Identification of three N-terminal ends of type XVIII collagen chains and tissue-specific differences in the expression of the corresponding transcripts. The longest form contains a novel motif homologous to rat and Drosophila frizzled proteins

J Biol Chem. 1995 Mar 3;270(9):4705-11. doi: 10.1074/jbc.270.9.4705.


Transcripts for the alpha 1 chain of mouse type XVIII collagen were found to be heterogeneous at their 5'-ends and to encode three variant N-terminal sequences of the ensuing 1315-, 1527-, or 1774-residue collagen chains. The variant mRNAs appeared to originate from the use of two alternate promoters of the alpha 1(XVIII) chain gene, resulting in the synthesis of either short or long N-terminal non-collagenous NC1 domains, the latter being further subject to modification due to alternative splicing of the transcripts. As a result, the 1527- and 1774-residue polypeptides share the same signal peptide, and the lengths of their NC1 domains are 517 or 764 amino acid residues, respectively, while the 1315-residue polypeptide has a different signal peptide and a 301-residue NC1 domain. The longest NC1 domain was strikingly characterized by a 110-residue sequence with 10 cysteines, which was found to be homologous with the previously identified frizzled proteins belonging to the family of G-protein-coupled membrane receptors. Thus, it is proposed that the cysteine-rich motif, termed fz, represents a new sequence motif that can be found in otherwise unrelated proteins. Tissues containing mainly one or two NC1 domain mRNA variants or all three NC1 domains were identified, indicating that there is tissue-specific utilization of two alternate promoters and alternative splicing of alpha 1(XVIII) transcripts.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Animals
  • Base Sequence
  • Cloning, Molecular
  • Collagen / chemistry*
  • Collagen / genetics
  • DNA, Complementary
  • Drosophila / genetics
  • Mice
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • RNA, Messenger / genetics*
  • Rats
  • Sequence Homology, Amino Acid
  • Tissue Distribution


  • DNA, Complementary
  • RNA, Messenger
  • Collagen

Associated data

  • GENBANK/U11636
  • GENBANK/U11637