Vollmar, Angelika M.; Gerbes, Alexander L.; Nemer, M.; Schulz, R.
Detection of C-type natriuretic peptide (CNP) transcript in the rat heart and immune organs.
In: Endocrinology, Vol. 132: pp. 1872-1874
Previous studies suggested the expression of mRNA, coding for CNP, exclusively in the central nervous system. In the present study, using the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) technique instead of the less sensitive Northern blot hybridization, CNP-specific sequences have also been detected in rat atria and ventricles of the heart as well as in organs of the immune system (thymus, spleen and lymph nodes). Parallel PCR-assays documented ANP-mRNA in these tissues. To verify specificity of the PCR-products, Southern blots have been hybridized with a third internal oligonucleotide and amplification products have been sequenced. The relative level of CNP-mRNA in these tissues was estimated to be in the range of 1-9% of total brain CNP transcripts. The results suggest that the peptide may have a peripheral as well as a central site of action. In light of its pronounced effect on cell proliferation, particular interest should focus on a possible role of CNP in the immune system.