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Heterogeneity of neural progenitor cells revealed by enhancers in the nestin gene.

Yaworsky P.J., Kappen C.

Using transgenic embryos, we have identified two distinct CNS progenitor cell-specific enhancers, each requiring the cooperation of at least two independent regulatory sites, within the second intron of the rat nestin gene. One enhancer is active throughout the developing CNS, while the other is specifically active in the ventral midbrain. These experiments demonstrate that neural progenitor cells in the midbrain constitute a unique subpopulation based upon their ability to activate the midbrain regulatory element. Our finding of differential enhancer activity from a gene encoding a structural protein reveals a previously unrecognized diversity in neural progenitor cell populations.

Dev. Biol. 205:309-321(1999) [PubMed] [Europe PMC]

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