Phylogenetic analysis and expression of zebrafish transient receptor potential melastatin family genes

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Abstract

Background: The transient receptor potential melastatin (TRPM) gene family belongs to the superfamily of nonselective TRP ion channels. TRP channels are cellular sensors, detecting a multitude of inputs, including temperature, light, chemical, and mechanical stimuli. Recent studies revealed diverse roles during development, linking TRP channels to differentiation, proliferation, cell motility, cell death, and survival. A detailed description of this gene family in the zebrafish is still missing. Results: Phylogenetic analysis revealed 11 trpm genes in the zebrafish genome. The zebrafish orthologs of mammalian TRPM1 and TRPM4 are duplicated and quadruplicated, respectively, and TRPM8, a cold sensitive channel has been lost in zebrafish. Whole-mount in situ hybridization experiments revealed dynamic expression pattern of trpm genes in the developing embryo and early larva. Transcripts were mainly found in neural cell clusters, but also in tissues involved in ion homeostasis. Conclusions: Our results suggest a role of TRPM channels in sensory information processing, including vision, olfaction, taste, and mechanosensation. An involvement in developmental processes is likely, as some trpm genes were found to be expressed in differentiating cells. Our data now provide a basis for functional analyses of this gene family of ion channels in the vertebrate model organism Danio rerio. Developmental Dynamics 242:1236–1249, 2013. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

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