Comparative genome analysis of cortactin and HSI: the significance of the F-actin binding repeat domain

AGSH van Rossum, E Schuuring-Scholtes, VV Seggelen, PM Kluin, E Schuuring*

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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    Abstract

    Background: In human carcinomas, overexpression of cortactin correlates with poor prognosis. Cortactin is an F-actin-binding protein involved in cytoskeletal rearrangements and cell migration by promoting actin-related protein (Arp)2/3 mediated actin polymerization. It shares a high amino acid sequence and structural similarity to hematopoietic lineage cell-specific protein I (HSI) although their functions differ considerable. In this manuscript we describe the genomic organization of these two genes in a variety of species by a combination of cloning and database searches. Based on our analysis, we predict the genesis of the actin-binding repeat domain during evolution.

    Results: Cortactin homologues exist in sponges, worms, shrimps, insects, urochordates, fishes, amphibians, birds and mammalians, whereas HSI exists in vertebrates only, suggesting that both genes have been derived from an ancestor cortactin gene by duplication. In agreement with this, comparative genome analysis revealed very similar exon-intron structures and sequence homologies, especially over the regions that encode the characteristic highly conserved F-actin-binding repeat domain. Cortactin splice variants affecting this F-actin-binding domain were identified not only in mammalians, but also in amphibians, fishes and birds. In mammalians, cortactin is ubiquitously expressed except in hematopoietic cells, whereas HSI is mainly expressed in hematopoietic cells. In accordance with their distinct tissue specificity, the putative promoter region of cortactin is different from HSI.

    Conclusions: Comparative analysis of the genomic organization and amino acid sequences of cortactin and HSI provides inside into their origin and evolution. Our analysis shows that both genes originated from a gene duplication event and subsequently HSI lost two repeats, whereas cortactin gained one repeat. Our analysis genetically underscores the significance of the F-actin binding domain in cytoskeletal remodeling, which is of importance for the major role of HSI in apoptosis and for cortactin in cell migration.

    Original languageEnglish
    Article number15
    Number of pages14
    JournalBMC Genomics
    Volume6
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 14-Feb-2005

    Keywords

    • PROTEIN-TYROSINE KINASE(S)
    • SQUAMOUS-CELL CARCINOMAS
    • CHROMOSOME 11Q13 REGION
    • PRIMARY BREAST-CANCER
    • EMS1 GENE
    • HEMATOPOIETIC LINEAGE
    • MEDIATED APOPTOSIS
    • MAJOR SUBSTRATE
    • ARP2/3 COMPLEX
    • POOR-PROGNOSIS

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