Journal Article

The mouse dystrophin muscle enhancer-1 imparts skeletal muscle, but not cardiac muscle, expression onto the dystrophin Purkinje promoter in transgenic mice

Yves De Repentigny, Philip Marshall, Ronald G. Worton and Rashmi Kothary

in Human Molecular Genetics

Volume 13, issue 22, pages 2853-2862
Published in print November 2004 | ISSN: 0964-6906
Published online September 2004 | e-ISSN: 1460-2083 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/hmg/ddh305
The mouse dystrophin muscle enhancer-1 imparts skeletal muscle, but not cardiac muscle, expression onto the dystrophin Purkinje promoter in transgenic mice

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A subset of patients harboring mutations in the dystrophin gene suffer from X-linked dilated cardiomyopathy (XLCM), a familial heart disease that is not accompanied by any clinical signs of skeletal muscle myopathy. As the muscle (M) isoform of dystrophin is not expressed in these patients, the absence of skeletal muscle symptoms has been attributed to expression of the brain (B) and cerebellar Purkinje (CP) isoforms of dystrophin in skeletal, but not cardiac, muscles of XLCM patients. The compensatory mechanism of dystrophin B and CP promoter upregulation is not known but it has been suggested that the dystrophin muscle enhancer from intron 1, DME-1, may be important in this activity. Previous studies have shown that the presence of the DME-1 is essential for a significant increase in dystrophin B and CP promoter activity in skeletal muscle cells in culture. Here, we demonstrate that the mouse dystrophin CP promoter drives expression of a lacZ reporter gene specifically to the cerebellar Purkinje cell layer but not to skeletal or cardiac muscle of transgenic mice. However, if the mouse counterpart of DME-1 is present in the transgene construct, the dystrophin CP promoter is now activated in skeletal muscle, but not in cardiac muscle. Our findings provide in vivo evidence for the importance of the dystrophin muscle enhancer sequences in activating the dystrophin CP promoter in skeletal muscle. Furthermore, they provide support for the model in which muscle enhancers, like DME-1, activate the dystrophin B and CP promoters in skeletal muscle, but not in cardiac muscle, of XLCM patients.

Journal Article.  6135 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Genetics and Genomics

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