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Prdm12 regulates inhibitory neuron differentiation in mouse embryonal carcinoma cells


The epigenetic regulatory system significant influences the fate determination of cells during developmental processes. Prdm12 is a transcriptional regulator that modulates gene expression epigenetically. The Prdm12 gene has been shown to be expressed in neural tissues, specifically during development, but its detailed function is not fully understood. This study investigated the function of the Prdm12 gene in P19 mouse embryonic tumor cells as a model for neural differentiation. A decrease in the expression of neuron-specific genes and the alterations of dendrites and axons morphology was confirmed in Prdm12-knockout P19 cells. In addition, almost no astrocytes were generated in Prdm12-knockout P19 cells. Comprehensive gene expression analysis revealed that there was a reduction in the expression of the inhibitory neuron-specific genes Gad1/2 and Glyt2, but not the excitatory neuron-specific gene VGLUT2, in Prdm12-knockout P19 cells. Furthermore, the expression of inhibitory neuron-related factors, Ptf1a, Dbx1, and Gsx1/2, decreased in Prdm12-knockout P19 cells. Gene expression analysis also revealed that the Ptf1a, Hic1, and Foxa1 genes were candidate targets of Prdm12 during neurogenesis. These results suggest that Prdm12 regulates the differentiation of inhibitory neurons and astrocytes by controlling the expression of these genes during the neural differentiation of P19 cells.

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The authors would like to thank Dr. Shinobu Arai for her suggestions and Tomomi Kasa, Mamiko Ujihara, Hanaka Ono, and Akiko Enomoto for their advice.

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Correspondence to Kosuke Tashiro.

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Baba, A., Suwada, T., Muta, S. et al. Prdm12 regulates inhibitory neuron differentiation in mouse embryonal carcinoma cells. Cytotechnology 74, 329–339 (2022).

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  • Prdm12
  • Neural. differentiation
  • Epigenetic
  • P19
  • Inhibitory neuron
  • Astrocyte