A novel protein, BCNT, originally isolated from bovine brain and named after Bucentaur, contains an internal portion that is translated from part of bovine LINE repetitive sequence (Bov-B LINE). Human cDNA highly homologous to the bovine bent (bbcnt) cDNA has been isolated but does not contain a sequence similar to the Bov-B LINE insert. In this study, we conducted a polymerase chain reaction analysis to investigate whether such a Bov-B LINE insert is present in bcnt orthologs in other animals and in the genomic sequence of the human BCNT (hBCNT) gene. The results indicate that the Bov-B LINE insert is present in the genomic sequences of bent orthologs from sheep, goats, axis deer, and mouse deer (chevrotain), that is in Ruminantia, but not in pigs or human. Analysis of the bbcnt genomic sequence around the Bov-B LINE insert revealed a large part of the inserted Bov-B LINE sequence to be included in an exon; this is followed by a 54-nucleotide sequence that is highly homologous to Bov-B LINE in the 3'-side intron. The hBCNT gene was isolated and found to consist of seven exons and six introns, among which the intron corresponding to the Bov-B LINE insertion site in the bbcnt genome is 16.5 kb in length with no sequence similar to Bov-B LINE. Based on these results, it seems likely that the Bov-B LINE insert is derived from a long Bov-B LINE repetitive sequence transposed to an ancestral bent gene in Ruminantia and reformed as a new exon through new splicing sites in the transposed sequence.
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