Neural differentiation potentiated by the leukaemia inhibitory factor through STAT3 signalling in mouse embryonal carcinoma cells
LIF is a cytokine playing a key role in the regulation of self-renewal and maintenance of undifferentiated state in mouse ES cells. The response of pluripotent cells to LIF is mediated mainly by the STAT3 and ERK signalling pathways. Recently, we have shown that LIF potentiated retinoic acid-induced neural differentiation of pluripotent mouse embryonal carcinoma P19 cells. Here we demonstrate that pro-neural effects of LIF and partially also of retinoic acid are abolished by inhibition of the JAK2->STAT3 signalling pathway. In contrast, inhibition of the MEK1->ERK signalling pathway does not exhibit any effect. These results suggest that in neurogenic regions, cooperative action of LIF and other neuro-differentiation-inducing factors, such as retinoic acid, may be mediated by the STAT3 signalling pathway.