Isolation and characterization of six different chicken actin genes. Academic Article uri icon


  • Genes representing six different actin isoforms were isolated from a chicken genomic library. Cloned actin cDNAs as well as tissue-specific mRNAs enriched in different actin species were used as hybridization probes to group individual actin genomic clones by their relative thermal stability. Restriction maps showed that these actin genes were derived from separate and nonoverlapping regions of genomic DNA. Of the six isolated genes, five included sequences from both the 5' and 3' ends of the actin-coding area. Amino acid sequence analysis from both the NH2- and COOH-terminal regions provided for the unequivocal identification of these genes. The striated isoforms were represented by the isolated alpha-skeletal, alpha-cardiac, and alpha-smooth muscle actin genes. The nonmuscle isoforms included the beta-cytoplasmic actin gene and an actin gene fragment which lacked the 5' coding and flanking sequence; presumably, this region of DNA was removed from this gene during construction of the genomic library. Unexpectedly, a third nonmuscle chicken actin gene was found which resembled the amphibian type 5 actin isoform (J. Vandekerckhove, W. W. Franke, and K. Weber, J. Mol. Biol., 152:413-426). This nonmuscle actin type has not been previously detected in warm-blooded vertebrates. We showed that interspersed, repeated DNA sequences closely flanked the alpha-skeletal, alpha-cardiac, beta-, and type 5-like actin genes. The repeated DNA sequences which surround the alpha-skeletal actin-coding regions were not related to repetitious DNA located on the other actin genes. Analysis of genomic DNA blots showed that the chicken actin multigene family was represented by 8 to 10 separate coding loci. The six isolated actin genes corresponded to 7 of 11 genomic EcoRI fragments. Only the alpha-smooth muscle actin gene was shown to be split by an EcoRI site. Thus, in the chicken genome each actin isoform appeared to be encoded by a single gene.

published proceedings

  • Mol Cell Biol

altmetric score

  • 3

author list (cited authors)

  • Chang, K. S., Zimmer, W. E., Bergsma, D. J., Dodgson, J. B., & Schwartz, R. J.

citation count

  • 0

complete list of authors

  • Chang, KS||Zimmer, WE||Bergsma, DJ||Dodgson, JB||Schwartz, RJ

publication date

  • November 1984