Wnt signaling and PKA control Nodal expression and left-right determination in the chick embryo

C. Rodríguez-Esteban, J. Capdevila, Y. Kawakami, J. C I Belmonte*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

53 Scopus citations


Expression of the Nodal gene, which encodes a member of the TGFβ superfamily of secreted factors, localizes to the left side of the developing embryo in all vertebrates examined so far. This asymmetric pattern correlates with normal development of the left-right axis. We now show that the Wnt and PKA signaling pathways control left-right determination in the chick embryo through Nodal. A Wnt/β-catenin pathway controls Nodal expression in and around Hensen's node, without affecting the upstream regulators Sonic hedgehog, Car and Fibroblast Growth Factor 8. Transcription of Nodal is also positively regulated by a protein kinase A-dependent pathway. Both the adhesion protein N-cadherin and PKI (an endogenous protein kinase A inhibitor) are localized to the right side of the node and may contribute to restrict Nodal activation by Wnt signaling and PKA to the left side of the node.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3189-3195
Number of pages7
Issue number16
StatePublished - 2001
Externally publishedYes


  • β-catenin
  • Chick
  • Left-right
  • Nodal
  • PKA
  • Sonic hedgehog
  • TGFβ
  • Wnt

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anatomy
  • Cell Biology

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