It has been proposed that Ca2+ signaling, in the form of pulses, waves and steady gradients, may play a crucial role in key pattern forming events during early vertebrate development [L.F. Jaffe, Organization of early development by calcium patterns, BioEssays 21 (1999) 657-667; M.J. Berridge, P. Lipp, M.D. Bootman, The versatility and universality of calcium signaling, Nat. Rev. Mol. Cell Biol. 1 (2000) 11-21; S.E. Webb, A.L. Miller, Calcium signalling during embryonic development, Nat. Rev. Mol. Cell Biol. 4 (2003) 539-551]. With reference to the embryos of zebrafish (Danio rerio) and the frog, Xenopus laevis, we review the Ca2+ signals reported during the Blastula and Gastrula Periods. This developmental window encompasses the major pattern forming events of epiboly, involution, and convergent extension, which result in the establishment of the basic germ layers and body axes [C.B. Kimmel, W.W. Ballard, S.R. Kimmel, B. Ullmann, T.F. Schilling, Stages of embryonic development of the zebrafish, Dev. Dyn. 203 (1995) 253-310]. Data will be presented to support the suggestion that propagating waves (both long and short range) of Ca2+ release, followed by sequestration, may play a crucial role in: (1) Coordinating cell movements during these pattern forming events and (2) Contributing to the establishment of the basic embryonic axes, as well as (3) Helping to define the morphological boundaries of specific tissue domains and embryonic structures, including future organ anlagen [E. Gilland, A.L. Miller, E. Karplus, R. Baker, S.E. Webb, Imaging of multicellular large-scale rhythmic calcium waves during zebrafish gastrulation, Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 96 (1999) 157-161; J.B. Wallingford, A.J. Ewald, R.M. Harland, S.E. Fraser, Calcium signaling during convergent extension in Xenopus, Curr. Biol. 11 (2001) 652-661]. The various potential targets of these Ca2+ transients will also be discussed, as well as how they might integrate with other known pattern forming pathways known to modulate early developmental events (such as the Wnt/Ca2+pathway; [T.A. Westfall, B. Hjertos, D.C. Slusarski, Requirement for intracellular calcium modulation in zebrafish dorsal-ventral patterning, Dev. Biol. 259 (2003) 380-391]). © 2006 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Webb, S. E., & Miller, A. L. (2006, November). Ca2+ signaling and early embryonic patterning during the Blastula and Gastrula Periods of Zebrafish and Xenopus development. Biochimica et Biophysica Acta - Molecular Cell Research. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.bbamcr.2006.08.004