Mafb and c-Maf Have Prenatal Compensatory and Postnatal Antagonistic Roles in Cortical Interneuron Fate and Function

Cell Rep. 2019 Jan 29;26(5):1157-1173.e5. doi: 10.1016/j.celrep.2019.01.031.


Mafb and c-Maf transcription factor (TF) expression is enriched in medial ganglionic eminence (MGE) lineages, beginning in late-secondary progenitors and continuing into mature parvalbumin (PV+) and somatostatin (SST+) interneurons. However, the functions of Maf TFs in MGE development remain to be elucidated. Herein, Mafb and c-Maf were conditionally deleted, alone and together, in the MGE and its lineages. Analyses of Maf mutant mice revealed redundant functions of Mafb and c-Maf in secondary MGE progenitors, where they repress the generation of SST+ cortical and hippocampal interneurons. By contrast, Mafb and c-Maf have distinct roles in postnatal cortical interneuron (CIN) morphological maturation, synaptogenesis, and cortical circuit integration. Thus, Mafb and c-Maf have redundant and opposing functions at different steps in CIN development.

Keywords: MAF transcription factor; MGE; interneuron fate determination; parvalbumin cortical interneuron; somatostatin cortical interneuron.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Action Potentials
  • Animals
  • Animals, Newborn
  • Apoptosis
  • Cell Lineage*
  • Cell Membrane / metabolism
  • Cell Movement
  • Cell Proliferation
  • Cerebral Cortex / metabolism*
  • Hippocampus / metabolism
  • Interneurons / metabolism*
  • MafB Transcription Factor / metabolism*
  • Median Eminence / metabolism
  • Mice, Knockout
  • Neurites / metabolism
  • Neurogenesis
  • Parvalbumins / metabolism
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-maf / metabolism*
  • Somatostatin / metabolism
  • Synapses / metabolism


  • MafB Transcription Factor
  • Mafb protein, mouse
  • Parvalbumins
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-maf
  • Somatostatin