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Development 2011 Feb 01;1383:465-74. doi: 10.1242/dev.061234.
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Role of Tbx2 in defining the territory of the pronephric nephron.

Cho GS , Choi SC , Park EC , Han JK .

Despite extensive study of the development of the nephron, which is the functional unit of the kidney, the molecular mechanisms underlying the determination of nephron size remain largely unknown. Using the Xenopus pronephros, we demonstrate here that Tbx2, a T-box transcriptional repressor, functions to demarcate the territory of the pronephric nephron. Tbx2 is specifically expressed around three distinct components of the pronephric nephron: the tubule, duct and glomus. Gain of function of Tbx2 inhibits nephric mesoderm formation. Conversely, Tbx2 loss of function expands the boundary of each component of the pronephric nephron, resulting in an enlarged pronephros. BMP signals induce Tbx2 in the non-nephric mesoderm, which inhibits the expression of the nephric markers Hey1 and Gremlin. Importantly, these pronephric molecules repress Tbx2 expression by antagonizing BMP signals in the nephric mesoderm. These results suggest that the negative regulatory loops between BMP/Tbx2 and Gremlin or Hey1 are responsible for defining the territory of the pronephric nephron.

PubMed ID: 21205791
Article link: Development

Species referenced: Xenopus laevis
Genes referenced: bmp4 grem1 hey1 mycn myod1 nphs1 odc1 pax2 rgn smad1 tbx2 vim wt1 zfp36l2.1
Antibodies: Kidney Ab2
Morpholinos: tbx2 MO2

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