DEAD-box proteins are a large group of putative RNA helicases that exist ubiquitously in organisms ranging from bacteria to humans. They are likely to play important roles in many different RNA metabolic processes. In this paper, we report the cloning of human DDX24, a putative DEAD-box protein, and its ortholog, Ddx24 in mouse. The deduced proteins encoded by these two cDNAs share 78.7% identity at the amino acid level and possess all the well-conserved motifs of DEAD-box proteins. However, little homology can be found between them and other DEAD-box proteins, even in their core region (identity <40%). Northern blot analysis showed that a 3.0-kb transcript of human DDX24 exists ubiquitously in the 16 human tissues examined and was most abundant in heart and brain, but with lowest levels in thymus and small intestine. The mouse Ddx24, whose transcript is 4.0 kb, was also expressed widely in 10 tissues tested with the highest level in heart and testis. By radiation hybrid mapping, the human DDX24 gene was localized to human chromosome 14q32 between the markers D14S81 and D14S265. Moreover, the gene structure of DDX24 was determined by comparing its cDNA and genomic sequence from BAC R-1089B7, which showed that the gene spanned a 30-kb region and consisted of at least nine exons.
Copyright 2000 Academic Press.