Functions of Heparan Sulfate During Mouse Development : Studies of Mice with Genetically Altered Heparan Sulfate Biosynthesis

by Ringvall, Maria

Abstract (Summary)
Heparan sulfate (HS) is a ubiquitous polysaccharide on the cell surface and in the extracellular matrix. HS is an important actor in the regulation of cell signaling, especially in the developing embryo. In combination with cell culture and biochemical experiments, in vivo studies of genetically modified animals have pointed out the sulfation pattern of HS as highly important for binding of ligands, their receptors and other signaling modulators.The sulfation pattern of an HS chain is gained by several modifying steps, performed by multiple enzymes during biosynthesis in the Golgi apparatus. By alterations of sulfation pattern, and the amount of sulfate groups, a cell can regulate the binding properties of its HS to different molecules. The most highly sulfated form of HS is called heparin, and can only be found intracellularly in mast cells.This thesis describes the phenotypes and the alterations in HS/heparin biosynthesis of two genetically modified mouse strains deficient in N-deacetylase/N-sulfotransferase-1 (NDST1) and -2 (NDST2) respectively. We have found NDST1 to be important for correct sulfation of HS and that NDST2 is crucial in heparin biosynthesis. NDST2 deficient mice completely lack heparin and therefore have a severe mast cell phenotype. NDST1 deficient mice produce undersulfated HS and show several developmental disturbances. Some NDST1 embryos die in utero while the rest die neonatally due to breathing difficulties. Defect brain, eye and skeletal development has also been observed while some organs, such as the liver, appear to be largely unaffected. Several phenotypes are similar to defects seen in other mouse strains with impaired fibroblast growth factor and bone morphogenetic protein signaling, among others. This suggests the phenotypes of NDST1 deficient embryos to be of a multi factorial origin, in complete accordance to the many signaling pathways HS is suggested to modulate.
Bibliographical Information:


School:Uppsala universitet

School Location:Sweden

Source Type:Doctoral Dissertation

Keywords:NATURAL SCIENCES; Biology; Organism biology; Developmental biology; Developmental biology; embryonic development; gene targeting; lung development; ossification; heparan sulfate; heparin; N-deacetylase/N-sulfaotransferase; NDST; proteoglycan; morphogen; biosynthesis; Utvecklingsbiologi


Date of Publication:01/01/2004

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