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J Biol Chem. 1991 Apr 5;266(10):6365-9.

Molecular cloning and expression of the cDNA for the alpha 1A-adrenergic receptor. The gene for which is located on human chromosome 5.

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Department of Pathology, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, North Carolina 27710.


Pharmacological and molecular cloning studies have demonstrated heterogeneity of alpha 1-adrenergic receptors. We have now cloned two alpha 1-adrenergic receptors from a rat cerebral cortex cDNA library, using the hamster alpha 1B-adrenergic receptor as a probe. The deduced amino acid sequence of clone RA42 encodes a protein of 560 amino acids whose putative topology is similar to that of the family of G-protein-coupled receptors. The primary structure though most closely resembles that of an alpha 1-adrenergic receptor, having approximately 73% amino acid identity in the putative transmembrane domains with the previously isolated hamster alpha 1B receptor. Analysis of the ligand binding properties of RA42 expressed in COS-7 cells with a variety of adrenergic ligands demonstrates a unique alpha 1-adrenergic receptor pharmacology. High affinity for the antagonist WB4101 and agonists phenylephrine and methoxamine suggests that cDNA RA42 encodes the alpha 1A receptor subtype. Northern blot analysis of various rat tissues also shows the distribution expected of the alpha 1A receptor subtype with abundant expression in vas deferens followed by hippocampus, cerebral cortex, aorta, brainstem, heart and spleen. The second alpha 1-adrenergic receptor cloned represents the rat homolog of the hamster alpha 1B subtype. Expression of mRNA for this receptor is strongly detected in liver followed by heart, cerebral cortex, brain stem, kidney, lung, and spleen. This study provides definitive evidence for the existence of three alpha 1-adrenergic receptor subtypes.

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