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Science 314 (5805): 1595-1598

Copyright © 2006 by the American Association for the Advancement of Science

A Complex Oscillating Network of Signaling Genes Underlies the Mouse Segmentation Clock

Mary-Lee Dequéant,1,2,3 Earl Glynn,3 Karin Gaudenz,3 Matthias Wahl,1,3 Jie Chen,4 Arcady Mushegian,3 Olivier Pourquié1,2,3*

Abstract: The segmental pattern of the spine is established early in development, when the vertebral precursors, the somites, are rhythmically produced from the presomitic mesoderm. Microarray studies of the mouse presomitic mesoderm transcriptome reveal that the oscillator associated with this process, the segmentation clock, drives the periodic expression of a large network of cyclic genes involved in cell signaling. Mutually exclusive activation of the notch–fibroblast growth factor and Wnt pathways during each cycle suggests that coordinated regulation of these three pathways underlies the clock oscillator.

1 Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Kansas City, MO 64110, USA.
2 Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology, University of Kansas Medical Center, Kansas City, KS 66160, USA.
3 Stowers Institute for Medical Research, Kansas City, MO, 64110, USA.
4 Department of Mathematics and Statistics, University of Missouri–Kansas City, Kansas City, MO 64110, USA.

* To whom correspondence should be addressed. E-mail: olp{at}

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