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Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1991 Oct 1;88(19):8337-41.

Cloning and primary structure of a human islet isoform of glutamic acid decarboxylase from chromosome 10.

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Department of Medicine, University of Washington, Seattle 98195.


Glutamic acid decarboxylase (GAD; glutamate decarboxylase, L-glutamate 1-carboxy-lyase, EC, which catalyzes formation of gamma-aminobutyric acid from L-glutamic acid, is detectable in different isoforms with distinct electrophoretic and kinetic characteristics. GAD has also been implicated as an autoantigen in the vastly differing autoimmune disease stiff-man syndrome and insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus. Despite the differing GAD isoforms, only one type of GAD cDNA (GAD-1), localized to a syntenic region of chromosome 2, has been isolated from rat, mouse, and cat. Using sequence information from GAD-1 to screen a human pancreatic islet cDNA library, we describe the isolation of an additional GAD cDNA (GAD-2), which was mapped to the short arm of human chromosome 10. Genomic Southern blotting with GAD-2 demonstrated a hybridization pattern different from that detected by GAD-1. GAD-2 recognizes a 5.6-kilobase transcript in both islets and brain, in contrast to GAD-1, which detects a 3.7-kilobase transcript in brain only. The deduced 585-amino acid sequence coded for by GAD-2 shows less than 65% identity to previously published, highly conserved GAD-1 brain sequences, which show greater than 96% deduced amino acid sequence homology among the three species. The function of this additional islet GAD isoform and its importance as an autoantigen in insulin-dependent diabetes remain to be determined.

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