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Open Access Research article

The repertoire of G-protein-coupled receptors in Xenopus tropicalis

Yanping Ji, Zhen Zhang and Yinghe Hu*

Author Affiliations

Shanghai Institute of Brain Functional Genomics, East China Normal University, 3663 Zhongshan Road N., Shanghai, 200062, PR China

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BMC Genomics 2009, 10:263  doi:10.1186/1471-2164-10-263

Published: 9 June 2009

Abstract

Background

The G-protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) superfamily represents the largest protein family in the human genome. These proteins have a variety of physiological functions that give them well recognized roles in clinical medicine. In Xenopus tropicalis, a widely used animal model for physiology research, the repertoire of GPCRs may help link the GPCR evolutionary history in vertebrates from teleost fish to mammals.

Results

We have identified 1452 GPCRs in the X. tropicalis genome. Phylogenetic analyses classified these receptors into the following seven families: Glutamate, Rhodopsin, Adhesion, Frizzled, Secretin, Taste 2 and Vomeronasal 1. Nearly 70% of X. tropicalis GPCRs are represented by the following three types of receptors thought to receive chemosensory information from the outside world: olfactory, vomeronasal 1 and vomeronasal 2 receptors.

Conclusion

X. tropicalis shares a more similar repertoire of GPCRs with mammals than it does with fish. An examination of the three major groups of receptors related to olfactory/pheromone detection shows that in X. tropicalis, these groups have undergone lineage specific expansion. A comparison of GPCRs in X. tropicalis, teleost fish and mammals reveals the GPCR evolutionary history in vertebrates.