Author(s): Siebert PD, Huang BC
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Abstract Lactoferrin (LF), traditionally known as an iron-binding protein present in high concentrations in milk and various secretions, has emerged as a multifunctional protein involved in many aspects of the host defense against infection. Recently, LF has been shown to inhibit the growth of solid tumors and reduce experimental metastasis in mice, suggesting that LF also may play a role in the defense against tumorigenesis. Here we provide the sequence of the cDNA and promoter region, the chromosome assignment, and tissue expression pattern of a novel form of LF mRNA (delta LF). The sequence of delta LF mRNA is nearly identical to that of LF mRNA; however, at the 5' end, we find a novel sequence that replaces the N-terminal signal peptide sequence of LF mRNA. We map the delta LF mRNA to human chromosome 3 and find that both delta LF and LF sequences colocalize to the same cloned 90- to 150-kb genomic DNA fragment. We further show that the delta LF mRNA is the product of alternative splicing of the LF gene and likely is specified by use of an alternative promoter. Although we find delta LF mRNA at various levels in 20 of 20 adult and fetal human tissues, we do not find delta LF mRNA in any of 14 diverse tumor-derived cell lines.
This article was published in Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A
and referenced in Journal of Cancer Science & Therapy