Alternative splicing of the neural cell adhesion molecule gene generates variant extracellular domain structure in skeletal muscle and brain

Joanne Thompson, G Dickson, S E Moore, H J Gower, W Putt, J G Kenimer, C H Barton, F S Walsh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

Myotube mRNA isoforms of the neural cell adhesion molecule (N-CAM) contain a novel sequence block termed muscle-specific domain 1 (MSD1), which is inserted within the extracellular coding region. Here, we report a characterization of the genomic organization of MSD1 and its pattern of expression within cellular N-CAM RNA and polypeptide species. S1 nuclease protection analyses and sequence analysis of an N-CAM human genomic clone containing MSD1 sequences indicated that MSD1 is comprised of three discrete exons of 15, 48, and 42 bp, designated MSD1a, MSD1b, and MSD1c, respectively. Although the MSD1a exon was present in a small proportion of mRNAs from both brain and muscle cells, the entire MSD1 sequence occurred predominantly in mRNAs from differentiated myotube cells. In addition, antiserum raised to a synthetic, MSD1b-encoded peptide sequence was found to stain the cell surface of human skeletal myotubes in culture, whereas myoblasts, fibroblasts, and neural cells were negative. MSD1a, MSD1b, and MSD1c sequences thus arise collectively in N-CAM mRNA and polypeptide isoforms as a result of muscle tissue-specific and developmentally regulated alternative mRNA splicing events. In addition, the occurrence of brain and muscle mRNAs containing only MSD1a indicate that alternative splicing may occur within the MSD region itself to generate further diversity.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)348-57
Number of pages10
JournalGenes & Development
Volume3
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1989

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