A multi-gene family (Cetn1, Cetn2, and Cetn3) encodes the calcium-binding protein, centrin, in the mouse. This work characterizes the Cetn2 gene. Structurally, Cetn2 consists of five exons and four introns, and contains a classical TATA-less promoter. Cetn2 has two alternate transcription start sites, and a single length 3′ untranslated region. Fluorescence in situ hybridization demonstrates that Cetn2 is an X-linked gene whose alleles replicate asynchronously during S-phase. Cetn2 encodes a 172 amino acid protein, with a predicted molecular mass of 19,795 Da (pI = 4.71), that contains all of the defining characteristics of centrin. Northern blot analysis indicates that Cetn2 is ubiquitously expressed in the tissues of adult mice. RT-PCR shows that Cetn2 and Cetn3, but not Cetn1, are expressed in NIH 3T3 cells. Immunofluorescence microscopy demonstrates that mouse centrin 2 protein localizes to the region immediately surrounding the centrioles in the centrosome of NIH 3T3 cells.
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