A new T-box gene, CiVegTR, was isolated in the ascidian Ciona intestinalis. CiVegTR maternal RNAs become localized to the vegetal cytoplasm of fertilized eggs and are incorporated into muscle lineages derived from the B4.1 blastomere. The CiVegTR protein binds to specific sequences within a minimal, 262-bp enhancer that mediates Ci-snail expression in the tail muscles. Mutations in these binding sites abolish expression from an otherwise normal lacZ reporter gene in electroporated embryos. In addition to the previously identified AC-core E-box sequences, T-box recognition sequences are conserved in the promoter regions of many genes expressed in B4.1 lineages in both Ciona and the distantly related ascidian Halocynthia. These results suggest that CiVegTR encodes a component of the classical muscle determinant that was first identified in ascidians nearly 100 years ago. (C) 2000 Academic Press.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Molecular Biology
- Developmental Biology
- Cell Biology