It has been known from results obtained in the classical experiments on sea urchin embryos that cell isolation and transplantation showed extensive interactions between the early blastomeres and/or their descendants. In the experiments reported here a systematic reexamination of recombination of mesomeres and their progeny (which come from the animal hemisphere) with various vegetal cells derived from blastomeres of the 32- and 64-cell stage was carried out. Cells were marked with lineage tracers to follow which cell gave rise to what structures, and newly available molecular markers have been used to analyze different structures characteristic of regional differentiation. Large micromeres form spicules and induce gut and pigment cells in mesomeres, conforming to previous results. Small micromeres, a cell type not heretofore examined, gave rise to no recognizable structure and had very limited ability to evoke poorly differentiated gut tissue in mesomeres. Macromeres and their descendants, Veg 1 and Veg 2, form primarily what their normal fate dictated, though both did have some capacity to form spicules, presumably by formation from secondary mesenchyme. Macromeres and their descendants were not potent inducers of vegetal structures in animal cells, but they suppress the latent ability of mesomeres to form vegetal structures. The results lead us to propose that the significant interactions during normal development may be principally suppressive effects of mesomeres on one another and of adjacent vegetal cells on mesomeres.

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