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Neuron. 2001 Jul 19;31(1):15-22.

Targeting transcription to the neuromuscular synapse.

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  • 1Laboratoire de Neurobiologie MolĂ©culaire, CNRS URA 2182 "RĂ©cepteurs et Cognition", Institut Pasteur, 25 rue du Dr Roux, 75724 Cedex 15, Paris, France.


Concomitant with innervation, genes coding for components of the neuromuscular junction become exclusively expressed in subsynaptic nuclei. A six-base pair element, the N box, can confer synapse-specific transcription to the acetylcholine nicotinic receptor delta and epsilon subunit, utrophin, and acetylcholine esterase genes. N box-dependent synaptic expression is stimulated by the nerve-derived signal agrin and the trophic factor neuregulin, which triggers the MAPK and JNK signaling pathways, to ultimately allow activation by the N box binding Ets transcription factor GABP.

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