The p24 family consists of type I transmembrane proteins that are present abundantly in transport vesicles, may play a role in endoplasmic reticulum-to-Golgi cargo transport, and have been classified into subfamilies named p24alpha, -beta, -gamma, and -delta. We previously identified a member of the p24delta subfamily that is coordinately expressed with the prohormone proopiomelanocortin (POMC) in the melanotrope cells of the intermediate pituitary during black background adaptation of the amphibian Xenopus laevis ( approximately 30-fold increase in POMC mRNA). In this study, we report on the characterization of this p24delta member (Xp24delta(2)) and on the identification and characterization of a second member (Xp24delta(1)) that is also expressed in the melanotrope cells and that has 66% amino acid sequence identity to Xp24delta(2). The two p24delta members are ubiquitously expressed, but Xp24delta(2) is neuroendocrine enriched. During black background adaptation, the amount of the Xp24delta(2) protein in the intermediate pituitary was increased approximately 25 times, whereas Xp24delta(1) protein expression was increased only 2.5 times. Furthermore, the level of Xp24delta(2) mRNA was approximately 5-fold higher in the melanotrope cells of black-adapted animals than in those of white-adapted animals, whereas Xp24delta(1) mRNA expression was not induced. Therefore, the expression of Xp24delta(2) specifically correlates with the expression of POMC. Together, our findings suggest that p24delta proteins have a role in selective protein transport in the secretory pathway.
- Cell Line
- Pituitary Gland, Anterior/cytology
- Receptors, Cell Surface/biosynthesis
- Tissue Distribution
- Xenopus laevis