Role of PTHrP nuclear localization and carboxyl terminus sequences in postnatal spinal cord development

Dev Neurobiol. 2021 Jan;81(1):47-62. doi: 10.1002/dneu.22798. Epub 2020 Dec 15.


Parathyroid hormone-related peptide (PTHrP) acts under physiological conditions to regulate normal development of several tissues and organs. The role of PTHrP in spinal cord development has not been characterized. Pthrp knock in (Pthrp KI) mice were genetically modified to produce PTHrP in which there is a deficiency of the nuclear localization sequence (NLS) and C-terminus. Using this genetically modified mouse model, we have characterized its effect on spinal cord development early postnatally. The spinal cords from Pthrp KI mice displayed a significant reduction in its length, weight, and cross-sectional area compared to wild-type controls. Histologically, there was a decreased development of neurons and glial cells that caused decreased cell proliferation and increased apoptosis. The neural stem cells (NSCs) cultures also revealed decreased cell proliferation and differentiation and increased apoptosis. The proposed mechanism of delayed spinal cord development in Pthrp KI mice may be due to alteration in associated pathways in regulation of cell-division cycles and apoptosis. There was significant downregulation of Bmi-1 and upregulation of cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitors p27, p21, and p16 in Pthrp KI animals. We conclude that NLS and C-terminus peptide segments of PTHrP play an important role in inhibiting cell apoptosis and stimulation of cellular proliferation necessary for normal spinal cord development.

Keywords: cell cycle; nuclear localization sequence; parathyroid hormone-related peptide; spinal cord.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Apoptosis*
  • Cell Nucleus
  • Cell Proliferation
  • Mice
  • Parathyroid Hormone-Related Protein*
  • Spinal Cord / physiology


  • Parathyroid Hormone-Related Protein