Ophir D Klein

CSU Mentor, Long Beach, California, United States

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Publications (91)506.97 Total impact

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Cleft lip and/or palate (CL/P) are common structural birth defects in humans. We used exome sequencing to study a patient with bilateral CL/P and identified a single nucleotide deletion in the patient and her similarly affected son - c.546_546delG, predicting p.Gln183Argfs*57 in the Distal-less 4 (DLX4) gene. The sequence variant was absent from databases, predicted to be deleterious and was verified by Sanger sequencing. In mammals, there are three Dlx homeobox clusters with closely located gene pairs (Dlx1/Dlx2, Dlx3/Dlx4, Dlx5/Dlx6). In-situ hybridization showed that Dlx4 was expressed in the mesenchyme of the murine palatal shelves at E12.5, prior to palate closure. Wildtype human DLX4, but not mutant DLX4_c.546delG, could activate two murine Dlx conserved regulatory elements, implying that the mutation caused haploinsufficiency. We showed that reduced DLX4 expression after short interfering RNA (siRNA) treatment in a human cell line resulted in significant upregulation of DLX3, DLX5 and DLX6, with reduced expression of DLX2 and significant upregulation of BMP4, although the increased BMP4 expression was demonstrated only in HeLa cells. We used antisense morpholinos (MOs) to target the orthologous Danio rerio gene, dlx4b, and found reduced cranial size and abnormal cartilaginous elements. We sequenced DLX4 in 155 patients with non-syndromic CL/P and CP, but observed no sequence variants. From the published literature, Dlx1/Dlx2 double homozygous null mice and Dlx5 homozygous null mice both have clefts of the secondary palate. This first finding of a DLX4 mutation in a family with CL/P establishes DLX4 as a potential cause of human clefts. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.
    Human Molecular Genetics 05/2015; DOI:10.1093/hmg/ddv167 · 6.68 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The SATB2-associated syndrome (SAS) was recently proposed as a clinically recognizable syndrome that results from deleterious alterations of the SATB2 gene in humans. Although interstitial deletions at 2q33 encompassing SATB2, either alone or contiguously with other genes, have been reported before, there is limited literature regarding intragenic mutations of this gene and the resulting phenotype. We describe five patients in whom whole exome sequencing identified five unique de novo mutations in the SATB2 gene (one splice site, one frameshift, and three nonsense mutations). The five patients had overlapping features that support the characteristic features of the SAS: intellectual disability with limited speech development and craniofacial abnormalities including cleft palate, dysmorphic features, and dental abnormalities. Furthermore, Patient 1 also had features not previously described that represent an expansion of the phenotype. Osteopenia was seen in two of the patients, suggesting that this finding could be added to the list of distinctive findings. We provide supporting evidence that analysis for deletions or point mutations in SATB2 should be considered in children with intellectual disability and severely impaired speech, cleft or high palate, teeth abnormalities, and osteopenia. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
    American Journal of Medical Genetics Part A 05/2015; 167(5):1026-1032. DOI:10.1002/ajmg.a.36849 · 2.05 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The fossil record is widely informative about evolution, but fossils are not systematically used to study the evolution of stem-cell-driven renewal. Here, we examined evolution of the continuous growth (hypselodonty) of rodent molar teeth, which is fuelled by the presence of dental stem cells. We studied occurrences of 3,500 North American rodent fossils, ranging from 50 million years ago (mya) to 2 mya. We examined changes in molar height to determine whether evolution of hypselodonty shows distinct patterns in the fossil record, and we found that hypselodont taxa emerged through intermediate forms of increasing crown height. Next, we designed a Markov simulation model, which replicated molar height increases throughout the Cenozoic and, moreover, evolution of hypselodonty. Thus, by extension, the retention of the adult stem cell niche appears to be a predictable quantitative rather than a stochastic qualitative process. Our analyses predict that hypselodonty will eventually become the dominant phenotype. Copyright © 2015 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
    Cell Reports 04/2015; 11(5). DOI:10.1016/j.celrep.2015.03.064 · 7.21 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Recent breakthroughs in 3-dimensional (3D) organoid cultures for many organ systems have led to new physiologically complex in vitro models to study human development and disease. Here, we report the step-wise differentiation of human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs) (embryonic and induced) into lung organoids. By manipulating developmental signaling pathways hPSCs generate ventral-anterior foregut spheroids, which are then expanded into human lung organoids (HLOs). HLOs consist of epithelial and mesenchymal compartments of the lung, organized with structural features similar to the native lung. HLOs possess upper airway-like epithelium with basal cells and immature ciliated cells surrounded by smooth muscle and myofibroblasts as well as an alveolar-like domain with appropriate cell types. Using RNA-sequencing, we show that HLOs are remarkably similar to human fetal lung based on global transcriptional profiles, suggesting that HLOs are an excellent model to study human lung development, maturation and disease.
