Link to Pubmed [PMID] – 1685988
Development 1991 Oct;113(2):589-99
Hepatic nuclear factor 1 (HNF1) is a highly diverged homeoprotein that is crucial for transcription of many liver-specific genes including albumin. In particular, a minimal promoter, consisting of an HNF1-binding-site and a TATA box, is highly active only in hepatoma cell lines. The expression of the HNF1 and albumin genes has been examined in mouse embryos by in situ hybridization. At 10.5 days of gestation, the HNF1 mRNA was detected in both the hepatic primordia and visceral endoderm of the yolk sac whereas the albumin transcript was present only in the nascent liver. At later stages of development, HNF1 was detected in liver, in the epithelial cells of most of the digestive tract and in the cortex of the kidney, whereas albumin was again found only in the liver. The presence of HNF1 protein in adult kidney was demonstrated by immunodetection in gel-retardation assays and western blot analysis. These experiments show that, even though the HNF1 homeo-protein is essential for expression of many liver-specific genes, it cannot, by itself, force high expression levels of these genes, in non-hepatic tissues.