SLUG is a member of the snail family of zinc finger proteins. It is involved in epithelial to mesenchyme cell transition during neurulation and plays a role in limb bud development. We have isolated and described the human SLUG gene by sequencing a region spanning 4034 bp. The human SLUG gene contains three exons. The SLUG transcript is 2.2 kb and is found in placenta and adult heart, pancreas, liver, kidney, and skeletal muscle, and it codes for a protein of 268 amino acids and 29.989 kDa. This protein contains five zinc finger regions. The human SLUG protein is 95, 93, and 88% homologous to mouse, chicken, and Xenopus slug, respectively, but shows only 47% homology to mouse Snail. The zinc finger region is 100% identical between human and mouse slug. Slug maps to the long arm of chromosome 8, closely linked to D8S2090 between D8S519 and D8S1098.
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