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Protein Sci. 2004 Oct;13(10):2573-7.

The C terminus of the nuclear protein NuMA: phylogenetic distribution and structure.

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Department of Basic Medical Sciences, Purdue University, 625 Harrison Street, LYNN, West Lafayette, IN 47907-2026, USA.


The C terminus of the nuclear protein NuMA, NuMA-CT, has a well-known function in mitosis via its proximal segment, but it seems also involved in the control of differentiation. To further investigate the structure and function of NuMA, we exploited established computational techniques and tools to collate and characterize proteins with regions similar to the distal portion of NuMA-CT (NuMA-CTDP). The phylogenetic distribution of NuMA-CTDP was examined by PSI-BLAST- and TBLASTN-based analysis of genome and protein sequence databases. Proteins and open reading frames with a NuMA-CTDP-like region were found in a diverse set of vertebrate species including mammals, birds, amphibia, and early teleost fish. The potential structure of NuMA-CTDP was investigated by searching a database of protein sequences of known three-dimensional structure with a hidden Markov model (HMM) estimated using representative (human, frog, chicken, and pufferfish) sequences. The two highest scoring sequences that aligned to the HMM were the extracellular domains of beta3-integrin and Her2, suggesting that NuMA-CTDP may have a primarily beta fold structure. These data indicate that NuMA-CTDP may represent an important functional sequence conserved in vertebrates, where it may act as a receptor to coordinate cellular events.

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