Activation of Matrix Metalloproteinase Genes during Thyroid Hormone-Induced Apoptotic Tissue Remodeling

  • Yun-Bo Shi
  • Atsuko Ishizuya-Oka


Programmed cell death or apoptosis is an essential process during amphibian metamorphosis, not only in the resorption of tadpole specific tissues but also in the remodeling of existing tissues and de novo development of adult ones. The control of metamorphosis by thyroid hormone has allowed the identification and characterization of a number of genes which are involved in this process. Among them are genes encoding matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs), which are capable of digesting various components of the extracellular matrix (ECM). Of particular interest is the MMP stromelysin-3. The gene is activated prior to larval cell death and its high levels of expression correlate with basal lamina (the ECM that separates epithelium and the mesenchyme) modification. These and other observations implicate that stromelysin-3 may participate in ECM remodeling, which in turn regulates cell fate during metamorphosis. In addition, our analyses of the expression of several other MMPs indicate multiple MMPs function, in a tissue-dependent manner, at various steps of organ transformation, some in the regulation of cell death, proliferation, and differentiation, while others in post-apoptotic ECM removal.


Thyroid Hormone Basal Lamina Xenopus Laevis Metamorphic Climax Amphibian Metamorphosis 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1997

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yun-Bo Shi
    • 1
  • Atsuko Ishizuya-Oka
    • 2
  1. 1.Laboratory of Molecular EmbryologyNational Institute of Child Health and Human DevelopmentBethesdaUSA
  2. 2.Department of AnatomyDokkyo University School of MedicineMibu, TochigiJapan

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