Number of mast cells in the peritoneal cavity of mice: influence of microphthalmia transcription factor through transcription of newly found mast cell adhesion molecule, spermatogenic immunoglobulin superfamily

Am J Pathol. 2004 Aug;165(2):491-9. doi: 10.1016/s0002-9440(10)63314-7.


The mi (microphthalmia) locus of mice encodes a transcription factor, MITF. B6-tg/tg mice that do not express any MITF have white coats and small eyes. Moreover, the number of mast cells decreased to one-third that of normal control (+/+) mice in the skin of B6-tg/tg mice. No mast cells were detectable in the stomach, mesentery, and peritoneal cavity of B6-tg/tg mice. Cultured mast cells derived from B6-tg/tg mice do not express a mast cell adhesion molecule, spermatogenic immunoglobulin superfamily (SgIGSF). To obtain in vivo evidence for the correlation of nonexpression of SgIGSF with decrease in mast cell number, we used another MITF mutant, B6-mi(vit)/mi(vit) mice that have a mild phenotype, ie, black coat with white patches and eyes of normal size. B6-mi(vit)/mi(vit) mice had a normal number of mast cells in the skin, stomach, and mesentery, but the number of peritoneal mast cells decreased to one-sixth that of +/+ mice. Cultured mast cells and peritoneal mast cells of B6-mi(vit)/mi(vit) mice showed a reduced but apparently detectable level of SgIGSF expression, demonstrating the parallelism between mast cell number and expression level of SgIGSF. The number of peritoneal mast cells appeared to be influenced by MITF through transcription of SgIGSF.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Adhesion Molecule-1
  • Cell Adhesion Molecules
  • Cell Adhesion*
  • Cell Count
  • Cells, Cultured
  • DNA-Binding Proteins / genetics
  • DNA-Binding Proteins / physiology*
  • Female
  • Fibroblasts / metabolism
  • Gene Expression Regulation
  • Immunoglobulins / genetics
  • Immunoglobulins / metabolism*
  • Male
  • Mast Cells / cytology*
  • Mast Cells / metabolism
  • Membrane Proteins / genetics
  • Membrane Proteins / metabolism*
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Mice, Transgenic
  • Microphthalmia-Associated Transcription Factor
  • Mutation
  • NIH 3T3 Cells
  • Peritoneal Cavity / cytology*
  • Phenotype
  • Transcription Factors / genetics
  • Transcription Factors / physiology*
  • Transcription, Genetic*


  • Cadm1 protein, mouse
  • Cell Adhesion Molecule-1
  • Cell Adhesion Molecules
  • DNA-Binding Proteins
  • Immunoglobulins
  • Membrane Proteins
  • Microphthalmia-Associated Transcription Factor
  • Mitf protein, mouse
  • Transcription Factors