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Neuroscience. 1994 Jun;60(4):907-26.

Differential localization of SCG10 and p19/stathmin messenger RNAs in adult rat brain indicates distinct roles for these growth-associated proteins.

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Ethel Percy Andrus Gerontology Center, University of Southern California, Los Angeles 90089-0191.


SCG10 is a developmentally regulated, growth-associated protein (GAP) that was isolated as a neuronal marker of the neural crest. It was recently found that SCG10 shares an amino acid sequence similarity with a phosphoprotein named stathmin or p19 of which phosphorylation is induced by nerve growth factor and vasoactive intestinal peptide in PC12 cells and striatal neurons, respectively. While expression of SCG10 messenger RNA dramatically decreases during postnatal development, significant levels of expression still persist into adulthood. To examine possible roles of SCG10 in the adult brain, we examined the distribution of messenger RNAs encoding SCG10 and p19/stathmin as well as GAP-43 in adult rat brain sections by northern blot, RNase protection and in situ hybridization. SCG10 transcripts are found at high levels in long-distance projecting neurons and neurons with extensive dendritic arbors, while p19/stathmin messenger RNA was weakly distributed over most brain areas. Both messenger RNAs are expressed in neuronal subpopulations but not in glia, although the overall distribution of the transcripts of these two structurally related genes is distinct. The spatial and temporal expression profiles of SCG10 messenger RNA is comparable to that of GAP-43, another neuronal GAP, in the developing nervous system, however the expression of SCG10 messenger RNA in the adult brain is distinct from that of GAP-43, especially in the hippocampus and brain stem, where the dentate granule cells and sensory and motor neurons of brainstem express SCG10 but not GAP-43. These results suggest that SCG10 may have a unique role in the neuronal growth-response of subsets of mature neurons, and that SCG10 plays a stathmin-like function at nerve terminals, to which it may be rapidly transported by means of membrane attachment due to a hydrophobic domain present in SCG10 but not in p19/stathmin. This suggests that SCG10 may play a role in structural plasticity in the adult brain.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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