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GAST (gastrin)

Written2011-04Celia Chao, Mark R Hellmich
Department of Surgery, Sealy Center for Cancer Cell Biology, University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston, TX 77555, USA

(Note : for Links provided by Atlas : click)


HGNC Alias namepreprogastrin
HGNC Previous nameGAS
LocusID (NCBI) 2520
Atlas_Id 44214
Location 17q21.2  [Link to chromosome band 17q21]
Location_base_pair Starts at 41712331 and ends at 41715969 bp from pter ( according to hg19-Feb_2009)  [Mapping GAST.png]
  Chromosome 17 - NC_000017.10.
Fusion genes
(updated 2017)
Data from Atlas, Mitelman, Cosmic Fusion, Fusion Cancer, TCGA fusion databases with official HUGO symbols (see references in chromosomal bands)
HAP1 (17q21.2) / GAST (17q21.2)


Note The 4.3 kb gene for human gastrin contains two introns and 3 exons that encode preprogastrin, the gastrin precursor. It is located on chromosome 17(q21), and consists of three exons that contain the code sequence for a prepropeptide of 101 amino acid residues with a calculated molecular mass of 11.4 kDa (see diagram below). The primary structure of human preprogastrin protein consists of an N-terminal 21-amino acid signal sequence followed by a spacer peptide, a bioactive domain, and finally a hexapeptide C-terminal flanking peptide (CTFP). Upon initiation of translation, the signal sequence facilitates the translocation of the elongating polypeptide into the endoplasmic reticulum (ER), where it is subsequently removed by a membrane-bound signal peptidase that cleaves the growing polypeptide chain between alanine residue 21 and serine 22 to generate the 80 amino acid peptide, progastrin. Progastrin is further processed (see protein section below) into the two principal C-terminal alpha-amidated forms of circulating gastrin generated from the proteolytic cleavage of progastrin are gastrin-17 (G17) and gastrin-34 (G34).
  Schematic representation of the preprogastrin gene, its mRNA, and the peptide precursor preprogastrin. The gene is transcribed as a 303 nucleotide RNA transcript and the mRNA is processed into a 101 amino acid (aa) preprohormone. The preprogastrin peptide consists of a 21-aa signal sequence, which is co-translationally cleaved, a N-terminal spacer, the active peptide and the C-terminal flanking peptide (CTFP). Progastrin is formed after removal of the signal peptide.


