Sharma, M.K., Liu, R.Z., Thisse, C., Thisse, B., Denovan-Wright, E.M., and Wright, J.M. (2006) Hierarchical subfunctionalization of fabp1a, fabp1b and fabp10 tissue-specific expression may account for retention of these duplicated genes in the zebrafish (Danio rerio) genome. The FEBS journal. 273(14):3216-3229.
Fatty acid-binding protein type 1 (FABP1), commonly termed liver-type fatty acid-binding protein (L-FABP), is encoded by a single gene in mammals. We cloned and sequenced cDNAs for two distinct FABP1s in zebrafish coded by genes designated fabp1a and fabp1b. The zebrafish proteins, FABP1a and FABP1b, show highest sequence identity and similarity to the human protein FABP1. Zebrafish fabp1a and fabp1b genes were assigned to linkage groups 5 and 8, respectively. Both linkage groups show conserved syntenies to a segment of mouse chromosome 6, rat chromosome 4 and human chromosome 2 harboring the FABP1 locus. Phylogenetic analysis further suggests that zebrafish fabp1a and fabp1b genes are orthologs of mammalian FABP1 and most likely arose by a whole-genome duplication event in the ray-finned fish lineage, estimated to have occurred 200-450 million years ago. The paralogous fabp10 gene encoding basic L-FABP, found to date in only nonmammalian vertebrates, was assigned to zebrafish linkage group 16. RT-PCR amplification of mRNA in adults, and in situ hybridization to whole-mount embryos to fabp1a, fabp1b and fapb10 mRNAs, revealed a distinct and differential pattern of expression for the fabp1a, fabp1b and fabp10 genes in zebrafish, suggesting a division of function for these orthogolous and paralogous gene products following their duplication in the vertebrate genome. The differential and complementary expression patterns of the zebrafish fabp1a, fapb1b and fabp10 genes imply a hierarchical subfunctionalization that may account for the retention of both the duplicated fabp1a and fabp1b genes, and the fabp10 gene in the zebrafish genome.