Sep 8, 2010

Ultradian oscillations in Notch signaling regulate dynamic biological events

Current Topics in Developmental Biology
Ryoichiro KageyamaToshiyuki Ohtsuka


Notch signaling regulates many dynamic processes; accordingly, expression of genes in this pathway is also dynamic. In mouse embryos, one dynamic process regulated by Notch is somite segmentation, which occurs with a 2-h periodicity. This periodic event is regulated by a biological clock called the segmentation clock, which involves cyclic expression of the Notch effector gene Hes7. Loss of Hes7 expression and sustained expression of Hes7 result in identical and severe somite defects, suggesting that Hes7 oscillation is required for proper somite segmentation. Mathematical models of this oscillator have been used to generate and test hypothesis, helping to uncover the role of negative feedback in regulating the oscillator. Oscillations of another Notch effector gene, Hes1, plays an important role in maintenance of neural stem cells. Hes1 expression oscillates with a period of about 2-3h in neural stem cells, whereas sustained Hes1 expression inhibits proliferation and differentiation of these cells, suggesting that Hes1 oscillations are important for their proper activities. Hes1 inhibits its own expression as well as the expression of the proneural gene Neurogenin2 and the Notch ligand Delta1, driving oscillations of these two...Continue Reading

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Mentioned in this Paper

Biochemical Pathway
Receptors, Notch
Biologic Segmentation
Oscillators, Biological
HES1 gene
DLK1 gene
Neural Stem Cells
Cell Differentiation Process

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