Note It should be noted that the numbering system of critical amino acid residues involved in peptide cleavage and post-translational modifications of gastrin varies within the scientific literature. This is due to the fact that the numbering system of some authors is based on the sequence of preprogastrin, which includes the 21 amino acids of the signal peptide sequence, whereas the numbering system of others is based on the sequence of progastrin. Our description of prohormone processing will be based on the 80 amino acid peptide sequence of progastrin.
After signal peptide cleavage, progastrin undergoes additional post-translational modifications as it transits from the ER through the Golgi to the trans-Golgi network before it is sorted into immature secretory vesicles of the regulated exocytosis (secretory) pathway. The modifications include O-sulfation at tyrosine residue 66 of the propeptide by tyrosylprotein sulfotransferases and/or phosphorylation at serine 75 by a calcium-dependent casein-like kinase. Although O-sulfation is thought to occur primarily in the trans-Golgi network, a recent study provides evidence suggesting that it may continue through later compartments of the regulated secretory pathway.
The extent of gastrin O-sulfation varies with species and cellular localization of peptide synthesis within the GI tract as well as the developmental stage of the tissues. For example, in adult humans, approximately half of the gastrin peptide synthesized in G cells of the antrum and duodenum, and released into the circulation are sulfated, whereas all of the gastrin peptide produced by the fetal pancreas appears to be sulfated. Functionally, sulfation of gastrin enhances endoproteolytic processing of progastrin, and may promote protein-protein interactions and peptide sorting between secretory pathways. However, unlike sulfation of the related peptide, cholecystokinin (CCK), sulfation of gastrin does not significantly affect its affinity for its physiologic receptor.
Phosphorylation of serine 75 of progastrin may promote proteolytic processing at the upstream arginine residues at positions 73 and 74 (arginine 73-arginine 74) releasing the C-terminal flanking peptide, and may affect the conversion of glycine-extended gastrin intermediates to mature C-terminal alpha-amidated peptides. However, since phosphorylation is not essential for progastrin processing, its biological significance remains an enigma.
Following sulfation and/or phosphorylation, progastrin exits the trans-Golgi network and enters immature granules of the regulated secretory pathway. The major proteolytic processing of progastrin to its biologically active peptides occurs in the maturing dense core secretory granules of the regulated pathway. Progastrin is cleaved by two types of proteases: endo- and exopeptidases. Endopeptidases, also known as prohormone convertases (PC), typically cleave polypeptides downstream of two adjacent basic amino acid residues at the general motif (lysine/arginine)-(X)n-(lysine/arginine), where n=0, 2, 4, or 6 and X is any amino acid, but usually not a Cysteine. PC1/3 and PC2 are involved in progastrin processing.
The two principal biologically active forms of circulating gastrin are gastrin-17 (G17) and gastrin-34 (G34). In rodent and human G cells of antrum and proximal duodenum, approximately 95% of the progastrin is processed to partially sulfated G17 (85%) and G34 (10%). Although G17 is the predominant product, G34 is the major circulating form of gastrin due to its slower rate of clearance. In both humans, the half-life of circulating G34 is approximately five times longer than that of G17.
The proteolytic processing of progastrin involves convertase-specific cleavage at three dibasic consensus sites. PC1/3 is active early in the secretory pathway in granules with a neutral pH (i.e., pH ≈ 7) and cleaves the prohormone after the arginine 36-arginine 37 and arginine 73-arginine 74 sequences, releasing the C-terminal flanking peptide, and generating G34. The post-cleavage residual basic residues are then removed by carboxypeptidase E, generating what are commonly referred to as the glycine-extended gastrins (i.e., G34-Glycine). In contrast to PC1/3, PC2 is mainly active in mature granules at an acidic pH (i.e., pH ≈ 5). Cleavage of G34-glycine by PC2 after the dibasic amino acid sequence lysine 53-lysine 54 produces G17-glycine. These glycine-extended peptides are substrates for the peptidyl-glycine alpha-amidating monooxygenase (PAM) that utilizes the glycyl residue as an amide donor to alpha-amidate the carboxyl group of the C-terminus of the peptide. The ratio of amidated gastrins to processing intermediates varies considerably across tissues and cell types. Processing intermediates are quite scarce in the gastric antrum, making up only about 1-5% of gastrin gene products, while in the duodenum the value has been reported to be as high as 20%. Carboxyl-terminus alpha-amidation is a prerequisite for high affinity binding of gastrin to its cognate receptor, CCK2 receptor.
  Processing of gastrin. The numbering system of critical amino acid residues involved in peptide cleavage and post-translational modifications of gastrin varies within the scientific literature. This is due to the fact that the numbering system of some authors is based on the sequence of preprogastrin, which includes the 21 amino acids of the signal peptide sequence, whereas the numbering system of others is based on the sequence of progastrin. The numbers at the top of the diagram represents the amino acid (aa) sequence for preprogastrin; the numbers at the bottom of the diagram represents the aa sequence for progastrin. The signal peptide is cleaved co-translationally in the rough ER by signal peptidase. In the Trans-Golgi-Network (TGN), progastrin is modified by sulfation at Tyr 66 and phosphorylation of Ser 75 by a casein-like kinase. Prohormone convertases (PC) and carboxypeptidase E (CPE) sequentially convert the prohormone to the glycine-extended forms (G71-Gly, G34-Gly, G17-Gly). Abbreviations: CTFP: C-terminal flanking peptide, TPST: tyrosyl-protein sulfotransferase, PAM: peptidyl-alpha-amidating-monooxygenase.


Note There are no known mutations in the gastrin gene causing a pathologic entity. Overexpression of gastrin, or aberrant expression of gastrin, have both been associated with gastric, colorectal, esophageal and pancreatic cancers.

