The role of Shox2 in SAN development and function.
ABSTRACT Embryonic development is a tightly regulated process, and many families of genes functions to provide a regulatory genetic network to achieve such a program. The homeobox genes are an extensive family that encodes transcription factors with a characteristic 60-amino acid homeodomain. Mutations in these genes or in the encoded proteins might result in structural malformations, physiological defects, and even embryonic death. Mutations in the short-stature homeobox gene (SHOX) is associated with idiopathic short stature in humans, as observed in patients with Turner syndrome and/or Leri-Weill dyschondrosteosis. A closely related human homolog, SHOX2, has not been linked to any syndrome or defect so far. In mice, a SHOX ortholog gene is not present in the genome; however, a true SHOX2 ortholog has been identified. Analyses of Shox2 knockout mouse models have showed crucial functions during embryonic development, including limb skeletogenesis, palatogenesis, temporomandibular joint formation, and cardiovascular development. During embryonic cardiac development, Shox2 is restrictedly expressed in the sinus venosus region, including the sinoatrial node (SAN) and the sinus valves. Shox2 null mutant is embryonically lethal due to cardiovascular defects, including a severely hypoplastic SAN and sinus valves attributed to a significantly decreased level of cell proliferation in addition to an abnormal low heartbeat rate (bradycardia). In addition, it has been demonstrated that Shox2 regulates a genetic network through the repression of Nkx2.5 to maintain the SAN fate and thus plays essential roles in its proper formation and differentiation.
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ABSTRACT: Mutations in the homeobox gene SHOX cause growth retardation and the skeletal abnormalities associated with Léri-Weill, Langer, and Turner syndromes. Little is known about the mechanism underlying these SHOX-related inherited disorders of bone formation. Here we demonstrate that SHOX expression in osteogenic stable cell lines, primary oral fibroblasts, and primary chondrocytes leads to cell cycle arrest and apoptosis. These events are associated with alterations in the expression of several cellular genes, including pRB, p53, and the cyclin kinase inhibitors p21(Cip1) and p27(Kip1). A SHOX mutant, such as seen in Léri-Weill syndrome patients, does not display these activities of the wild type protein. We have also shown that endogenous SHOX is mainly expressed in hypertrophic/apoptotic chondrocytes of the growth plate, strongly suggesting that the protein plays a direct role in regulating the differentiation of these cells. This study provides the first insight into the biological function of SHOX as regulator of cellular proliferation and viability and relates these cellular events to the phenotypic consequences of SHOX deficiency.Journal of Biological Chemistry 09/2004; 279(35):37103-14. · 4.65 Impact Factor
- Journal of Medical Genetics 12/2002; 39(11):807-11. · 5.70 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: The short stature homeobox gene SHOX is associated with idiopathic short stature in humans, as seen in Turner syndrome and Leri-Weill dyschondrosteosis, while little is known about its close relative SHOX2. We report the restricted expression of Shox2 in the anterior domain of the secondary palate in mice and humans. Shox2-/- mice develop an incomplete cleft that is confined to the anterior region of the palate, an extremely rare type of clefting in humans. The Shox2-/- palatal shelves initiate, grow and elevate normally, but the anterior region fails to contact and fuse at the midline, owing to altered cell proliferation and apoptosis, leading to incomplete clefting within the presumptive hard palate. Accompanied with these cellular alterations is an ectopic expression of Fgf10 and Fgfr2c in the anterior palatal mesenchyme of the mutants. Tissue recombination and bead implantation experiments revealed that signals from the anterior palatal epithelium are responsible for the restricted mesenchymal Shox2 expression. BMP activity is necessary but not sufficient for the induction of palatal Shox2 expression. Our results demonstrate an intrinsic requirement for Shox2 in palatogenesis, and support the idea that palatogenesis is differentially regulated along the anteroposterior axis. Furthermore, our results demonstrate that fusion of the posterior palate can occur independently of fusion in the anterior palate.Development 11/2005; 132(19):4397-406. · 6.21 Impact Factor