The smad binding protein 1 gene (SMADIP1, MIM 605802) has been recently identified as a disease causing gene in a polytopic embryonic defect (MIM 235730) including midline anomalies, facial dysmorphic features and enteric nervous system malformation (Hirschsprung disease). To confirm the pleiotropic role of SMADIP1 during embryogenesis and investigate its role in neural crest cell derivatives differentiation, we performed RNA in situ hybridization at early stages of human development. According to the spectrum of malformations observed in patients, expression of SMADIP1 is observed in neural crest derived cells (peripheric nervous system, enteric nervous system, facial neurectoderm and cranial nerve ganglia), central nervous system, genital tubercle, muscles and kidneys. Surprisingly, SMADIP1 expression is also found in limbs and developing eye. Although congenital heart defects are frequently observed in patients with either a SMADIP1 large scale deletion or truncating mutation, no SMADIP1 expression could be detected in the developing heart at the stages studied.
Copyright 2002 Elsevier Science Ireland Ltd.