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A core promoter is a stretch of DNA surrounding the transcription start site (TSS) that integrates regulatory inputs and recruits general transcription factors to initiate transcription. The nature and causative relationship of the DNA sequence and chromatin signals that govern the selection of most TSSs by RNA polymerase II remain unresolved. Maternal to(More)
The cis-regulatory regions of many developmental regulators and transcription factors are believed to be highly conserved in the genomes of vertebrate species, suggesting specific regulatory mechanisms for these gene classes. We functionally characterized five notochord enhancers, whose sequence is highly conserved, and systematically mutated two of them.(More)
Zebrafish embryos offer a unique combination of high-throughput capabilities and the complexity of the vertebrate animal for a variety of phenotypic screening applications. However, there is a need for automation of imaging technologies to exploit the potential of the transparent embryo. Here we report a high-throughput pipeline for registering(More)
TATA binding protein (TBP) is a key regulator of RNA polymerase transcription. It binds to core promoters, often in large multiprotein complexes, and nucleates RNA polymerase II (Pol II) transcription initiation. In addition to the previously described TBP-like factor present in metazoans (TLF/TRF2/TRP/TLP), we describe a third, vertebrate-specific member(More)
In zebrafish, as in other vertebrates, the secreted signalling molecule Sonic hedgehog (Shh) is expressed in organiser regions such as the embryonic midline and the zona limitans intrathalamica (zli). To investigate the regulatory mechanisms underlying the pattern of shh expression, we carried out a systematic analysis of the intronic regulatory sequences(More)
Co-option of cis-regulatory modules has been suggested as a mechanism for the evolution of expression sites during development. However, the extent and mechanisms involved in mobilization of cis-regulatory modules remains elusive. To trace the history of non-coding elements, which may represent candidate ancestral cis-regulatory modules affirmed during(More)
BACKGROUND The modern coelacanth (Latimeria) is the extant taxon of a basal sarcopterygian lineage and sister group to tetrapods. Apart from certain apomorphic traits, its morphology is characterized by a high degree of retention of ancestral vertebrate structures and little morphological change. An insight into the molecular evolution that may explain the(More)
BACKGROUND Little is known about the control of the development of vertebrate unpaired appendages such as the caudal fin, one of the key morphological specializations of fishes. Recent analysis of lamprey and dogshark median fins suggests the co-option of some molecular mechanisms between paired and median in Chondrichthyes. However, the extent to which the(More)
Hedgehog (Hh) genes play major roles in animal development and studies of their evolution, expression and function point to major differences among chordates. Here we focused on Hh genes in lampreys in order to characterize the evolution of Hh signalling at the emergence of vertebrates. Screening of a cosmid library of the river lamprey Lampetra fluviatilis(More)
BACKGROUND Cis-regulatory modules of developmental genes are targets of evolutionary changes that underlie the morphologic diversity of animals. Little is known about the 'grammar' of interactions between transcription factors and cis-regulatory modules and therefore about the molecular mechanisms that underlie changes in these modules, particularly after(More)