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Biochemistry. 1995 Apr 11;34(14):4562-8.

cDNA sequence and chromosomal localization of human enterokinase, the proteolytic activator of trypsinogen.

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Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Department of Surgery, Jewish Hospital of St. Louis, Washington University School of Medicine, Missouri 63110, USA.


Enterokinase is a serine protease of the duodenal brush border membrane that cleaves trypsinogen and produces active trypsin, thereby leading to the activation of many pancreatic digestive enzymes. Overlapping cDNA clones that encode the complete human enterokinase amino acid sequence were isolated from a human intestine cDNA library. Starting from the first ATG codon, the composite 3696 nt cDNA sequence contains an open reading frame of 3057 nt that encodes a 784 amino acid heavy chain followed by a 235 amino acid light chain; the two chains are linked by at least one disulfide bond. The heavy chain contains a potential N-terminal myristoylation site, a potential signal anchor sequence near the amino terminus, and six structural motifs that are found in otherwise unrelated proteins. These domains resemble motifs of the LDL receptor (two copies), complement component Clr (two copies), the metalloprotease meprin (one copy), and the macrophage scavenger receptor (one copy). The enterokinase light chain is homologous to the trypsin-like serine proteinases. These structural features are conserved among human, bovine, and porcine enterokinase. By Northern blotting, a 4.4 kb enterokinase mRNA was detected only in small intestine. The enterokinase gene was localized to human chromosome 21q21 by fluorescence in situ hybridization.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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