Ectopic expression of the H19 gene in mice causes prenatal lethality

M. E. Brunkow, S. M. Tilghman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

133 Scopus citations

Abstract

The mouse H19 gene is expressed in a broad array of tissues of both endoderm and mesoderm origin in the developing mouse embryo. Its expression is repressed in all tissues except skeletal muscle shortly after birth. This gene is unusual in that it may not encode a protein, despite its conservation in mammals. The RNA product is found as a spliced and polyadenylated RNA in a cytoplasmic particle. To probe whether this unusual gene is functional, excess copies were introduced into mouse zygotes. Transgenic progeny were obtained at a very low frequency, but in no instance was the transgene expressed. That the gene itself was deleterious to embryos was established by introducing into zygotes a mutant of the structural gene in which its most conserved segment was deleted. Transgenic founders were obtained at a higher frequency, and these expressed the altered transgene at high rates in a subset of the tissues that express the endogenous H19 gene. The lethal effects are manifested late in gestation, between day 14 and birth.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1092-1101
Number of pages10
JournalGenes and Development
Volume5
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 1991
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Genetics
  • Developmental Biology

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