Implicated in

Entity Gastrinomas
Note Gastrinomas are neuroendocrine tumors that can arise from the stomach, duodenum or pancreas. Patients with multiple endocrine neoplasia type 1 (MEN1) have a mutation in the menin gene and are at very high risk for developing gastrinomas. In patients with hypergastrinemia due to pernicious anemia or MEN1, tissue and plasma levels of PAI-2 are elevated. Gastrin directly regulates PAI-2 expression in CCK2 receptor-positive cells, and in neighboring receptor-negative cells, by way of paracrine mediators released from the CCK2 receptor-expressing cells. Direct regulation involves cell automous activation of CRE and AP-1 transcription factors via a PKC, Ras, Raf, RhoA, and the NFkappaB signaling pathways in CCK2 receptor-expressing cells by gastrin. The CRE and AP-1 transcription factors, in turn, regulate expression of the genes for IL-8 and COX2. IL-8 acts through a GACAGA site via the activating signal cointegrator 1 (ASC-1) complex, whereas prostaglandins, resulting from the activation of COX2, target the Myc-associated zinc finger protein (MAZ site via the small GTPase RhoA to stimulate PAI-2 expression in adjacent CCK2 receptor-negative cells.
Entity Inflammation-associated carcinomas
Note In a rat intestinal epithelial cell model, MAPKs mediate CCK2 receptor regulation of cyclooxgenase 2 (COX-2). COX-2 is an inducible enzyme catalyzing the rate-limiting step in prostaglandin synthesis, converting arachidonic acid to prostaglandin H2. A large body of genetic and biochemical evidence support the important role of COX-2 and the subsequent synthesis of prostaglandins in the regulation of inflammation and promotion of tumorigenesis. Gastrin has been shown to increase COX-2 expression in colorectal, gastric, and esophageal cancers.
Entity Gastric cancer
Note Gastric carcinogenesis is a multistep process that arises from superficial gastritis, chronic atrophic gastritis, progressing to intestinal metaplasia, dysplasia, and finally carcinoma. H. pylori is the most common known cause of chronic gastritis in humans, secretes urease, which converts urea to ammonia, and neutralizes the acid in the stomach. H. pylori initiates a host inflammatory response that is associated with the recruitment of mononuclear and polymorphonuclear leukocytes, and bone marrow-derived cells. Specific inflammatory cytokines from immune cells are required for the initiation and promotion of carcinogenesis. In addition to local inflammation, H. pylori induces the systemic elevation of serum gastrin (hypergastrinemia). The combination of achlorhydria and hypergastrinemia, induced by H. pylori infection, results in gastric bacterial overgrowth, lack of parietal cell differentiation, development of gastric metaplasia, and eventual progression to gastric carcinoma.
Entity Colorectal cancer
Note Gastrin and gastrin-like peptides are upregulated locally in 78% of premalignant adenomatous polyps, before the appearance of invasive carcinoma, and gastrin expression has been linked to key mutations in the initiation of colorectal carcinogenesis. When the APCmin-/+ mouse was crossed with a gastrin gene knockout mouse, the hybrid developed fewer intestinal polyps. Gastrin transcription is linked to the Wnt/beta-catenin pathway by a binding site for the transcription factor TCF4 in the gastrin promoter. Induction of the wild-type APC decreased gastrin mRNA expression, while transfection of constitutively active beta-catenin increased gastrin promoter activity.


