The Drosophila male-specific lethal (MSL) genes regulate transcription from the male X chromosome in a dosage compensation pathway that equalizes X-linked gene expression in males and females. The members of this gene family, including msl-1, msl-2, msl-3, mle, and mof, encode proteins with no sequence homology. However, mutations in each of these genes produce a similar phenotype: sex-specific lethality of male embryos caused by the failure of mutants to increase transcription from the single male X chromosome. The MSL gene products assemble into a multiprotein transcriptional activation complex at hundreds of sites along the chromatin of the X chromosome. Here we report the isolation and characterization of a human gene, named MSL3L1, that encodes a protein with significant homology to Drosophila MSL-3 in three distinct regions, including two putative chromo domains. MSL3L1 was identified by database queries with genomic sequence from BAC GS-590J6 (GenBank AC0004554) in Xp22.3 and was evaluated as a candidate gene for several developmental disorders mapping to this region, including OFD1 and SED tarda, as well as Aicardi syndrome and Goltz syndrome.
Copyright 1999 Academic Press.