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Genesis. 2011 Sep;49(9):719-24. doi: 10.1002/dvg.20761. Epub 2011 Aug 19.

BMPR-II is dispensable for formation of the limb skeleton.


Initiation of BMP signaling is dependent upon activation of Type I BMP receptor by constitutively active Type II BMP receptor. Three Type II BMP receptors have been identified; Acvr2a and Acvr2b serve as receptors for BMPs and for activin-like ligands whereas BMPR-II functions only as a BMP receptor. As BMP signaling is required for endochondral ossification and loss of either Acvr2a or Acvr2b is not associated with deficits in limb development, we hypothesized that BMPR-II would be essential for BMP signaling during skeletogenesis. We removed BMPR-II from early limb mesoderm by crossing BMPR-II floxed mice with those carrying the Prx1-Cre transgene. Mice lacking limb expression of BMPR-II have normal skeletons that could not be distinguished from control littermates. From these data, we conclude that BMPR-II is not required for endochondral ossification in the limb where loss of BMPR-II may be compensated by BMP utilization of Acvr2a and Acvr2b.

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