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Exp Cell Res. 1991 Jun;194(2):297-300.

Epithelial synthesis of tenascin at tips of growing bronchi and graded accumulation in basement membrane and mesenchyme.

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Department of Biophysical Chemistry, Biocenter of the University, Basel, Switzerland.


The extracellular matrix protein, tenascin, has been proposed as mediator in epithelial-mesenchymal interactions because of its characteristic distribution during embryogenesis. Here we compared the accumulation of tenascin and laminin in the early chicken lung bud. Laminin is deposited in the basement membrane, starting at the tips and increasing along the shafts of growing primary and secondary bronchi. In contrast, tenascin accumulation is highest in basement membranes and mesenchyme at sites where new bronchial branches are formed. By in situ hybridization, tenascin mRNA was found to be produced exclusively by the epithelium at sites of active growth of bronchial tubes.

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