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JOURNAL ARTICLE

A high molecular weight glutamyl endopeptidase and its endogenous inhibitors from cucumber leaves

Y Yamauchi, Y Ejiri, T Sugimoto, K Sueyoshi, Y Oji, K Tanaka
Journal of Biochemistry 2001, 130 (2): 257-61
11481043
We purified a glutamyl endopeptidase that is a major foliar endopeptidase in cucumber. The endopeptidase had a molecular mass of 400 kDa, consisted of four subunits of 97 kDa, and was inactivated by SH-modifying reagents. Its optimum pH and optimum temperature were 8.0 and 30-37 degrees C, respectively. An internal amino acid sequence of the endopeptidase was highly homologous to a partial sequence of unidentified proteins deduced from genetic information for Arabidopsis thaliana, soybean and rice, but not to the sequences of bacterial glutamyl endopeptidases or animal proteases. Therefore, the unidentified proteins might be glutamyl endopeptidases and be widely distributed only among plant species. The activity of the cucumber glutamyl endopeptidase was inhibited by at least three inhibitors existing in cucumber leaves. One of the inhibitors was a competitive inhibitor of 25 kDa, which did not significantly inhibit commercial endopeptidases derived from animals and microorganisms. This suggests that the cucumber glutamyl endopeptidase might be controlled by endogenous inhibitors in vivo.

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