Indexed on: 19 Nov '04Published on: 19 Nov '04Published in: The Journal of neuroscience : the official journal of the Society for Neuroscience
Defects of either anosmin-1 or fibroblast growth factor receptor 1 (FGFR1) are known to underlie hereditary Kallmann's syndrome (KS), a human disorder of olfactory and gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) neuronal ontogeny. Here, we report a functional interaction between anosmin-1 and the FGFR1-FGF2-heparan sulfate complex, leading to amplified responses in the FGFR1 signaling pathway. In human embryonic GnRH olfactory neuroblasts, wild-type anosmin-1, but not proteins with loss-of-function KS mutations, induces neurite outgrowth and cytoskeletal rearrangements through FGFR1-dependent mechanisms involving p42/44 and p38 mitogen-activated protein kinases and Cdc42/Rac1 activation. Furthermore, anosmin-1 enhances FGF2 signaling specifically through FGFR1 IIIc in heterologous BaF3 lymphoid cells in a heparan sulfate-dependent manner. Our study provides compelling evidence for anosmin-1 as an isoform-specific co-ligand modulator of FGFR signaling that amplifies and specifies FGFR1 signaling responses during human nervous system development and defines a mechanism underlying the link between autosomal and X-linked KS.