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Nat Genet. 2004 Aug;36(8):818-26. Epub 2004 Jul 25.

The imprinted signaling protein XL alpha s is required for postnatal adaptation to feeding.

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1
Laboratory of Developmental Genetics and Imprinting, The Babraham Institute, Cambridge, CB2 4AT, UK.

Abstract

Genomic imprinting, by which maternal and paternal alleles of some genes have different levels of activity, has profound effects on growth and development of the mammalian fetus. The action of imprinted genes after birth, in particular while the infant is dependent on maternal provision of nutrients, is far less well understood. We disrupted a paternally expressed transcript at the Gnas locus, Gnasxl, which encodes the unusual Gs alpha isoform XL alpha s. Mice with mutations in Gnasxl have poor postnatal growth and survival and a spectrum of phenotypic effects that indicate that XL alpha s controls a number of key postnatal physiological adaptations, including suckling, blood glucose and energy homeostasis. Increased cAMP levels in brown adipose tissue of Gnasxl mutants and phenotypic comparison with Gnas mutants suggest that XL alpha s can antagonize Gs alpha-dependent signaling pathways. The opposing effects of maternally and paternally expressed products of the Gnas locus provide tangible molecular support for the parental-conflict hypothesis of imprinting.

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PMID:
15273686
DOI:
10.1038/ng1397
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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