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Brain Res Mol Brain Res. 1998 Jun 15;57(2):181-92.

Characterization of a new beta-spectrin gene which is predominantly expressed in brain.

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Laboratory of DNA Technology, Kazusa DNA Research Institute, Chiba, Japan.


We recently identified a gene which shows high similarity to the beta-spectrin gene but with a different chromosomal location from either of the two known beta-spectrin genes [T. Nagase, K.-I. Ishikawa, D. Nakajima, M. Ohira, N. Seki, N. Miyajima, A. Tanaka, H. Kotani, N. Nomura, O. Ohara, Prediction of the coding sequences of unidentified human genes: VII. The complete sequences of 100 new cDNA clones from brain which can code for large proteins in vitro, DNA Res. 4 (1997) 141-150]. In order to further characterize this new spectrin gene and its product, we isolated the rat counterpart of this gene and analyzed it in terms of its protein coding sequence, the tissue distribution of its mRNA and the product, and the regional distribution of the mRNA and the product in the brain. The results indicated that this gene was most abundantly transcribed in the brain and neurons were the predominant cell-type to express this gene. In particular, Purkinje cells were the richest in this gene product, and this new form of beta-spectrin was found more prominently in the dendrites than in the cell bodies. Since the expression pattern and the subcellular localization of this gene product were quiet distinct from those of the two beta-spectrin isoforms already characterized, this beta-spectrin gene would play an important role in neuronal membrane skeleton although it has been overlooked to date.

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