Neural tube derived signals and Fgf8 act antagonistically to specify eye versus mandibular arch muscles

G. Von Scheven, L. Alvares, R. Mootoosamy, Susanne Dietrich

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Recent knockout experiments in the mouse generated amazing craniofacial skeletal muscle phenotypes. Yet none of the genes could be placed into a molecular network, because the programme to control the development of muscles in the head is not known. Here we show that antagonistic signals from the neural tube and the branchial arches specify extraocular versus branchiomeric muscles. Moreover, we identified Fgf8 as the branchial arch derived signal. However, this molecule has an additional function in supporting the proliferative state of myoblasts, suppressing their differentiation, while a further branchial arch derived signal, namely Bmp7, is an overall negative regulator of head myogenesis.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2731-45
Number of pages15
Issue number14
Publication statusPublished - 2006


  • Animals
  • Bone Morphogenetic Protein 7
  • Bone Morphogenetic
  • Proteins/genetics/metabolism
  • Branchial Region/anatomy & histology/*embryology
  • Chick Embryo
  • Eye/anatomy & histology/*embryology
  • Fibroblast Growth Factor 8/genetics/*metabolism
  • Gene Expression Regulation
  • Developmental
  • Head/anatomy & histology/embryology
  • Humans
  • Mesoderm/cytology/physiology
  • Mice
  • Models
  • Anatomic
  • Morphogenesis
  • Muscle Development/*physiology
  • Muscle
  • Skeletal/anatomy & histology/*embryology/metabolism
  • Neural Crest/cytology/*physiology
  • Oculomotor
  • Muscles/*embryology/innervation
  • Phenotype
  • Quail/anatomy & histology/embryology
  • Signal Transduction/*physiology
  • Transforming Growth Factor beta/genetics/metabolism


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