A Robust Reporter Ssystem to Identify Bone Morphogentic (BMP) Activity
Background: Bone Morphogentic Proteins (BMP)s are involved in various developmental processes, but are most famous for the activity to stimulate bone formation. Technology: Through phylogenetic footprinting and deletion analyses, UCI researchers identified a conserved BMP responsive element that specifically responds to BMP signaling, initially from the promoter of Xvent2, and subsequently from the promoter of Id3. These elements were multimerized and linked to a minimal promoter. These synthetic promoters responds to BMP signaling in flies, frogs, mouse and human. Importantly the response is very robust and specific toward BMP signaling. We have generated various forms of reporter genes (e.g., GFP, luciferase, beta-galactosidase) harboring the BMP response elements. In all cases, the reporters faithfully respond to BMP signaling in a dose dependent-manner. Application: These newly developed reporter genes will be useful in 1) monitoring BMP activity in developing embryos and adult tissues 2) developing cell lines that specifically respond to BMP signaling.
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