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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Two homologs of the Drosophila polarity gene frizzled ( fz) are widely expressed in mammalian tissues.

The frizzled ( fz) locus of Drosophila encodes a protein (Fz) with a seven-transmembrane-domain profile characteristic of G-protein-coupled receptors. In Drosophila, genetic evidence suggests that Fz functions to transmit and transduce polarity signals in epidermal cells during hair and bristle development. We have isolated from a UMR 106 rat osteosarcoma cell library a cDNA (fz-1) encoding a predicted 641-residue protein ( Fz-1) with 46% homology with Drosophila Fz. We also identified a second cDNA (fz-2) encoding a protein (Fz-2) of 570 amino acids that is 80% homologous with Fz-1, with divergence most evident in the extracellular domains. Southern blots of rat genomic DNA indicated that fz-1 and fz-2 represent distinct genes. Northern analysis revealed the presence of a single fz-1 mRNA (4.7 kilobases) and two fz-2 mRNAs (2.5 and 4.5 kilobases) in rat tissues. The fz-1 and fz-2 genes are widely expressed in rat tissues with the highest steady-state levels of mRNA in kidney, liver, heart, uterus, and ovary. fz-1 and -2 mRNA levels were greater in neonatal than in corresponding adult tissues. Treatment of UMR 106 cells with bone resorbing agents including parathyroid hormone, epidermal growth factor, and 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D3 produced increases in fz-1 and -2 mRNA levels. We suggest that hormonal induction of Fz proteins in osteoblasts serves to promote intercellular signaling required for functional responses such as increased bone resorption. Fz-1 and Fz-2 may represent products of a gene family whose members serve as transducers or intercellular transmitters of signals required for normal morphogenesis and/or differentiated function in diverse tissues.[1]


  1. Two homologs of the Drosophila polarity gene frizzled (fz) are widely expressed in mammalian tissues. Chan, S.D., Karpf, D.B., Fowlkes, M.E., Hooks, M., Bradley, M.S., Vuong, V., Bambino, T., Liu, M.Y., Arnaud, C.D., Strewler, G.J. J. Biol. Chem. (1992) [Pubmed]
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