Protein tyrosine kinase activity was assayed in a variety of chicken tissues during embryonic development and in the adult. In some tissues protein tyrosine kinase activity decreased during embryonic development; however, in other tissues it remained high throughout development, it contrast to the level of protein tyrosine phosphorylation, which decreased during development. The highest levels of tyrosine kinase activity were detected in 17-d embryonic brain although only low levels of protein tyrosine phosphorylation were observed in this tissue. Several alternatives were examined in an effort to determine the mechanism responsible for the low levels of tyrosine phosphorylated proteins in most older embryonic and adult chicken tissues despite the presence of highly active tyrosine kinases. The results show that the regulation of protein tyrosine phosphorylation during embryonic development is complex and varies from tissue to tissue. Furthermore, the results suggest that protein tyrosine phosphatases play an important role in regulating the level of phosphotyrosine in proteins of many older embryonic and adult tissues.

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