5-aminolevulinate synthase is present, but porphyrins do not accumulate, in the Harderian glands of the mole rat, Spalax ehrenbergi, and two species of spiny mice, Acomys cahirinus and A. russatus

Abraham Haim, Uri Shanas, Kirsten M. Oates, Clifford B. Sample, Gerald R. Buzzell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

We have examined porphyrins and 5-aminolevulinate synthase (ALAS), the rate-limiting enzyme of porphyrin synthesis, in Harderian glands from the mole rat (Spalax ehrenbergi) and two species of spiny mice of the genus Acomys. In both groups of rodents, the Harderian glands lacked measurable porphyrins. However, Western blots probed with an antibody showed appreciable concentrations of ALAS protein. If ALAS protein represents the active enzyme, these results suggest that porphyrins are produced in these animals but are rapidly metabolized.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)267-272
Number of pages6
JournalIsrael Journal of Zoology
Volume43
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1997
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We thank AGEN Ltd. and Dr. P.G. Bundesen for the ALAS antibody, and H. Kosik for maintaining the colonies of spiny mice. This study was partially supported by a BSF grant to A.H. and coinvestigators, and a grant from NSERC Canada to G.R.B.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Animal Science and Zoology

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