The nervous and immune systems share many functional and molecular similarities, including shared surface antigens, secretions of soluble factors, and cross-modulatory effects. We have identified previously a novel mRNA termed F5, which is expressed only in activated T lymphocytes and mature, postmitotic neurons. Tissue specificity and sequence conservation suggest an important function for F5 in T-lymphocyte proliferation and neuronal maturation. The F5 gene product is an evolutionarily conserved, cytoskeletal-associated phosphoprotein. A full-length mouse genomic clone has been isolated. The protein coding region of the F5 gene is approximately 16 kb in length and is composed of 13 coding exons. The gene encoding F5, termed I2rf5, was mapped using interspecies mouse crosses in close proximity to a number of genes associated with neuronal defects on distal chromosome 4.
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