Chromosomal locations have been assigned to seven members of the TGF-β superfamily using an interspecific mouse backcross. Probes for the Tgfb-1, -2, and -3, Bmp-2a and -3, and Vgr-1 genes recognized only single loci, whereas the Bmp-2b probe recognized two independently segregating loci (designated Bmp-2b1 and Bmp-2b2). The results show that the seven members of the TGF-β superfamily map to eight different chromosomes, indicating that the TGF-β family has become widely dispersed during evolution. Five of the eight loci (Tgfb-1, Bmp-2a, Bmp-2b1, Bmp-2b2, Vgr-1) mapped near mutant loci associated with connective tissue and skeletal disorders, raising the possibility that at least some of these mutations result from defects in TGF-β-related genes.
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