In tetrapods, only one gene encoding a somatostatin precursor has been identified so far. The present study reports the characterization of the cDNA clones that encode two distinct somatostatin precursors in the brain of the frog Rana ridibunda. The cDNAs were isolated by using degenerate oligonucleotides based on the sequence of the central region of somatostatin to screen a frog brain cDNA library. One of the cDNAs encodes a 115-amino acid protein (prepro-somatostatin-14; PSS1) that exhibits a high degree of structural similarity with the mammalian somatostatin precursor. The other cDNA encodes a 103-amino acid protein (prepro-[Pro2, Met13]somatostatin-14; PSS2) that contains the sequence of the somatostatin analog (peptide SS2) at its C terminus, but does not exhibit appreciable sequence similarity with PSS1 in the remaining region. In situ hybridization studies indicate differential expression of the PSS1 and PSS2 genes in the septum, the lateral part of the pallium, the amygdaloid complex, the posterior nuclei of the thalamus, the ventral hypothalamic nucleus, the torus semicircularis and the optic tectum. The somatostatin variant SS2 was significantly more potent (4-6 fold) than somatostatin itself in displacing [125I-Tyr0, D-Trp8] somatostatin-14 from its specific binding sites. The present study indicates that the two somatostatin variants could exert different functions in the frog brain and pituitary. These data also suggest that distinct genes encoding somatostatin variants may be expressed in the brain of other tetrapods.
|Number of pages||6|
|Journal||Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America|
|Publication status||Published - Oct 29 1996|
- Neuropeptide precursors
- Nucleotide sequence
ASJC Scopus subject areas