    eLife Sciences 03/2015; 4. DOI:10.7554/eLife.05098 · 8.52 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Proper organ homeostasis requires tight control of adult stem cells and differentiation through the integration of multiple inputs. In the mouse small intestine, Notch and Wnt signaling are required both for stem cell maintenance and for a proper balance of differentiation between secretory and absorptive cell lineages. In the absence of Notch signaling, stem cells preferentially generate secretory cells at the expense of absorptive cells. Here, we use function-blocking antibodies against Notch receptors to demonstrate that Notch blockade perturbs intestinal stem cell function by causing a derepression of the Wnt signaling pathway, leading to misexpression of prosecretory genes. Importantly, attenuation of the Wnt pathway rescued the phenotype associated with Notch blockade. These studies bring to light a negative regulatory mechanism that maintains stem cell activity and balanced differentiation, and we propose that the interaction between Wnt and Notch signaling described here represents a common theme in adult stem cell biology. Copyright © 2015 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
    Cell Reports 03/2015; DOI:10.1016/j.celrep.2015.03.007 · 7.21 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Continuously growing incisors are common to all rodents, which include the Microtus genus of voles. However, unlike many rodents, voles also possess continuously growing molars. Here, we report spontaneous molar defects in a population of Prairie voles (Microtus ochrogaster). We identified bilateral protuberances on the ventral surface of the mandible in several voles in our colony. In some cases, the protuberances broke through the cortical bone. The mandibular molars became exposed and infected, and the maxillary molars entered the cranial vault. Visualisation upon soft tissue removal and microcomputed tomography (microCT) analyses confirmed that the protuberances were caused by the overgrowth of the apical ends of the molar teeth. We speculate that the unrestricted growth of the molars was due to the misregulation of the molar dental stem cell niche. Further study of this molar phenotype may yield additional insight into stem cell regulation and the evolution and development of continuously growing teeth.International Journal of Oral Science advance online publication, 30 January 2015; doi:10.1038/ijos.2014.75.
    International Journal of Oral Science 01/2015; 7(1). DOI:10.1038/ijos.2014.75 · 2.03 Impact Factor
  • Linda A Barlow, Ophir D Klein
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    ABSTRACT: Taste is one of the fundamental senses, and it is essential for our ability to ingest nutritious substances and to detect and avoid potentially toxic ones. Taste buds, which are clusters of neuroepithelial receptor cells, are housed in highly organized structures called taste papillae in the oral cavity. Whereas the overall structure of the taste periphery is conserved in almost all vertebrates examined to date, the anatomical, histological, and cell biological, as well as potentially the molecular details of taste buds in the oral cavity are diverse across species and even among individuals. In mammals, several types of gustatory papillae reside on the tongue in highly ordered arrangements, and the patterning and distribution of the mature papillae depend on coordinated molecular events in embryogenesis. In this review, we highlight new findings in the field of taste development, including how taste buds are patterned and how taste cell fate is regulated. We discuss whether a specialized taste bud stem cell population exists and how extrinsic signals can define which cell lineages are generated. We also address the question of whether molecular regulation of taste cell renewal is analogous to that of taste bud development. Finally, we conclude with suggestions for future directions, including the potential influence of the maternal diet and maternal health on the sense of taste in utero. © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
    Current Topics in Developmental Biology 01/2015; 111:401-19. DOI:10.1016/bs.ctdb.2014.11.012 · 4.21 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Hypohidrotic ectodermal dysplasia (HED) is the most prevalent type of ectodermal dysplasia (ED). ED is an umbrella term for a group of syndromes characterized by missing or malformed ectodermal structures, including skin, hair, sweat glands, and teeth. The X-linked recessive (XL), autosomal recessive (AR), and autosomal dominant (AD) types of HED are caused by mutations in the genes encoding ectodysplasin (EDA1), EDA receptor (EDAR), or EDAR-associated death domain (EDARADD). Patients with HED have a distinctive facial appearance, yet a quantitative analysis of the HED craniofacial phenotype using advanced three-dimensional (3D) technologies has not been reported. In this study, we characterized craniofacial morphology in subjects with X-linked hypohidrotic ectodermal dysplasia (XLHED) by use of 3D imaging and geometric morphometrics (GM), a technique that uses defined landmarks to quantify size and shape in complex craniofacial morphologies. We found that the XLHED craniofacial phenotype differed significantly from controls. Patients had a smaller and shorter face with a proportionally longer chin and midface, prominent midfacial hypoplasia, a more protrusive chin and mandible, a narrower and more pointed nose, shorter philtrum, a narrower mouth, and a fuller and more rounded lower lip. Our findings refine the phenotype of XLHED and may be useful both for clinical diagnosis of XLHED and to extend understanding of the role of EDA in craniofacial development.
