The Journal of biological chemistry

Isolation of markers for chondro-osteogenic differentiation using cDNA library subtraction. Molecular cloning and characterization of a gene belonging to a novel multigene family of integral membrane proteins.

PMID 8702637


To identify novel marker molecules associated with chondro-osteogenic differentiation, we have set up a differential screening system based on a cDNA library subtraction in organ cultures of prenatal mouse mandibular condyles. Differential screening of a cDNA library constructed from in vitro cultured condyles allowed the isolation of a novel gene, named E25. Full-length E25 cDNA is predicted to encode a type II integral membrane protein of 263 amino acid residues. In situ hybridization experiments show that E25 is expressed in the outer perichondrial rim of the postnatal mandibular condyle, which contains the proliferating progenitor cells, but not in the deeper layers of the condyle containing the more differentiated chondroblasts and chondrocytes. Other cartilagenous tissues and their perichondrium were negative. Strong in situ hybridization signals were also detected on bone trabeculae of mature bone in tooth germs and in hair follicles. Northern blot analysis showed strong expression in osteogenic tissues, such as neonatal mouse calvaria, paws, tail, and in skin. This expression profile suggests that E25 could be a useful marker for chondro-osteogenic differentiation. Homology searches of DNA databanks showed that E25 belongs to a novel multigene family, containing three members both in man and mouse. The mouse E25 gene locus (Itm2) was mapped to the X chromosome.