Cleft palate: players, pathways, and pursuits

J Clin Invest. 2004 Jun;113(12):1676-8. doi: 10.1172/JCI22154.


Cleft lip and palate is a common human birth defect, and its causes are being dissected through studies of human populations and through the use of animal models. Mouse models in particular have made a substantial contribution to our understanding of the gene pathways involved in palate development and the nature of signaling molecules that act in a tissue-specific manner at critical stages of embryogenesis. Related work has provided further support for investigating the role of common environmental triggers as causal covariates.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cleft Palate / genetics*
  • Cleft Palate / metabolism*
  • Embryo, Mammalian / anatomy & histology
  • Embryo, Mammalian / physiology
  • Humans
  • Palate / embryology
  • Signal Transduction / physiology