The pattern of cellular proliferation and differentiation that leads to normal development of embryonic structures often depends upon the localized production of secreted protein signals. Cells surrounding the source of a particular signal respond in a graded manner according to the effective concentration of the signal, and this response produces the pattern of cell types constituting the mature structure. A novel segment-polarity gene known as dispatched has been identified in Drosophila and its protein product is required for normal Hedgehog signaling. This gene is one of two human homologs of Drosophila dispatched and, based on sequence identity to its mouse counterpart, the encoded protein may play an essential role in Hh patterning activities in the early embryo.
DISPA; dispatched A; dispatched homolog 1; DKFZP434I0428; MGC13130; MGC16796; Protein dispatched homolog 1