We report here that loss of the Sprouty2 gene (also known as Spry2) in mice resulted in enteric nerve hyperplasia, which led to esophageal achalasia and intestinal pseudo-obstruction. Glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) induced hyperactivation of ERK and Akt in enteric nerve cells. Anti-GDNF antibody administration corrected nerve hyperplasia in Sprouty2-deficient mice. We show Sprouty2 to be a negative regulator of GDNF for the neonatal development or survival of enteric nerve cells.
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