Link to Pubmed [PMID] – 15465494
Gene Expr. Patterns 2004 Oct;4(6):713-7
Notch signaling is an evolutionary conserved pathway involved in intercellular signaling and essential for proper cell fate choices during development. Thus, it could be involved in mouse preimplantation development where intercellular signaling plays a crucial role, particularly between the inner cell mass and the trophectoderm of the blastocyst. At their face value, the phenotypes observed when disrupting each of the four Notch genes known in the mouse do not support this view as none of them involves perturbation of preimplantation development. However this could be due to functional redundancy and/or maternal expression. As a first step to address this issue, we decided to examine the expression in early development of various genes known to participate in Notch signaling. Here, we report on the expression pattern of Notch1-4, Jagged1 (Jag1), Jag2, Delta-like1 (Dll-1), Dll-3, Dll-4, Rbpsuh, Deltex1(Dtx1)and Dtx2 genes during preimplantation development from unfertilized eggs until late blastocyst stage using a RT-PCR strategy. We show that Notch1, 2, Jag1-2, Dll-3, Rbpsuh and Dtx2 transcripts are expressed at all stages. Notch4 and Dll-4 mRNAs are synthesized from the 2-cell through to the hatched blastocyst stage. Notch3, Dll-1 and Dtx1exhibit a stage dependent expression as their mRNAs are detected in 2-cell embryos and in hatched blastocysts, but are absent or weakly detected at the morula stage. Finally, we show that all the above genes are expressed both in Embryonic and Trophoblast Stem cells (ES and TS cells, respectively). Our results suggest that the Notch pathway may be active during mouse preimplantation development.