Comparative genomics on Wnt5a and Wnt5b genes
- Masuko Katoh
- Masaru Katoh
Published online on: Friday, April 1, 2005
Canonical WNTs (WNT2, WNT2B, etc) activate the β-catenin-TCF pathway to induce carcinogenesis, while non-canonical WNTs (WNT5A, WNT11, etc) activate the planar cell polarity (PCP) pathway to induce cell motility and metastasis. WNT5A gene at chromosome 3p14.3 and WNT5B gene at chromosome 12p13.33 are paralogs within the human genome. Here, we identified and characterized rat Wnt5a and Wnt5b genes by using bioinformatics. Rat Wnt5a and Wnt5b genes, consisting of five exons, were identified within AC095764.5 and AC112027.3 genome sequences, respectively. Rat Wnt5a (380 aa) and Wnt5b (359 aa) were secreted proteins with 24 conserved Cys residues and four Asn-linked glycosylation sites, which showed 75.8% total-amino-acid identity. Nucleotide position 182586-183836 of AC095764.5 genome sequence and nucleotide position 161044-159886 of AC121764.2 genome sequence were identified as evolutionarily conserved rat Wnt5a and human WNT5A promoters, respectively. Nucleotide identity between rat Wnt5a and human WNT5A promoters was 72.5%. E47 and NKX2-5-binding sites were evolutionarily conserved among rat Wnt5a, mouse Wnt5a, and human WNT5A promoters. On the other hand, rodent Wnt5b promoters and human WNT5B promoter were significantly divergent. Up-regulation of Wnt5b during rodent adipocytic differentiation does not simply indicate the implication of WNT5B in human adipogenesis. Real susceptibility gene for type 2 diabetes, associated with SNP within intron 3 of human WNT5B gene (IMS-JST024404), remains to be identified. This is the first report on rat Wnt5a and Wnt5b genes as well as on comparative genomics for Wnt5a and Wnt5b orthologs.