Molecular characterization of nephron progenitors and their early epithelial derivative structures in the nephrogenic zone of the canine fetal kidney
Nephron progenitors (NPs) and nephrogenesis have been extensively studied in mice and humans and have provided insights into the mechanisms of renal development, disease and possibility of NP-based therapies. However, molecular features of NPs and their derivatives in the canine fetal kidney (CFK) remain unknown. This study was focused to characterize the expression of potential markers of canine NPs and their derivatives by immuno-fluorescence and western blot analysis. Transcription factors (TFs) SIX1 and SIX2, well-characterized human NP markers, were expressed in NPs surrounding the ureteric bud in the CFK. Canine NPs also expressed ITGA8 and NCAM1, surface markers previously used to isolate NPs from the mouse and human fetal kidneys. TF, PAX2 was detected in the ureteric bud, NPs and their derivative structures such as renal vesicle and S-shaped body. This study highlights the similarities in dog, mouse and human renal development and characterizes markers to identify canine NPs and their derivatives. These results will facilitate the isolation of canine NPs and their functional characterization to develop NP-based therapies for canine renal diseases.
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