Expression of beta-glucuronidase haplotypes in prototype and congenic mouse strains.


A gene complex consists of a structural gene with its associated regulatory information; together they behave as the functional and evolutionary unit of mammalian chromosomes. The use of congenic lines, in which alternate forms, or haplotypes, of a gene complex are transferred into a common genetic background by repeated backcrossing, provides a means of comparing the regulatory properties of different haplotypes of a gene complex without the complications introduced by extraneous genetic differences. We have now carried out such a study of the A, B, and H haplotypes of the beta-glucuronidase gene complex, [Gus], in mice. These haplotypes were derived from strains A/J, C57BL/6J, and C3H/HeJ and were compared against the C57BL/6J genetic background. Enzyme structure was compared in terms of charge (isoelectric point), stability (rate of thermal denaturation), substrate affinity (for 4 MU glucuronide), and antigenicity (reactivity with a standard antibody). Compared to the B form, the enzyme coded by the A haplotype has a lower isoelectric point, and that coded by the H haplotype is less stable. The decreased stability is the result of a lower activation energy for the thermal denaturation reaction. These differences were maintained in the congenic strains. All three enzyme forms showed identical substrate affinities. Antigenicity per enzyme unit was also identical for all three, indicating that none lacks an antigenic site possessed by the others and that they all possess the same catalytic activity per molecule. The expression of alleles of the Gus-t temporal locus within the gene complex was not affected by transfer into the C57BL/6 genetic background. The same developmental switches in enzyme activity were seen in each case. Transfer into the C57Bl/6 background also did not affect expression of the Gus-r regulator determining androgen inducibility of beta-glucuronidase synthesis in kidney epithelial cells. However, enzyme accumulation in induced cells was altered when the haplotypes were transferred into the C57BL/6 genetic background. Since the rate of synthesis was not affected, it suggests that the genetic differences between strains that are not linked to the [Gus] complex affect the rate of enzyme loss by degradation or secretion. Beta-Glucuronidase in liver is present in both lysosomes and endoplasmic reticulum (microsomes). The relative amount of enzyme at each site depended on both the indentity of the structural allele and the function of unlinked genetic modifiers. Within the C57BL/6 background the percentage of total enzyme present in the microsome fraction was the order A greater than B greater than H. For the H form of the enzyme the percentage was appreciably greater in the C3H genetic background compared to C57BL/6. As expected, then, the [Gus] complex contains all of the genetic determinants of enzyme structure detected by thermal stability and isoelectric point measurements...

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@article{Pfister1982ExpressionOB, title={Expression of beta-glucuronidase haplotypes in prototype and congenic mouse strains.}, author={Klaus Pfister and Kenneth Paigen and Gray Watson and Verne M. Chapman}, journal={Biochemical genetics}, year={1982}, volume={20 5-6}, pages={519-36} }