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Expression sites of two byssal protein genes of Mytilus galloprovincialis
Miki, D.; Takeuchi, Y.; Inoue, K.; Odo, S. (1996). Expression sites of two byssal protein genes of Mytilus galloprovincialis. Biol. Bull. 190(2): 213-217
In: Biological Bulletin. Marine Biological Laboratory: Lancaster. ISSN 0006-3185, more
Peer reviewed article  

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  • Miki, D.
  • Takeuchi, Y.
  • Inoue, K.
  • Odo, S.

    Mussels form byssal threads that can attach tenaciously to wet and irregular surfaces. The byssus consists of a fibrous collagenous core, and at least two types of polyphenolic proteins surround it. One of these proteins, designated Mgfp-1, coats the collagenous core; the other, designated Mgfp-2, is the major component of the terminal adhesive plaque of byssal threads. Both proteins contain 3,4-dihydroxyphenylalanine (DOPA) in their primary sequences. In this study, the sites of expression of the genes encoding the polyphenolic proteins were investigated in Mytilus galloprovincialis. By northern blot analysis, we found that the expression of both genes is foot-specific. Northern blot analysis of RNA isolated from the distal end and the remaining proximal portion of the foot indicated that the Mgfp-2 gene is expressed primarily in the distal part, whereas Mgfp-1 expression occurs in both parts. In situ hybridization indicated that the Mgfp-1 gene transcript is localized in the accessory gland along the ventral groove of the foot, and the Mgfp-2 gene transcript is localized in the phenol gland near the foot apex. Thus, it was shown that tissues expressing Mgfp-1 and Mgfp-2 are located around the ventral groove in an arrangement appropriate for byssus formation.

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