Pericellular and extracellular proteoglycans play an important role in modulating morphogen gradients and signal transductions. Chondroitin sulfate proteoglycan 4 (Cspg4) is a membrane spanning proteoglycan expressed in immature progenitor cells and cancer cells. Cspg4 participates in cellular events such as proliferation, migration and signal transduction, and these events are generally important for embryo development. In this study, we characterized Cspg4 for its roles in zebrafish embryonic development. Our results demonstrated that cspg4 was maternally expressed from 0 to 3 hours post fertilization (hpf) and expressed in the anterior and posterior embryo end after 9 hpf. Knocking-down cspg4 resulted in a shorter anterior-posterior axis than control embryo, which could be rescued by co-injecting wnt11 mRNA suggesting that Cspg4 regulates body axis organization through modulating the Wnt/planar cell polarity signaling pathway. In addition, overexpressing cspg4 caused cyclopia. The Cspg4 transmembrane domain mutant embryo phenocopied the global overexpression of cspg4 mRNA and led to cyclopia with a very low penetrance. Our results demonstrated that the quantitatively and spatially accurate distribution of Cspg4 is critical for body axis and midline development during gastrulation.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)