During development of Xenopus laevis, the supraorbital lateral line system (i.e. the parietal and supraorbital lines of organs and the anterior auditory group of organs) is all derived from a single primordium located in the ear region of the epidermis. The primordium elongates first by active movement along the dorsal margin of the eye. Individual primary organs are then formed by progressive fragmentation of the streak-like primordium. After fragmentation, passive displacement of the organs due to skin growth seems to play the main role in altering the arrangement of the line system. Transplantation experiments confirmed that non-placodal epidermal cells are not incorporated into the developing system. The active elongation of the primordium is due to cell multiplication, and not due to cell rearrangement or change in cell shape or size. Cell multiplication is not confined to a growth zone, but dividing cells are randomly distributed throughout the primordium. All cells of a primordium have to change position during its elongation.

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