Submitted to: Gene
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 3/21/1997
Publication Date: N/A
Interpretive Summary: Cattle produce a protein chemical commonly referred to as dynorphin. This protein is widely distributed throughout the body, including the brain, spinal cord, and the pituitary gland. Dynorphin is thought to be involved in several biological processes including pain perception, feed consumption, and locomotive behavior. It is not understood how production of this important protein is regulated in the cow. The ability of the bod to produce dynorphin is dependent upon activation of the dynorphin gene. Since the structure of this gene has not been determined, we have not had the ability to measure its activation and regulation in cattle. As a result of the present study, we report the entire primary structure for the bovine dynorphin gene. Since dynorphin is linked to behavior, pain percetption, and psychological processes, its measurement may serve as a biological indicator of stress in cattle. With this information, researchers can now determine livestock production or environment that either positively or negatively affect production of this protein.
Technical Abstract: Prodynorphin in the anterior pituitary gland appears to be processed differently than in the brain. Also, the prodynorphin derived peptides may function differently in the anterior pituitary than in the brain. To further investigate the roles of prodynorphin derived peptides in the anterior pituitary, we have determined the nucleotide (nt) sequence of the cDNA encoding bovine prodynorphin. This is the first time a complete sequence for prodynorphin cDNA has been reported. The nt and deduced amino acid (aa) sequences were compared to the known prodynorphins of other species. Northern blot analysis and RT-PCR (reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction) combined with Southern blot analysis revealed that the expression of prodynorphin mRNA in both the anterior and posterior pituitary was much lower than that in the neural tissues of the striatum and hypothalamus.