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J Biochem. 1988 Apr;103(4):629-32.

Characteristic distribution of cathepsin E which immunologically cross-reacts with the 86-kDa acid proteinase from rat gastric mucosa.

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  • 1Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Josai University, Saitama.


The antiserum raised against the high-molecular-weight acid proteinase from rat gastric mucosa, termed 86-kDa acid proteinase, has been shown to recognize rat cathepsin E, but not cathepsin D (Muto, N. et al. (1987) J. Biochem. 101, 1069-1075). Using this specific antiserum, characteristic distribution of cathepsin E in rats was demonstrated. The enzyme was detected in a limited number of tissues, such as stomach, thymus, spleen, bladder, and erythrocyte membranes. Among them, the highest activity was observed in the stomach. In contrast, cathepsin D immunoreactive with the antiserum specific to rat gastric cathepsin D was demonstrated in all the tissues examined. Cathepsin E-type enzymes partially purified from these five tissues were precipitated in the same manner by the specific antiserum, and they had the same molecular weight, electrophoretic mobility, and resistance against denaturation by 4 M urea. These results indicate that they could be exactly classified as cathepsin E. This type of enzyme was also detectable in mice and guinea pigs, but they showed relatively weak immunoreactivities with the antiserum. Thus, it is concluded that the distribution of cathepsin E is intrinsically different from ordinary cathepsin D, suggesting that it has a different physiological role from cathepsin D.

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