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Biochim Biophys Acta. 2002 Sep 27;1577(3):377-83.

Characterisation and expression analysis of the WDR9 gene, located in the Down critical region-2 of the human chromosome 21.

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  • 1Human Genetics Research Group, IDIBAPS, Faculty of Medicine, University of Barcelona, Casanova 143, Spain.


We report the isolation and characterisation of the gene WDR9 (WD Repeat 9), located in the Down Syndrome critical region-2 (DCR-2) from the human chromosome 21. This gene spans 125 kb of genomic sequence and is organised in 41 exons and 40 introns. The WDR9 cDNA has a size of 13 kb and encodes for a putative protein of 2269 amino acids with a potential location in the nucleus. Expression analysis in different human adult tissues and in cultured cell lines indicates that the gene has several tissue-specific transcripts. The more significant protein signatures in the WDR9 protein sequence are for WD repeats, bromodomain, beta-ketoacyl synthases, and ribonucleoprotein (RNP). The WDR9 protein has a high similarity with the Mus musculus neuronal differentiation protein (NDRP) and a region of similarity with the region of the Yotiao protein that has been proposed to bind the NR1 subunit of the NMDA receptor. The presence of protein-protein interaction domains as such the WD repeats, and the similarity of the WDR9 protein to regulatory proteins suggest a potential involvement in some of the clinical features associated to the DCR-2.

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