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J Biol Chem. 2006 Jul 21;281(29):20140-7. Epub 2006 May 16.

Cloning and characterization of mouse lung-type acyl-CoA:lysophosphatidylcholine acyltransferase 1 (LPCAT1). Expression in alveolar type II cells and possible involvement in surfactant production.

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  • 1Department of Metabolome, Faculty of Medicine, The University of Tokyo, 7-3-1 Hongo, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo 113-0033, Japan.


Phosphatidylcholine (1,2-diacyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine, PC), is an important constituent of biological membranes. It is also the major component of serum lipoproteins and pulmonary surfactant. In the remodeling pathway of PC biosynthesis, 1-acyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine (LPC) is converted to PC by acyl-CoA:lysophosphatidylcholine acyltransferase (LPCAT, EC Whereas LPCAT activity has been detected in several tissues, the structure and detailed biochemical information on the enzyme have not yet been reported. Here, we present the cloning and characterization of a cDNA for mouse lung-type LPCAT (LPCAT1). The cDNA encodes an enzyme of 60 kDa, with three putative transmembrane domains. When expressed in Chinese hamster ovary cells, mouse LPCAT1 exhibited Ca(2+)-independent activity with a pH optimum between 7.4 and 10. LPCAT1 demonstrated a clear preference for saturated fatty acyl-CoAs, and 1-myristoyl- or 1-palmitoyl-LPC as acyl donors and acceptors, respectively. Furthermore, the enzyme was predominantly expressed in the lung, in particular in alveolar type II cells. Thus, the enzyme might synthesize phosphatidylcholine in pulmonary surfactant and play a pivotal role in respiratory physiology.

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