A complete nucleotide sequence of a 4.2-kb genomic fragment containing the Drosophila lamin gene and flanking sequences is presented. Primer extension experiments and sequence analysis revealed that transcription starts from a single promoter. The lamin maternal 2.8-kb transcript and the 3.0-kb zygotic transcript are generated from two alternative polyadenylation sites. The gene contains four exons. The first intron is 7 bp upstream of the first AUG site. The two other introns are located within the α-helical rod domain of the protein: one in coil 1B in the 42-amino-acid domain that is absent in vertebrate cytoplasmic intermediate filament proteins and the other in coil 2 at a position different from intron positions within the vertebrate intermediate filament genes. Together with the sequence homology analysis, the data suggest either that the lamin gene was the ancestral gene of intermediate filament genes or that the lamin gene diverged from other intermediate filament genes early in evolution.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This work was supported by the fund for basic science, administrated by the Israel Academy of Sciences and Humanities.