Molecular characterization of the developmental gene in eyes: Through data-mining on integrated transcriptome databases

K. W. Choy*, C. C. Wang, A. Ogura, T. K. Lau, M. S. Rogers, K. Ikeo, T. Gojobori, L. Y. Tang, D. S.C. Lam, T. K.H. Chung, C. P. Pang

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Objectives: Our aim was to utilize publicly available and proprietary sources to discover candidate genes important for ocular development. Design and methods: The collated information on our 5092 non-redundant clusters was grouped and functional annotation was conducted using gene ontology (FatiGO) for categorizing them with respect to molecular function. The web-based viewer technological platform (H-InvDB) was employed for transcription analyses of in-house high quality fetal eye Expressed Sequence Tags (ESTs). Eye-specific ESTs were also analyzed across species by using EMBEST. Results: According to adult eye cDNA libraries, nucleic acid binding and cell structure/cytoskeletal protein genes were the most abundant among the ESTs of fetal eyes. Using cDNA assembly in H-InvDB, 20 (80%) of the 25 most commonly expressed genes in the human eye are also expressed in extraocular tissues. The crystalline gamma S gene is highly expressed in the eye, but not in other tissues. We used EMBEST to compare human fetal eye and octopus eye ESTs and the expression similarity was low (1.6%). This indicated that our fetal eye library contains genes necessary for the developmental process and biological function of the eye, which may not be expressed in the fully developed octopus eyes. The human fetal eye cDNA library also contained highly abundant eye tissue genes, including αA-crystallin, eukaryotic translation elongation factor 1 alpha 1 (EEF1A1), bestrophin (VMD2), cystatin C, and transforming growth factor, beta-induced (BIGH3). Conclusions: Our annotated EST set provides a valuable resource for gene discovery and functional genomic analysis. This display will help to appreciate the strengths and weaknesses of the different technological platforms, so that in future studies the maximum amount of beneficial information can be derived from the appropriate use of each method.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)224-230
Number of pages7
JournalClinical Biochemistry
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2006
Externally publishedYes


  • Bioinformatics
  • ESTs
  • Eye
  • Human
  • Octopus

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Biochemistry


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