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Gene. 2001 Dec 27;281(1-2):43-51.

Molecular cloning, genetic mapping, and expression analysis of four zebrafish c/ebp genes.

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National Human Genome Research Institute, National Institutes of Health, 49 Convent Drive, Room 3A18, Bethesda, MD 20892, USA.


The CCAAT/enhancer binding protein family (C/EBP) are transcription factors that play integral roles in the development and function of many organ systems, including hematopoietic cells, adipose tissues, and liver. We have identified and characterized putative zebrafish orthologs of mammalian C/EBP alpha, beta, gamma, and delta using low-stringency hybridization screening and computer searches of the GenBank EST database. c/ebpa and g were mapped within 1 cM of each other on linkage group (LG) 7, syntenic with human CEBPA and G genes on chromosome 19. c/ebpb was mapped to LG8, and c/ebpd was mapped to LG24, on the same LG as a recently identified unique c/ebp in zebrafish, c/ebp1. The mapping of these genes established new syntenic relationships between LG8 and human chromosome 20, extended existing synteny between LG7 and human chromosome 19, and confirmed the synteny between LG24 and human chromosome 8. In addition, these syntenies between zebrafish and human chromosomes are also conserved in the mouse genome. To characterize the expression of these genes, RNA in situ hybridization in embryos of wild type and a hematopoietic mutant, cloche, was performed. The results showed that zebrafish c/ebpa, b, g, and d were expressed in many embryonic tissues. c/ebpa and b were expressed in a subset of hematopoietic cells in a region consistent with myeloid expression. In addition, there was expression of c/ebpa and b in the liver and c/ebpa, b, and d in regions of the gastrointestinal tract. The expression of the c/ebps may serve as important markers for analysis of myelopoiesis, hepatic development, and other developmental processes in the future.

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