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Volume 295, Issue 1-3 p. 149-154
Full-length article
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Cloning and functional characterization of a cocaine-sensitive dopamine transporter

Bruno Giros

Corresponding Author

Bruno Giros

Departments of Cell Biology and Medicine and The Howard Hughes Medical Institute Laboratories, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC 27710, USA

Correspondence address: B. Giros, Department of Cell Biology, Duke University Medical Center, PO Box 3287, Durham, NC 27710, USA.Search for more papers by this author
Salah El Mestikawy

Salah El Mestikawy

Departments of Cell Biology and Medicine and The Howard Hughes Medical Institute Laboratories, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC 27710, USA

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Lucie Bertrand

Lucie Bertrand

Departments of Cell Biology and Medicine and The Howard Hughes Medical Institute Laboratories, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC 27710, USA

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Marc G. Caron

Marc G. Caron

Departments of Cell Biology and Medicine and The Howard Hughes Medical Institute Laboratories, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC 27710, USA

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First published: December 16, 1991
Citations: 271

Abstract

We report the cloning of a rat cDNA encoding a functional dopamine transporter. This cDNA, derived from an intron-containing gene, encodes a protein of 620 amino acids. Hydropathicity analysis of the protein sequence suggests the presence of 12 putative transmembrane domains. The protein displays considerable identity with transporters for noradrenaline and GABA (64 and 30%, respectively). Transient expression of the cDNA in COS7 cells directs the expression of dopamine uptake activity with appropriate pharmacology and in a sodium-dependent fashion. In situ hybridization reveals that the mRNA for this transporter is expressed in the substantia nigra and ventral tegmental area, regions that contain dopaminergic cell bodies.