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Exp Cell Res. 1987 Nov;173(1):137-43.

Turnover of cytokeratin polypeptides in mouse hepatocytes.

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Institute of Pathology, University of Graz School of Medicine, Austria.


The turnover of cytokeratin polypeptides A (equivalent to No. 8 of the human cytokeratin catalog) and D (equivalent to human cytokeratin No. 18) of mouse hepatocytes was studied by pulse-labeling of mouse liver proteins after intraperitoneal injection of L-[guanido-14C]arginine and [14C]sodium bicarbonate. At various times after injection cytoskeletal proteins were prepared and separated by SDS-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis, and the specific radioactivities of polypeptides recovered from excised gel slices were determined. With L-[guanido-14C]arginine a rapid increase in the specific radioactivity of both cytokeratins was observed which reached a plateau between 12 and 24 h. With [14C]sodium bicarbonate maximal specific radioactivity was obtained at 6 h followed by a rapid decrease to half maximum values within the subsequent 6 h and then a slower decrease. Half-lives were determined from the decrease of specific radioactivities after pulse-labeling by least-squares plots and found to be 84 h (for cytokeratin component A) and 104 h (component D) for arginine labeling. Values obtained after bicarbonate labeling were similar (95 h for A and 98 h for D). These results show that liver cytokeratins are relatively stable proteins and suggest that components A and D are synthesized and degraded at similar rates, probably in a coordinate way.

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