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Genome-wide strategies identify downstream target genes of connective tissue-associated transcription factors

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Börno,  Stefan T.
Sequencing (Head: Bernd Timmermann), Scientific Service (Head: Christoph Krukenkamp), Max Planck Institute for Molecular Genetics, Max Planck Society;

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Timmermann,  Bernd
Sequencing (Head: Bernd Timmermann), Scientific Service (Head: Christoph Krukenkamp), Max Planck Institute for Molecular Genetics, Max Planck Society;

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Stricker,  Sigmar
Research Group Development & Disease (Head: Stefan Mundlos), Max Planck Institute for Molecular Genetics, Max Planck Society;

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Citation

Orgeur, M., Martens, M., Leonte, G., Nassari, S., Bonnin, M.-A., Börno, S. T., et al. (2018). Genome-wide strategies identify downstream target genes of connective tissue-associated transcription factors. Development, 145(7): dev161208. doi:10.1242/dev.161208.


Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0000-E315-8
Abstract
Connective tissues support organs and play crucial roles in development, homeostasis and fibrosis, yet our understanding of their formation is still limited. To gain insight into the molecular mechanisms of connective tissue specification, we selected five zinc finger transcription factors - OSR1, OSR2, EGR1, KLF2 and KLF4 - based on their expression patterns and/or known involvement in connective tissue subtype differentiation. RNA-seq and ChIP-seq profiling revealed a set of common genes regulated by all five transcription factors, which we propose as connective tissue core expression set. This common core was enriched in genes associated with axon guidance and myofibroblast signature, including fibrosis-related genes. In addition, each transcription factor regulated a specific set of signalling molecules and extracellular matrix components. This suggests a concept whereby local molecular niches can be created via the expression of specific transcription factors impinging on the specification of local microenvironments. The regulatory network established here identifies common and distinct molecular signatures of limb connective tissue subtypes, provides novel insight into the signalling pathways governing connective tissue specification, and serves as a resource for connective tissue development.