• Munc 30;
  • homeodomain;
  • paired-like;
  • expression;
  • development;
  • RT—PCR;
  • in situ hybridization

The temporal and spatial expression of transcription factors is of critical importance in the organization and specification of cellular phenotypes in the anterior structures of the head and in particular the CNS. In order to identify further genes which might play a role in such patterning we have cloned the Munc 30 gene, a new isoform of the paired -like homeodomain gene Ptx2. Using RT—PCR, Munc 30 expression was detected in embryonic head and brain and in a wide panel of adult mouse tissues including brain, spinal cord, eye and tongue. In situ hybridization showed the expression domain of Munc 30 to be localized to a wide variety of developing organs and primordial tissues of the embryo with extremely high levels of expression in Rathke's pouch, tooth primordia and the hypothalamus. In situ RT—PCR was used to localize gene expression to cells of the cortex, striatum and thalamus of adult mouse forebrain. Together, these expression patterns suggest that this gene may not only play a critical role in patterning of anterior structures of the head during development but may also be responsible for the maintenance and/or modulation of cell identity in adult.