We have analyzed the functional role of neuronal calcium sensor-1 (Ncs-1) in zebrafish development. We identified two orthologs of the mammalian NCS-1 gene. Full-length cDNAs encoding zebrafish Ncs-1a and Ncs-1b polypeptides were cloned and characterized. Whole-mount in situ hybridization revealed that ncs-1a mRNA was expressed beginning at early somitogenesis. As development progressed, ncs-1a mRNA was present throughout the embryo with expression detected in ventral hematopoietic mesoderm, pronephric tubules, CNS nuclei, and otic vesicle. By 4.5 days post fertilization (dpf), ncs-1a expression was detected primarily in the brain. Expression of ncs-1b mRNA was first detected at 36 hours post fertilization (hpf) and was restricted to the olfactory bulb. By 4.5 dpf, ncs-1b was expressed at low levels throughout the brain. Knockdown of ncs-1a mRNA translation with antisense morpholinos blocked formation of semicircular canals. These studies identify a novel function for ncs-1a in inner ear development and suggest that this calcium sensor plays an important role in vestibular function.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience