By using a serial analysis of gene expression (SAGE), we have identified a novel full-length cDNA that is preferentially expressed in human cord blood-derived mast cells. The predicted protein showed unique primary structure with a nuclear localization signal (NLS), a sterile alpha motif (SAM), and a Src homology 3 domain (SH3) (termed Nash1). Nash1 was mapped to human chromosome 21q11.1 and highly expressed in spleen, liver, peripheral blood, and mast cell lines. In consistent with the presence of NLS, Nash1 was localized in the nucleus. Interestingly, screening gene databases for Nash1-related sequences revealed the existence of a Nash1-related gene termed SLY that was preferentially detected in lymphoid cells. We also found at least two additional candidates for this gene family in the database. These findings suggested that Nash1 and Nash1-related proteins consisted of a novel family of signaling/adaptor proteins, and Nash1 might function as a signaling component of mast cells, possibly in the nucleus.
Copyright 2001 Academic Press.