Developmental expression of Cu,Zn superoxide dismutase in Xenopus. Constant level of the enzyme in oogenesis and embryogenesis

L. Montesano, M. T. Carri, P. Mariottini, F. Amaldi, G. Rotilio

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


cDNA clones for Xenopus laevis Cu,Zn-superoxide dismutase were isolated, sequenced and used as probes to study the expression of the corresponding gene during oogenesis and embryogenesis; Cu,Zn-suproxide dismutase activity was also monitored throughout development. It has been observed that its mRNA is actively synthesized during early oogenesis, reaching a maximum level at stage II, and is utilized through oogenesis. This results in an accumulation of enzyme activity during oocyte growth, paralleling the accumulation of the several other cellular components which are stored in the oocyte to be utilized later on by the developing embryo. In fact, Cu,Zn-superoxide dismutase activity is present at an approximately constant level until late embryonic development, while its mRNA disappears soon after fertilization to be accumulated again only during the last part of embryogenesis. This developmental expression behaviour can be viewed as typical of an housekeeping function and suggests that Cu,Zn-superoxide dismutase activity is a constant need of the cell rather than being subject to regulation by oxygen metabolism.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)421-426
Number of pages6
JournalEuropean Journal of Biochemistry
Issue number1-2
Publication statusPublished - 1989


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry

Cite this