Comparative immunocytochemical localization of lysyl oxidase (LOX) and the lysyl oxidase-like (LOXL) proteins: changes in the expression of LOXL during development and growth of mouse tissues

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SummaryLysyl oxidase (LOX) and lysyl oxidase-like (LOXL) are extracellular enzymes that deaminate peptidyl lysyl residues involved in the cross-linking of fibrillar collagens and elastin. While LOX is required for the survival of newborn mice, the role of LOXL during development remains unclear. Studies have shown that the same cell types express LOX and LOXL in the same tissues, but no functional differences have been established. We have compared the immunohistochemical localization of LOX and LOXL in various tissues from normal, young adult mice. LOX and LOXL were co-localized in the skin, aorta, heart, lung, liver and cartilage, but were localized to different areas in the kidney, stomach, small intestine, colon, retina, ovary, testis and brain. LOXL expression was further examined in tissues from different developmental stages. In embryonic mice (10.5–14.5 dpc), LOXL immunostaining was abundant in the heart, liver, intestine, and neural tube. LOXL was present in most major organs in late fetal (16.5 dpc) and newborn mice, but generally diminished as animals aged. Immunoreactivity was significantly reduced in the heart, lung, kidney and liver of 2 year-old mice, but remained prevalent in the skin and tongue. LOX and LOXL were also found in the nuclei of cells in a number of tissues. These results indicate that LOXL has a role during mouse development and in the maintenance of adult tissues.

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