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FRAS1-related extracellular matrix protein 2 precursor (ECM3 homolog)


Differential localization profile of Fras1/Frem proteins in epithelial basement membranes of newborn and adult mice.

The Fras1/Frem gene family encodes for structurally similar proteins of the extracellular matrix, functionally correlated with embryonic dermal-epidermal adhesion as deduced from the appearance of sub-epidermal blisters in mouse mutants compromising the function of Fras1, Frem1 and Frem2 proteins. Mutations in the human counterparts FRAS1 and FREM2 have been detected in patients suffering from Fraser syndrome. So far, Fras1/Frem proteins have been shown to be strictly colocalized in the sublamina densa of mouse epithelial basement membranes during development. Here, we focused on the characterization of the localization pattern of the aforementioned proteins, in various parts of the adult mouse skin as well as a range of organs and tissues. Frem3 was present in a broad range of epithelial basement membranes where Fras1, Frem1 and Frem2 were missing. The localization profile of Frem3 coincided with that of collagen VII in all skin basement membranes but differed in that Frem3 was additionally found in the basement membrane of several internal epithelia, where collagen VII was absent. Fras1 and Frem2 were colocalized with Frem3 in the basement membrane of certain skin parts, underlying the thin-layer, of rapidly proliferating keratinocytes, whereas Frem1 was detected only in the basement membrane of the tail. The localization pattern of Fras1 and Frem2 was indistinguishable, while both proteins along with Frem3 could be detected even in the absence of Frem1.

MeSH Terms

  • Aging
  • Animals
  • Animals, Newborn
  • Basement Membrane
  • Collagen Type VII
  • Extracellular Matrix Proteins
  • Fluorescent Antibody Technique
  • Mice
  • Microscopy, Confocal
  • Skin