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Hum Genet. 2001 Sep;109(3):271-8.

DNA sequence comparison of human and mouse retinitis pigmentosa GTPase regulator (RPGR) identifies tissue-specific exons and putative regulatory elements.

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Max Planck Institute for Molecular Genetics, Ihnestrasse 73, 14195 Berlin, Germany.


Retinitis pigmentosa 3 (RP3) is a progressive retinal degeneration due to mutations in the X-linked RPGR gene. Transcription studies in human and mouse tissues have revealed ubiquitously expressed transcripts and also an exceptional high number of tissue-specific alternative splice variants. However, regulation of tissue-specific expression and splicing is unclear, but this is of particular interest as mutations in this ubiquitously expressed gene lead to severe retinal degeneration, while other tissues are unaffected. To elucidate the conservation pattern of RPGR and to identify additional tissue-specific exons and putative regulatory elements we performed comparative genomic sequencing of the human and mouse RPGR gene. Each of the genes spans a region of nearly 59 kb, and all previously identified exons are conserved between the two species. DNA sequence comparison identified 28 conserved sequence elements (CSEs) in introns, upstream of exon 1, within the promotor region, and downstream of the most 3' exon. Some of the intronic CSEs flank tissue-specific exons and therefore may represent important regulatory elements for alternative splicing. Comparative northern blot hybridization of ubiquitous and tissue-specific RPGR probes identified high molecular weight transcripts with similar expression patterns in both human and mouse. These transcripts range from 6 to 15 kb in size and suggest the presence of additional transcribed sequences within RPGR. Our cross-species sequence comparison enables us to define candidate regions that may explain these large transcripts and will therefore contribute to the understanding of RPGR expression and splicing.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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