Mesoderm Induction Assays

  • C. Michael Jones
  • James C. Smith
Part of the METHODS IN MOLECULAR BIOLOGY™ book series (MIMB, volume 461)

1. Introduction

Inductive interactions play a major role in early development, and one of the earliest such interactions in amphibian development, and perhaps the in development of all vertebrates, is mesoderm induction ( 1, 2, 3, 4, 5). Mesoderm induction occurs at blastula stages, when a signal from the vegetal hemisphere of the embryo acts on overlying equatorial cells, causing them to form mesoderm rather than ectoderm. This interaction was first discovered in experiments in which prospective ectodermal tissue of the embryo (the so-called “animal cap”) is juxtaposed with future endoderm from the vegetal hemisphere (Fig. 1). When cultured alone, the animal caps form epidermis; when cultured adjacent to vegetal pole blastomeres, they form mesoderm.


Human Chorionic Gonadotrophin Xenopus Embryo Animal Pole Pregnant Mare Serum Gonadotrophin Vegetal Pole 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science + Business Media, LLC 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • C. Michael Jones
    • 1
  • James C. Smith
    • 2
  1. 1.Centre for Molecular MedicineSingapore
  2. 2.CRC/Wellcome Trust Gurdon InstituteUniversity of CambridgeCambridgeUK

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