Embryo microinjection of the lecithotrophic sea urchin Heliocidaris erythrogramma
Microinjection is a common embryological technique used for many types of experiments, including lineage tracing, manipulating gene expression, or genome editing. Injectable reagents include mRNA overexpression, mis-expression, or dominant-negative experiments to examine a gene of interest, a morpholino antisense oligo to prevent translation of an mRNA or spliceoform of interest and CRISPR-Cas9 reagents. Thus, the technique is broadly useful for basic embryological studies, constructing gene regulatory networks, and directly testing hypotheses about cis-regulatory and coding sequence changes underlying the evolution of development. However, the methods for microinjection in typical planktotrophic marine invertebrates may not work well in the highly modified eggs and embryos of lecithotrophic species. This protocol is optimized for the lecithotrophic sea urchin Heliocidaris erythrogramma.
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