• RXRα;
  • conditional inactivation;
  • cervical alterations;
  • Cre/loxP;
  • homeostasis


Retinoids play critical regulatory roles in the maintenance of mammalian epithelia and exert pleiotropic effects through nuclear receptors. RXRα, which is a ligand-dependent transcription factor, is the most abundant RXR isotype expressed in cervical epithelia, and may play a crucial role in cervix development and homeostasis. We have previously described a mouse model to induce the temporally controlled epithelia-specific somatic mutagenesis of RXRα alleles in epidermis. To study the role of RXRα in cervical homeostasis, we ablated RXRα in cervix epithelial cells of adult mice. We found that such mutant mice develop ectocervical atrophy with moderate epidermoid metaplasia. In addition, we report a simultaneous increase of cell proliferation and apoptosis levels accompanied by alteration in the expression of genes involved in both processes. genesis 46:19–28, 2008. © 2008 Wiley-Liss, Inc.