CD44 is a cell‐surface glycoprotein postulated to play a role in a variety of biological processes, including lymphocyte homing and tumor‐cell metastasis. Several isoforms of CD44 have been identified in human cells, and the genesis of some of these isoforms has been attributed to alternative splicing. In the study presented here we amplified three novel transcript variants of CD44 from human cell lines using a reverse transcriptase‐polymerase chain reaction strategy. Two of the novel isoforms differed from previously described CD44 isoforms as a result of alternative splicing that occurred at previously reported splice junctions. The third novel CD44 isoform was generated from a previously unreported alternative splice junction near the 5′ end of the open reading frame. Southern blot analysis of genomic DNA revealed that these novel isoforms and all of the previously described CD44 isoforms arose from alternative splicing. The capability of cells to modify their CD44 alternative splicing pattern was demonstrated in MCF‐7 cells, which altered their CD44‐isoform expression pattern in response to treatment with hyaluronidase. A better understanding of mechanisms regulating CD44 alternative splicing may provide insights into diverse processes, including tumor‐cell metastasis and lymphocyte homing.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Molecular Biology
- Cancer Research