Author(s): Sehgal R, Karcavich R, Carlson S, BeleckyAdams TL
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Abstract Pax2 is essential for the development of the urogenital system, neural tube, otic vesicle, optic cup and optic tract [Dressler, G.R., Deutsch, U., et al., 1990. PAX2, a new murine paired-box-containing gene and its expression in the developing excretory system. Development 109 (4), 787-795; Nornes, H.O., Dressler, G.R., et al., 1990. Spatially and temporally restricted expression of Pax2 during murine neurogenesis. Development 109 (4), 797-809; Eccles, M.R., Wallis, L.J., et al., 1992. Expression of the PAX2 gene in human fetal kidney and Wilms' tumor. Cell Growth Differ 3 (5), 279-289]. Within the visual system, a loss-of-function leads to lack of choroid fissure closure (known as a coloboma), a loss of optic nerve astrocytes, and anomalous axonal pathfinding at the optic chiasm [Favor, J., Sandulache, R., et al., 1996. The mouse Pax2(1Neu) mutation is identical to a human PAX2 mutation in a family with renal-coloboma syndrome and results in developmental defects of the brain, ear, eye, and kidney. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U. S. A. 93 (24), 13870-13875; Torres, M., Gomez-Pardo, E., et al., 1996. Pax2 contributes to inner ear patterning and optic nerve trajectory. Development 122 (11), 3381-3391]. This study is directed at determining the effects of ectopic Pax2 expression in the chick ventral optic cup past the normal developmental period when Pax2 is found. In ovo electroporation of Pax2 into the chick ventral optic cup results in the formation of colobomas, a condition typically associated with a loss of Pax2 expression. While the overexpression of Pax2 appears to phenocopy a loss of Pax2, the mechanism of the failure of choroid fissure closure is associated with a cell fate switch from ventral retina and retinal pigmented epithelium (RPE) to an astrocyte fate. Further, ectopic expression of Pax2 in RPE appears to have non-cell autonomous effects on adjacent RPE, creating an ectopic neural retina in place of the RPE.
This article was published in Dev Biol
and referenced in Journal of Cell Signaling