Generation of a Magoh conditional allele in mice.Genesis 2014; 52(8):752-8G
Magoh encodes a core component of the exon junction complex (EJC), which binds mRNA and regulates mRNA metabolism. Magoh is highly expressed in proliferative tissues during development. EJC components have been implicated in several developmental disorders including TAR syndrome, Richieri-Costa-Pereira syndrome, and intellectual disability. Existing germline null Magoh mice are embryonic lethal as homozygotes and perinatal lethal as heterozygotes, precluding detailed analysis of embryonic and postnatal functions. Here, we report the generation of a new genetic tool to dissect temporal and tissue-specific roles for Magoh in development and adult homeostasis. This Magoh conditional allele has two loxP sites flanking the second exon. Ubiquitous Cre-mediated deletion of the floxed allele in a heterozygous mouse (Magoh(del/+)) causes 50% reduction of both Magoh mRNA and protein. Magoh(del/+) mice exhibit both microcephaly and hypopigmentation, thus phenocopying germline haploinsufficient Magoh mice. Using Emx1-Cre, we further show that conditional Magoh deletion in neural progenitors during embryonic development also causes microcephaly. We anticipate this novel conditional allele will be a valuable tool for assessing tissue-specific roles for Magoh in mammalian development and postnatal processes.