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Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2000 Jun 16;272(3):912-21.

Structural and functional characterizations of the 5'-flanking region of the mouse glucagon receptor gene: comparison with the rat gene.

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INSERM U376, CHU Arnaud de Villeneuve, Montpellier, France.


A putative proximal promoter was defined previously for the mouse glucagon receptor (GR) gene. In the present study, a distal promoter was characterized upstream from a novel non-coding exon revealed by the 5'-rapid amplification of cDNA ends from mouse liver tissue. The 5'-flanking region of the mouse GR gene was cloned up to 6 kb and the structural organization was compared to the 5' untranslated region of the rat gene cloned up to 7 kb. The novel exon, separated by an intron of 3.8 kb from the first coding exon, displayed a high homology (80%) with the most distal of the two untranslated exons found in the 5' region of the rat GR gene. The mouse distal promoter region, extending up to -1 kb from the novel exon, displayed 85% identity with the rat promoter. Both contain a highly GC-rich sequence with five putative binding sites for Sp1, but no consensus TATA or CAAT elements. To evaluate basal promoter activities, 5'-flanking sequences of mouse or rat GR genes were fused to a luciferase reporter gene and transiently expressed in a mouse and in a rat cell line, respectively or in rat hepatocytes. Both mouse and rat distal promoter regions directed a high level of reporter gene activity. Deletion of the Sp1 binding sites region or mutation of the second proximal Sp1 sequence markedly reduced the distal promoter activity of the reporter gene. The mouse proximal promoter activity was 2- to 3-fold less than the distal promoter, for which no functional counterpart was observed in the similar region of the rat gene.

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