Salmivirta,K., Gullberg,D., Hirsch,E., Altruda,F., and, Ekblom,P.
Integrin subunit expression associated with epithelial-mesenchymal interactions during murine tooth development.
Developmental Dynamics 205:104-113 (1996).
The initial information for patterning of early tooth development resides in the epithelium. Later, this is shifted to the mesenchyme. The process is governed by multiple epithelial- mesenchymal interactions, Integrins are cell surface receptors for extracellular matrix components. Expression of the beta(5) integrin subunit alternates between epithelium and mesenchyme during early tooth development (Yamada et al,  Int, J. Dev. Biol, 38: 553-556), By immunofluorescence and in situ hybridization we show here a remarkably similar oscillating expression pattern of the alpha(v) integrin subunit. This subunit is known to associate with beta(5), and we therefore suggest that integrin alpha(v) beta(5) is involved in epithelial-mesenchymal interactions during tooth development, We also demonstrate that the developing tooth epithelium expresses the alpha(6), beta(1) and beta(4) subunits. The laminin receptors alpha(6) beta(1) and alpha(6) beta(4) may thus in part mediate the effect of basement membranes on tooth epithelial development. Interestingly, the enamel knot region expressed very little alpha(6) integrin subunit, whereas some expression was seen transiently in the condensing mesenchyme, During early tooth development, integrins possessing the alpha(6), subunit might also be involved in cell-cell interactions independently of laminins.
Last edited 10.12.2004 by P.N.