Cloning and expression analysis of a novel mouse gene with sequence similarity to the Drosophila fat facets gene

Mech Dev. 1997 Apr;63(1):29-38. doi: 10.1016/s0925-4773(97)00672-2.


The Drosophila fat facets (faf) gene is a ubiquitin-specific protease necessary for the normal development of the eye and of the syncytial stage embryo in the fly. Using a gene trap approach in embryonic stem cells we have isolated a murine gene with extensive sequence similarity to the Drosophila faf gene and called it Fam (fat facets in mouse). The putative mouse protein shows colinearity and a high degree of sequence identity to the Drosophila protein over almost its entire length of 2554 amino acids. The two enzymatic sites characteristic of ubiquitin-specific proteases are very highly conserved between mice and Drosophila and this conservation extends to yeast. Fam is expressed in a complex pattern during postimplantation development. In situ hybridisation detected Fam transcripts in the rapidly expanding cell populations of gastrulating and neurulating embryos, in post-mitotic cells of the CNS as well as in the apoptotic regions between the digits, indicating that it is not associated with a single developmental or cellular event. The strong sequence similarity to faf and the developmentally regulated expression pattern suggest that Fam and the ubiquitin pathway may play a role in determining cell fate in mammals, as has been established for Drosophila.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Animals
  • Chromosome Mapping
  • Cloning, Molecular
  • Conserved Sequence
  • Crosses, Genetic
  • Drosophila / genetics*
  • Embryo, Mammalian
  • Embryo, Nonmammalian
  • Embryonic and Fetal Development
  • Endopeptidases / biosynthesis*
  • Endopeptidases / chemistry
  • Endopeptidases / genetics*
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Developmental*
  • Mice
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Recombinant Fusion Proteins / biosynthesis
  • Recombinant Proteins / biosynthesis
  • Recombinant Proteins / chemistry
  • Sequence Alignment
  • Sequence Homology, Amino Acid
  • Stem Cells
  • Transcription, Genetic
  • Ubiquitin Thiolesterase
  • X Chromosome*


  • Recombinant Fusion Proteins
  • Recombinant Proteins
  • Endopeptidases
  • Ubiquitin Thiolesterase
  • Usp9x protein, mouse

Associated data

  • GENBANK/U67874