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Eur J Biochem. 1995 Sep 1;232(2):473-7.

A nuclear protein, synthesized in growth-arrested human hepatoblastoma cells, is a novel member of the short-chain alcohol dehydrogenase family.

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Department of Physiology and Biochemistry, University of Pisa, Italy.


We have described a protein (Hep27) [Donadel, G., Garzelli, C., Frank, R. & Gabrielli, F. (1991) Eur. J. Biochem. 195, 723-729] which is synthesized and accumulated in the nucleus of human hepatoblastoma (HepG2) cells, following growth arrest induced by butyrate treatment. The synthesis of Hep27 is inhibited in cells that, released from the butyrate block, have resumed DNA synthesis. This report describes the cloning and the characterization of the cDNA coding for the Hep27 protein. The translation of the Hep27 cDNA predicts an amino acid sequence that can be aligned with those of the known short-chain alcohol dehydrogenase enzymes (SCAD) family. Both the recognition of enzymic functional domains and the similarity with the SCAD family of proteins of several amino acid blocks throughout the molecule, strongly suggest that this protein is a new member of the SCAD family. In agreement with its nuclear localization Hep27 has a region similar to the bipartite nuclear-targeting sequence. The study of Hep27 mRNA expression and protein synthesis suggests the existence of a regulation at the post-transcriptional level. The possible nuclear role of the Hep27 protein is discussed.

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