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Mech Dev. 2000 Aug;96(1):79-89.

Murine hoxd4 expression in the CNS requires multiple elements including a retinoic acid response element.

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McGill Cancer Centre, McGill University, 3655 Promenade Sir William Osler, Québec H3G 1Y6, Montréal, Canada.


We have identified a retinoic acid response element (RARE) within a neural enhancer located 3' to the Hoxd4 gene. This RARE is required for the initiation and maintenance of Hoxd4 transgene expression in neurectoderm, and for full anteriorized expression upon retinoic acid (RA) treatment. Mutations within the sequence TTTTCTG, located 2 bp downstream of the RARE, posteriorized transgene activity. However, the onset of transgene expression and its response to RA were indistinguishable from wild type. While the TTTTCTG motif resembles a CDX binding site, human CDX1 protein did not interact with this element in vitro. Three additional regions were also shown to control transgene expression in neurectoderm, establishing that multiple elements constitute the Hoxd4 neural enhancer.

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