Gene Regulatory Networks and Signaling Pathways in Palatogenesis and Cleft Palate: A Comprehensive Review

Hyung Jin Won, Jin Woo Kim, Hyung Sun Won, Jeong Oh Shin

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Palatogenesis is a complex and intricate process involving the formation of the palate through various morphogenetic events highly dependent on the surrounding context. These events comprise outgrowth of palatal shelves from embryonic maxillary prominences, their elevation from a vertical to a horizontal position above the tongue, and their subsequent adhesion and fusion at the midline to separate oral and nasal cavities. Disruptions in any of these processes can result in cleft palate, a common congenital abnormality that significantly affects patient’s quality of life, despite surgical intervention. Although many genes involved in palatogenesis have been identified through studies on genetically modified mice and human genetics, the precise roles of these genes and their products in signaling networks that regulate palatogenesis remain elusive. Recent investigations have revealed that palatal shelf growth, patterning, adhesion, and fusion are intricately regulated by numerous transcription factors and signaling pathways, including Sonic hedgehog (Shh), bone morphogenetic protein (Bmp), fibroblast growth factor (Fgf), transforming growth factor beta (Tgf-β), Wnt signaling, and others. These studies have also identified a significant number of genes that are essential for palate development. Integrated information from these studies offers novel insights into gene regulatory networks and dynamic cellular processes underlying palatal shelf elevation, contact, and fusion, deepening our understanding of palatogenesis, and facilitating the development of more efficacious treatments for cleft palate.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1954
Issue number15
StatePublished - Aug 2023

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 by the authors.


  • cleft palate/lip
  • congenital disorder
  • genetic network
  • palate development


Dive into the research topics of 'Gene Regulatory Networks and Signaling Pathways in Palatogenesis and Cleft Palate: A Comprehensive Review'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this