Requirement of Math1 for Secretory Cell Lineage Commitment in the Mouse Intestine

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Science  07 Dec 2001:
Vol. 294, Issue 5549, pp. 2155-2158
DOI: 10.1126/science.1065718

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The mouse small intestinal epithelium consists of four principal cell types deriving from one multipotent stem cell: enterocytes, goblet, enteroendocrine, and Paneth cells. Previous studies showed that Math1, a basic helix-loop-helix (bHLH) transcription factor, is expressed in the gut. We find that loss ofMath1 leads to depletion of goblet, enteroendocrine, and Paneth cells without affecting enterocytes. Colocalization ofMath1 with Ki-67 in some proliferating cells suggests that secretory cells (goblet, enteroendocrine, and Paneth cells) arise from a common progenitor that expresses Math1, whereas absorptive cells (enterocytes) arise from a progenitor that isMath1-independent. The continuous rapid renewal of these cells makes the intestinal epithelium a model system for the study of stem cell regeneration and lineage commitment.

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