    09/2014; 2(5). DOI:10.1002/mgg3.84
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    ABSTRACT: The evolutionary relationships of extinct species are ascertained primarily through the analysis of morphological characters. Character inter-dependencies can have a substantial effect on evolutionary interpretations, but the developmental underpinnings of character inter-dependence remain obscure because experiments frequently do not provide detailed resolution of morphological characters. Here we show experimentally and computationally how gradual modification of development differentially affects characters in the mouse dentition. We found that intermediate phenotypes could be produced by gradually adding ectodysplasin A (EDA) protein in culture to tooth explants carrying a null mutation in the tooth-patterning gene Eda. By identifying development-based character inter-dependencies, we show how to predict morphological patterns of teeth among mammalian species. Finally, in vivo inhibition of sonic hedgehog signalling in Eda null teeth enabled us to reproduce characters deep in the rodent ancestry. Taken together, evolutionarily informative transitions can be experimentally reproduced, thereby providing development-based expectations for character-state transitions used in evolutionary studies.
    Nature 07/2014; 512(7512). DOI:10.1038/nature13613 · 42.35 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Taste buds are assemblies of elongated epithelial cells, which are innervated by gustatory nerves that transmit taste information to the brain stem. Taste cells are continuously renewed throughout life via proliferation of epithelial progenitors, but the molecular regulation of this process remains unknown. During embryogenesis, sonic hedgehog (SHH) negatively regulates taste bud patterning, such that inhibition of SHH causes the formation of more and larger taste bud primordia, including in regions of the tongue normally devoid of taste buds. Here, using a Cre-lox system to drive constitutive expression of SHH, we identify the effects of SHH on the lingual epithelium of adult mice. We show that misexpression of SHH transforms lingual epithelial cell fate, such that daughter cells of lingual epithelial progenitors form cell type-replete, onion-shaped taste buds, rather than non-taste, pseudostratified epithelium. These SHH-induced ectopic taste buds are found in regions of the adult tongue previously thought incapable of generating taste organs. The ectopic buds are composed of all taste cell types, including support cells and detectors of sweet, bitter, umami, salt and sour, and recapitulate the molecular differentiation process of endogenous taste buds. In contrast to the well-established nerve dependence of endogenous taste buds, however, ectopic taste buds form independently of both gustatory and somatosensory innervation. As innervation is required for SHH expression by endogenous taste buds, our data suggest that SHH can replace the need for innervation to drive the entire program of taste bud differentiation.
    Development 07/2014; 141(15). DOI:10.1242/dev.107631 · 6.27 Impact Factor
  • Adrien Naveau, Kerstin Seidel, Ophir D. Klein
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    ABSTRACT: The vertebrate ectoderm gives rise to organs that produce mineralized or keratinized substances, including teeth, hair, and claws. Most of these ectodermal derivatives grow continuously throughout the animal's life and have active pools of adult stem cells that generate all the necessary cell types. These organs provide powerful systems for understanding the mechanisms that enable stem cells to regenerate or renew ectodermally derived tissues, and remarkable progress in our understanding of these systems has been made in recent years using mouse models. We briefly compare what is known about stem cells and their niches in incisors, hair follicles, and claws, and we examine expression of Gli1 as a potential example of a shared stem cell marker. We summarize some of the features, structures, and functions of the stem cell niches in these ectodermal derivatives; definition of the basic elements of the stem cell niches in these organs will provide guiding principles for identification and characterization of the niche in similar systems.
