Alpha-inhibin is a tumour-suppressor gene with gonadal specificity in mice

Nature. 1992 Nov 26;360(6402):313-9. doi: 10.1038/360313a0.


The inhibins are alpha:beta heterodimeric growth factors that are members of the transforming growth factor-beta family. To understand the physiological roles of the inhibins in mammalian development and reproduction, a targeted deletion of the alpha-inhibin gene was generated by homologous recombination in mouse embryonic stem cells. Mice homozygous for the null allele (inhibin-deficient) initially develop normally but every mouse ultimately develops mixed or incompletely differentiated gonadal stromal tumours either unilaterally or bilaterally. Inhibin is thus a critical negative regulator of gonadal stromal cell proliferation and the first secreted protein identified to have tumour-suppressor activity.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Female
  • Genes, Tumor Suppressor*
  • Gonads / embryology
  • Gonads / pathology
  • Gonads / physiology*
  • Heterozygote
  • Homozygote
  • Inhibins / deficiency
  • Inhibins / genetics*
  • Inhibins / physiology
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Mice, Transgenic
  • Mutagenesis
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / genetics
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / pathology
  • Testicular Neoplasms / genetics
  • Testicular Neoplasms / pathology


  • Inhibins