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Biochim Biophys Acta. 2005 Jan 17;1703(2):203-12. Epub 2004 Nov 11.

Methionine sulfoxide reductases: history and cellular role in protecting against oxidative damage.

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Center for Molecular Biology and Biotechnology, Florida Atlantic University, 777 Glades Road, Boca Raton, FL 33431, USA.


An enzyme that can reduce methionine sulfoxide in proteins was first discovered in Escherichia coli about 25 years ago. It is now apparent that there is a family of enzymes, referred to as methionine sulfoxide reductases (Msr), and in recent years there has been considerable interest in one of the members of the Msr family, MsrA. This enzyme has been shown to protect cells against oxidative damage, which suggests a possible role in a large number of age-related diseases. This review summarizes the history of the discovery of MsrA, properties of the enzyme and its role in protecting cells against oxidative damage. Other members of the Msr family that differ in substrate specificity and localization are described as well as a possible role for the Msr system in drug metabolism. The concept that the Msr system can be used to develop novel drugs that could be catalytic anti-oxidants is discussed.

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