Differential expression of urate oxidase in rat liver

Linda Symons Raab, The University of Texas Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences at Houston


An affinity-purified monospecific antibody was prepared to study the differential expression of the peroxisomal enzyme urate oxidase in rat liver during development and in various metabolic states. Monospecific antibody for urate oxidase was affinity purified from a pool of antibodies initially produced against a mixture of proteins from a Percoll density gradient fraction. Immunogold staining of samples of the gradient fraction and rat liver tissue with the affinity-purified antibody demonstrated labelling of peroxisomal core structures. Screening of liver homogenates from rats at different developmental stages using immunoblot analysis demonstrated low levels of urate oxidase prior to 20 days of age; at 20 days of age, urate oxidase levels are 2-fold greater than the 15-day old levels and approximate adult levels. Catalase expression during rat development mimicked the differential expression pattern of urate oxidase. The increase between days 15 and 20 was determined to be independent of the process of weaning. Administration of exogenous glucocorticoid hormone to 10-day old rats resulted in a precocious rise (2.5-fold) in urate oxidase levels, but adrenalectomy at 10 days of age did not cause decreased expression in the fourth week of life. In adult animals, exogenous glucocorticoid did not influence urate oxidase levels, but adrenalectomized rats had urate oxidase levels that were 40 percent of control expression 4 days post-surgery. Catalase expression was not influenced by glucocorticoid status in these studies. Glucocorticoid regulation of urate oxidase expression appears to be one part of a more complex mechanism controlling levels of the enzyme. Exogenous glucocorticoid administration influenced urate oxidase levels in an age-dependent manner; in addition, it is possible that the control mechanism for urate oxidase may include factors which can modulate expression in the absence of glucocorticoids. The effect of glucocorticoids on urate oxidase expression can not be extended to include all peroxisomal proteins, since catalase is unaffected. Glucocorticoids appear to participate in the complex regulation of urate oxidase expression; glucocorticoids influence urate oxidase specifically and do not modulate all peroxisomal proteins.

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Recommended Citation

Raab, Linda Symons, "Differential expression of urate oxidase in rat liver" (1989). Texas Medical Center Dissertations (via ProQuest). AAI9016341.