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Int J Biochem Cell Biol. 2004 Jun;36(6):981-5.

A disintegrin-like and metalloprotease (reprolysin type) with thrombospondin type 1 motifs: the ADAMTS family.

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  • 1Department of Biomedical Engineering, Lerner Research Institute, Cleveland Clinic Foundation (ND20), 9500 Euclid Avenue, Cleveland, OH 44195, USA.


ADAMTS proteases are complex secreted enzymes containing a prometalloprotease domain of the reprolysin type attached to an ancillary domain with a highly conserved structure that includes at least one thrombospondin type 1 repeat. Known functions of ADAMTS proteases include processing of procollagens and von Willebrand factor as well as catabolism of aggrecan, versican and brevican. They have been demonstrated to have important roles in connective tissue organization, coagulation, inflammation, arthritis, angiogenesis and cell migration. ADAMTS can be grouped into distinct clades within which there is conservation of modular organization, protein sequence, gene structure and possibly, of substrate preference. ADAMTS proteases are synthesized as zymogens, with constitutive proprotein convertase removal of the propeptide occurring prior to secretion. Their enzymatic specificity is heavily influenced by their ancillary domain, which plays a critical role in directing these enzymes to their substrates, the cell surface and the extracellular matrix.

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