PARallels in Axis Formation

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Science  09 Jun 2000:
Vol. 288, Issue 5472, pp. 1759-1760
DOI: 10.1126/science.288.5472.1759

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There is an intricate network of molecules called cell fate determinants that instruct the cells of the embryo to take on either an anterior or posterior fate. In a lively Perspective, Lehmann and her colleagues discuss new findings in the fruit fly that identify a key protein, PAR-1, which ensures that the cell fate determinants are themselves located in the correct region of the oocyte. In this way, the anterior-posterior axis is set up in the fruit fly egg before fertilization.