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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

A loss-of-function mutation in natriuretic peptide receptor 2 ( Npr2) gene is responsible for disproportionate dwarfism in cn/cn mouse.

The achondroplastic mouse is a spontaneous mutant characterized by disproportionate dwarfism with short limbs and tail due to disturbed chondrogenesis during endochondral ossification. These abnormal phenotypes are controlled by an autosomal recessive gene (cn). In this study, linkage analysis using 115 affected mice of F2 progeny mapped the cn locus on an approximately 0.8-cM region of chromosome 4, and natriuretic peptide receptor 2 ( Npr2) gene was identified as the most potent candidate for the cn mutant in this region. This gene encodes a receptor for C-type natriuretic peptide (CNP) that positively regulates longitudinal bone growth by producing cGMP in response to CNP binding to the extracellular domain. Sequence analyses of the Npr2 gene in cn/cn mice revealed a T to G transversion leading to the amino acid substitution of highly conserved Leu with Arg in the guanylyl cyclase domain. In cultured chondrocytes of cn/cn mice, stimulus with CNP did not significantly increase intracellular cGMP concentration, whereas it increased in +/+ mice. Transfection of the mutant Npr2 gene into COS-7 cells also showed similar results, indicating that the missense mutation of the Npr2 gene in cn/cn mice resulted in disruption of the guanylyl cyclase activity of the receptor. We therefore concluded that the dwarf phenotype of cn/cn mouse is caused by a loss-of- function mutation of the Npr2 gene, and cn/cn mouse will be a useful model to further study the molecular mechanism regulating endochondral ossification by CNP/natriuretic peptide receptor B signal.[1]


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