Rat placental lactogen II gene: characterization of gene structure and placental-specific expression. Academic Article uri icon


  • Rat placental lactogen II (rPLII) was the first described member of the rat PRL-like placental gene family in which nine novel proteins have now been identified. In this article, we present data on the isolation and characterization of the rPLII gene. Two genomic clones, GC I (18.5 kb) and GC II (9.4 kb), were isolated from an EMBL3 Sprague-Dawley rat liver genomic DNA library. GC I, which was used for further analysis, contains the entire coding region and extensive 5' and 3' flanking information. The rPLII gene, estimated to be 5.4 kb in size, has the same five-exon and four-intron structure and identical intron/exon splice sites and types as the rPRL gene. A major transcription start site 58 bp upstream of the initiator methionine codon and several minor sites 1-3 bp 5' and 3' of this site were identified by primer extension of day 18 placental messenger RNA. The rPLII gene has been localized to chromosome 17, using a series of hybrid cell lines derived from mouse hepatoma cells (MWTG3) and adult rat hepatocytes; this is the same chromosome designation as the PRL gene itself and other cloned placental members of this gene family. Luciferase reporter constructs containing 5' flanking DNA sequences were tested in transient transfection assays in the rat choriocarcinoma cell line, Rcho, and the rat pituitary GC cell line. Both a 4.5- and 3-kb 5' flanking sequence supported luciferase expression in the Rcho but not the GC cells. A 765-bp fragment showed no activity in either cell type. Transient transgenic mice, generated with the 3-kb 5' rPLII/luciferase construct, expressed varying amounts of luciferase expression in the placenta.

published proceedings

  • Endocrinology

author list (cited authors)

  • Shah, P., Sun, Y., Szpirer, C., & Duckworth, M. L.

citation count

  • 14

complete list of authors

  • Shah, P||Sun, Y||Szpirer, C||Duckworth, ML

publication date

  • March 1998