Award Date


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Life Sciences

First Committee Member

Ai-Sun Tseng

Second Committee Member

Andrew Andres

Third Committee Member

Nora Caberoy

Fourth Committee Member

Allen Gibbs

Fifth Committee Member

Hong Sun

Number of Pages



Eye development in vertebrates of complex steps that include specific interactions of the neuroectoderm and overlying head ectoderm. The African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis (X. laevis), has a well-characterize eye developmental pathway and is an established model for eye regeneration research. Additionally, Xenopus frogs have high regenerative abilities to regenerate individual eye tissues such as the retina, lens, and cornea. However, it was previously shown that the removal of the specified eye field during the neurulation stage or an eye during the swimming tadpole stage does not permit an eye to regenerate. Here we will describe a model for investigating eye regeneration. We discovered that eye regrowth occurs in tailbud embryos after the surgical removal of the specified optic vesicle tissues. Regrown eyes are found to show similar morphology and reach similar size to a contralateral, internal control eye by 5 days of recovery. Additionally, the regrown eye has expected eye structures, including all cell types of the retina and the lens. Furthermore, we found that eye regrowth requires an early bioelectrical signaling mechanism as seen in appendage regeneration. Overall, our results indicate that Xenopus tailbud embryos can regenerate an eye after tissue lost through a process that requires a known mechanism driving regeneration.


Biology | Cell Biology | Developmental Biology

File Format


Degree Grantor

University of Nevada, Las Vegas




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