Nucleic acid primers and probes for the mammalian OB gene
The present invention relates generally to the control of body weight of animals including mammals and humans, and more particularly to materials identified herein as modulators of weight, and to the diagnostic and therapeutic uses to which such modulators may be put. In its broadest aspect, the present invention relates to the elucidation and discovery of nucleotide sequences, and proteins putatively expressed by such nucleotides or degenerate variations thereof, that demonstrate the ability to participate in the control of mammalian body weight. The nucleotide sequences in object represent the genes corresponding to the murine and human ob gene, that have been postulated to play a critical role in the regulation of body weight and adiposity. Preliminary data, presented herein, suggests that the polypeptide product of the gene in question functions as a hormone. The present invention further provides nucleic acid molecules for use as molecular probes, or as primers for polymerase chain reaction (PCR) amplification, i.e., synthetic or natural oligonucleotides. In further aspects, the present invention provides a cloning vector, which comprises the nucleic acids of the invention; and a bacterial, insect, or a mammalian expression vector, which comprises the nucleic acid molecules of the invention, operatively associated with an expression control sequence. Accordingly, the invention further relates to a bacterial or a mammalian cell transfected or transformed with an appropriate expression vector, and correspondingly, to the use of the above mentioned constructs in the preparation of the modulators of the invention. Also provided are antibodies to the ob polypeptide. Moreover, a method for modulating body weight of a mammal is provided. In specific examples, genes encoding two isoforms of both the murine and human ob polypeptides are provided.
Friedman; Jeffrey M. (New York, NY), Zhang; Yiying (New York, NY), Proenca; Ricardo (Astoria, NY), Maffei; Margherita (New York, NY)
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