Nucleus-targeted Dmp1 transgene fails to rescue dental defects in Dmp1 null mice. Academic Article uri icon


  • Dentin matrix protein 1 (DMP1) is essential to odontogenesis. Its mutations in human subjects lead to dental problems such as dental deformities, hypomineralization and periodontal impairment. Primarily, DMP1 is considered as an extracellular matrix protein that promotes hydroxyapatite formation and activates intracellular signaling pathway via interacting with v3 integrin. Recent in vitro studies suggested that DMP1 might also act as a transcription factor. In this study, we examined whether full-length DMP1 could function as a transcription factor in the nucleus and regulate odontogenesis in vivo. We first demonstrated that a patient with the DMP1 M1V mutation, which presumably causes a loss of the secretory DMP1 but does not affect the nuclear translocation of DMP1, shows a typical rachitic tooth defect. Furthermore, we generated transgenic mice expressing (NLS)DMP1, in which the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) entry signal sequence of DMP1 was replaced by a nuclear localization signal (NLS) sequence, under the control of a 3.6kb rat type I collagen promoter plus a 1.6kb intron 1. We then crossbred the (NLS)DMP1 transgenic mice with Dmp1 null mice to express the (NLS)DMP1 in Dmp1-deficient genetic background. Although immunohistochemistry demonstrated that (NLS)DMP1 was localized in the nuclei of the preodontoblasts and odontoblasts, the histological, morphological and biochemical analyses showed that it failed to rescue the dental and periodontal defects as well as the delayed tooth eruption in Dmp1 null mice. These data suggest that the full-length DMP1 plays no apparent role in the nucleus during odontogenesis.

published proceedings

  • Int J Oral Sci

author list (cited authors)

  • Lin, S., Zhang, Q. i., Zhang, H., Yan, K., Ward, L., Lu, Y., & Feng, J.

citation count

  • 6

complete list of authors

  • Lin, Shu-Xian||Zhang, Qi||Zhang, Hua||Yan, Kevin||Ward, Leanne||Lu, Yong-Bo||Feng, Jian-Quan

publication date

  • January 2014