In mice, Chordin is expressed in the node but not in the anterior visceral endoderm. It has been found to be required for forebrain development. In developing mice that are deficient in both chordin and noggin, the head is nearly absent. This is significant because when only noggin is deficient there are mild defects but the head still forms.
In humans, the chordin peptide is encoded by the CHRDgene.
Chordin is also involved in avian gastrulation. It is expressed in the anterior cells of Koller's sickle, which form the anterior cells of the primitive streak, a key structure through which gastrulation occurs. 
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