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Gene Review

myf6-a  -  myogenic factor 6 (herculin)

Xenopus laevis

Synonyms: Xmrf4, herculin, mrf4, myf6, myf6a
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High impact information on MRF4

  • In adult frogs, MRF4 RNA is detectable only in skeletal muscle (whereas MyoD, unexpectedly, is also expressed at low levels in the heart) [1].
  • This implies that MRF4 is not involved in the commitment or early differentiation of muscle cells [1].
  • During embryonic development, MRF4 RNA appears later than MyoD, at a time when the embryonic musculature already shows many differentiated features [1].
  • A Xenopus MRF4 cDNA has been isolated and encodes an amino acid sequence with 72% identity to rat MRF4 [1].
  • In Xenopus, previous studies showed that the transcripts of the myogenic regulatory factor (MRF) MRF4 accumulate during skeletal muscle differentiation, but nothing is known about the accumulation of XMRF4 protein during myogenesis [2].

Biological context of MRF4

  • These results fail to support the hypothesis that MRF4 gene expression is triggered or is significantly up-regulated in myogenic cells by signals from motor axons [3].
  • This suggests that MRF4 expression may be induced by innervation and hence may be involved in mediating transcriptional responses to innervation and that myogenin expression may compensate for the down-regulation of MRF4 gene [4].
  • The up-regulation of myogenin by denervation suggests that myogenin expression may compensate for the down-regulation of MRF4 gene [5].

Anatomical context of MRF4

  • MRF4 mRNA was detected later, just before the young myotube stage, and was strongly expressed during the different stages of the maturation of myotubes [6].

Associations of MRF4 with chemical compounds


Analytical, diagnostic and therapeutic context of MRF4


  1. Expression of the myogenic gene MRF4 during Xenopus development. Jennings, C.G. Dev. Biol. (1992) [Pubmed]
  2. Expression of MRF4 protein in adult and in regenerating muscles in Xenopus. Becker, C., Della Gaspera, B., Guyot, M., Donsez, E., Armand, A.S., Charbonnier, F., Launay, T., Chanoine, C. Dev. Dyn. (2003) [Pubmed]
  3. MRF4 gene expression in Xenopus embryos and aneural myofibers. Ataian, Y., Owens, J., Hinterberger, T. Dev. Dyn. (2003) [Pubmed]
  4. Neural and hormonal control of expression of myogenic regulatory factor genes during regeneration of Xenopus fast muscles: myogenin and MRF4 mRNA accumulation are neurally regulated oppositely. Nicolas, N., Mira, J.C., Gallien, C.L., Chanoine, C. Dev. Dyn. (2000) [Pubmed]
  5. Long-term denervation modulates differentially the accumulation of myogenin and MRF4 mRNA in adult Xenopus muscle. Nicolas, N., Mira, J.C., Gallien, C.L., Chanoine, C. Neurosci. Lett. (1999) [Pubmed]
  6. Localization of Myf-5, MRF4 and alpha cardiac actin mRNAs in regenerating Xenopus skeletal muscle. Nicolas, N., Mira, J.C., Gallien, C.L., Chanoine, C. C. R. Acad. Sci. III, Sci. Vie (1998) [Pubmed]
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