Activation of the myogenin promoter during mouse embryogenesis in the absence of positive autoregulation

Tse Chang Cheng, Brian S. Tseng, John P. Merlie, William H. Klein, Eric N. Olson

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4 Scopus citations


Myogenin, a member of the MyoD family of helix-loop-helix proteins, can induce myogenesis in a wide range of cell types. In addition to activating muscle structural genes, members of the MyoD family can autoactivate their own and cross-activate one another's expression in transfected cells. This has led to the hypothesis that autoregulatory loops among these factors provide a mechanism for amplifying and maintaining the muscle-specific gene expression program in vivo. Here, we make use of myogenin-null mice to directly test this hypothesis. To investigate whether the myogenin protein autoregulates the myogenin gene during embryogenesis, we introduced a myogenin-lacZ transgene into mice harboring a null mutation at the myogenin locus. Despite a seven deficiency of skeletal muscle in myogenin-null neonates, the myogenin-lacZ transgene was expressed normally in myogenic cells throughout embryogenesis. These results show that myogenin is not required for regulation of the myogenin gene and argue against the existence of a myogenin autoregulatory loop in the embryo.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)561-565
Number of pages5
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 17 1995

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General


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