Joseph EM, Melton DA. 1998. Mutant Vg1 ligands disrupt endoderm and mesoderm formation in Xenopus embryos. Development (Cambridge, England). 125(14):2677-85. Pubmed: 9636082


The Xenopus Vg1 gene, a TGFbeta superfamily member, is expressed as a maternal mRNA localized to prospective endoderm, and mature Vg1 protein can induce both endodermal and mesodermal markers in embryonic cells. Most previous work on embryonic inducers, including activin, BMPs and Vg1, has relied on ectopic expression to assay for gene function. Here we employ a mutant ligand approach to block Vg1 signaling in developing embryos. The results indicate that Vg1 expression is essential for normal endodermal development and the induction of dorsal mesoderm in vivo.

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Photo of Doug Melton

Doug Melton is pursuing a cure for type 1 diabetes. His lab studies the developmental biology of the pancreas, using that information to grow and develop pancreatic cells (islets of Langerhans). In parallel, they investigate ways to protect beta cells from autoimmune attack.

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