Neurohypophysial dysmorphogenesis in mice lacking the homeobox gene Uncx4·1
Abstract A number of transcription factors have been implicated in the development of the hypothalamo-neurohypophysial system (HNS). Null mutations for these factors caused severe defects in proliferation, migration and survival during early embryogenesis. While they have informed about early events of HNS developments no insights in mechanisms of late development and maturation of this major peptidergic system have been obtained as yet. In a screen for adult-expressed homeobox genes we identified Uncx4.1 as a gene expressed in adult and embryonic magnocellular neurons of the (HNS). Null mutation of Uncx4.1 left these neurons viable and able to express neuropeptides. However, the connectivity of magnocellular neurons with posterior pituitary elements was compromised. As a consequence neuronal fibres traversed to the adenohypophysis. The penetrance of this phenotype was about 50%. The data show a selective role of Uncx4.1 in controlling the development of connections of hypothalamic neurons to pituitary elements, allowing central neurons to reach the peripheral blood circulation and to deliver hormones for control of peripheral functions.
|Keywords||Animals, Base Sequence, Cloning, Molecular, DNA Primers, Homeodomain Proteins/*genetics, Hypothalamus/enzymology/*pathology, Immunohistochemistry, Mice, Mice, Inbred C57BL, Mice, Inbred CBA, Mice, Knockout, Pituitary Gland/enzymology/*pathology|
|Persistent URL||dx.doi.org/10.1677/jme.1.01831, hdl.handle.net/1765/21011|
Asbreuk, C.H.J., van Doorninck, J.H., Mansouri, A., Smidt, M.P., & Burbach, J.P.H.. (2006). Neurohypophysial dysmorphogenesis in mice lacking the homeobox gene Uncx4·1. Journal of Molecular Endocrinology, 36(1), 65–71. doi:10.1677/jme.1.01831