Functions of the POU domain genes skn-1a/i and Tst-1/Oct-6/SCIP in epidermal differentiation

Bogi Andersen, Wendy C. Weinberg, Oliver Rennekampff, Robert J. McEvilly, John R. Bermingham, Farideh Hooshmand, Vyacheslav Vasilyev, John F. Hansbrough, Mark R. Pittelkow, Stuart H. Yuspa, Michael G. Rosenfeld

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Here we report on investigation of the role of the POU domain genes Skin-1a/i (Skn-1a/i/Epoc/Oct-11) and Testes-1 (Tst-1/Oct-6/SCIP) in epidermis where proliferating basal keratinocytes withdraw from the cell cycle, migrate suprabasally, and terminally differentiate to form a multilayered, stratified epithelium. The expression of the Skn-1a/i and Tst-1 genes is linked to keratinocyte differentiation in vivo and in vitro, whereas the ubiquitous POU domain factor Oct-1 is expressed highly in both proliferating and post- mitotic keratinocytes. Analysis of Skn-1a7/i gene-deleted mice reveals that the Skn-1a/i gene modulates the pattern of expression of the terminal differentiation marker loricrin and inhibits expression of genes encoding markers of the epidermal keratinocyte wounding response. Although epidermis from Tst-1 gene-deleted mice develops normally, epidermis from mice deleted for both Skn-1a/i and Tst-1 is hyperplastic and fails to suppress expression of K14 and Spr-1 in suprabasal cells when transplanted onto athymic mice. This suggests that Skn1a/i and Tst-1 serve redundant functions in epidermis. Therefore, at least two POU domain genes, Skn-1a/i and Tst-1, serve both distinct and overlapping functions to regulate differentiation of epidermal keratinocytes during normal development and wound healing.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1873-1884
Number of pages12
JournalGenes and Development
Issue number14
StatePublished - Jul 15 1997


  • Differentiation
  • Epidermis
  • POU
  • Wound healing


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