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Brain Res Mol Brain Res. 2001 Jun 20;90(2):125-34.

Quantitative mRNA analysis of five C-terminal splice variants of the human 5-HT4 receptor in the central nervous system by TaqMan real time RT-PCR.

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Neuroscience Research, GlaxoSmithKline, Third Avenue, Essex, CM19 5AW, Harlow, UK.


5-HT4 receptors mediate several physiological effects of 5-HT, particularly in the central nervous system (CNS), heart and gut. Recently, several C-terminal splice variants of the human 5-HT4 (h5-HT4) receptor have been described, namely h5-HT4(a), h5-HT4(b), h5-HT4(c), h5-HT4(d) and h5-HT4(g). Previous tissue distribution data suggest some degree of specificity in the mRNA expression patterns of the different h5-HT4 receptor splice variants. However, comparison of the mRNA expression profiles of these splice variants is difficult due to the non-quantitative methods used, and in addition, there is very limited data on the expression of each splice variant in human CNS subregions. In the present study we used a single technique, TaqMan real time quantitative RT-PCR, to investigate the mRNA distribution of 5-HT4 receptor C-terminal splice variants in multiple human CNS and peripheral tissues. Using a primer/probe set that amplified all 5-HT4 splice variants (5-HT4pan), the highest CNS expression of 5-HT4 receptor mRNA was observed in basal ganglia, amygdala and hippocampus, consistent with previous studies. h5-HT4(a), h5-HT4(b), h5-HT4(c) and h5-HT4(g) were predominantly expressed in various CNS tissues, compared to most peripheral tissues, but there were differences in expression levels and distribution patterns of each variant. The distribution profile and expression levels observed for the 5-HT4(b) splice variant were virtually identical to that obtained with the 5-HT4pan primer/probe set, whilst the other splice variants were expressed at much lower levels and with different expression patterns obtained with both 5-HT4(b) and 5-HT4pan primer/probe sets. Highest levels of 5-HT4(g) were observed in the hypothalamus and cortex, whilst the 5-HT4(a) variant was highest in the amygdala. 5-HT4(c) expression was highest in the pituitary gland whilst 5-HT4(d) mRNA was only detected in the small intestine at very low levels and not in the CNS. In conclusion, we have shown quantitative differences in the mRNA distribution profiles of the 5-HT4 receptor C-terminal splice variants in human CNS subregions as well as peripheral tissues. In addition, our data suggests that the h5-HT4(b) variant is the most predominant form of the 5-HT4 receptor in humans.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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