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Mech Dev. 1998 May;73(2):211-5.

Spatially- and temporally-restricted expression of meltrin alpha (ADAM12) and beta (ADAM19) in mouse embryo.

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Department of Molecular Genetics, National Institute of Neuroscience, NCNP, 4-1-1 Ogawahigashi, Kodaira, Tokyo 187, Japan.


The cloning of the full-length cDNA encoding meltrin beta (ADAM19), one of the metalloprotease-disintegrins expressed in mouse myogenic cells, revealed that the meltrin beta gene encodes a membrane protein closely related to meltrin alpha (ADAM12) which participates in myotube formation in vitro. To delineate the functions of meltrin alpha and beta, we examined the expression patterns of their transcripts during embryogenesis. The meltrin alpha gene is activated in condensed mesenchymal cells that give rise to skeletal muscle, bones and visceral organs. Meltrin beta mRNA, in contrast, is markedly expressed in craniofacial and dorsal root ganglia and ventral horns of the spinal cord, where peripheral neuronal cell lineages differentiate. Heart, skeletal muscle, intestine and lung also express meltrin beta mRNA transiently. Although the meltrin alpha and beta transcripts exhibit distinct expression patterns during embryogenesis, both genes are mainly activated in mesenchymal cells that are derived from both mesoderm and ectoderm.

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