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Department of Pharmacology

Ladds, G, Davey, J

Many secretory proteins are synthesized as inactive proproteins that undergo proteolytic activation as they travel through the eukaryotic secretory pathway. The best characterized family of processing enzymes are the prohormone convertases or kexins, and these are responsible for the processing of a wide variety of prohormones and other precursors. Recent work has identified other proteases that appear to be involved in proprotein processing, but characterization of these enzymes is at an early stage. Krp1 is the only kexin identified in the fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe, in which it is essential for cell viability. We have used a genetic screen to identify four proteases with specificities that overlap Krp1. Two are serine proteases, one is a zinc metalloprotease (glycoprotease) and one is an aspartyl protease that belongs to the recently described yapsin family of processing enzymes. All four proteases support the growth of a yeast strain lacking Krp1, and each is able to process the P-factor precursor, the only substrate currently known to be processed by Krp1.

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November 2000
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Publication type: 
Journal articles
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Mol Microbiol
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