Background: Repulsive guidance molecules (RGM) are high-affinity ligands for the Netrin receptor Neogenin, and they are crucial for nervous system development including neural tube closure; neuronal and neural crest cell differentiation and axon guidance. Recent studies implicated RGM molecules in bone morphogenetic protein signaling, which regulates a variety of developmental processes. Moreover, a role for RGMc in iron metabolism has been established. This suggests that RGM molecules may play important roles in non-neural tissues. Results: To explore which tissues and processed may be regulated by RGM molecules, we systematically investigated the expression of RGMa and RGMb, the only RGM molecules currently known for avians, in the chicken embryo. Conclusions: Our study suggests so far unknown roles of RGM molecules in notochord, somite and skeletal muscle development. Developmental Dynamics, 2012. (c) 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.