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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

The 11beta hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase 2 exists as an inactive dimer.

The 11beta-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase types 1 and 2 enzymes (11beta-HSD1 and 11beta-HSD2), modulate glucocorticoid occupation of the mineralocorticoid and glucocorticoid receptors by interconverting corticosterone and cortisol to the inactive metabolites 11-dehydrocorticosterone and cortisone within the target cells. The NAD(+)-dependent 11-HSD 2 in the kidney inactivates corticosterone and cortisol, allowing aldosterone, which is not metabolized, access to the receptor. Studies of the kinetics of 11-HSD 2 activity in the rat kidney have produced inconsistent results. Western blots done in the absence of the reducing agent beta-mercaptoethanol showed two bands with approximate MW of 40 and 80 kDa. When beta-mercaptoethanol was used, only the 40 kDa was detected, indicating that under non-denaturing conditions a significant proportion of the 11beta-HSD 2 exists as a dimer. NAD(+)-dependent conversion of 3H-corticosterone by 20 microg of microsomal protein increased approximately 10 fold with the addition of 5 mM DTT concentration. NADP(+)-dependent activity with 20 microg of microsomal protein was very low and did not change significantly when using DTT. In the presence of DTT, the predominant 11-HSD activity in the rat kidney is NAD(+)-dependent with a K(m) of 15.1 nM, similar to that of the cloned and expressed enzyme. These data suggest that dimerization and subsequent enzyme inactivation occur when protocols promoting oxidation of this protein are used.[1]


  1. The 11beta hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase 2 exists as an inactive dimer. Gomez-Sanchez, E.P., Ganjam, V., Chen, Y.J., Liu, Y., Clark, S.A., Gomez-Sanchez, C.E. Steroids (2001) [Pubmed]
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