Alx-4: cDNA cloning and characterization of a novel paired-type homeodomain protein

Gene. 1997 Dec 12;203(2):217-23. doi: 10.1016/s0378-1119(97)00497-6.


Homeodomain containing transcription factors serve important functions in patterning the embryo during vertebrate development. We have isolated cDNA clones encoding a novel protein, named Alx-4, that contains a paired-type homeodomain. Analysis of the homeodomain sequence shows that Alx-4 belongs to a family of genes that are related to the Drosophila gene aristaless, and includes the mammalian genes Alx3, Cart-1, MHox, and S8. We have analyzed the expression of Alx-4 during development by Northern blot and whole mount in situ hybridization. In addition, we have generated antibodies to recombinant Alx-4 protein and identified Alx-4 protein in nuclear extracts prepared from mouse embryos. The expression pattern of Alx-4 suggests that it may play a role in the patterning of structures derived from craniofacial mesenchyme, the first branchial arch, and the limb bud. Our results provide a starting point for the analysis of a new member of the family of paired type homeodomain proteins.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Animals
  • Base Sequence
  • Cell Line
  • Cloning, Molecular
  • DNA, Complementary
  • Embryo, Mammalian / metabolism*
  • Embryonic and Fetal Development
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Developmental*
  • Homeodomain Proteins / analysis
  • Homeodomain Proteins / chemistry
  • Homeodomain Proteins / genetics*
  • Homeodomain Proteins / physiology*
  • Humans
  • In Situ Hybridization
  • Mesoderm / metabolism
  • Mice
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • RNA, Messenger / analysis
  • RNA, Messenger / genetics
  • Recombinant Proteins
  • Sequence Alignment
  • Sequence Analysis, DNA


  • Alx4 protein, mouse
  • DNA, Complementary
  • Homeodomain Proteins
  • RNA, Messenger
  • Recombinant Proteins

Associated data

  • GENBANK/AF001465