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Developmental and nutritional regulation of the messenger RNAs for fatty acid synthase, malic enzyme and albumin in the livers of embryonic and newly-hatched chicks

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Summary

The mRNAs for fatty acid synthase and malic enzyme were almost undetectable in total RNA extracted from the livers of 16-day old chick embryos. Both mRNAs increased in abundance between the 16th day of incubation and the day of hatching. In neonates, fatty acid synthase mRNA level was dependent on nutritional status, increasing slowly if the chicks were starved and rapidly if they were fed. The abundance of malic enzyme mRNA decreased in starved neonatal chicks and increased in fed ones. When neonates were first fed and then starved, starvation caused a large decrease in the abundance of both mRNAs. Conversely, feeding, after a period of starvation, resulted in a substantial increase in both mRNAs. The relative abundances of fatty acid synthase and malic enzyme mRNAs correlated positively with relative rates of enzyme synthesis. Thus, nutritional and hormonal regulation of the synthesis of these two ‘lipogenic’ enzymes is exerted primarily at a pre-translational level.

The abundance of albumin mRNA decreased significantly between the 16th day of incubation and the day of hatching but did not change thereafter in fed or starved chicks. The relative stability of albumin mRNA levels after hatching attests to the selectivity of the nutritional regulation of fatty acid synthase and malic enzyme mRNAs. The decrease in albumin mRNA which occurred between 16 days of incubation and hatching contrasts with the increase in albumin mRNA sequences which occurred during late gestation in the fetal rat (20). High levels of albumin in the chick embryo may be related to the lack of an analogue of mammalian alpha-fetoprotein in birds.

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Abbreviations

PIPES:

piperazine-N,N-bis (2 ethanesulfonic acid)

SDS:

sodium dodecyl sulfate

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Postdoctoral Fellow of the Medical Research Council of Canada.

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Morris, S.M., Winberry, L.K., Fisch, J.E. et al. Developmental and nutritional regulation of the messenger RNAs for fatty acid synthase, malic enzyme and albumin in the livers of embryonic and newly-hatched chicks. Mol Cell Biochem 64, 63–68 (1984). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00420929

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00420929

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