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Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2004 Jul 27;101(30):11052-7. Epub 2004 Jul 8.

GTF2IRD2 is located in the Williams-Beuren syndrome critical region 7q11.23 and encodes a protein with two TFII-I-like helix-loop-helix repeats.

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  • 1Department of Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology, Yale University, 266 Whitney Avenue, New Haven, CT 06520, USA.


Williams-Beuren syndrome (also known as Williams syndrome) is caused by a deletion of a 1.55- to 1.84-megabase region from chromosome band 7q11.23. GTF2IRD1 and GTF2I, located within this critical region, encode proteins of the TFII-I family with multiple helix-loop-helix domains known as I repeats. In the present work, we characterize a third member, GTF2IRD2, which has sequence and structural similarity to the GTF2I and GTF2IRD1 paralogs. The ORF encodes a protein with several features characteristic of regulatory factors, including two I repeats, two leucine zippers, and a single Cys-2/His-2 zinc finger. The genomic organization of human, baboon, rat, and mouse genes is well conserved. Our exon-by-exon comparison has revealed that GTF2IRD2 is more closely related to GTF2I than to GTF2IRD1 and apparently is derived from the GTF2I sequence. The comparison of GTF2I and GTF2IRD2 genes revealed two distinct regions of homology, indicating that the helix-loop-helix domain structure of the GTF2IRD2 gene has been generated by two independent genomic duplications. We speculate that GTF2I is derived from GTF2IRD1 as a result of local duplication and the further evolution of its structure was associated with its functional specialization. Comparison of genomic sequences surrounding GTF2IRD2 genes in mice and humans allows refinement of the centromeric breakpoint position of the primate-specific inversion within the Williams-Beuren syndrome critical region.

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