xenopus (FETAX) protocol, a 96 h exposure with daily solution exchanges. Nanomaterials were dispersed in reconstituted moderately hard test medium. These exposures did not increase mortality in static renewal exposures containing up to 1,000 mg L(-1) for TiO(2), Fe(2)O(3), CuO, and ZnO, but did induce developmental abnormalities. Gastrointestinal, spinal, and other abnormalities were observed in CuO and ZnO nanomaterial exposures at concentrations as low as 3.16 mg L(-1) (ZnO). An EC(50) of 10.3 mg L(-1) ZnO was observed for total malformations. The minimum concentration to inhibit growth of tadpoles exposed to CuO or ZnO nanomaterials was 10 mg L(-1). The results indicate that select nanomaterials can negatively affect amphibians during development. Evaluation of nanomaterial exposure on vertebrate organisms are imperative to responsible production and introduction of nanomaterials in everyday products to ensure human and environmental safety. PMID:21345480

  10. Highly efficient gene knockout by injection of TALEN mRNAs into oocytes and host transfer in Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Nakajima, Keisuke; Yaoita, Yoshio

    2015-01-16

    Zinc-finger nucleases, transcription activator-like effector nucleases (TALENs) and the CRISPR/Cas (clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats/CRISPR-associated proteins) system are potentially powerful tools for producing tailor-made knockout animals. However, their mutagenic activity is not high enough to induce mutations at all loci of a target gene throughout an entire tadpole. In this study, we present a highly efficient method for introducing gene modifications at almost all target sequences in randomly selected embryos. The gene modification activity of TALEN is enhanced by adopting the host-transfer technique. In our method, the efficiency is further improved by injecting TALEN mRNAs fused to the 3'UTR of the Xenopus DEADSouth gene into oocytes, which are then transferred into a host female frog, where they are ovulated and fertilized. The addition of the 3'UTR of the DEADSouth gene promotes mRNA translation in the oocytes and increases the expression of TALEN proteins to near-maximal levels three hours post fertilization (hpf). In contrast, TALEN mRNAs without this 3'UTR are translated infrequently in oocytes. Our data suggest that genomic DNA is more sensitive to TALEN proteins from fertilization to the midblastula (MBT) stage. Our method works by increasing the levels of TALEN proteins during the pre-MBT stages.

  11. Characterization and early embryonic expression of a neural specific transcription factor xSOX3 in Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Penzel, R; Oschwald, R; Chen, Y; Tacke, L; Grunz, H

    1997-10-01

    Using the powerful RDA-PCR-technique we could identify a novel Xenopus specific Sox-gene (xSox3) a transcription factor closely related to the sox sub-group B, which contains a HMG box. In normogenesis the xSox3 gene is expressed in the presumptive central nervous system. Furthermore a maternal component is also found in oocytes and in early cleavage stages in the animal hemisphere only. By whole-mount in situ hybridization the first zygotic transcription activities can be detected in the late blastula in the dorsal ectoderm and the dorsal and lateral part of the marginal zone. The expression reaches the highest level atthe late gastrula till the late neurula and fades after stage 30. The expression is restricted from gastrulation onwards to the presumptive brain area and the lens epithelium. Furthermore we could show that the gene is expressed in isolated Spemann organizer with adjacent neuroectoderm. The signal can be suppressed by suramin treatment, which inhibits neural development and causes a shift of dorsal to ventral mesoderm. The treatment of whole embryos with LiCl and UV results in an overexpression or an inhibition of the expression, respectively. In exogastrulae (pseudo-exogastrulae) the gene is expressed in the close vicinity to the endomesoderm only, but not in the distal most part of the ectoderm. This result indicates that it is unlikely that the gene can be activated by planar signals. The gene can also be activated in dissociated gastrula ectoderm without mesodermal or neural inducers. That means that the gene can be expressed in ectodermal cells in a cell autonomous manner. PMID:9415486

