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Nature. 1986 Jan 2-8;319(6048):73-7.

Human N-myc is closely related in organization and nucleotide sequence to c-myc.


N-myc, a cellular gene related to the c-myc proto-oncogene, was originally identified on the basis of its very frequent amplification and overexpression in a restricted set of tumours, most notably human neuroblastomas. That N-myc may have a causal role in the genesis of these tumours is suggested by the observation that in the rat embryo fibroblast co-transformation assay it has a transforming potential similar to that of c-myc. The apparent structural and functional homology of N-myc and c-myc suggests that they may be members of the same protooncogene family. However, despite these apparent similarities, expression of the two genes appears to be dramatically different with respect to tumour specificity, as well as tissue and developmental stage specificity. To further elucidate the common and unique aspects of N-myc and c-myc gene structure and function in normal and transformed cells, we have determined the organization of human N-myc and the nucleotide sequence of its messenger product, and we report here that N-myc and c-myc have a similar intron/exon structure and that their protein products share regions of significant homology.

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