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Biol Chem. 2010 Jul;391(7):771-6. doi: 10.1515/BC.2010.078.

Human SepSecS or SLA/LP: selenocysteine formation and autoimmune hepatitis.

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Department of Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry, Yale University, New Haven, CT 06520-8114, USA.


Selenocysteine, the 21st genetically encoded amino acid, is the major form of the antioxidant trace element selenium in the human body. In eukaryotes and archaea its synthesis proceeds through a phosphorylated intermediate in a tRNA-dependent fashion. The final step of selenocysteine formation is catalyzed by O-phosphoseryl-tRNA:selenocysteinyl-tRNA synthase (SepSecS) that converts phosphoseryl-tRNA(Sec) to selenocysteinyl-tRNA(Sec). The human SepSecS protein is also known as soluble liver antigen/liver pancreas (SLA/LP), which represents one of the antigens of autoimmune hepatitis. Here we review the discovery of human SepSecS and the current understanding of the immunogenicity of SLA/LP in autoimmune hepatitis.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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