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Zoeller, JJ, Pimtong, W, Corby, H, Goldoni, S, Iozzo, AE, Owens, RT, Ho, SY and Iozzo, RV (2009) A central role for decorin during vertebrate convergent extension. J. Biol. Chem. 284:11728-37


Decorin, an archetypal member of the small leucine-rich proteoglycan gene family, regulates collagen fibrillogenesis and cell growth. To further explore its biological function, we examined the role of Decorin during zebrafish development. Zebrafish Decorin is a chondroitin sulfate proteoglycan that exhibits a high degree of conservation with its mammalian counterpart and displays a unique spatiotemporal expression pattern. Morpholino-mediated knockdown of zebrafish decorin identified a developmental role during medial-lateral convergence and anterior-posterior extension of the body plan, as well as in craniofacial cartilage formation. decorin morphants displayed a pronounced shortening of the head-to-tail axis as well as compression, flattening, and extension of the jaw cartilages. The morphant phenotype was efficiently rescued by zebrafish decorin mRNA. Unexpectedly, microinjection of excess zebrafish decorin mRNA or proteoglycan/protein core into one-cell stage embryos caused cyclopia. The morphant and overexpression phenotype represent a convergent extension defect. Our results indicate a central function for Decorin during early embryogenesis.


PubMed PMC2670176 Online version:10.1074/jbc.M808991200


Animals; Cartilage/metabolism; Decorin; Developmental Biology/methods; Extracellular Matrix Proteins/metabolism; Extracellular Matrix Proteins/physiology; Gene Expression Regulation; Humans; Immunohistochemistry/methods; Models, Biological; Phenotype; Phylogeny; Proteoglycans/metabolism; Proteoglycans/physiology; RNA/metabolism; RNA, Messenger/metabolism; Time Factors; Vertebrates; Zebrafish