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Neurosci Lett. 1999 Apr 9;265(1):53-6.

Palmitoyl-protein thioesterase, an enzyme implicated in neurodegeneration, is localized in neurons and is developmentally regulated in rat brain.

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Department of Medical Chemistry, Institute of Biomedicine, University of Helsinki, Finland.


Palmitoyl-protein thioesterase (PPT) is an enzyme involved in cleavage of palmitate residues from acylated proteins. Mutations in PPT gene cause a severe neurodegenerative disorder, infantile neuronal ceroid-lipofuscinosis (INCL), characterized by loss of cortical neurons. In order to clarify the role of PPT and palmitoylation/depalmitoylation in the development of CNS and pathogenesis of infantile neuronal ceroid-lipofuscinosis (INCL), we studied the localization and expression of PPT in developing rats. Using immunohistochemical methods, we show for the first time that PPT is truly localized in neurons. Further, using RT-PCR and Western blotting, we show that expression of PPT in rat brain is developmentally regulated, with increasing expression during the maturation of CNS, reaching the maximum in young adulthood. The presented data support the view of PPT being essential for both development and maintenance of cortical neurons.

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