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In the present report, we investigated zinc, copper and metallothionein (MT) contents in zebrafish oocytes and embryos. Our results demonstrate that the metal content increases during oocytes maturation. Zinc increases from 30 ng/oocyte (stage-1 oocytes) to 100 ng/oocyte (stage-3 oocytes); copper varied from 1 ng/oocyte (stage-1 oocytes) to 3.5 ng/oocyte(More)
Reverse transcriptase-mediated PCR has been used to isolate two distinct metallothionein (MT) cDNA species from RNA extracted from icefish liver, namely MT-I and MT-II. Northern blot analysis with these cDNA species revealed that significant endogenous levels of MT mRNA were present in liver tissues of normal animals despite the fact that no MT protein(More)
The presence of serotonin in sea urchin eggs has been ascertained by high-performance liquid chromatography and thin-layer chromatography analysis of tissue-free bioamines. The results show the presence of both serotonin and 5-methoxytryptamine. The role of these substances in the cell division process has been studied by using the serotonin antagonists,(More)
In vertebrates, a large proportion of genes is organized in gene families. Paralogous gene groups generated by gene duplication are related by homology, high degree of sequence identity and similar structural architecture of their products. Aspartic proteinases form a widely distributed protein superfamily including cathepsins, pepsins, renin and napsin. In(More)
The recognition of the important role of the polar habitats in global climate changes has awakened great interest in the evolutionary biology of polar organisms. They are exposed to strong environmental constraints, and it is important to understand how they have adapted to cope with these challenges and to what extent adaptations may be upset by current(More)
Structural studies show that fish and mammalian metallothioneins are endowed of distinctive features. In particular, the ninth cysteine residue present in the alpha domain of fish metallothionein is shifted of two positions with respect to the mammalian metallothionein, introducing a conformational modification in the protein structure. In addition, the(More)
To investigate the regulation of Chionodraco hamatus metallothionein (MT) encoding genes about 1000-bp regions of both MT-I and MT-II gene promoters were cloned and sequenced. Both promoters were rich in A-T content, and lacked the canonical TATA box; several putative cis-regulatory sequences were also present. In the MT-I promoter, four MREs were(More)
In the present paper, we examine eight species of Antarctic fish belonging to the suborder Notothenioidei, using reverse-transcriptase polymerase chain reaction, to investigate the presence of mRNAs encoding metallothionein (MT) isoforms. A total of 168 bp from the coding region and the complete (133-165 bp) 3' untranslated region (UTR) was obtained for all(More)