The small leucine-rich repeat secreted protein Asporin induces eyes in Xenopus embryos through the IGF signalling pathway

Kristin Luehders, Noriaki Sasai, Hongorzul Davaapil, Maiko Kurosawa-Yoshida, Hitoshi Hiura, Tara Brah, Shin-ichi Ohnuma
2015 Development  
Small leucine-rich repeat proteoglycan (SLRP) family proteins play important roles in a number of biological events. Here, we demonstrate that the SLRP family member Asporin (ASPN) plays a crucial role in the early stages of eye development in Xenopus embryos. During embryogenesis, ASPN is broadly expressed in the neuroectoderm of the embryo. Overexpression of ASPN causes the induction of ectopic eyes. By contrast, blocking ASPN function with a morpholino oligonucleotide (ASPN-MO) inhibits eye
more » ... ormation, indicating that ASPN is an essential factor for eye development. Detailed molecular analyses revealed that ASPN interacts with insulin growth factor receptor (IGFR) and is essential for activating the IGF receptor-mediated intracellular signalling pathway. Moreover, ASPN perturbed the Wnt, BMP and Activin signalling pathways, suggesting that ASPN thereby creates a favourable environment in which the IGF signal can dominate. ASPN is thus a novel secreted molecule essential for eye induction through the coordination of multiple signalling pathways.
doi:10.1242/dev.124438 pmid:26443635 fatcat:q6ytfbgn5rho3moc4rud326uh4