    Experimental Cell Research 07/2014; DOI:10.1016/j.yexcr.2014.02.003 · 3.37 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The transition between the proliferation and differentiation of progenitor cells is a key step in organogenesis, and alterations in this process can lead to developmental disorders. The extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1/2 (ERK) signaling pathway is one of the most intensively studied signaling mechanisms that regulates both proliferation and differentiation. How a single molecule (e.g. ERK) can regulate two opposing cellular outcomes is still a mystery. Using both chick and mouse models, we shed light on the mechanism responsible for the switch from proliferation to differentiation of head muscle progenitors and implicate ERK subcellular localization. Manipulation of the fibroblast growth factor (FGF)-ERK signaling pathway in chick embryos in vitro and in vivo demonstrated that blockage of this pathway accelerated myogenic differentiation, whereas its activation diminished it. We next examined whether the spatial subcellular localization of ERK could act as a switch between proliferation (nuclear ERK) and differentiation (cytoplasmic ERK) of muscle progenitors. A myristoylated peptide that blocks importin 7-mediated ERK nuclear translocation induced robust myogenic differentiation of muscle progenitor/stem cells in both head and trunk. In the mouse, analysis of Sprouty mutant embryos revealed that increased ERK signaling suppressed both head and trunk myogenesis. Our findings, corroborated by mathematical modeling, suggest that ERK shuttling between the nucleus and the cytoplasm provides a switch-like transition between proliferation and differentiation of muscle progenitors.
    Development 06/2014; 141(13). DOI:10.1242/dev.107078 · 6.27 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Costello syndrome (CS) is a RASopathy characterized by a wide range of cardiac, musculoskeletal, dermatological, and developmental abnormalities. The RASopathies are defined as a group of syndromes caused by activated Ras/mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) signaling. Specifically, CS is caused by activating mutations in HRAS. Although receptor tyrosine kinase (RTK) signaling, which is upstream of Ras/MAPK, is known to play a critical role in craniofacial and dental development, the craniofacial and dental features of CS have not been systematically defined in a large group of individuals. In order to address this gap in our understanding and fully characterize the CS phenotype, we evaluated the craniofacial and dental phenotype in a large cohort (n = 41) of CS individuals. We confirmed that the craniofacial features common in CS include macrocephaly, bitemporal narrowing, convex facial profile, full cheeks, and large mouth. Additionally, CS patients have a characteristic dental phenotype that includes malocclusion with anterior open bite and posterior crossbite, enamel hypo-mineralization, delayed tooth development and eruption, gingival hyperplasia, thickening of the alveolar ridge, and high palate. Comparison of the craniofacial and dental phenotype in CS with other RASopathies, such as cardio-facio-cutaneous syndrome (CFC), provides insight into the complexities of Ras/MAPK signaling in human craniofacial and dental development. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
    American Journal of Medical Genetics Part A 06/2014; 164(6). DOI:10.1002/ajmg.a.36475 · 2.05 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Stem cells from the apical papilla (SCAPs) are important for the formation and regeneration of root dentin. Here, we examined the expression of Notch signaling components in SCAPs and investigated crosstalk between microRNA miR-34aand Notch signaling during cell differentiation. We found that human SCAPs express NOTCH2, NOTCH3, JAG2, DLL3, and HES1, and we tested the relationship between Notch signaling and both cell differentiation and miR-34a expression. NOTCH activation in SCAPs inhibited cell differentiation and up-regulated the expression of miR-34a, whereas miR-34a inhibited Notch signaling in SCAPs by directly targeting the 3'UTR of NOTCH2 and HES1 mRNA and suppressing the expression of NOTCH2, N2ICD, and HES1. DSPP, RUNX2, OSX, and OCN expression was consequently up-regulated. Thus, Notch signaling in human SCAPs plays a vital role in maintenance of these cells. miR-34a interacts with Notch signaling and promotes both odontogenic and osteogenic differentiation of SCAPs.
