Protooncogene c-kit, a transmembrane tyrosine kinase receptor, was recently shown to map to the dominant white spotting locus (W) of the mouse. W mutations affect melanogenesis, gametogenesis and hematopoiesis during development and in adult life. In order to determine the regulation of the c-kit gene in cell differentiation, we investigated its expression during the differentiation of F9 cells. Undifferentiated F9 cells and F9 cells treated with retinoic acid (RA) alone or dbcAMP alone showed little expression of c-kit mRNA if any. The subsequent addition of dbcAMP to F9 cells treated with RA markedly increased the expression of c-kit mRNA. Furthermore, the effect of dbcAMP on c-kit expression is reversible. In differentiated cells treated with RA, c-kit gene expression is induced by agents such as forskolin or theophylline, which are known to elevate cellular cAMP level. These results indicate that the expression of the c-kit gene is regulated by the level of intracellular cAMP in differentiated F9 cells induced by RA.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cell Biology