Volume 64 (2018) Issue 1 Pages 57-64
Insulin-like growth factor 2 (IGF2) is responsible for a broad range of physiological processes during fetal development and adulthood, but genomic analyses of IGF2 containing the 5ʹ- and 3ʹ-untranslated regions (UTRs) in equines have been limited. In this study, we characterized the IGF2 mRNA containing the UTRs, and determined its expression pattern in the fetal tissues of horses. The complete equine IGF2 mRNA sequence harboring another exon approximately 2.8 kb upstream from the canonical transcription start site was identified as a new transcript variant. As this upstream exon did not contain the start codon, the amino acid sequence was identical to the canonical variant. Analysis of the deduced amino acid sequence revealed that the protein possessed two major domains, IlGF and IGF2_C, and analysis of IGF2 sequence polymorphism in fetal tissues of Hokkaido native horse and Thoroughbreds revealed a single nucleotide polymorphism (T to C transition) at position 398 in Thoroughbreds, which caused an amino acid substitution at position 133 in the IGF2 sequence. Furthermore, the expression pattern of the IGF2 mRNA in the fetal tissues of horses was determined for the first time, and was found to be consistent with those of other species. Taken together, these results suggested that the transcriptional and translational products of the IGF2 gene have conserved functions in the fetal development of mammals, including horses.