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, 13 (6), 429-42

Msx Homeobox Gene Family and Craniofacial Development


Msx Homeobox Gene Family and Craniofacial Development

Sylvia Alappat et al. Cell Res.


Vertebrate Msx genes are unlinked, homeobox-containing genes that bear homology to the Drosophila muscle segment homeobox gene. These genes are expressed at multiple sites of tissue-tissue interactions during vertebrate embryonic development. Inductive interactions mediated by the Msx genes are essential for normal craniofacial, limb and ectodermal organ morphogenesis, and are also essential to survival in mice, as manifested by the phenotypic abnormalities shown in knockout mice and in humans. This review summarizes studies on the expression, regulation, and functional analysis of Msx genes that bear relevance to craniofacial development in humans and mice. Key words: Msx genes, craniofacial, tooth, cleft palate, suture, development, transcription factor, signaling molecule.

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