Inosine 5'-monophosphate dehydrogenase (IMPDH) is an essential rate-limiting enzyme in the de novo guanine nucleotide synthetic pathway that catalyzes the conversion of IMP to XMP. Enzyme activity is accounted for by the expression of two distinct but closely related genes termed IMPDH I and II. Increased IMPDH activity has been linked to both cellular proliferation and neoplastic transformation and generally ascribed to an increase in the expression of the type II gene. We have characterized the type I and type II genes and identified elements important in the transcriptional regulation of both genes. The type II IMPDH gene contains a 466 bp 5' flanking region spanning the translation start site that contains several transcription factor binding sites and mediates increased transcription of a CAT reporter gene in peripheral blood T lymphocytes when these cells are induced to proliferate. The single functional IMPDH type I gene contains exon-intron boundaries and exon structures that are nearly identical to those in the type II gene. In contrast to the type II gene, however, it contains two putative promoter sites, each with the potential for transcriptional regulation. We conclude that these two genes most probably arose from an early gene duplication event and that their highly conserved structures and differential regulation at the transcriptional level argue strongly for a significant role for each gene in cellular metabolism, growth, and differentiation.
View details for Web of Science ID A1996BG03K00005
View details for PubMedID 8869741