Hybrid cell extinction and re-expression of Oct-3 function correlates with differentiation potential

T. Shimazaki, H. Okazawa, H. Fujii, M. Ikeda, K. Tamai, R. D.G. McKay, M. Muramatsu, H. Hamada

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71 Citations (Scopus)


The Oct-3 gene is expressed in highly undifferentiated cells and is implicated in mammalian early embryogenesis. We have generated a series of hybrid cells between pluripotent embryonal carcinoma cells (Oct-3+) and fibroblasts (Oct-3-), and have studied the regulation and function of Oct-3. Upon fusion, the hybrid cells differentiated to nestin+/Brn-2+ cells resembling neuroepithelial stem cells. Expression of Oct-3 was extinguished at the transcriptional level in all the hybrid cells examined. The Oct-3 modulating activity required for the Oct-3-mediated enhancer activation was also extinguished. When the Oct-3 transactivating function was introduced into the hybrid cells, they transformed into morphologically distinct nestin-/Brn-2- cells ('revertants'). When the 'revertant' cells subsequently lost Oct-3 expression, they differentiated back to nestin+/Brn-2+ cells. The close correlation between the phenotypic changes and the gain/loss of Oct-3 function indicates that Oct-3 can induce dedifferentiation of the neural cells.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4489-4498
Number of pages10
JournalEMBO Journal
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 1993
Externally publishedYes


  • Embryogenesis
  • Hybrid cell extinction
  • Oct-3
  • POU

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Molecular Biology
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)


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