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Med Sci (Paris). 2016 Feb;32(2):192-7. doi: 10.1051/medsci/20163202013. Epub 2016 Mar 2.

[Epiblast and primitive endoderm cell specification during mouse preimplantation development: a combination between biology and mathematical modeling].

[Article in French]

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GReD, Inserm U1103, CNRS UMR6293, Clermont Université, 28, place Henri Dunant, BP38, 63001 Clermont-Ferrand Cedex, France.
Unité de chronobiologie théorique, faculté des Sciences, université libre de Bruxelles (ULB), campus Plaine, CP 231, B-1050 Bruxelles, Belgique.


Upon its implantation in the uterus of the mother in mammals, the embryo is composed by three morphologically distinct tissues: the Epiblast (Epi), the Trophectoderm (TE) and the Primitive Endoderm (PrE). Both Epi and PrE are formed from the same cell homogeneous population called the Inner Cell Mass (ICM). Based on our studies, we discuss in this review what molecular interactions are necessary for the specification of these two lineages. For this, we have combined a biological approach with mathematical modeling. We have shown the central role of the gene regulation group composed by NANOG, FGF4, GATA6 and FGFR2 for Epi/PrE cell specification.

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