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Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2001 Jan 12;280(1):110-4.

Mechanism of release of urinary Tamm-Horsfall glycoprotein from the kidney GPI-anchored counterpart.

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Department of Experimental Pathology, University of Bologna, Via S. Giacomo 14, 40126 Bologna, Italy.


Human Tamm-Horsfall glycoprotein (THP) is synthesised in the thick ascending limb of Henle and convoluted distal tubules, inserted into luminal cell-surface by the glycosyl-phosphatidylinositol (GPI)-anchor and excreted in urine at a rate of 50-100 mg per day. Up to date there is no indication on the way in which THP is excreted into the urinary fluid. In this study, we examined by Western blotting THP from human kidney in comparison to urinary THP. As expected for a GPI-anchored protein, THP was recovered from the kidney lysate in a Triton X-100 insoluble form, which moved in a sucrose gradient to a zone of low density. The apparent molecular weight of kidney THP appeared greater than that of urinary THP, but no difference in the electrophoretic mobility was observed when the former was subjected to GPI-specific phospholipase-C treatment, strongly suggesting that a proteolytic cleavage at the juxtamembrane-ectodomain of kidney THP is responsible for the urinary excretion.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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