Dose-and time-dependent expression patterns of zebrafish orthologs of selected E2F target genes in response to serum starvation/replenishment
Targets of E2F transcription factors effectively regulate the cell cycle from worms to humans. Furthermore, the dysregulation of E2F transcription modules plays a highly conserved role in cancers of human and zebrafish. Studying E2F target expression under a given cellular state, such as quiescence, might lead to a better understanding of the conserved patterns of expression in different taxa. In the present study, we used literature searches and phylogeny to identify several targets of E2F transcription factors that are known to be serum-responsive; namely, PCNA, MYBL2, MCM7, TYMS, and CTGF. The transcriptional serum response of zebrafish orthologs of these genes were quantified under different doses (i.e., 0, 0.1, 1, 3, and 10% FBS) and time points (i.e., 6, 24 and 48 hours, h) using quantitative RT-PCR (qRT-PCR) in the zebrafish fibroblast cells (ZF4). Our results indicated that mRNA expression of zebrafish pcna, mybl2, mcm7 and tyms drastically decreased while that of ctgf increased with decreasing serum levels as observed in mammals. These genes responded to serum starvation at 24 and 48 h and to the mitogenic stimuli as early as 6 h except for ctgf whose expression was significantly altered at 24 h. The zebrafish Mcm7 protein levels also were modulated by serum starvation/ replenishment. The present study provides a foundation for the comparative analysis of quantitative expression patterns for genes involved in regulation of cell cycle using a zebrafish serum response model. © Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2010.