Retinoic acid (RA) and Hensen's node, the organizer center in the chick embryo, have been shown to have polarizing activity when applied or grafted into the chick limb bud. Here we investigate and compare the effects of RA and grafted Hensen's node on the early chick embryo. Anion exchange beads soaked with RA at concentrations ranging from 5 to 100 ng/ml and implanted on the anterior side or on the left side of the host anteroposterior axis of a stage 4 chick embryo in ovo have the ability to induce secondary axis formation, while beads soaked with RA of the same concentration and implanted on the right side or on the posterior side of the host axis are unable to induce the secondary axis. All of the induced axes contain trunk‐tail structures. Hensen's node from quail embryos implanted into the early chick blastoderm could also cause the formation of secondary axes in addition to self‐differentiation of the graft into a secondary axis. Both RA and grafted Hensen's node caused the inhibition of forebrain development with an increase in hindbrain development and the host heart to loop in an abnormal direction. The results support the hypothesis that Hensen's node is a source of RA which is involved in early embryo‐genesis. Alternatively, RA might stimulate the formation of Hensen's nodal properties in adjacent tissue. © 1992 Wiley‐Liss, Inc.
Developmental Dynamics – Wiley
Published: Oct 1, 1992
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