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

3-Hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl coenzyme A reductase in the sea urchin embryo is developmentally regulated.

The activity of 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl-CoA (HMG-CoA) reductase, an enzyme which plays a regulatory role in the synthesis of cholesterol, dolichol, and coenzyme Q, has been measured in the developing embryo of the sea urchin. Enzyme activity increased at least 200-fold during development from the unfertilized egg to the pluteus stage embryo. Mixing experiments suggested that the low level of enzyme activity found at early stages was not due to the presence of inhibitor(s) in the egg or zygote. The enzyme in the sea urchin embryo exhibited properties different from that found in mammals: only a fraction of the activity could be solubilized from microsomes, and mild trypsinization inactivated the enzyme without releasing any of it from the microsomes in soluble form. To further study the sea urchin HMG-CoA reductase, a genomic clone was identified by hybridization to a cDNA encoding hamster HMG-CoA reductase. Sequence analysis of this clone revealed a coding region that shares a high degree of homology with the carboxyl-terminal domain of hamster HMG-CoA reductase. Analysis of sea urchin embryo HMG-CoA reductase mRNA levels using a restriction fragment derived from the genomic clone revealed a 5.5-kilobase poly(A)+ mRNA that increased 15-fold during development from the egg to the gastrula stage and then decreased 1.5-fold at the pluteus stage. Since the relative increase in HMG-CoA reductase mRNA was less than the increase in enzyme activity (15-fold versus 200-fold) factors in addition to the level of mRNA may control the activity of this enzyme during embryogenesis.[1]


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