  12. Dual role for the RNA-binding domain of Xenopus laevis SLBP1 in histone pre-mRNA processing.

    PubMed Central

    Ingledue, T C; Dominski, Z; Sánchez, R; Erkmann, J A; Marzluff, W F

    2000-01-01

    The replication-dependent histone mRNAs end in a conserved 26-nt sequence that forms a stem-loop structure. This sequence is required for histone pre-mRNA processing and plays a role in multiple aspects of histone mRNA metabolism. Two proteins that bind the 3' end of histone mRNA are found in Xenopus oocytes. xSLBP1 is found in the nucleus, where it functions in histone pre-mRNA processing, and in the cytoplasm, where it may control histone mRNA translation and stability. xSLBP2 is a cytoplasmic protein, inactive in histone pre-mRNA processing, whose expression is restricted to oogenesis and early development. These proteins are similar only in their RNA-binding domains (RBD). A chimeric protein (1-2-1) in which the RBD of xSLBP1 has been replaced with the RBD of xSLBP2 binds the stem-loop with an affinity similar to the original protein. The 1-2-1 protein efficiently localizes to the nucleus of the frog oocyte, but is not active in processing of histone pre-mRNA in vivo. This protein does not support processing in a nuclear extract, but inhibits processing by competing with the active SLBP by binding to the substrate. The 1-2-1 protein also inhibits processing of synthetic histone pre-mRNA injected into frog oocytes, but has no effect on processing of histone pre-mRNA transcribed from an injected histone gene. This result suggests that sequences in the RBD of xSLBP1 give it preferential access to histone pre-mRNA transcribed in vivo. PMID:11105762

  13. A step in embryonic axis specification in Xenopus laevis is simulated by cytoplasmic displacements elicited by gravity and centrifugal force

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Black, Steven D.

    Determination of the body pattern in Xenopus embryos is known to involve at least six steps. One of these steps can be experimentally simulated by inclining the fertilized egg with respect to gravity or centrifugal force (10-30 g × 4 min, directed 90° to the animal-vegetal axis). In these eggs, the dorsal structures of the body axis form from the side of the egg that was uppermost in the gravitational or centrifugal field. This topography is seen even if the sperm entry point side (the prospective ventral side in control eggs) was uppermost. In addition, conjoined twin embryos form at very high frequencies in response to certain conditions of single or double centrifugation. Cytological analysis shows that the dorsal structures invariably form from the side(s) of the egg away from which vegetal cytoplasm was displaced. This is similar to the situation in the unperturbed egg, where the subcortical cytoplasm of the vegetal hemisphere rotates some 30° relative to the surface, and the dorsal structures form from the side of the egg away from which the subcortical cytoplasm moved. The displacements elicited by centrifugation probably substitute for the normal displacements brought about by the subcortical rotation. These and other data suggest that the subcortical rotation is a crucial step in the process of axis determination. The subcortical rotation is an autonomous activity of the activated egg, and can displace cytoplasm against gravity. I believe that the subcortical rotation will function normally at microgravity, and I expect that overall development and axis polarity at microgravity will be normal. This will be tested in spaceflight.

  14. Force-dependent and force-independent heat production in single slow- and fast-twitch muscle fibres from Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed Central

