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Cell. 1999 Nov 24;99(5):499-510.

p27Xic1, a Cdk inhibitor, promotes the determination of glial cells in Xenopus retina.

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Department of Anatomy, University of Cambridge, United Kingdom.


p27Xic1, a member of the Cip/Kip family of Cdk inhibitors, besides its known function of inhibiting cell division, induces Müller glia from retinoblasts. This novel gliogenic function of p27Xic1 is mediated by part of the N-terminal domain near but distinct from the region that inhibits cyclin-dependent kinases. Cotransfections with dominant-negative and constitutively active Delta and Notch constructs indicate that the gliogenic effects of p27Xic1 work within the context of an active Notch pathway. The gradual increase of p27Xic1 in the developing retina thus not only limits the number of retinal cells but also increasingly favors the fate of the last cell type to be born in the retina, the Müller glia.

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