Characterization of the genomic corticotropin-releasing factor (CRF) gene from Xenopus laevis: Two members of the CRF family exist in amphibians

Mary Stenzel-Poore, K. A. Heldwein, Peter Stenzel, S. Lee, W. W. Vale

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

91 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

In mammals, the release of pituitary ACTH is stimulated by CRF. Two related peptides exist in nonmammalian vertebrates, sauvagine from frog skin and urotensin-I from the urophysis of teleost fish. Their related structures (∼50%) and capacity to stimulate the release of ACTH from mammalian and fish pituitaries has led to the proposal that sauvagine and urotensin-I are homologs of mammalian CRF. However, sauvagine does not appear to stimulate ACTH release in amphibians, although mammalian CRF (ovine) induces a potent response from amphibian pituitaries. This could indicate that the main function of sauvagine does not involve ACTH regulation and suggests that an additional CRF-like peptide exists in Amphibia. We report here the isolation of two highly homologous CRF-like genes from the frog, Xenopus laevis. Analysis of the expression pattern of these CRF-like genes revealed mRNA in splenic tissue and in the preoptic nucleus and paraventricular organ of the brain. The amino acid sequence of the mature peptide regions (1-41) of both X. laevis genes is strikingly conserved, sharing more than 93% homology with mammalian CRFs, yet only 50% homology with sauvagine. In view of the fact that these new amphibian CRF-like genes share far greater homology with mammalian CRF than that exhibited by sauvagine, we propose that the new Xenopus CRF-like genes are the amphibian counterparts to mammalian CRF. Thus, two members of the CRF family have now been identified in the Am-phibia, namely CRF and sauvagine.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1716-1724
Number of pages9
JournalMolecular Endocrinology
Volume6
Issue number10
StatePublished - 1992

Fingerprint

Corticotropin-Releasing Hormone
Xenopus laevis
Amphibians
Genes
Adrenocorticotropic Hormone
Anura
Peptides
Fishes
Preoptic Area
Xenopus
sauvagine
Vertebrates
Mammals
Amino Acid Sequence
Sheep

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism

Cite this

Characterization of the genomic corticotropin-releasing factor (CRF) gene from Xenopus laevis : Two members of the CRF family exist in amphibians. / Stenzel-Poore, Mary; Heldwein, K. A.; Stenzel, Peter; Lee, S.; Vale, W. W.

In: Molecular Endocrinology, Vol. 6, No. 10, 1992, p. 1716-1724.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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