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Mamm Genome. 1992;3(5):274-80.

The mouse male germ cell-specific gene Tpx-1: molecular structure, mode of expression in spermatogenesis, and sequence similarity to two non-mammalian genes.

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Department of Microbiology and Immunology, University of Miami School of Medicine, Florida 33101.


Tpx-1 is a testis-specific gene that maps on mouse Chromosome (Chr) 17. The deduced TPX-1 protein shows 55% amino acid sequence similarity to acidic epididymal glycoprotein (AEG), assumed to be involved in sperm maturation. In the present study, we determined the genomic structure of the mouse Tpx-1 gene and the cellular localization of its transcripts. The gene was found to contain ten exons, with an unusually large intron (approximately 17.0 kilobase pairs) between exons 8 and 9. In situ hybridization of testicular sections showed that Tpx-1 is transcribed abundantly by haploid male germ cells. A computer search of protein databases revealed that deduced TPX-1/AEG proteins have significant sequence similarity (approximately 30%) to two non-mammalian proteins: "pathogenesis-related" proteins 1 of tobaccos, and venom sac proteins of white-face hornets, known as Dol m V. Amino acid residues encoded by exon 10 of the Tpx-1 gene and most of those encoded by exon 9 were absent in the non-mammalian proteins. This result suggests that the ancestor of Tpx-1 acquired exons 9 and 10 after its divergence from the ancestors of the plant and insect proteins.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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