Amelogenin sequence and enamel biomineralization in Rana pipiens.
Additional Document Info
The amelogenin gene contributes the majority of tooth enamel proteins and plays a significant role in enamel biomineralization. While several mammalian and reptilian amelogenins have been cloned and sequenced, basal vertebrate amelogenin evolution remains to be understood. In order to start elucidating the structure and function of amelogenins in the evolution of enamel, the leopard frog (Rana pipiens) was used as a model. Tissues from Rana pipiens teeth were analyzed for enamel structure and RNA extracts were processed for sequence analysis. Electron microscopy revealed that Rana pipiens enamel contains long and parallel crystals similar to mammalian enamel, while immunoreactions confirmed the site-specific localization of cross-reactive amelogenins in Rana pipiens enamel. Sequencing of amelogenin PCR products revealed a 782bp cDNA with a 546-nucleotide coding sequence encoding 181 amino acids. The homology of the newly discovered Rana pipiens amelogenin nucleotide and amino acid sequence with the published mouse amelogenin was 38.6% and 45%, respectively. These findings report the first complete amelogenin cDNA sequence in amphibians and indicate a close homology between mammalian enamel formation and Rana pipiens enamel biomineralization.