Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Biochemistry. 2006 Sep 26;45(38):11444-52.

The transferable tail: fusion of the N-terminal acidic extension of heparin cofactor II to alpha1-proteinase inhibitor M358R specifically increases the rate of thrombin inhibition.

Author information

Department of Pathology and Molecular Medicine, McMaster University, HSC 4N66, 1200 Main Street West, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada L8N 3Z5.


The conversion of the reactive center bond of the serpin alpha1-proteinase inhibitor (alpha1-PI, also known as alpha1-antitrypsin) from Met-Ser to Arg-Ser decreases the rate at which it inhibits neutrophil elastase and endows it with the ability to inhibit thrombin and activated protein C (APC). Another serpin, heparin cofactor II (HCII), contains a unique N-terminal extension that binds thrombin exosite 1. We fused residues 1-75 of HCII to the N-terminus of alpha1-PI M358R, forming an HCII-alpha1-PI chimera (HAPI M358R). It inhibited alpha-thrombin 21-fold faster than alpha1-PI M358R, with second-order rate constants of 2.3 x 10(8) M(-1) min(-1) versus 1.1 x 10(7) M(-1) min(-1), respectively. When gammaT-thrombin, which lacks an intact exosite 1, was substituted for alpha-thrombin, the kinetic advantage of HAPI M358R over alpha1-PI M358R was reduced to 9-fold, whereas APC and trypsin, proteases lacking exosite 1-like regions, were inhibited only 1.3- and 2-fold more rapidly by HAPI M358R than by alpha1-PI M358R, respectively. Maximal enhancement of alpha1-PI M358R activity required the acidic residues found between HCII residues 55 and 75, because no enhancement was observed either by fusion of residues 1-54 alone or by fusion of a mutated HCII acidic extension in which all Glu and Asp residues between positions 55 and 75 were neutralized by mutation. Fusing residues 55-75 to alpha1-PI M358R yielded a relative rate enhancement of only 6-fold, suggesting a need for the full tail region to achieve maximal enhancement. Our results suggest that transfer of the N-terminal acidic extension of HCII to alpha1-PI M358R enhanced its inhibition of thrombin by conferring the ability to bind exosite 1 on HAPI M358R. This enhancement may aid in efforts to tailor this inhibitor for therapeutic use.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for American Chemical Society
    Loading ...
    Support Center