Ciona intestinalis peroxinectin is a novel component of the peroxidase–cyclooxygenase gene superfamily upregulated by LPS

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Peroxinectins function as hemoperoxidase and cell adhesion factor involved in invertebrate immune reaction. In this study, the ascidian (Ciona intestinalis) peroxinectin gene (CiPxt) and its expression during the inflammatory response have been examined. CiPxt is a new member of the peroxidase–cyclooxygenase gene superfamily that contains both the peroxidase domain and the integrin KGD (Lys-Gly-Asp) binding motif. A phylogenetic tree showed that CiPxt is very close to the chordate group and appears to be the outgroup of mammalian MPO, EPO and TPO clades. The CiPxt molecular structure model resulted superimposable to the human myeloperoxidase. The CiPxt mRNA expression is upregulated by LPS inoculation suggesting it is involved in C. intestinalis inflammatory response. The CiPxt was expressed in hemocytes (compartment/morula cells), vessel epithelium, and unilocular refractile granulocytes populating the inflamed tunic matrix and in the zones 7, 8 and 9 of the endostyle, a special pharynx organs homolog to the vertebrate thyroid gland.

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