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J Biol Chem. 1997 Jan 10;272(2):1082-7.

Characterization and functional analysis of 12 naturally occurring reactive site variants of serpin-1 from Manduca sexta.

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  • 1Department of Biochemistry, Kansas State University, Manhattan 66506, USA.

Abstract

Serpin gene-1 from the tobacco hornworm, Manduca sexta, encodes, through alternative exon usage, 12 reactive site variants (Jiang, H., Wang, Y. and Kanost, M. R., (1994) J. Biol. Chem. 269, 55-58; Jiang, H., Wang, Y., Huang, Y., Mulnix, A. B., Kadel, J., Cole, K., and Kanost, M. R. (1996) J. Biol. Chem. 271, 28017-28023). These 43-kDa proteins differ from each other only in their COOH-terminal 39-46 residues, which include the reactive site. To test the hypothesis that these proteins are proteinase inhibitors of diverse selectivities and to begin to elucidate their physiological functions, we expressed the 12 serpin-1 variants in Escherichia coli. Seven of the variants inhibited mammalian serine proteinases, with association rate constants comparable with those of human serpins. Serpin-1A, with a P1 Arg residue, inhibited both trypsin and plasmin. Serpin-1B (P1 Ala) and serpin-1F (P1 Val) inhibited porcine pancreatic elastase and human neutrophil elastase. Serpin-1H, -1K, and -1Z, all with a Tyr residue at the P1 position, inhibited chymotrypsin and cathepsin G. Serpin-1I (P1 Leu) inhibited both elastase and chymotrypsin. Nine of the serpin variants were active as inhibitors of microbial serine proteinases, including subtilisin Carlsberg, proteinase K, and two proteinases secreted by an entomopathogenic fungus, Metarhizium anisopliae. In addition, one of the serpin variants, serpin-1J, strongly inhibited activation of M. sexta hemolymph phenoloxidase, a pathway involving a serine proteinase cascade. This pathway is a component of the defensive response of insects to microbial infection. These results suggest that the products of M. sexta serpin gene-1 may be important in regulating both exogenous and endogenous serine proteinases in hemolymph.

PMID:
8995406
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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