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J Biol Chem. 1989 Feb 15;264(5):2890-7.

Isolation and characterization of the gene and cDNA encoding human mitochondrial creatine kinase.

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  • 1Department of Biological Chemistry, Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, Missouri 63110.

Erratum in

  • J Biol Chem 1989 Sep 25;264(27):16332.


Creatine kinase (CK; EC isoenzymes play prominent roles in energy metabolism. Nuclear genes encode three known CK subunits: cytoplasmic muscle (MCK), cytoplasmic brain (BCK), and mitochondrial (MtCK). We have isolated the gene and cDNA encoding human placental MtCK. By using a dog heart MCK cDNA-derived probe, the 7.0-kb EcoRI fragment from one cross-hybridizing genomic clone was isolated and its complete nucleotide sequence determined. A region of this clone encoded predicted amino acid sequence identical to residues 15-26 of the human heart MtCK NH2-terminal protein sequence. The human placental MtCK cDNA was isolated by hybridization to a genomic fragment encoding this region. The human placental MtCK gene contains 9 exons encoding 416 amino acids, including a 38-amino acid transit peptide, presumably essential for mitochondrial import. Residues 1-14 of human placental MtCK cDNA-derived NH2-terminal sequence differ from the human heart MtCK protein sequence, suggesting that tissue-specific MtCK mRNAs are derived from multiple MtCK genes. RNA blot analysis demonstrated abundant MtCK mRNA in adult human ventricle and skeletal muscle, low amounts in placenta and small intestine, and a dramatic increase during in vitro differentiation induced by serum-deprivation in the non-fusing mouse smooth muscle cell line, BC3H1. These findings demonstrate coordinate regulation of MtCK and cytosolic CK gene expression and support the phosphocreatine shuttle hypothesis.

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