Pod-1, a mesoderm-specific basic-helix-loop-helix protein expressed in mesenchymal and glomerular epithelial cells in the developing kidney

Susan E. Quaggin, Gregory B. Vanden Heuvel, Peter Igarashi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

128 Scopus citations

Abstract

Basic-helix-loop-helix (bHLH) proteins are transcriptional regulatory proteins that govern cell fate determination and differentiation in a variety of tissues. We have identified a novel bHLH protein, named Pod-1, that belongs to a recently-described subfamily of bHLH proteins that have essential roles in the embryonic development of mesodermal tissues. In the adult human and mouse, Pod-1 was most highly expressed in the kidney, lung and heart. In developing mouse embryos, Pod-1 was selectively expressed in mesenchymal cells at sites of epithelial-mesenchymal interaction in the kidney, lung, intestine and pancreas. Pod-1 was also expressed in visceral glomerular epithelial cells (podocytes) in the kidney, and its expression coincided with the onset of podocyte differentiation. The expression of Pod- 1 in embryonic kidney explants was inhibited using antisense oligonucleotides. Inhibition of Pod-1 expression resulted in decreased mesenchymal cell condensation around the ureteric bud and a 40% decrease in ureteric branching. Pod-1 is the first tissue-restricted basic-helix-loop- helix protein that has been identified in the developing kidney where it may play a role in the regulation of morphogenetic events.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)37-48
Number of pages12
JournalMechanisms of Development
Volume71
Issue number1-2
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 1 1998

Keywords

  • Antisense oligonucleotides
  • Branching morphogenesis
  • Epithelial-mesenchymal interactions
  • Kidney development
  • Transcription factor

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Embryology
  • Developmental Biology

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