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BACKGROUND Consistent left-right (LR) asymmetry is a fascinating problem in developmental and evolutionary biology. Conservation of early LR patterning steps among vertebrates as well as involvement of nonprotein small-molecule messengers are very poorly understood. Serotonin (5-HT) is a key neurotransmitter with crucial roles in physiology and cognition.(More)
The neurotransmitter serotonin has been shown to regulate a number of embryonic patterning events in addition to its crucial role in the nervous system. Here, we examine the role of two serotonin transporters, the plasma membrane serotonin transporter (SERT) and the vesicular monoamine transporter (VMAT), in embryonic left-right asymmetry. Pharmacological(More)
Biased left-right asymmetry is a fascinating and medically important phenomenon. We provide molecular genetic and physiological characterization of a novel, conserved, early, biophysical event that is crucial for correct asymmetry: H+ flux. A pharmacological screen implicated the H+-pump H+-V-ATPase in Xenopus asymmetry, where it acts upstream of early(More)
Chicken Syndecan-2 (cSyndecan-2) is the homologue of Xenopus Syndecan-2, a member of the heparan sulfate proteoglycan family with an important role in left-right patterning in frog embryos. A relationship to LR asymmetry in other species has not been reported. We show that cSyndecan-2 is expressed throughout the primitive streak between st. 1 and 3 in the(More)
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