Cloning and characterization of the human IFT20 gene.
Intraflagellar transport (IFT), in which molecular motors and IFT particle proteins participate, is very important in assembling and maintaining many cilia/flagella, such as the motile cilia that drive the swimming of cells and embryos, the nodal cilia that generate left-right asymmetry in vertebrate embryos, and the sensory cilia that detect sensory stimuli in some animals. Here we report the molecular cloning and characterization of a novel human cDNA that is 1060 base pair in length, encoding a putative protein of 158 amino acid residues which shares high homology to Mus musculus intraflagellar transport protein mIFT20 (Accession number AAL99202, identity 82.3%, similarity 82.9%) at protein level. Bioinformatics analysis revealed that the gene is composed of 6 exons and is located on human chromosome 17p 11.1. RT-PCR showed that this gene is expressed in human brain, lung, kidney and pancreas, and lower expression were also detected in human placenta, liver, thymus, prostate and testis.