morphogen

(redirected from Morphogens)
Also found in: Dictionary, Encyclopedia.

mor·pho·gen

(mōr'fō-jen),
A soluble molecule secreted at a distance from the target cells that specifies the fates of cells. A morphogen may specify more than one cell type by forming a concentration gradient.

morphogen

(môr′fō-jĕn′)
n.
Any of various chemicals in embryonic tissue that influence the movement and organization of cells during morphogenesis by forming a concentration gradient.

morphogen

(1) Any substance (e.g., retinoic acid) that triggers growth, proliferation and differentiation of cells and tissues in a concentration-dependent fashion. 
(2) Any molecule that orchestrates the development of an organism from the stage of a single cell to early embryogenesis.
References in periodicals archive ?
To implement this principle, Andrea Manfrin developed a method for exposing human embryonic stem cells in culture to gradients of morphogens, mimicking the real-life conditions of gastrulation, an early stage of the developing embryo where its cells begin to transform into different cell types and tissues.
With this model, it was possible to understand morphogen's spatio-temporal dynamics and stationary concentration profiles during the process of cap formation from a semi-quantitative point of view.
Hedgehog morphogens are associated with MPs shed from the plasma membrane of apoptotic stimulated T cells.
Their study not only demonstrates a mechanism, which is likely to be widely relevant in vertebrate development, but also provides confidence that chemicals called morphogens, which control these patterns, can be used in regenerative medicine to differentiate stem cells into tissue.
Genes induced by P4 and further stimulated by IFNT in uterine LE/sGE include: i) morphogens (GRP, IRF6); ii) proteases (CTSL); iii) protease inhibitors (CST3); iv) mediators of cell migration and adhesion including SPP1, galectin 15 (LGALS15), periostin (POSTN) and insulin-like growth factor binding protein 1 (IGFBP1); v) hypoxia inducible factors (HIF1A and HI[F.sub.2[alpha]]) that stimulate angiogenesis and erythropoiesis; vi) hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase 11B (HSD11B1) that mediates corticosterone metabolism and expression of glucocorticoid recetors (GCCR); vii) synthesis of prostaglandins (PTGS2) ; and viii) IRF2 a potent repressor of transcription (Bazer et al., 2009; Bazer et al., 2010; Bazer et al., 2011a).
Activins are members of the important transforming growth factor beta (TGF-beta) family of "morphogens," i.e., developmental factors that direct and control the differentiation and eventual fate of early precursor cells.
Protein gradients play an important part in directing cell behavior in biological systems; for example, gradients of proteins termed morphogens govern the development of tissue, ensuring that the various specialized cells present within a tissue structure are positioned properly.
These cells not only produce many of the morphogens that will lead to the epithelial-mesenchymal-transition in the endocardial cushions, but also produce many of the matrix components that the mesenchymal cells will utilize as a migratory substratum.
Plant growth and development is orchestrated by several classes of morphogens. Chief among these are the auxins (from the Greek for "to grow").
The researchers have thought that these so-called morphogens create chemical maps by simply diffusing through an embryo.
Interspecific morphogens regulating prey-predator relationships in protozoa.
In Drosophila, as in other animals, initial morphological axes depend on very few diffusible morphogens under the control of a few genes.