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Am J Physiol. 1996 Sep;271(3 Pt 1):G470-6.
PMID 8843772
Agonist-independent activation of Src tyrosine kinase by a cholecystokinin-2 (CCK2) receptor splice variant.
Olszewska-Pazdrak B, Townsend CM Jr, Hellmich MR.
J Biol Chem. 2004 Sep 24;279(39):40400-4. Epub 2004 Jul 29.
PMID 15292208
Gastrin increases murine intestinal crypt regeneration following injury.
Ottewell PD, Duckworth CA, Varro A, Dimaline R, Wang TC, Watson AJ, Dockray GJ, Pritchard DM.
Gastroenterology. 2006 Apr;130(4):1169-80.
PMID 16618411
Gastrin effects on isolated rat enterochromaffin-like cells in primary culture.
Prinz C, Scott DR, Hurwitz D, Helander HF, Sachs G.
Am J Physiol. 1994 Oct;267(4 Pt 1):G663-75.
PMID 7524350
Prohormone convertases 1/3 and 2 together orchestrate the site-specific cleavages of progastrin to release gastrin-34 and gastrin-17.
Rehfeld JF, Zhu X, Norrbom C, Bundgaard JR, Johnsen AH, Nielsen JE, Vikesaa J, Stein J, Dey A, Steiner DF, Friis-Hansen L.
Biochem J. 2008 Oct 1;415(1):35-43.
PMID 18554181
Stimulation of gastrin secretion in vitro by intraluminal chemicals: regulation by intramural cholinergic and noncholinergic neurons.
Saffouri B, DuVal JW, Makhlouf GM.
Gastroenterology. 1984 Sep;87(3):557-61.
PMID 6146551
Gastrin regulates histidine decarboxylase activity and mRNA abundance in rat oxyntic mucosa.
Sandvik AK, Dimaline R, Marvik R, Brenna E, Waldum HL.
Am J Physiol. 1994 Aug;267(2 Pt 1):G254-8.
PMID 8074225
Peptone stimulates gastrin secretion from the stomach by activating bombesin/GRP and cholinergic neurons.
Schubert ML, Coy DH, Makhlouf GM.
Am J Physiol. 1992 Apr;262(4 Pt 1):G685-9.
PMID 1348906
Biology and pathology of non-amidated gastrins.
Shulkes A, Baldwin G.
Scand J Clin Lab Invest Suppl. 2001;234:123-8. (REVIEW)
PMID 11713973
Gastrin regulates the heparin-binding epidermal-like growth factor promoter via a PKC/EGFR-dependent mechanism.
Sinclair NF, Ai W, Raychowdhury R, Bi M, Wang TC, Koh TJ, McLaughlin JT.
Am J Physiol Gastrointest Liver Physiol. 2004 Jun;286(6):G992-9. Epub 2004 Feb 5.
PMID 14764442
Gastrin and gastrin receptor activation: an early event in the adenoma-carcinoma sequence.
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PMID 11076881
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PMID 4720024
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PMID 697427
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PMID 10075714
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This paper should be referenced as such :
Chao, C ; Hellmich, MR
GAST (gastrin)
Atlas Genet Cytogenet Oncol Haematol. 2011;15(11):921-927.
Free journal version : [ pdf ]   [ DOI ]
On line version :

Other Solid tumors implicated (Data extracted from papers in the Atlas) [ 2 ]
  Neuro-Endocrine/Endocrine system: Carcinoid tumors
HAP1/GAST (17q21)