    Journal of dental research 04/2014; 93(6). DOI:10.1177/0022034514531146 · 4.14 Impact Factor
  • 34th Annual Meeting of the; 04/2014
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    ABSTRACT: Objective: GPCR-mediated G-protein signaling orchestrates crucial intercellular communications during the development of multicellular organs such as mammary glands, brain, liver, and bone. Tooth development is also governed by communication between epithelial and mesenchymal cells. We aim to identify target GPCRs with greater expression in developing teeth than in vital organs such as brain/liver to enable tooth-specific pharmacologic targeting, and to modulate tooth formation through the GPCR signaling. Method: To identify the target GPCRs, we compared RNA sequencing data derived from teeth, brain and liver in E13.5 wild-type mice. To identify potential ligands, we constructed atomic models for the corresponding protein sequences, bioinformatically mapped all compounds co-crystallized with GPCRs, chemoinformatically compared them to small molecules and FDA-approved drugs, and evaluated for molecular fit. To examine if altered G-protein signals can affect tooth formation, transgenic mice were developed to express Rs1, an engineered GPCR that constitutively activates stimulatory G-protein (Gs) signaling, in dental epithelial cells using the cytokeratin-5 promoter. Jaws from the Rs1 and wild-type mice were processed for immunohistochemistry. Result: Gs protein expression in wild-type mice was greater in the developing tooth buds than in adjacent tissues. We found that increased Gs signaling in dental epithelial cells induced the development of supernumerary teeth in K5/Rs1 mice. Twenty GPCRs were highly expressed in E13.5 developing teeth with at least two-fold greater expression. Structural analysis indicates that over 100 drugs are predicted to interact with these GPCRs. The 5HTR1b protein, a GPCR similar to the Rs1, was also found to be expressed highly in odontogenic epithelial cells and at higher levels in teeth as compared to liver (3.9-fold) and brain (390-fold). Pharmacological activationof the 5HTR1b in wild-type mice resulted in supernumerary incisor formation as seen in the K5/Rs1 mice. Conclusion: Differential expression of GPCRs in developing teeth will enable pharmacological manipulation to specifically control tooth formation.
    AADR Annual Meeting & Exhibition 2014; 03/2014
  • Clinical dysmorphology 02/2014; DOI:10.1097/MCD.0000000000000026 · 0.42 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) are typically defined by their in vitro characteristics, and as a consequence the in vivo identity of MSCs and their niches are poorly understood. To address this issue, we used lineage tracing in a mouse incisor model and identified the neurovascular bundle (NVB) as an MSC niche. We found that NVB sensory nerves secrete Shh protein, which activates Gli1 expression in periarterial cells that contribute to all mesenchymal derivatives. These periarterial cells do not express classical MSC markers used to define MSCs in vitro. In contrast, NG2(+) pericytes represent an MSC subpopulation derived from Gli1+ cells; they express classical MSC markers and contribute little to homeostasis but are actively involved in injury repair. Likewise, incisor Gli1(+) cells, but not NG2(+) cells, exhibit typical MSC characteristics in vitro. Collectively, we demonstrate that MSCs originate from periarterial cells and are regulated by Shh secretion from an NVB.
    Cell stem cell 02/2014; 14(2):160-73. DOI:10.1016/j.stem.2013.12.013 · 22.15 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The rodent incisor is one of a number of organs that grow continuously throughout the life of an animal. Continuous growth of the incisor arose as an evolutionary adaptation to compensate for abrasion at the distal end of the tooth. The sustained turnover of cells that deposit the mineralized dental tissues is made possible by epithelial and mesenchymal stem cells residing at the proximal end of the incisor. A complex network of signaling pathways and transcription factors regulates the formation, maintenance, and differentiation of these stem cells during development and throughout adulthood. Research over the past 15 years has led to significant progress in our understanding of this network, which includes FGF, BMP, Notch, and Hh signaling, as well as cell adhesion molecules and microRNAs. This review surveys key historical experiments that laid the foundation of the field and discusses more recent findings that definitively identified the stem cell population, elucidated the regulatory network, and demonstrated possible genetic mechanisms for the evolution of continuously growing teeth. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
    genesis 02/2014; 52(2). DOI:10.1002/dvg.22732 · 2.04 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

2k Citations
506.97 Total Impact Points


  • 2015
    • CSU Mentor
      Long Beach, California, United States
  • 2004–2015
    • University of California, San Francisco
      • • Institute for Human Genetics
      • • Division of Medical Genetics
      • • Department of Orofacial Sciences
      • • Division of Hospital Medicine
      • • Department of Pediatrics
      San Francisco, California, United States
  • 2007
    • Baylor College of Dentistry
      • Department of Biomedical Sciences
      Port Arthur, Texas, United States