    Buschman, H P; van der Laarse, W J; Stienen, G J; Elzinga, G

    1996-01-01

    1. The origin of labile heat production, i.e. a heat component which rapidly decays after the onset of stimulation, and of stable (maintenance) heat production was investigated in intact single fast-twitch (type 1) and slow-twitch (type 3) iliofibularis muscle fibres from Xenopus laevis, at 20 degrees C, by varying stimulation frequency and by varying sarcomere length and the concentration of 2,3-butanedione 2-monoxime (BDM) added. 2. The labile heat produced consisted of a force-independent and a force-dependent part. The average parvalbumin (PA) content found in type 1 fibre bundles (0.84 +/- 0.08 mM; mean +/- S.E.M.; n = 5) and in type 3 fibre bundles (0.12 +/- 0.02 mM; n = 5) indicates that the force-independent labile heat is explained by Ca(2+)-Mg2+ exchange on PA, and amounts to a molar enthalpy change of -78 kJ (molPA)-1. 3. Force-dependent labile heat during fused contractions was similar to the calculated heat production resulting from the formation of force-generating cross-bridges, assuming an enthalpy change associated with cross-bridge formation of -30 kJ mol-1. 4. Activation heat, i.e. the part of the total stable heat that is not related to the contractile apparatus, and of which the calcium sequestration by the sarcoplasmic reticulum is the most important contributor, determined by varying sarcomere length or BDM concentration, was identical. For fused contractions the fraction activation heat of the stable maintenance rate of heat production was 34 +/- 4% (mean +/- S.E.M.; n = 13) in type 1 fibres, and 52 +/- 4% (n = 15) in type 3 fibres. In unfused contractions this was 48 +/- 5% (n = 13) in type 1 fibres, and 35 +/- 2% (n = 11) in type 3 fibres. 5. From the force-dependent stable rate of heat production the economy of cross-bridge cycling, expressed as the force-time integral for a single myosin head per ATP molecule hydrolysed, was calculated. It followed that cross-bridge interaction in type 3 fibres is more economical than in type 1 fibres

  15. Dark rearing rescues P23H rhodopsin-induced retinal degeneration in a transgenic Xenopus laevis model of retinitis pigmentosa: a chromophore-dependent mechanism characterized by production of N-terminally truncated mutant rhodopsin.

    PubMed

    Tam, Beatrice M; Moritz, Orson L

    2007-08-22

    To elucidate the molecular mechanisms underlying the light-sensitive retinal degeneration caused by the rhodopsin mutation P23H, which causes retinitis pigmentosa (RP) in humans, we expressed Xenopus laevis, bovine, human, and murine forms of P23H rhodopsin in transgenic X. laevis rod photoreceptors. All P23H rhodopsins caused aggressive retinal degeneration associated with low expression levels and retention of P23H rhodopsin in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER), suggesting involvement of protein misfolding and ER stress. However, light sensitivity varied dramatically between these RP models, with complete or partial rescue by dark rearing in the case of bovine and human P23H rhodopsin, and no rescue for X. laevis P23H rhodopsin. Rescue by dark rearing required an intact 11-cis-retinal chromophore binding site within the mutant protein and was associated with truncation of the P23H rhodopsin N terminus. This yielded an abundant nontoxic approximately 27 kDa form that escaped the ER and was transported to the rod outer segment. The truncated protein was produced in the greatest quantities in dark-reared retinas expressing bovine P23H rhodopsin and was not observed with X. laevis P23H rhodopsin. These results are consistent with a mechanism involving enhanced protein folding in the presence of 11-cis-retinal chromophore, with ER exit assisted by proteolytic truncation of the N terminus. This study provides a molecular mechanism for light sensitivity observed in other transgenic models of RP and for phenotypic variation among RP patients.

  16. [Do the variations in water carbon dioxide pressure and PH have an effect on the nature of end products of protein catabolism, ammonia and urea, in the clawed frog Xenopus laevis?].

    PubMed

    Dejours, P; Armand, J; Beekenkamp, H

    1991-01-01

    The effects of PCO2 and pH changes in the ambient water on the nitrogen catabolism and the proportions of the excreted nitrogenous end products, ammonia and urea, were studied in the clawed frog, Xenopus laevis, at 24 degrees C. In animals living in artificial fresh water, the exposure to a hypocapnic alkalosis (PCO2 = 0.7 Torr instead of 10 Torr) did not entail any change in the nitrogen catabolism. In animals who lived in a water loaded with NaCl and had therefore a higher oxygen consumption, an intense nitrogen catabolism and a marked ureotelism, the hypocapnic alkalosis seems to have increased the intensity of the nitrogen catabolism. In neither group were there signs of ammonia toxicity.

