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Amino acid sequence and comparative antigenicity of chicken metallothionein.

By C C McCormick, C S Fullmer and J S Garvey


The complete amino acid sequence of metallothionein (MT) from chicken liver is reported. The primary structure was determined by automated sequence analysis of peptides produced by limited acid hydrolysis and by trypsin digestion. The comparative antigenicity of chicken MT was determined by radioimmunoassay using rabbit anti-rat MT polyclonal antibody. Chicken MT consists of 63 amino acids as compared to 61 found in MTs from mammals. One insertion (and two substitutions) occurs in the amino-terminal region, a region considered invariant among mammalian MTs. Eighteen of the 20 cysteines in chicken MT were aligned with cysteines from other mammalian sequences. Two cysteines near the carboxyl terminus are shifted by one residue due to the insertion of proline in that region. Overall, the chicken protein showed approximately equal to 68% sequence identity in a comparison with various mammalian MTs. The affinity of the polyclonal antibody for chicken MT was decreased by 2 orders of magnitude in comparison to that of a mammalian MT (rat MT isoforms). This reduced affinity is attributed to major substitutions in chicken MT in the regions of the principal determinants of mammalian MTs. Theoretical analysis of the primary structure predicted the secondary structure to consist of reverse turns and random coils with no stable beta or helix conformations. There is no evidence that chicken MT differs functionally from mammalian MTs

Topics: Research Article
Year: 1988
OAI identifier: oai:pubmedcentral.nih.gov:279537
Provided by: PubMed Central
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