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BACKGROUND Skeletal muscle of trunk, limbs and tongue develops from a small population of cells that originates from somites. Although promoters and inhibitors of muscle differentiation have been isolated, nothing is known about how the amplification of the muscle precursor pool is regulated; this amplification provides muscle mass during development.(More)
A splicing mutation in the ikbkap gene causes Familial Dysautonomia (FD), affecting the IKAP protein expression levels and proper development and function of the peripheral nervous system (PNS). Here we attempted to elucidate the role of IKAP in PNS development in the chick embryo and found that IKAP is required for proper axonal outgrowth, branching, and(More)
Programmed cell death (PCD) plays an important part in animal development. It is responsible for eliminating the cells between developing digits, for example, and is involved in hollowing out solid structures to create cavities (reviewed in [1] [2]). There are many cases, however, where PCD occurs in developing tissues but its function is unknown. Important(More)
The epidermis is a multilayered squamous epithelium in which dividing basal cells withdraw from the cell cycle and progressively differentiate as they are displaced toward the skin surface. Eventually, the cells lose their nucleus and other organelles to become flattened squames, which are finally shed from the surface as bags of cross-linked keratin(More)
Prosaposin is the precursor of four lysosomal activator molecules known as saposins A, B, C and D. It is also secreted and was proposed to be a neurotrophic factor. The neurotrophic function was attributed to the amino terminus of saposin C. In man, mouse and rat prosaposin is transcribed to two major isoforms differing in the inclusion of 9 bps of exon 8(More)
Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a devastating disease, characterized by extremely rapid loss of motor neurons. Our studies over the last decade have established CD4(+) T cells as important players in central nervous system maintenance and repair. Those results, together with recent findings that CD4(+) T cells play a protective role in mouse models(More)
BACKGROUND The absence of a suitable cellular model is a major obstacle for the study of peripheral neuropathies. Human embryonic stem cells hold the potential to be differentiated into peripheral neurons which makes them a suitable candidate for this purpose. However, so far the potential of hESC to differentiate into derivatives of the peripheral nervous(More)
Deficiency in the IKAP/Elp1 protein leads to the recessive sensory autosomal congenital neuropathy which is called familial dysautonomia (FD). This protein was originally identified as a role player in transcriptional elongation being a subunit of the RNAPII transcriptional Elongator multi-protein complex. Subsequently, IKAP/Elp1 was shown to play various(More)
Familial dysautonomia (FD) is a developmental neuropathy of the sensory and autonomous nervous systems. The IKBKAP gene, encoding the IKAP/hELP1 subunit of the RNA polymerase II Elongator complex is mutated in FD patients, leading to a tissue-specific mis-splicing of the gene and to the absence of the protein in neuronal tissues. To elucidate the function(More)