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Nuclear factor one (NFI) transcription factors are implicated in both brain development and cancer in mice and humans and play an essential role in glial differentiation. NFI expression is reduced in human astrocytoma samples, particularly those of higher grade, whereas over-expression of NFI protein can induce the differentiation of glioblastoma cells within human tumour xenografts and in glioblastoma cell lines in vitro. These data indicate that NFI proteins may act as tumour suppressors in glioma. To test this hypothesis, we generated complex mouse genetic crosses involving six alleles to target gene deletion of known tumour suppressor genes that induce endogenous high-grade glioma in mice, and overlaid this with loss of function Nfi mutant alleles, Nfia and Nfib, a reporter transgene and an inducible Cre allele. Deletion of Nfi resulted in reduced survival time of the mice, increased tumour load and a more aggressive tumour phenotype than observed in glioma mice with normal expression of NFI. Together, these data indicate that NFI genes represent a credible target for both diagnostic analyses and therapeutic strategies to combat high-grade glioma. © The Author(s) 2020. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email:


Kok-Siong Chen, Zorana Lynton, Jonathan W C Lim, Thomas Robertson, Richard M Gronostajski, Jens Bunt, Linda J Richards. NFIA and NFIB function as tumour suppressors in high-grade glioma in mice. Carcinogenesis. 2021 Apr 17;42(3):357-368

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PMID: 33346791

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