Elliott W. Abrams

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Understanding how organs acquire the capacity to perform their respective functions is important for both cell and developmental biology. Here, we have examined the role of early-expressed transcription factors in activating genes crucial for secretory function in the Drosophila salivary gland. We show that expression of genes encoding proteins required for(More)
(Fkh) is required to block salivary gland apoptosis, internalize salivary gland precursors, prevent expression of duct genes in secretory cells and maintain expression of CrebA, which is required for elevated secretory function. Here, we characterize two new Fkh-dependent genes: PH4alphaSG1 and PH4alphaSG2. We show through in vitro DNA-binding studies and(More)
The molecular mechanisms involved in growth and morphogenesis of the mammalian urogenital system are largely undefined. In this study, we describe the cloning and characterization of a novel murine homeobox gene, Nkx3.1, which is expressed in the male urogenital system during late embryogenesis and adulthood. We show that Nkx3.1 encodes a 38 kDa(More)
The extracellular matrix (ECM) is proposed to play critical roles in organ morphogenesis through the stabilization and/or sequestration of signaling factors and adhesion molecules, and by maintaining organ integrity. As a first step toward understanding molecules involved in ECM modification and maturation, we have examined the embryonic expression profiles(More)
The earliest stages of embryonic development in all animals examined rely on maternal gene products that are generated during oogenesis and supplied to the egg. The period of maternal control of embryonic development varies among animals according to the onset of zygotic transcription and the persistence of maternal gene products. This maternal regulation(More)
To accommodate the large cells following zygote formation, early blastomeres employ modified cell divisions. Karyomeres are one such modification, mitotic intermediates wherein individual chromatin masses are surrounded by nuclear envelope; the karyomeres then fuse to form a single mononucleus. We identified brambleberry, a maternal-effect zebrafish mutant(More)
Tubes are required in metazoans to transport the liquids and gases that sustain life. The conservation of molecules and mechanisms involved in tube formation suggests that what we learn by studying simple systems will apply to related processes in higher animals. Studies over the past 10 years have revealed the molecules that specify cell fate in Drosophila(More)
Microtubule-microfilament interactions are important for cytokinesis and subcellular localization of proteins and mRNAs. In the early zebrafish embryo, astral microtubule-microfilament interactions also facilitate a stereotypic segregation pattern of germ plasm ribonucleoparticles (GP RNPs), which is critical for their eventual selective inheritance by germ(More)
Dorsoventral patterning of the embryonic axis relies upon the mutual antagonism of competing signaling pathways to establish a balance between ventralizing BMP signaling and dorsal cell fate specification mediated by the organizer. In zebrafish, the initial embryo-wide domain of BMP signaling is refined into a morphogenetic gradient following activation(More)
The vertebrate embryonic dorsoventral axis is established and patterned by Wnt and bone morphogenetic protein (BMP) signaling pathways, respectively. Whereas Wnt signaling establishes the dorsal side of the embryo and induces the dorsal organizer, a BMP signaling gradient patterns tissues along the dorsoventral axis. Early Wnt signaling is provided(More)