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Free Content A Drosophila receptor-type tyrosine kinase (DFR1) acts as a fibroblast growth factor receptor in Xenopus embryos

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Members of the fibroblast growth factor (FGF) family play important roles in various developmental processes in vertebrates. Since two genes closely related to the vertebrate FGF receptor (FGFR) genes DFR1 and DFR2/breathless have already been reported in Drosophila, the existence of a Drosophila FGF has been predicted. In the present study, we examined whether DFR1 is functionally interchangeable with a vertebrate FGFR in the Xenopus system. First, we found that the expression of DFR1 promoted Ca2+ efflux in response to human basic (b)FGF in Xenopus oocytes, whereas the coexpression of a dominant negative form of DFR1 (ΔDFR1) with a chick FGFR1/cek1 inhibited promotion of Ca2+ efflux induced by the expression of cek1 in the oocyte. Second, the expression of ΔDFR1 was observed to induce a defect in the posterior structure of the Xenopus embryo at stage 30, as observed with a dominant negative form of cek1 (Δcek1). Third, we found that the expression of ΔDFR1 inhibited the expression of FGF-regulated genes such as Xbra, Xnot, and Xshh in Xenopus embryos at stage 11, while the coexpression of DFR1 with ΔDFR1 could rescue the inhibited expression of FGF-regulated genes. These results indicate that DFR1 acts as an FGFR in Xenopus embryos and that an FGF is likely to exist in Drosophila.
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Keywords: Ca2+ efflux; DFR1; Drosophila; Xenopus laevis; fibroblast growth factor receptor

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Department of Biological Science and Technology, Faculty of Engineering, The University of Tokushima, Minami-Jyosanjima, Tokushima City 770, Japan. 2: Department of Molecular Biology and Biochemistry, Kawasaki Medical School, Matsushima, Kurashiki City 701-01, Japan. 3: Department of Biophysics and Biochemistry, Graduate School of Science, University of Tokyo, Hongo, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo 113, Japan.

Publication date: 1996-12-01

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