The proliferation associated nuclear element (PANE1) had been identified in a screen for genes activated in mouse mammary epithelium transformed by stabilized beta-catenin. We have now cloned the human and zebrafish orthologs, analyzed their expression and expressed them ectopically in tissue culture cell lines. PANE1 consists of 180 amino acids and displays 38% conservation between man and zebrafish. Expression of the human PANE1 gene was detected preferentially in immune cells including leukemias and lymphomas, tumor tissues and tumor derived cell lines. In B- and T-cells PANE1 RNA was only detected after the respective cell types were activated either in vivo or in vitro.