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Dev Biol. 2004 Feb 15;266(2):238-51.

The nuclear orphan receptor COUP-TFI is important for differentiation of oligodendrocytes.

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Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, TX 77030, USA.


We report here that a member of the nuclear hormone receptor superfamily, chicken ovalbumin upstream promoter-transcription factor 1 (COUP-TFI), plays a critical role in glial cell development and subsequent central nervous system myelination. We demonstrate that COUP-TF1 is expressed in cells of oligodendrocyte lineage. Furthermore, we demonstrate that COUP-TFI null mutant mice exhibit delayed axon myelination and increased dysmyelination in the central nervous system. Using in vitro differentiation assays, we show that these myelination defects are due to delays in oligodendrocyte differentiation. Finally, in situ hybridization and transfection analysis suggests that COUP-TFI acts as an upstream regulator of SCIP/Oct-6/Tst-1, a transcription factor involved in axon myelination. Taken together, these results suggest that COUP-TFI is an important regulator of oligodendrocyte differentiation.

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