Journal of Biological Chemistry vol:261 issue:24 pages:11369-73
Limited proteolysis of human alpha 2-macroglobulin (alpha 2M) by a novel bacterial proteinase resulted in the isolation of a soluble 20-kDa domain. The isolated fragment contained the receptor recognition site, expressed on alpha 2M complexes, as it competed effectively with alpha 2M-trypsin for binding to the receptor on skin fibroblasts. The fragment also reacted with two monoclonal antibodies which define epitopes that are part of the receptor recognition site. Characterization of the 20-kDa domain showed it to contain an intact disulfide bridge, while its susceptibility to N-glycanase and reaction with concanavalin A indicated the presence of N-linked carbohydrate. The NH2-terminal sequence (Glu-Glu-Phe-Pro-Phe-Ala-Leu-Gly-Val-Glu-Thr-Leu-Pro-Glu-Thr-Cys-Asp-Glu -Pro) proved this fragment to constitute the COOH terminus of human alpha 2M. Proteolysis occurred at Lys1313-Glu which together with the observation that tosyllysine chloromethyl ketone was an effective inhibitor of the bacterial proteinase, would indicate the latter to hydrolyze preferentially peptide bonds carboxyl-terminal to lysine residues.