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Matrix Biol. 1998 Jun;17(2):131-43.

Restricted localization of thrombospondin-2 protein during mouse embryogenesis: a comparison to thrombospondin-1.

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Department of Medicine, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 53706, USA.


Thrombospondin-1 and -2 (TSP1 and TSP2) are multifunctional, multimodular extracellular matrix proteins encoded by separate genes. We compared the distributions of TSP1 and TSP2 in mouse embryos (day 10 and later) by immunohistochemistry. TSP1 was detected on day 10 in the heart and intestinal epithelium, on day 11 in megakaryocytes, and on day 14 in the lung. TSP2 was not detected until day 14, with strongest staining in mesenchymal condensation that gives rise to cartilage and bone. The distribution of TSP2 was different from but overlapped with the distribution of TSP1. TSP1 was found in cartilage proper with diminished staining around chondrocytes undergoing differentiation and hypertrophy, whereas TSP2 was restricted to the matrix surrounding chondrocytes of the growth zone cartilage. TSP2 and TSP1 were both expressed in centers of intramembranous ossification that form the skull bones, in reticular dermis, on the apical surface of nasal epithelium, in skeletal muscle, and in the sheath surrounding vibrissae. Areas of exclusive staining for TSP2 included the perichondrium surrounding the cartilage of the nasal cavities, developing bone of the lower mandible, and adrenal gland. The distinct localizations of TSP1 and TSP2 indicate that the two proteins have specific functions during mouse embryogenesis.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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