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Dev Dyn. 2007 Oct;236(10):2779-91.

Rbp-j regulates expansion of pancreatic epithelial cells and their differentiation into exocrine cells during mouse development.

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Department of Medicine and Clinical Science, Kyoto University Graduate School of Medicine, Sakyo-ku, Kyoto, Japan.


Notch signaling regulates cell fate determination in various tissues. We have reported the generation of mice with a pancreas-specific knockout of Rbp-j using Pdx.cre mice. Those mice exhibited premature endocrine and ductal differentiation. We now generated mice in which the Rbp-j gene was inactivated in Ptf1a-expressing cells using Ptf1a.cre mice. The timing of the Cre-mediated deletion in Rbp-j(f/f) Ptf1a.cre mice is 1 day later than that in Rbp-j(f/f) Pdx.cre mice. In Rbp-j(f/f) Ptf1a.cre mouse pancreases, at E13.5, the reduced Hes1 expression was accompanied by reduced epithelial growth, but premature endocrine cell differentiation was minimal. At E15.5, Pdx1 expression was repressed and acinar cell differentiation was reduced, but an increase in acinar cell proliferation was observed during the perinatal period. Our study indicates that, in addition to its role in preventing premature differentiation of early endocrine cells, Rbp-j regulates epithelial growth, Pdx1 expression, and acinar cell differentiation during mid-pancreatic development.

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