Regeneration of the lens in newts is quite a unique process. The lens is removed in its entirety and regeneration ensues from the pigment epithelial cells of the dorsal iris via transdifferentiation. The same type of cells from the ventral iris are not capable of regenerating a lens. It is, thus, expected that differences between dorsal and ventral iris during the process of regeneration might provide important clues pertaining to the mechanism of regeneration. In this paper, we employed next generation RNA-seq to determine gene expression patterns during lens regeneration in Notophthalmus viridescens. The expression of more than 38,000 transcripts was compared between dorsal and ventral iris. Although very few genes were found to be dorsal- or ventral-specific, certain groups of genes were up-regulated specifically in the dorsal iris. These genes are involved in cell cycle, gene regulation, cytoskeleton and immune response. In addition, the expression of six highly regulated genes, TBX5, FGF10, UNC5B, VAX2, NR2F5, and NTN1, was verified using qRT-PCR. These graded gene expression patterns provide insight into the mechanism of lens regeneration, the markers that are specific to dorsal or ventral iris, and layout a map for future studies in the field.