Two v-erbA-related genes, named ear-2 and ear-3, have been identified in the human genome and characterized by cDNA cloning. These genes are predicted to encode proteins that are very similar in primary structure to receptors for steroid hormones or thyroid hormone (T3) In addition, amino acid sequences of the ear-2 and ear-3 gene products are very similar each other especially at the DNA binding domain (86% homology) and at the putative ligand binding domain (76% homology). Northern hybridization with ear DNA probes of RNAs from various tissues of a human fetus reveals that the expression of ear-2 is high in the liver whereas the expression of ear-3 is relatively ubiquitous. Hybridization analysis of DNAs from sorted chromosomes shows that the ear-2 gene is located on chromosome 19 and ear-3 on chromosome 5, indicating that the two genes are clearly different from each other.
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