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Nat Genet. 1995 Sep;11(1):17-26.

The developmental pattern of Brca1 expression implies a role in differentiation of the breast and other tissues.

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  • 1Department of Molecular and Cellular Engineering, University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, Philadelphia 19104-6069, USA.


We have examined the developmental expression of the murine breast and ovarian cancer susceptibility gene, Brca1, to investigate its role in the control of cell growth and differentiation. Specifically, we have analysed Brca1 expression during embryonic development, in adult tissues, and during postnatal mammary gland development, particularly in response to ovarian hormones. Our results suggest that Brca1 is expressed in rapidly proliferating cell types undergoing differentiation. In the mammary gland, Brca1 expression is induced during puberty, pregnancy, and following treatment of ovariectomized animals with 17 beta-estradiol and progesterone. These observations imply that Brca1 is involved in the processes of proliferation and differentiation in multiple tissues, notably in the mammary gland in response to ovarian hormones.

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