Expression and synthesis of alternatively spliced variants of Dp71 in adult human brain
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Transcripts encoding the 70-75 kDa C-terminal protein product of the dystrophin gene (Dp71) are alternatively spliced to generate multiple protein products in a number of adult human tissues. In this report, reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction was used to clone and characterize a subpopulation of truncated Dp71 transcripts in adult human brain tissue which did not contain exons 71-74, resulting in an in-frame deletion of 330 bp encoding the syntrophin-binding domain. These truncated Dp71 transcripts are also alternatively spliced for exon 78. Immunoblot analysis, using dystrophin-specific C-terminal antibodies directed against epitopes in either exon 77 (MANDRA1), or 78 (1461), identified full-length dystrophin, Dp140 and Dp71, in total protein lysates from adult human brain tissue. In addition, a minor immunoreactive protein of approximately 58 kDa was also identified (designated Dp71 big up tri, open(110)). The observation that a monoclonal antibody directed against epitopes within exons 73-74 (MANEX7374A) failed to detect this 58 kDa protein provides definitive evidence that Dp71 big up tri, open(110) is derived from Dp71 transcripts deleted for the syntrophin-binding domain. These results, as well as previous findings, demonstrate that alternative splicing of Dp71 in the human brain generates a variety of mRNA transcripts encoding distinct protein variants of Dp71, and further supports the use of exon-specific antibodies in characterizing these variants. The presence of these Dp71 protein variants in brain tissue points to their interaction with various cellular proteins and their involvement in different cellular functions.
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