  17. Acute toxic effects of the herbicide formulation and the active ingredient used in cycloxydim-tolerant maize cultivation on embryos and larvae of the African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Wagner, Norman; Lötters, Stefan; Veith, Michael; Viertel, Bruno

    2015-04-01

    Most genetically engineered herbicide-tolerant crops are still awaiting approval in Europe. There is, however, a recent trend for the cultivation of cycloxydim-tolerant maize hybrids for use in maize production. We studied the acute toxic effects of the complementary herbicide Focus(®) Ultra and its active ingredient cycloxydim on embryos and early-stage larvae of the African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis). The results indicate that the herbicide formulation is significantly more toxic than the active ingredient alone. Therefore, it is suggested that the added substances either solely or in a synergistic action with the active ingredient are responsible for adverse effects. The formulation was found to be moderately toxic to embryos but highly toxic to early larvae. Based on calculated teratogenic indices, both cycloxydim and Focus(®) Ultra seem to be non-teratogenic and also the minimum Focus(®) Ultra concentration to inhibit growth in embryos and larvae was close to the LC50 values. The data suggest that tests with the rainbow trout are not in all cases appropriate to assess the risk in aquatically developing anurans. This is demonstrated by 96-h LC50 values, which are for rainbow trout more than 50- to 20-fold higher than for early X. laevis larvae. However, based on worst-case predicted environmental concentrations for surface waters, there is apparently a large safety margin in field use of Focus(®) Ultra if buffer strips between the farm land and the amphibian habitats are regarded. PMID:25634323

  18. Organization of cytokeratin cytoskeleton and germ plasm in the vegetal cortex of Xenopus laevis oocytes depends on coding and non-coding RNAs: Three-dimensional and ultrastructural analysis

    SciTech Connect

    Kloc, Malgorzata . E-mail: mkloc@mdanderson.org; Bilinski, Szczepan; Dougherty, Matthew T.

    2007-05-01

    Recent studies discovered a novel structural role of RNA in maintaining the integrity of the mitotic spindle and cellular cytoskeleton. In Xenopus laevis, non-coding Xlsirts and coding VegT RNAs play a structural role in anchoring localized RNAs, maintaining the organization of the cytokeratin cytoskeleton and germinal granules in the oocyte vegetal cortex and in subsequent development of the germline in the embryo. We studied the ultrastructural effects of antisense oligonucleotide driven ablation of Xlsirts and VegT RNAs on the organization of the cytokeratin, germ plasm and other components of the vegetal cortex. We developed a novel method to immunolabel and visualize cytokeratin at the electron microscopy level, which allowed us to reconstruct the ultrastructural organization of the cytokeratin network relative to the components of the vegetal cortex in Xenopus oocytes. The removal of Xlsirts and VegT RNAs not only disrupts the cytokeratin cytoskeleton but also has a profound transcript-specific effect on the anchoring and distribution of germ plasm islands and their germinal granules and the arrangement of yolk platelets within the vegetal cortex. We suggest that the cytokeratin cytoskeleton plays a role in anchoring of germ plasm islands within the vegetal cortex and germinal granules within the germ plasm islands.

  19. Nearly 1000 Protein Identifications from 50 ng of Xenopus laevis Zygote Homogenate Using Online Sample Preparation on a Strong Cation Exchange Monolith Based Microreactor Coupled with Capillary Zone Electrophoresis.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Zhenbin; Sun, Liangliang; Zhu, Guijie; Cox, Olivia F; Huber, Paul W; Dovichi, Norman J

