A brain membrane protein similar to the rat src gene product
We report the purification to homogeneity of a 20,000-dalton, transformation-related, rat cell membrane protein. This protein, p20, was originally identified in preparations of a defective woolly monkey leukemia virus pseudotype of Kirsten sarcoma virus. The chromatographically purified p20 was an acidic hydrophobic protein, capable of specifically binding GTP (dissociation constant = 15 microM). This nucleotide binding property and other previously reported characteristics were similar to properties ascribed to the Harvey sarcoma virus src gene product. p20 also appeared similar to this src gene product when immunoprecipitates of both proteins were directly compared by one- and two-dimensional NaDodSO4 gel electrophoreses. However, the proteins were not identical, because their tryptic maps differed. Using a competition radioimmunoassay, we have measured the concentration of p20 in cells, viruses, and rat tissues: p20 was not encoded by rat sarcoma viruses because it was increased only slightly after Kirsten sarcoma virus transformation of rat cells and was not increased in nonrat cells transformed by the Kirsten or Harvey sarcoma virus. Remarkably, of 10 rat tissues examined, p20 was found predominantly in brain, specifically in the membranes.