Goosecoid misexpression alters the morphology and Hox gene expression of the developing chick limb bud

Tiffany A. Heanue, Randy L. Johnson, Juan Carlos Izpisua-Belmonte, Claudio D. Stern, Eddy M. De Robertis, Clifford J. Tabin*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


The homeobox-containing gene goosecoid (gsc) has been implicated in a variety of embryonic processes from gastrulation to rib patterning. We have analyzed the role it plays during chick limb development. Expression is initially observed at stage 20 in a proximal-anterior-ventral domain of the early limb bud which expands during subsequent stages. Later in limb development a second domain of expression appears distally which resolves to regions which surround the condensing cartilage. In order to understand the function of gsc in limb development, we have examined the effect of misexpressing gsc throughout the limb. Two striking phenotypes are observed. The first, evident at stage 24, is an alteration in the angle of femur outgrowth from the main body axis. The second, which can be detected at day 10 of development, is an overall decrease in the size of the limb with bones that are small, misshapen and bent. These phenotypes correlate with a decrease in levels of Hox gene expression in gsc-infected limb buds. From these results we suggest that gsc may normally function to regulate growth and patterning of the limb, perhaps through regulation of Hox gene expression.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)31-37
Number of pages7
JournalMechanisms of Development
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - Dec 1997
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We wish to thank Craig Nelson and Andrea Vortkamp for providing assistance and members of the Tabin lab for technical advice. This work was supported by a grant to C.J.T. from the NIH. We also acknowledge the support of the Human Frontiers Science Program (E.M.D.R. and C.D.S.).


  • Chick
  • Goosecoid
  • Hox
  • Limb

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Embryology
  • Developmental Biology


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