    2016-01-01

    A sulfonate-silica hybrid strong cation exchange monolith microreactor was synthesized and coupled to a linear polyacrylamide coated capillary for online sample preparation and capillary zone electrophoresis-tandem mass spectrometry (CZE-MS/MS) bottom-up proteomic analysis. The protein sample was loaded onto the microreactor in an acidic buffer. After online reduction, alkylation, and digestion with trypsin, the digests were eluted with 200 mM ammonium bicarbonate at pH 8.2 for CZE-MS/MS analysis using 1 M acetic acid as the background electrolyte. This combination of basic elution and acidic background electrolytes results in both sample stacking and formation of a dynamic pH junction. 369 protein groups and 1274 peptides were identified from 50 ng of Xenopus laevis zygote homogenate, which is comparable with an offline sample preparation method, but the time required for sample preparation was decreased from over 24 h to less than 40 min. Dramatically improved performance was produced by coupling the reactor to a longer separation capillary (∼100 cm) and a Q Exactive HF mass spectrometer. 975 protein groups and 3749 peptides were identified from 50 ng of Xenopus protein using the online sample preparation method.

  20. Different forms of U15 snoRNA are encoded in the introns of the ribosomal protein S1 gene of Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed Central

    Pellizzoni, L; Crosio, C; Campioni, N; Loreni, F; Pierandrei-Amaldi, P

    1994-01-01

    Recent cloning and sequencing of one of the two Xenopus gene copies (S1b) coding for the ribosomal protein S1 has revealed that its introns III, V and VI carry a region of about 150 nt that shares an identity of 60%. We show here the presence in Xenopus oocytes and cultured cells of a 143-147 nt long RNA species encoded by these three repeated sequences on the same strand as the S1 mRNA and by at least one repeat present in the S1 a copy of the r-protein gene. We identify these RNAs as forms of the small nucleolar RNA U15 (U15 snoRNA) because of their sequence homology with an already described human U15 RNA encoded in the first intron of the human r-protein S3 gene, which is homologous to Xenopus S1. Comparison of the various Xenopus and human U15 RNA forms shows a very high conservation in some regions, but considerable divergence in others. In particular the most conserved sequences include two box C and two box D motifs, typical of most snoRNAs interacting with the nucleolar protein fibrillarin. Adjacent to the two D boxes there are two sequences, 9 and 10 nt in length, which are perfectly complementary to an evolutionary conserved sequence of the 28S rRNA. Modeling the possible secondary structure of Xenopus and human U15 RNAs reveals that, in spite of the noticeable sequence diversity, a high structural conservation in some cases may be maintained by compensatory mutations. We show also that the different Xenopus U15 RNA forms are expressed at comparable levels, localized in the nucleoli and produced by processing of the intronic sequences, as recently described for other snoRNAs. Images PMID:7984408

  1. Potential protective effect of L-cysteine against the toxicity of acrylamide and furan in exposed Xenopus laevis embryos: an interaction study

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The embryo toxicities of two food-processing-induced toxic compounds, acrylamide and furan, with and without added L-cysteine were examined individually and in mixtures using the frog embryo teratogenesis assay-Xenopus (FETAX). The following measures of developmental toxicity were used (a) 96-h LC5...

  2. A role for FoxN3 in the development of cranial cartilages and muscles in Xenopus laevis (Amphibia: Anura: Pipidae) with special emphasis on the novel rostral cartilages

    PubMed Central

    Schmidt, Jennifer; Schuff, Maximilian; Olsson, Lennart

    2011-01-01

    The origin of morphological novelties is a controversial topic in evolutionary developmental biology. The heads of anuran larvae have several unique structures, including the supra- and infrarostral cartilages, the specialised structure of the gill basket (used for filtration), and novel cranial muscle arrangements. FoxN3, a member of the forkhead/winged helix family of transcription factors, has been implicated as important for normal craniofacial development in the pipid anuran Xenopus laevis. We have investigated the effects of functional knockdown of FoxN3 (using antisense oligonucleotide morpholino) on the development of the larval head skeleton and the associated cranial muscles in X. laevis. Our data complement earlier studies and provide a more complete account of the requirement of FoxN3 in chondrocranium development. In addition, we