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Eur J Biochem. 1998 Feb 1;251(3):845-53.

Purification and characterization of a kinin-releasing and fibrinogen-clotting serine proteinase (KN-BJ) from the venom of Bothrops jararaca, and molecular cloning and sequence analysis of its cDNA.

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Instituto Butantan, Laboratorio de Bioquímica e Biofísica, São Paulo, Brazil.


Two forms of a proteinase, KN-BJ 1 and 2, were purified to homogeneity from the venom of Bothrops jararaca. In SDS/PAGE reduced KN-BJ 1 and 2 migrated as single bands with molecular masses of 38 kDa and 39 kDa. The two enzymes have similar N-terminal amino acid sequences and specific activities on synthetic chromogenic substrates, and both release bradykinin from bovine low-molecular-mass kininogen. KN-BJ 1 and KN-BJ 2 clot fibrinogen with specific activities of 245 NIH U/mg and 219 NIH U/mg, releasing only fibrinopeptide A. The amidolytic, kinin-releasing and coagulant activities are inhibited by phenylmethylsulfonyl fluoride, demonstrating that KN-BJ is a serine proteinase. Benzamidine derivatives, which are competitive inhibitors of trypsin-like proteinases, also inhibited the amidolytic activity of KN-BJ. A cDNA clone (HS104, 2.2 kb) has been isolated from a cDNA library of B. jararaca venom glands with an ORF of 771 bp. The deduced amino acid sequence contains segments that are identical to the sequences of the N-terminus and three tryptic peptides of KN-BJ 2. Therefore, the cDNA is believed to represent the gene of KN-BJ 2. The deduced amino acid sequence indicates that KN-BJ 2 is synthesized as a prezymogen of 257 amino acids with a putative signal peptide of 18 amino acids and an activating peptide of six amino acid residues. The sequence of 233 amino acids representing the mature enzyme exhibits high similarity to sequences of serine proteinases isolated from crotalid venoms.

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