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Vet Immunol Immunopathol. 2011 Apr 15;140(3-4):329-34. doi: 10.1016/j.vetimm.2011.01.012. Epub 2011 Feb 1.

Molecular structure, phylogenetic analysis, tissue distribution, and function characterization of interferon-γ-inducible lysosomal thiol reductase (GILT) gene in sheep (Ovis aries).

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Jiangsu Province Key Laboratory for Molecular and Medical Biotechnology, Life Sciences College, Nanjing Normal University, Nanjing 210046, China.


Interferon-γ-inducible-lysosomal thiol reductase (GILT) plays a key role in the processing and presentation of MHC class II-restricted antigen (Ag) by catalyzing disulfide bond reduction. In this study, a sheep cDNA, sGILT, encoding GILT protein was isolated from the spleen cDNA library of Ovis aries. It codes for a deduced protein of 244 amino acids with a putative molecular weight of 27.6 kDa, which has all the typical structural features of GILT protein including an active-site CXXC motif, a GILT signature sequence CQHGX(2)ECX(2)NX(4)C, and 5 conserved cysteines. Sequence comparison indicated the amino acid sequence of sGILT showed high identity to cow GILT (93.03%). Phylogenetic analysis showed that sGILT and cow GILT shared the greatest homology. The result of real-time PCR suggested that sGILT mRNA was expressed in a tissue-specific manner and obviously up-regulated in splenocytes and PBMCs after induction with lipopolysaccharide (LPS). Recombinant sGILT fused with His(6) tag was efficiently expressed in Escherichia coli BL21 (DE3) and purified by Ni-NTA affinity chromatography. Its expression was confirmed by SDS-PAGE and Western blotting analysis. Thiol reductase activity was assessed using antibody as the substrate. These results suggest that sGILT has the activity of disulfide bond reduction and indicate that sheep also express a protein that has been found to maintain first line of innate immune defense at basal level.

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