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

Thrombin hydrolysis of human osteopontin is dependent on thrombin anion-binding exosites.

The cytokine osteopontin (OPN) can be hydrolyzed by thrombin exposing a cryptic alpha(4)beta(1)/alpha(9)beta(1) integrin-binding motif (SVVYGLR), thereby acting as a potent cytokine for cells bearing these activated integrins. We show that purified milk OPN is a substrate for thrombin with a k(cat)/K(m) value of 1.14 x 10(5) m(-1) s(-1). Thrombin cleavage of OPN was inhibited by unsulfated hirugen (IC(50) = 1.2 +/- 0.2 microm), unfractionated heparin (IC(50) = 56.6 +/- 8.4 microg/ml) and low molecular weight (5 kDa) heparin (IC(50) = 31.0 +/- 7.9 microg/ml), indicating the involvement of both anion-binding exosite I (ABE-I) and anion-binding exosite II (ABE-II). Using a thrombin mutant library, we mapped residues important for recognition and cleavage of OPN within ABE-I and ABE-II. A peptide (OPN-(162-197)) was designed spanning the OPN thrombin cleavage site and a hirudin-like C-terminal tail domain. Thrombin cleaved OPN-(162-197) with a specificity constant of k(cat)/K(m) = 1.64 x 10(4) m(-1) s(-1). Representative ABE-I mutants (K65A, H66A, R68A, Y71A, and R73A) showed greatly impaired cleavage, whereas the ABE-II mutants were unaffected, suggesting that ABE-I interacts principally with the hirudin-like OPN domain C-terminal and contiguous to the thrombin cleavage site. Debye-Hückel slopes for milk OPN (-4.1 +/- 1.0) and OPN-(162-197) (-2.4 +/- 0.2) suggest that electrostatic interactions play an important role in thrombin recognition and cleavage of OPN. Thus, OPN is a bona fide substrate for thrombin, and generation of thrombin-cleaved OPN with enhanced pro-inflammatory properties provides another molecular link between coagulation and inflammation.[1]


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