Gap junctional communications play a crucial role for organogenesis including cartilage development. Pannexin 3 (Panx3) belongs to the new member of the gap junction pannexin family. However, the expression and function of Panx3 have not been cleared. Here, we demonstrate that Panx3 is expressed in cartridge, and regulates chondrocyte differentiation in vitro cell culture. Our observations indicate that Panx3 plays a crucial role for the differentiation of chondrocyte, and suggest that Panx3 is a key molecule for cartilage development.
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