Xenopus Myf-5 marks early muscle cells and can activate muscle genes ectopically in early embryos.Development. 1991 Feb; 111(2):551-60.D
We have cloned a Xenopus cDNA that encodes a homologue of the human myogenic factor, Myf-5. Xenopus Myf-5 (XMyf5) transcripts first accumulate in the prospective somite region of early gastrulae. The pattern of XMyf5 expression is similar to that of the Xenopus MyoD (XMyoD) gene, except that XMyf5 transcripts are largely restricted to posterior somitic mesoderm even before any somites have formed. Transient ectopic expression of XMyf5 activates cardiac actin and XMyoD genes in animal cap cells, but does not cause full myogenesis, even in combination with XMyoD. These results suggest that XMyf5 acts together with XMyoD as one of the set of genes regulating the earliest events of myogenesis, additional factors being required for complete muscle differentiation.