G proteins are involved in cellular signalling and regulate a variety of biological processes including differentiation and development. We have generated mice deficient for the G protein subunit αi2 (Gαi2) by homologous recombination in embryonic stem cells. Gαi2–deficient mice display growth retardation and develop a lethal diffuse colitis with clinical and histopathological features closely resembling ulcerative colitis in humans, including the development of adenocarcinoma of the colon. Prior to clinical symptoms, the mice show profound alterations in thymocyte maturation and function. The study of these animals should provide important insights into the pathogenesis of ulcerative colitis as well as carcinogenesis.
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Rudolph, U., Finegold, M., Rich, S. et al. Ulcerative colitis and adenocarcinoma of the colon in Gαi2-deficient mice. Nat Genet 10, 143–150 (1995) doi:10.1038/ng0695-143
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