Molecular identification and expression analysis of a novel cyclophilin a gene in the red swamp crayfish,Procambarus clarkii

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Cyclophilin A (Cyp A) is the main intracellular receptor of cyclosporin A (CsA) belonging to the immunophilin family, which is known as an effective immunosuppressive drug. This study aimed to gain insights into the structure and biological function of cyclophilin A in the red swamp crayfish, Procambarus clarkii (PcCypA). We cloned PcCypA by homology cloning and anchored polymerase chain reaction (PCR), and assessed its mRNA and protein expression levels in different tissues using quantitative real-time PCR and western blot analysis, respectively. The full-length DNA contained a 5′ untranslated region (UTR) comprising 108 base pairs (bp), an open reading frame of 495 bp encoding a polypeptide of 164 amino acids with an estimated molecular mass of 17.3 kDa, and a 3′ UTR of 281 bp including a significant poly(A) plus tail sequence. The predicted amino acid sequence of PcCypA shared high identity with CypA in other organisms. PcCypA transcripts were detected in the hepatopancreas, gill, heart, muscle, testis, and ovary of crayfish, with the highest expression levels in the heart. Western blot analysis found one 17-kDa band in all of the tissues examined, except for the ovary. Molecular identification and expression analysis of PcCypA will facilitate further studies of the immune defense mechanisms in red swamp crayfish, and provide new insights into freshwater invertebrate immunology.

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