A novel transcript of the Duchenne muscular dystrophy gene has been identified. This 6.5 kb mRNA contains sequences from the 3′ untranslated region of dystrophin mRNA and from the regions coding for the C-terminal and the cysteine-rich domains. However, probes for the regions encoding the spectrin-like repeats and the actin-binding domain, as well as probes for the first exons of the muscle- and brain-type dystrophin mRNA, did not hybridize with this new mRNA. Significant amounts of the 6.5 kb mRNA were found in a variety of non-muscle tissues, such as liver, testis, lung and kidney, but not in skeletal muscle. The abundance of this mRNA in the brain is at least as high as that of the previously described 14 kb brain-type dystrophin mRNA.

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