External links

HGNC (Hugo)GAST   4164
Entrez_Gene (NCBI)GAST  2520  gastrin
GeneCards (Weizmann)GAST
Ensembl hg19 (Hinxton)ENSG00000184502 [Gene_View]
Ensembl hg38 (Hinxton)ENSG00000184502 [Gene_View]  ENSG00000184502 [Sequence]  chr17:41712331-41715969 [Contig_View]  GAST [Vega]
ICGC DataPortalENSG00000184502
Genatlas (Paris)GAST
SOURCE (Princeton)GAST
Genetics Home Reference (NIH)GAST
Genomic and cartography
GoldenPath hg38 (UCSC)GAST  -     chr17:41712331-41715969 +  17q21.2   [Description]    (hg38-Dec_2013)
GoldenPath hg19 (UCSC)GAST  -     17q21.2   [Description]    (hg19-Feb_2009)
GoldenPathGAST - 17q21.2 [CytoView hg19]  GAST - 17q21.2 [CytoView hg38]
genome Data Viewer NCBIGAST [Mapview hg19]  
Gene and transcription
Genbank (Entrez)BC069724 BC069762 BM768483 BM768762 V00511
RefSeq transcript (Entrez)NM_000805
RefSeq genomic (Entrez)
Consensus coding sequences : CCDS (NCBI)GAST
Alternative Splicing GalleryENSG00000184502
Gene ExpressionGAST [ NCBI-GEO ]   GAST [ EBI - ARRAY_EXPRESS ]   GAST [ SEEK ]   GAST [ MEM ]
Gene Expression Viewer (FireBrowse)GAST [ Firebrowse - Broad ]
GenevisibleExpression of GAST in : [tissues]  [cell-lines]  [cancer]  [perturbations]  
BioGPS (Tissue expression)2520
GTEX Portal (Tissue expression)GAST
Human Protein AtlasENSG00000184502-GAST [pathology]   [cell]   [tissue]
Protein : pattern, domain, 3D structure
UniProt/SwissProtP01350   [function]  [subcellular_location]  [family_and_domains]  [pathology_and_biotech]  [ptm_processing]  [expression]  [interaction]
NextProtP01350  [Sequence]  [Exons]  [Medical]  [Publications]
With graphics : InterProP01350
Splice isoforms : SwissVarP01350
Domaine pattern : Prosite (Expaxy)GASTRIN (PS00259)   
Domains : Interpro (EBI)GAST    Gastrin/CCK    Gastrin/cholecystokinin_CS   
Domain families : Pfam (Sanger)Gastrin (PF00918)   
Domain families : Pfam (NCBI)pfam00918   
Conserved Domain (NCBI)GAST
DMDM Disease mutations2520
Blocks (Seattle)GAST
PDB Europe5WRJ   
Structural Biology KnowledgeBase5WRJ   
SCOP (Structural Classification of Proteins)5WRJ   
CATH (Classification of proteins structures)5WRJ   
Human Protein Atlas [tissue]ENSG00000184502-GAST [tissue]
Peptide AtlasP01350
Protein Interaction databases
IntAct (EBI)P01350
Ontologies - Pathways
Ontology : AmiGOhormone activity  protein binding  extracellular region  extracellular space  signal transduction  G protein-coupled receptor signaling pathway  G protein-coupled receptor signaling pathway  response to food  
Ontology : EGO-EBIhormone activity  protein binding  extracellular region  extracellular space  signal transduction  G protein-coupled receptor signaling pathway  G protein-coupled receptor signaling pathway  response to food  
Pathways : KEGGGastric acid secretion   
REACTOMEP01350 [protein]
REACTOME PathwaysR-HSA-881907 [pathway]   
NDEx NetworkGAST
Atlas of Cancer Signalling NetworkGAST
Wikipedia pathwaysGAST
Orthology - Evolution
GeneTree (enSembl)ENSG00000184502
Phylogenetic Trees/Animal Genes : TreeFamGAST
Homologs : HomoloGeneGAST
Homology/Alignments : Family Browser (UCSC)GAST
Gene fusions - Rearrangements
Fusion : MitelmanHAP1/GAST [17q21.2/17q21.2]  
Fusion PortalHAP1 17q21.2 GAST 17q21.2 BRCA
Fusion : Fusion_HubAFF1--GAST    FAT4--GAST    GAST--LIPF    GAST--PGC    HAP1--GAST   
Fusion : QuiverGAST
Polymorphisms : SNP and Copy number variants
NCBI Variation ViewerGAST [hg38]
dbSNP Single Nucleotide Polymorphism (NCBI)GAST
Exome Variant ServerGAST
GNOMAD BrowserENSG00000184502
Varsome BrowserGAST
Genetic variants : HAPMAP2520
Genomic Variants (DGV)GAST [DGVbeta]
DECIPHERGAST [patients]   [syndromes]   [variants]   [genes]  
CONAN: Copy Number AnalysisGAST 
ICGC Data PortalGAST 
TCGA Data PortalGAST 
Broad Tumor PortalGAST
OASIS PortalGAST [ Somatic mutations - Copy number]
Somatic Mutations in Cancer : COSMICGAST  [overview]  [genome browser]  [tissue]  [distribution]  
Somatic Mutations in Cancer : COSMIC3DGAST
Mutations and Diseases : HGMDGAST
LOVD (Leiden Open Variation Database)Whole genome datasets
LOVD (Leiden Open Variation Database)LOVD - Leiden Open Variation Database
LOVD (Leiden Open Variation Database)LOVD 3.0 shared installation
BioMutasearch GAST
DgiDB (Drug Gene Interaction Database)GAST
DoCM (Curated mutations)GAST (select the gene name)
CIViC (Clinical Interpretations of Variants in Cancer)GAST (select a term)
NCG6 (London) select GAST
Cancer3DGAST(select the gene name)
Impact of mutations[PolyPhen2] [Provean] [Buck Institute : MutDB] [Mutation Assessor] [Mutanalyser]
Genetic Testing Registry GAST
NextProtP01350 [Medical]
Target ValidationGAST
Huge Navigator GAST [HugePedia]
snp3D : Map Gene to Disease2520
Clinical trials, drugs, therapy
Protein Interactions : CTD2520
Pharm GKB GenePA28577
Clinical trialGAST
canSAR (ICR)GAST (select the gene name)
DataMed IndexGAST
Other databaseThe Pancreapedia
PubMed121 Pubmed reference(s) in Entrez
GeneRIFsGene References Into Functions (Entrez)
REVIEW articlesautomatic search in PubMed
Last year publicationsautomatic search in PubMed

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