A comparative study of mRNA and protein expression of the autoimmune regulator gene (Aire) in embryonic and adult murine tissues
Article first published online: 19 JAN 2004
Copyright © 2004 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
The Journal of Pathology
Volume 202, Issue 2, pages 180–187, February 2004
How to Cite
Adamson, K., Pearce, S., Lamb, J., Seckl, J. and Howie, S. (2004), A comparative study of mRNA and protein expression of the autoimmune regulator gene (Aire) in embryonic and adult murine tissues. J. Pathol., 202: 180–187. doi: 10.1002/path.1493
- Issue published online: 19 JAN 2004
- Article first published online: 19 JAN 2004
- Manuscript Accepted: 2 OCT 2003
- Manuscript Revised: 11 JUN 2003
- Manuscript Received: 23 SEP 2002
- Medical Research Council (UK)
- The Wellcome Trust
- autoimmune polyendocrine syndrome type 1;
Autoimmune polyendocrine syndrome type 1 (APS1) is a rare autosomal recessive human disorder caused by mutations in the autoimmune regulator gene (AIRE) and characterized by multiple autoimmune diseases. As reports of the tissue expression pattern of the murine Aire gene are discordant, a comprehensive survey of Aire expression was undertaken in adult and embryonic tissues at the mRNA and protein levels using real-time RT-PCR, in situ hybridization, and immunohistochemistry. In the adult, the highest Aire mRNA expression was in the thymus. All the other tissues investigated expressed Aire mRNA at low levels, but it was barely detectable in the adrenal gland. Aire protein expression was observed in the thymus, spleen, and lymph nodes. A common pattern was observed in other tissues, with staining in epithelial cells. An exception to this was the gut, where staining was seen in the mucin spaces. In embryonic tissue, Aire mRNA and protein expression was detected from E14.5 in the thymus. In the fetal liver, unlike the adult, staining was observed at E14.5 and decreased towards term. Thus, Aire is expressed in immunologically relevant tissues and in a restricted number of extra-immunological tissues in the adult. Furthermore, the presence of Aire protein is reported in extra-thymic tissues of the embryo. Copyright © 2004 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.