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Nature. 1996 Dec 12;384(6609):574-7.

Requirement for Brn-3.0 in differentiation and survival of sensory and motor neurons.

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Howard Hughes Medical Institute, University of California, San Diego, USA.


Specific families of transcription factors mediate events in the sequential maturation of distinct neuronal phenotypes. Members of one such family, the class IV POU domain transcription factor Brn-3.0, and two highly related factors Brn-3.1 and Brn-3.2, are differentially expressed in the developing and mature mammalian nervous system. The expression pattern of Brn-3.0 suggested that it has an important role in the development of sensory ganglia, as well as red nucleus, inferior olive, and nucleus ambiguus. Analysis of mice null for the Brn-3.0 locus shows that Brn-3.0 is required for the survival of subpopulations of proprioceptive, mechanoreceptive and nociceptive sensory neurons, where deletion of the gene affects neurotrophin and neurotrophin-receptor gene expression. Deletion of Brn-3.0 also alters either differentiation, migration or survival of specific central neuronal populations.

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