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Cell Death Differ. 2008 Sep;15(9):1450-9. doi: 10.1038/cdd.2008.63. Epub 2008 Apr 25.

Bcl2, a transcriptional target of p38alpha, is critical for neuronal commitment of mouse embryonic stem cells.

Author information

1
Université Bordeaux 2, Bordeaux, France.

Abstract

Mouse embryonic stem (ES) cells remain pluripotent in vitro when grown in the presence of leukemia inhibitory factor (LIF) cytokine. LIF starvation leads to cell commitment, and part of the ES-derived differentiated cells die by apoptosis together with caspase3-cleavage and p38alpha activation. Inhibition of p38 activity by chemical compounds (PD169316 and SB203580), along with LIF withdrawal, leads to different outcomes on cell apoptosis, giving the opportunity to study the influence of apoptosis on cell differentiation. By gene profiling studies on ES-derived differentiated cells treated or not with these inhibitors, we have characterized the common and specific set of genes modulated by each inhibitor. We have also identified key genes that might account for their different survival effects. In addition, we have demonstrated that some genes, similarly regulated by both inhibitors (upregulated as Bcl2, Id2, Cd24a or downregulated as Nodal), are bona fide p38alpha targets involved in neurogenesis and found a correlation with their expression profiles and the onset of neuronal differentiation triggered upon retinoic acid treatment. We also showed, in an embryoid body differentiation protocol, that overexpression of EGFP (enhanced green fluorescent protein)-BCL2 fusion protein and repression of p38alpha are essential to increase formation of TUJ1-positive neuronal cell networks along with an increase in Map2-expressing cells.

PMID:
18437159
DOI:
10.1038/cdd.2008.63
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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