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Biochem J. 2006 Apr 15;395(2):285-93.

Tumour necrosis factor alpha-converting enzyme mediates ectodomain shedding of Vps10p-domain receptor family members.

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Institute of Medical Biochemistry, MIND Center, Ole Worms Allé, Building 1170, University of Aarhus, 8000 Arhus C, Denmark.


Several transmembrane molecules are cleaved at juxtamembrane extracellular sites leading to shedding of ectodomains. We analysed shedding of members of the Vps10p-D (Vps10p domain; where Vps is vacuolar protein sorting) family of neuronal type-I receptors with partially overlapping functions, and additional proteolytic events initiated by the shedding. When transfected into CHO (Chinese-hamster ovary) cells (CHO-K1), sorCS1a-sorCS1c isoforms were shed at high rates (approximately 0.61% x min(-1)) that were increased approx. 3-fold upon stimulation with phorbol ester. sorCS1c identified in the cultured neuroblastoma cell line SH-SY5Y was shed similarly. In CHO-K1 transfectants, constitutive and stimulated shedding of sorCS3 also occurred at high rates (0.29% and 1.03% x min(-1)). By comparison, constitutive and stimulated shedding of sorLA occurred at somewhat lower rates (0.07% and 0.48% x min(-1)), whereas sorCS2 and sortilin were shed at very low rates even when stimulated (approximately 0.01% x min(-1)). Except for sorCS2, shedding of the receptors was dramatically reduced in mutant CHO cells (CHO-M2) devoid of active TACE (tumour necrosis factor alpha-converting enzyme), demonstrating that this enzyme accounts for most sheddase activity. The release of sorCS1 and sorLA ectodomains initiated rapid cleavage of the membrane-tethered C-terminal stubs that accumulated only in the presence of gamma-secretase inhibitors. Purified shed sorLA bound several ligands similarly to the entire luminal domain of the receptor, including PDGF-BB (platelet-derived growth factor-BB) and amyloid-beta precursor protein. In addition, PDGF-BB also bound to the luminal domains of sorCS1 and sorCS3. The results suggest that ectodomains shed from a subset of Vps10p-D receptors can function as carrier proteins.

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