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Xenopus laevis


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The African clawed toad, an animal extensively used in developmental biology because of its large embryo. The large eggs are often used as an expression system, particularly for ion channels which can be functionally expressed in the membrane and tested electrophysiologically. Xenopus was formerly used in pregnancy diagnosis because it ovulates under the influence of luteinizing hormone in urine; this attribute is useful for the laboratory breeding of the toads using pure human chorionic gonadotropin.

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