Institute of Modern Aquaculture Science and Engineering, School of Life Sciences, South China Normal University, Guangdong Provincial Key Laboratory for Healthy and Safe Aquaculture, Guangzhou, 510631, PR China. Electronic address: [Email]
Pax5 (Paired Box 5), a nuclear transcription factor expressed in B cell specifically, is a key regulator for B cell activation. In this study, we cloned and identified a Pax5 gene (OnPax5) from Nile tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus), which has an open reading frame of 1278 bp, encoding deduced amino acid sequence of 425 residues. OnPax5 contains a conserved DNA-binding domain encoding the paired box, an octapeptide, a homeobox homology region, a transactivation and a repressor domain. OnPax5 is constitutively expressed in various analyzed tissues of tilapia, with a relatively high expression in lymphoid organs, including spleen (SPL), anterior kidney (AK), and thymus. What's more, OnPax5 is highly expressed in leukocytes especially in IgM+ lymphocytes sorted from peripheral blood (PBL), SPL and AK. When stimulated with lipopolysaccharide (LPS) in vivo, OnPax5 expression was significantly up-regulated in PBL, SPL and AK. Upon stimulation with LPS, pokeweed mitogen and mouse anti-OnIgM monoclonal antibody in vitro, the expression of OnPax5 was also significantly up-regulated in leukocytes from SPL and AK. Taken together, Pax5, the B cell lineage specific activator factor, might get involved in B cell activation in Nile tilapia.