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Segmentation defects of Notch pathway mutants and absence of a synergistic phenotype in lunatic fringe/radical fringe double mutant mice.

Zhang N., Norton C.R., Gridley T.

The Notch signaling pathway is important in regulating formation and anterior-posterior patterning of somites in vertebrate embryos. Here we show that distinct segmentation defects are displayed in embryos mutant for the Notch pathway genes Notch1, Lunatic fringe (Lfng), Delta-like 1 (Dll1), and Delta-like 3 (Dll3). Lfng-deficient mice and Dll3-deficient mice exhibit very similar defects, and marker analysis suggests that progression of the segmentation clock is disrupted in Dll3 mutants. We also show that Radical fringe (Rfng)-deficient mice exhibit no obvious phenotypic defects. To assess whether the absence of a phenotype in Rfng-deficient mice was the result of functional redundancy with the Lfng gene, we generated Lfng/Rfng double homozygous mutant mice. These mice exhibit the skeletal defects normally observed in Lfng-deficient mice, but we detected no obvious synergistic or additive effects in the double mutant animals.

Genesis 33:21-28(2002) [PubMed] [Europe PMC]

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