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DNA Cell Biol. 1992 Jul-Aug;11(6):481-7.

Cloning and sequencing of the rat preproepidermal growth factor cDNA: comparison with mouse and human sequences.

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Department of Medicine, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, NY 10029.


We have cloned and sequenced the cDNA corresponding to the rat preproepidermal growth factor (ppEGF) mRNA. The cDNA contained 4,801 nucleotides, similar to that reported for the mouse (4,749 nucleotides) and the human mRNAs (4,871 nucleotides). The predicted protein sequence would contain 1,133 amino acids, smaller than that reported for the mouse (1,217 amino acids) and the human sequences (1,207 amino acids). The results of the sequencing of several cDNA clones suggested the existence of more than one structural gene for ppEGF. In addition, there was an occurrence of alternative splicing events, resulting in deletions of entire exons from the mature mRNA. These alternative splicing events do not create frameshift mutations but cause a deletion of one or more of the "EGF-like" repeat units from the ppEGF. There is approximately the same homology between the rat and mouse amino acid sequences both in the EGF region and in the other regions of the ppEGF protein. We conclude that, because of this conservation of homology, there may be an important function performed by these other regions of the ppEGF besides their function as a precursor for the EGF protein.

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