AP-2 transcription factors play important roles in the regulation of gene expression during development. Four of the five members of the AP-2 family (AP-2α, AP-2β, AP-2γ and AP-2δ) have previously been shown to be expressed in developing retina. Mouse knockouts have revealed roles for AP-2α, AP-2β and AP-2δ in retinal cell specification and function. Here, we show that the fifth member of the AP-2 family, AP-2ε, is also expressed in amacrine cells in developing mammalian and chicken retina. Our data indicate that there are considerably fewer AP-2ε-positive cells in the developing mouse retina compared to AP-2α, AP-2β and AP-2γ-positive cells, suggesting a specialized role for AP-2ε in a subset of amacrine cells. AP-2ε, which is restricted to the GABAergic amacrine lineage, is most commonly co-expressed with AP-2α and AP-2β, especially at early stages of retinal development. Co-expression of AP-2ε and AP-2γ increases with differentiation. Analysis of previously published Drop-seq data from single retinal cells supports co-expression of multiple AP-2s in the same cell. Since AP-2s bind to their target sequences as either homodimers or heterodimers, our work suggests spatially- and temporally-coordinated roles for combinations of AP-2 transcription factors in amacrine cells during retinal development.
Scientific Reports – Springer Journals
Published: Feb 21, 2018
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