Evidence for multiple prolactin receptor transcripts in the turkey

G. R. Pitts, S. You, D. N. Foster, M. E. El Halawani

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Multiple prolactin receptor (PRL-R) mRNA transcript isoforms have been identified in mammals, but there are conflicting reports concerning the number of avian PRL-R isoforms. We hypothesized that multiple turkey PRL-R transcript isoforms exist and that PRL-R mRNA abundance may be related to reproductive status. Two turkey PRL-R cDNA fragments were generated using reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) that displayed a high degree of similarity to mammalian and avian PRL-R. Northern blot analysis of poly A+ mRNA hybridized to a turkey PRL-R riboprobe revealed a 3.1-kb band in the liver, oviduct, and testes. Additional 1.5- and 10.7-kb transcripts were found in the liver and testes, respectively. Hybridization of the same Northern blot to a chicken PRL-R probe verified the presence of a 3.1-kb transcript in all three tissues. A Northern blot was used to examine turkey PRL-R transcript isoform expression in laying hens. A 3.1-kb band was found in the pineal, infundibulum, magnum, isthmus, kidney, and intestine. In addition, 10.7- and 7.3-kb bands were detected in the pineal, magnum, isthmus, and intestine. Turkey PRL-R transcript isoforms were also examined throughout the reproductive cycle. The 10.7-, 7.3-, and 3.1-kb isoforms were detected in the oviduct, intestine, and pineal during each reproductive state. Turkey PRL-R mRNA levels were also compared during the reproductive cycle. Turkey PRL-R mRNA levels were greatest in laying hen pineal glands (P < 0.05) and in incubating hen oviducts. This study provides the first evidence for multiple PRL-R mRNA transcript isoforms in turkeys.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)355-362
Number of pages8
JournalPoultry science
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2000

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  • Prolactin receptor
  • Turkey
  • mRNA


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