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J Biol Chem. 1997 Jan 3;272(1):556-62.

Molecular cloning of a gene encoding a new type of metalloproteinase-disintegrin family protein with thrombospondin motifs as an inflammation associated gene.

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  • 1Department of Pharmacology, Cancer Research Institute, Kanazawa University, Japan.


A cellular disintegrin and metalloproteinase (ADAM) is a new family of genes with structural homology to the snake venom metalloproteinases and disintegrins. We screened genes which were selectively expressed in the cachexigenic colon 26 adenocarcinoma subline in vivo. It was found that one novel cDNA clone, identified as a cachexigenic tumor selective gene, encodes a cysteine-rich protein which shows a sequence similarity to that of both the snake venom metalloproteinases and thrombospondins. We named this cDNA clone A disintegrin and metalloproteinase with thrombospondin motifs (ADAMTS-1). ADAMTS1 consists of six domains, 1) a pro- and 2) a metalloproteinase, 3) a disintegrin-like, 4) a thrombospondin (TSP) homologous domain containing TSP type I motif, 5) a spacer region, and 6) COOH-terminal TSP submotifs. Unlike other ADAMs, ADAMTS-1 does not possess a transmembrane domain and is a putative secretory protein. Therefore, ADAMTS-1 is a new type of ADAM family protein with TSP type I motifs. We demonstrated that the TSP homologous domain containing the TSP type I motif of ADAMTS-1 is functional for binding to heparin. ADAMTS-1 mRNA could be induced by stimulating colon 26 cells with an inflammatory cytokine, interleukin-1, in vitro. Moreover, intravenous administration of lipopolysaccharide in mice selectively induced ADAMTS-1 mRNA in kidney and heart. These data suggest that ADAM-TS-1 may be a gene whose expression is associated with various inflammatory processes as well as development of cancer cachexia.

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