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Homeotic duplication of the pelvic body segment in regenerating tadpole tails induced by retinoic acid
Author: Müller, Gerd B. and Streicher, Johannes and Müller, Romana J.
Journal: Development Genes and Evolution
Volume: 206
Year: 1996
Pages: 344—348

Homeosis, the ectopic formation of a body part, is one of the key phenomena that prompted the identification of the essential selector genes controlling body organization. Shared elements of such homeotic genes exist in all studied animal classes, but homeotic transformations of the same order of magnitude as in insects, such as the duplication of the thorax in Drosophila mutants, have not been described in vertebrates. Here we investigate the capacity of retinoic acid to modify tail regeneration in amphibians. We show that retinoic acid causes the formation of an additional body segment in regenerating tails of Rana temporaria tadpoles. A second pelvic section, including vertebral elements, pelvic girdle elements and limb buds, forms at the mid-tail level. This is the first report of a homeotic duplication of a whole body segment in vertebrate axial regeneration.