, Volume 36, Issue 3, pp 451-459
Date: 27 Mar 2009

Molecular cloning of rhamnose-binding lectin gene and its promoter region from snakehead Channa argus

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Lectins are sugar-binding proteins that mediate pathogen recognition and cell–cell interactions. A rhamnose-binding lectin (RBL) gene and its promoter region have been cloned and characterized from snakehead Channa argus. From the transcription initiation site, snakehead rhamnose-binding lectin (SHL) gene extends 2,382 bp to the end of the 3′ untranslated region (UTR), and contains nine exons and eight introns. The open reading frame (ORF) of the SHL transcript has 675 bp which encodes 224 amino acids. The molecular structure of SHL is composed of two tandem repeat carbohydrate recognition domains (CRD) with 35% internal identity. Analysis of the gene organization of SHL indicates that the ancestral gene of RBL may diverge and evolve by exon shuffling and gene duplication, producing new forms to play their own roles in various organisms. The characteristics of SHL gene 5′ flanking region are the presence of consensus nuclear factor of interleukin 6 (NF-IL6) and IFN-γ activation (GAS) sites. The results provide indirect evidence that up-regulation of SHL expression may be induced in response to inflammatory stimuli, such as lipopolysaccharide (LPS), interleukin 6 (IL-6), and interferon gamma (IFN-γ). The transcript of SHL mRNA was expressed in the head kidney, posterior kidney, spleen, liver, intestine, heart, muscle, and ovary. No tissue-specific expressive pattern is different from reported STLs, WCLs, and PFLs, suggesting that different types of RBLs exist in species-specific fish that have evolved and adapted to their surroundings.