Xenopus laevis contains two nonallelic preproinsulin genes. cDNA cloning and evolutionary perspective

A. R. Shuldiner, S. Phillips, C. T. Roberts, D. LeRoith, J. Roth

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41 Scopus citations


We undertook the cloning of preproinsulin cDNAs from the South African clawed toad, Xenopus laevis, in order to study the role of insulin during embryogenesis in this species. We found that X. laevis contains two different preproinsulin cDNAs, both of which code for peptides containing 106 amino acids of typical structure but which differ by eight amino acids: one in the signal peptide, two in the B-chain, four in the C-peptide, and one in the A-chain. Southern blot analysis indicates that the two preproinsulin cDNAs identified correspond to two different nonallelic genes which we believe arose through a recent gene duplication within the amphibian radiation possibly during the development of tetraploidy in this species. Both genes are expressed, since we have recently identified the two corresponding insulins in pancreatic extracts of adult toads (Shuldiner, A.R., Bennett, C., Robinson, E.A., and Roth, J. (1989) Endocrinology, in press). These cDNAs represent the first amphibian preproinsulin sequences to be elucidated.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)9428-9432
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number16
StatePublished - 1989
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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