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Biochim Biophys Acta. 1996 Sep 13;1297(1):83-9.

Action on bovine alpha s1-casein of cardosins A and B, aspartic proteinases from the flowers of the cardoon Cynara cardunculus L.

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Departamento de Bioquímica, Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia, Universidade de Coimbra, Portugal.


The cleavage of purified bovine alpha s1-casein separately by cardosin A and cardosin B, two distinct milk-clotting aspartic proteinases (APs) present in the stigmas of the plant Cynara cardunculus L., was studied. Casein digestion peptides were separated either by SDS-PAGE or by reverse-phase HPLC, and their N-terminal amino acid sequences were subsequently determined by automated Edman degradation, thus identifying the cleavage sites. Results showed that both enzymes exert a similar but distinct action on bovine alpha s1-casein. In common they have the preference for the bond Phe23-Phe24, and the cleavage of Trp164-Tyr165 and Phe153-Tyr154. Cardosin A also cleaves the bond Tyr165-Tyr166, whereas Cardosin B cleaves an extra type of bond, Phe150-Arg151, revealing a slightly broader specificity. A model for the action of both enzymes on bovine alpha s1-casein is proposed and discussed. In comparison with the reported action of chymosin on bovine alpha s1-casein, both cardosins proved to have a broader specificity towards this particular substrate due to a higher ability to cleave bonds between residues with large hydrophobic side-chains.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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