TITLE

Trangenic Misexpression of the Differentiation-Specific Desmocollin Isoform 1 in Basal Keratinocytes

AUTHOR(S)
Henkler, Frank; Strom, Molly; Mathers, Kathleen; Cordingley, Hayley; Sullivan, Kate; King, Ian
PUB. DATE
January 2001
SOURCE
Journal of Investigative Dermatology;Jan2001, Vol. 116 Issue 1, p144
SOURCE TYPE
Academic Journal
DOC. TYPE
Article
ABSTRACT
SummaryKeratinocytes undergoing terminal differentiation are characterized by well-defined changes in protein expression, which contribute towards the transformation of cytoarchitecture and epithelial morphology. Characteristic patterns of desmosomal cadherins are tightly regulated and distinct isoforms are expressed during development and differentiation of epithelial tissues. Desmocollin-1 is strictly confined to suprabasal layers of epidermis, but it is absent in mitotically active, basal keratinocytes. This raises the question of whether basal desmocollin-1 could alter desmosomal functions and compromise keratinocyte proliferation, stratification, or early differentiation in skin. In this study, we misexpressed human desmocollin-1 in mouse epidermis, under control of the keratin-14 promoter. Transgenic animals were generated, which showed a specific expression of transgenic human desmocollin-1 in epidermal basal cells. High level transgenic expression, which was equal to or greater than endogenous protein levels, was observed in mice with multiple copy integration of the transgene. A punctate distribution of desmocollin-1 was demonstrated at the cell membrane by indirect immunofluorescence. Transgenic human desmocollin-1 colocalized with endogenous desmosomal marker proteins, indicating efficient incorporation into desmosomes. Transgenic mice did not display any obvious abnormalities, either in the histology of skin and hair follicles, or in the ultrastructure of desmosomes. These observations suggest that desmocollin-1 can function as a desmosomal cadherin both in basal and suprabasal cells. We propose that the differentiation-specific desmocollin isoforms desmocollin-1 and desmocollin-3 are functionally equivalent in basal epidermal cells and suggest that their changing expression patterns are markers, but not regulators, of the initial steps in keratinocyte differentiation.
ACCESSION #
5661524

 

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