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Wullimann, Mario F.; Rink, Elke; Vernier, Philippe and Schlosser, Gerhard (2005): Secondary neurogenesis in the brain of the African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis, as revealed by PCNA, Delta-1, Neurogenin-related-1, and NeuroD expression. In: Journal of Comparative Neurology, Vol. 489, No. 3: pp. 387-402

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After primary neurogenesis in the Xenopus laevis embryo, a massive new surge of neurogenesis and related neurogenic and proneural gene expression occurs in the spinal cord at the beginning of the larval period (starting at Stage 46), which corresponds to well-documented secondary neurogenesis in larval zebrafish central nervous system development. Here, we document related neural proliferation and gene expression patterns in the brain of Xenopus, in various embryonic and larval stages, showing the distribution of proliferative cells (immunostaining of cells containing the proliferating cell nuclear antigen;the auxiliary protein of DNA polymerase delta;PCNA), and the activity of some critical genes expressed during neurogenesis (i.e., Delta-1, Neurogenin-related-1, NeuroD). This study reveals that the early larval stage in Xenopus (Stage 48) displays patterns of proliferation (PCNA), as well as of neurogenic (Delta-1) and proneural (Ngnr-1;NeuroD) gene expression that are qualitatively almost identical to those seen in the 3-day postembryonic zebrafish or the 12.5/13.5-day embryonic mouse. Furthermore, a comparable bauplan of early proliferation zones (including their neuromeric organization) as described in the postembryonic zebrafish apparently exists in tetrapods (Xenopus). Altogether, the data presented suggest a common brain bauplan on the level of early proliferation patterns and neurogenic/proneural gene activity in anamniotes, if not vertebrates. (c) 2005 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

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