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Journal of applied genetics

Splice-acceptor site mutation in p53 gene of hu888 zebrafish line.


PMID 25183022

Abstract

The p53 transcription factor is a key tumor suppressor and a central regulator of the stress response, which has been a subject of intense research for over 30xa0years. Recently, a zebrafish line which carries splice site mutation (G>T) in intron 8 of p53 gene (p53 (hu888) ), encoding the p53 paralogue, was developed (The Zebrafish Mutation Project). To uncover molecular effects of the mutation, we raised hu888 zebrafish line to adulthood and analyzed DNA, mRNA data, and protein levels of p53 to assess their potential contribution in molecular mechanisms of the mutant fish. To obtain zebrafish individuals homozygous for the point mutation, p53 (hu888) carriers were repeatedly incrossed but only heterozygous mutants (p53 (hu888/+) ) or p53-wild type hu888 zebrafish (p53 (+/+) ) were identified in their progeny. By evaluation of p53 expression changes in the liver of mutant and wild type hu888 zebrafish as well as of Tübingen reference strain, we demonstrated that two types of splicing occurred in each case: a classical one and the alternative splicing which involves the activation of cryptic splice-acceptor site in the exon 9 of zebrafish p53 pre-mRNA. The alternative splicing event results in a deletion 12 nucleotides in the mature mRNA, and produces a shortened variant of p53 protein. Interestingly, expression of p53 protein in liver of both heterozygous and wild type hu888 zebrafish was highly reduced compared to that in the reference strain.

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