Regional distribution of maternal messenger RNA in the amphibian oocyte

Mary Lou King, Eric Barklis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

52 Scopus citations


We show that there is a non-random distribution of information in the form of mRNAs along the animal/vegetal axis of Xenopus oocytes. Polyadenylated RNA isolated from different regions along this axis was translated in a cell-free system, and the products were fractionated by two-dimensional gel electrophoresis. A comparison of the resulting protein products using a computer program has established that specific translatable mRNAs are regionally localized within the oocyte prior to fertilization. Seventeen mRNAs show significant qualitative or quantitative differences in their subcellular location. These sequences comprise as much as 4% of the total detected translatable polyadenylated RNA. Asymmetric segregation of these messages during Xenopus development may be involved in the determination of cell fate.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)203-212
Number of pages10
JournalDevelopmental Biology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Nov 1985
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Developmental Biology
  • Cell Biology


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