PCR amplifications with two sets of degenerate primers that were targeted to CYP26-specific regions were performed with cDNAs from human fetal liver and brain as templates. PCR products were purified, cloned, sequenced and analyzed with the BLAST program. Our results revealed expression of CYP26 in both human fetal liver and brain. Furthermore, human fetal CYP26 cDNA exhibited 99.2%-100% nucleotide sequence identity to its adult counterpart. Novel isoforms, that would have indicated additional CYP26 genes, were not found. A Northern blot containing poly(A+)RNAs from 43 human adult and 7 human fetal tissues was tested for CYP26 expression. We were able to detect CYP26 message in most tissues but hybridization signals varied in intensity. Highest levels of transcription were in adult liver, heart, pituitary gland, adrenal gland, placenta and regions of the brain. CYP26 expression in fetal tissues was strongest in the brain and comparable with message levels in adult tissues.
Copyright 1998 Academic Press.