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The Chinese Journal of Dental Research

Year 2003
Volume 6 , Issue 2

Pages: 8 - 13

Expression of Homeobox Genes Msx-1, Msx-2 and Dlx-2 during Murine Mandibular First Molar Development

Li Ma, Zhi Chen, Mingwen Fan, Qi Zhang, Guangtai Song

Objective: To observe the expression of homeobox genes Msx-1, Msx-2 and Dlx-2 during murine mandibular first molar development. Methods: The murine heads or mandibles on embryonic days 11-18 (E11-E18) and postnatal days 1-3 (P1-P3) were removed, fixed, and embedded, and 5-Ám serial sections were cut in the coronal plane. Msx-1, Msx-2 and Dlx-2 RNA probes were synthesized by in vitro transcription and labeled with digoxigenin. Msx-1, Msx-2, and Dlx-2 mRNA expression was observed after in situ hybridization. Results: During molar development Msx-1 was expressed only in the mesenchymal cells, not in epithelial cells. Msx-2 and Dlx-2 were both expressed in epithelial and mesenchymal cells. At the initiation stage of molar development, Ms2-2 and Dlx-2 had similar expression patterns. At the bud stage (E13-E14), Msx-2 mRNA signaling was intensive in the enamel organ and slight in the dental mesenchyme; Dlx-2 signaling was stronger in the dental papilla. At the cap stage (E15-E16), Msx-2 showed prominent mRNA signaling in the enamel knot and Dlx-2 was maximal in the dental papilla. At the late bell stage (P2-P3) Msx-2 transcripts were observed in odontoblasts but not labeled in ameloblasts, and Dlx-2 transcripts appeared in ameloblasts but no labeling was seen in odontoblasts. Conclusion: The various expression patterns of Msx-1, Msx-2 and Dlx-2 during murine mandibular first molar development suggest the they play a key role in the interaction between the epithelium and mesenchyme during molar development.



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