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J Mol Biol. 1988 Dec 5;204(3):497-505.

Isolation of the chick myosin alkali light chain gene expressed in embryonic gizzard muscle and transitional expression of the light chain gene family in vivo.

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Department of Biochemistry, Japanese Foundation for Cancer Research, Tokyo.


A chick embryonic myosin alkali light chain L23 gene that is expressed transiently at embryonic stages in chick skeletal, cardiac and smooth muscles and in brain continuously from embryo to adult stages, was isolated and characterized. Sequence analysis showed that the exonic sequence of this gene was identical with that of embryonic myosin light chain mRNA except for one base replacement. This gene is a single gene of 5200 bases, which is divided into seven exons by six introns, and the positions of inserts of all the introns are well-conserved as in the skeletal and cardiac muscle myosin alkali light chain genes. Therefore, this embryonic myosin light chain gene can be classified as a member of the myosin alkali light chain gene family, and these three genes may have originated from a common ancestral gene. Transcription of the embryonic light chain gene starts from the same initiation site 33 bases upstream from ATG in embryonic muscle tissues and brain. Comparison of the nucleotide sequence around the promotor region of the embryonic myosin light chain gene with the corresponding regions of the skeletal and cardiac myosin light chain genes showed that the 11-base consensus sequence (TCCTATTTATAG) is present about 100 bases upstream from the transcription initiation site in each gene.

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