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Peptides. 2005 Mar;26(3):385-93.

Cholecystokinin mRNA in Atlantic herring, Clupea harengus--molecular cloning, characterization, and distribution in the digestive tract during the early life stages.

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Department of Biology, University of Bergen, Allégt 41, N-5007 Bergen, Norway.


The mRNA of the peptide hormone cholecystokinin (CCK) was isolated from juvenile Atlantic herring, Clupea harengus, by RT-PCR. The open reading frame encodes a 137 amino acid-long precursor protein. The peptide sequence of herring CCK-8, DYMGWMDF, is identical to that of higher vertebrates and elasmobranchs, and contains methionine in the sixth position from the C-terminus, which has not been reported previously in teleosts. Expression analysis by in situ hybridization shows that positive endocrine-like cells were mainly located in the pyloric caeca and to a less extent in the rectum of the juvenile. A few positive cells were also found in the pyloric portion of the stomach and the intestine. CCK cells were present in all the larvae examined from the day of hatching onwards. Although the CCK cells were scattered throughout the whole midgut, no signals were detected in either the foregut or the hindgut. Since herring larvae have a straight gut, the distribution pattern of CCK cells seems to be reflected in the anatomy of the gut.

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