The first estrogen receptor was discovered in the late 1950s, a period that Jan-Ǻke Gustafsson refers to as BC (before cloning). Forty years later, he and colleagues were looking for a completely unrelated androgen receptor in the prostate when they stumbled across a nuclear hormone receptor with near-perfect homology to the estrogen receptor's DNA binding region, and 58% homology at the c-terminal domain. "We thought it might be a cloning variant," Gustafsson says, but as soon as they realized it was a novel estrogen receptor, they raced to publish the results.
Dubbing the original protein ERα and this version ERβ, the group and...
References1. G.G. Kuiper et al., "Cloning of a novel estrogen receptor expressed in rat prostate and ovary," Proc Natl Acad Sci, 93:5925-30, 1996.
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