Ruth M. Arkell

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We identified two novel mouse mutants with abnormal head-shaking behavior and neural tube defects during the course of independent ENU mutagenesis experiments. The heterozygous and homozygous mutants exhibit defects in the orientation of sensory hair cells in the organ of Corti, indicating a defect in planar cell polarity. The homozygous mutants exhibit(More)
Circletail is one of only two mouse mutants that exhibit the most severe form of neural tube defect (NTD), termed craniorachischisis. In this disorder, almost the entire brain and spinal cord is affected, owing to a failure to initiate neural tube closure. Craniorachischisis is a significant cause of lethality in humans, yet the molecular mechanisms(More)
The onset of X inactivation is preceded by a marked increase in the level of Xist RNA. Here we demonstrate that increased stability of Xist RNA is the primary determinant of developmental up-regulation. Unstable transcript is produced by both alleles in XX ES cells and in XX embryos prior to the onset of random X inactivation. Following differentiation,(More)
As the human genome project approaches completion, the challenge for mammalian geneticists is to develop approaches for the systematic determination of mammalian gene function. Mouse mutagenesis will be a key element of studies of gene function. Phenotype-driven approaches using the chemical mutagen ethylnitrosourea (ENU) represent a potentially efficient(More)
The expression pattern of bone morphogenetic protein-7 (BMP-7) in the hindbrain region of the headfold and early somite stage developing mouse embryo suggests a role for BMP-7 in the patterning of this part of the cranial CNS. In chick embryos it is thought that BMP-7 is one of the secreted molecules which mediates the dorsalizing influence of surface(More)
ATRX is an X-encoded member of the SNF2 family of ATPase/helicase proteins thought to regulate gene expression by modifying chromatin at target loci. Mutations in ATRX provided the first example of a human genetic disease associated with defects in such proteins. To better understand the role of ATRX in development and the associated abnormalities in the(More)
Dorsolateral bending of the neural plate, an undifferentiated pseudostratified epithelium, is essential for neural tube closure in the mouse spinal region. If dorsolateral bending fails, spina bifida results. In the present study, we investigated the molecular signals that regulate the formation of dorsolateral hinge points (DLHPs). We show that Bmp2(More)
The Zic genes are the vertebrate homologues of the Drosophila pair rule gene odd-paired. It has been proposed that Zic genes play several roles during neural development including mediolateral segmentation of the neural plate, neural crest induction, and inhibition of neurogenesis. Initially during mouse neural development Zic2 is expressed throughout the(More)
The epidermal growth factor (EGF) superfamily comprises a diverse group of proteins that function as secreted signaling molecules, growth factors, and components of the extracellular matrix, many with a role in vertebrate development. We have isolated a novel mammalian gene encoding an EGF-related protein with a CUB (C1s-like) domain that defines a new(More)
The putative transcription factor ZIC2 is associated with a defect of forebrain development, known as Holoprosencephaly (HPE), in humans and mouse, yet the mechanism by which aberrant ZIC2 function causes classical HPE is unexplained. The zinc finger domain of all mammalian Zic genes is highly homologous with that of the Gli genes, which are transcriptional(More)