Differential display: Identifying genes involved in cardiomyocyte proliferation

Stephania Cormier-Regard, Louisiana State University
Daniel B. Egeland, Louisiana State University
Vivien J. Tannoch, Louisiana State University
William C. Claycomb, Louisiana State University


An estimated 15,000 different mRNA species are expressed in a typical mammalian cell. The differential expression of mRNAs in both a temporal and cell-specific manner determines the fate of the cell and creates the organism. Analysis of this differential gene expression has become a central aim of many laboratories attempting to understand the mechanisms underlying various biological processes. Currently, we are using a technique called differential display to analyze the differential expression of genes in cardiomyocytes. Differential display is a rapid and powerful technique that was introduced by Liang and Pardee in 1992. Since that time, it has been successfully applied by several groups, and it is quickly becoming a standard method for studying differential gene expression. Here, we present a detailed article discussing the differential display methodology and how we have utilized it to identify potential genes involved in cardiomyocyte proliferation. Furthermore, we have provided a list of materials and supplied examples of data obtained, in an effort to allow the reader to perform the technique with success in their own laboratory.