Molecular basis of the little mouse phenotype and Implications for cell type-specific growth

Abstract

The molecular basis for the little (lit) mouse phenotype, characterized by a hypoplastic anterior pituitary gland, is the mutation of a single nucleotide that alters Asp 60 to Gly in the growth hormone releasing factor receptor. Detailed analysis of the lit mouse anterior pituitary reveals spatially distinct proliferative zones of growth hormone-producing stem cells and mature somatotrophs, each regulated by a different trophic factor. This sequential growth factor requirement for a specific cell type may exemplify a common strategy for regulating cellular proliferation in other mammalian organs.

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