Phenotypic effects in Xenopus and zebrafish suggest that one-eyed pinhead functions as antagonist of BMP signalling

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


  • C Kiecker
  • W Wu
  • A Glinka
  • U Strähle
  • C Niehrs


Zebrafish one-eyed pinhead (oep) is essential for embryonic axis and dorsal midline formation by promoting Nodal signalling and is thought to act as a permissive factor. Here we describe that oep elicits profound phenotypic effects when overexpressed in Xenopus and zebrafish. In Xenopus, wild-type oep inhibits mesoderm induction, disrupts axis formation and neuralizes animal caps. A secreted Oep dorsoanteriorizes and neuralizes Xenopus embryos indicative of BMP inhibition. In zebrafish, misexpression of smad1 in oep mutant embryos also reveals an interaction of oep with BMP signalling. Furthermore, the phenotypic effect of nodal overexpression can be rescued by coexpression of oep both in Xenopus and zebrafish. Taken together, our results support an interaction between oep and nodal but they suggest also (1) that the role of oep in Nodal signalling may include negative as well as positive regulation, (2) that oep is able to function in an active fashion and (3) that oep exerts a regulatory effect on the BMP signalling pathway.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)37-46
Number of pages10
JournalMechanisms of Development
Issue number1-2
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2000


  • Animals, Body Patterning, Bone Morphogenetic Proteins, Cell Line, DNA-Binding Proteins, Embryo, Nonmammalian, Embryonic Induction, GPI-Linked Proteins, Gene Expression Regulation, Developmental, Homeodomain Proteins, Humans, Intercellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins, Interleukin-11 Receptor alpha Subunit, Mesoderm, Nodal Protein, Phenotype, Proteins, Receptors, Interleukin, Receptors, Interleukin-11, Signal Transduction, Smad Proteins, Smad1 Protein, Smad2 Protein, Trans-Activators, Transcription Factors, Transforming Growth Factor beta, Xenopus, Xenopus Proteins, Zebrafish, Zebrafish Proteins