Developmental alteration and neuron-specific expression of bone morphogenetic protein-6 (BMP-6) mRNA in rodent brain

Kazuhito Tomizawa, Hideki Matsui, Eisaku Kondo, Kazuhiro Miyamoto, Masaaki Tokuda, Toshifumi Itano, Shunichiro Nagahata, Tadaatsu Akagi, Osamu Hatase

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47 Citations (Scopus)


Bone morphogenetic proteins (BMPs) are a group of proteins which induce bone formation from mesenchymal cells. The existence of BMPs in the nervous system as well as in bone tissue has recently been reported. In this study, we show that BMP-6 is neuron-specific, and describe the temporal and spatial expression patterns of BMP-6 mRNA in the developing rat and gerbil brain. Northern blot analysis showed that the BMP-6 transcript level was specifically high from newborn to 3 weeks after birth compared with those in fetal and adult rats. In situ hybridization showed that most of the neurons possessed high levels of BMP-6 mRNA in the neonatal brain, while in the adult brain, BMP-6 mRNA level was significantly decreased in most of the neurons except those in hippocampus which retained high levels. Furthermore, to show that the BMP-6 expression was specific to neurons, we induced delayed neuronal cell death and compensative glial cell proliferation in the gerbil hippocampus by transient ischemia. Our findings collectively suggest that BMP-6 is neuron-specific and may play important roles in neuronal maturation and synapse formation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)122-128
Number of pages7
JournalMolecular Brain Research
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1995


  • Bone morphogenetic protein
  • Developing brain
  • Ischemic brain
  • Neuron
  • Neurotrophic factor
  • Transforming growth factor-β superfamily

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience


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