Ficolin is a collagenous lectin which plays a crucial role in innate immunity. Three and two ficolins have been identified in human and mice, respectively. To identify the mouse homologue of human H-ficolin and to elucidate the orthology between mouse ficolins A/B and human L-/M-ficolins, the gene structures were explored. The mouse homologue of the H-ficolin gene was identified as a pseudogene on chromosome 4. The mouse ficolin A gene was located far from the ficolin B gene on chromosome 2, whereas the human L-ficolin and M-ficolin genes were close in the region homologous to the ficolin B locus. Together with the exon-intron structures and the phylogenetic tree, these results suggest that ficolin B is the mouse orthologue of M-ficolin and that the genes encoding serum-type ficolins, ficolin A and L-ficolin, were generated independently from the ficolin B/M-ficolin lineage each in mice and primates.
Copyright 2004 Elsevier Inc.