Selective expression of trypsin fusion genes in acinar cells of the pancreas and stomach of transgenic mice

Brian P. Davis, Robert E Hammer, Albee Messing, Raymond J MacDonald

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


Fusion genes combining the 5′-transcriptional regulatory region of the rat trypsin I gene and the structural gene of human growth hormone as a reporter were expressed to the high levels characteristic of the endogenous trypsin I gene selectively in the acinar cells of the pancreas of transgenic mice. As little as 232 base pairs of trypsin gene sequences containing the transcriptional start site and upstream promoter elements were sufficient to direct pancreatic expression. The tissue-specific expression was controlled transcriptionally. Trypsin-human growth hormone fusion transgenes also were expressed, although at low levels, in the stomach, an unexpected site for the expression of pancreatic digestive enzymes. Expression in the stomach of endogenous trypsin, elastase, and amylase genes in both normal and transgenic mice verified that transgene expression was consistent with normal expression of pancreatic genes. Endogenous amylase colocalizes with pepsinogen in the acinar cell-like Chief cells of the glandular portion of the mouse stomach. The expression of pancreatic genes in stomach cells is probably the consequence of similar developmental origins of pancreatic and gastric acinar cells from the primordial gut.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)26070-26077
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number36
StatePublished - Dec 25 1992

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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