The ciliary margin (CM) develops in the peripheral retina and gives rise to the iris and the ciliary body. The Wnt/β-catenin signalling pathway has been implicated in ciliary margin development. Here, we tested the hypothesis that in the developing mouse retina Foxg1 is responsible for suppressing the Wnt/β-catenin pathway and restricting CM development. We showed that there is excess CM tissue in Foxg1(-/-) null embryos and this expansion is more pronounced in the nasal retina where Foxg1 normally shows its highest expression levels. Results on expression of a reporter allele for Wnt/β-catenin signalling and of Lef1, a target of Wnt/β-catenin signalling, displayed significant upregulation of this pathway in Foxg1(-/-) nulls at embryonic days 12.5 and 14.5. Interestingly, this upregulation was observed specifically in the nasal retina, where normally very few Wnt-responsive cells are observed. These results indicate a suppressive role of Foxg1 on this signalling pathway. Our results reveal a new role of Foxg1 in limiting CM development in the nasal peripheral retina and add a new molecular player in the developmental network involved in CM specification.
Keywords: Ciliary margin; Eye development; Foxg1; Mouse; Wnt/β-catenin signalling.
Copyright © 2013 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.