An IAP retrotransposon in the mouse ADAMTS13 gene creates ADAMTS13 variant proteins that are less effective in cleaving von Willebrand factor multimers

Wenhua Zhou, Eric E. Bouhassira, Han Mou Tsai

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

30 Scopus citations


Severe deficiency of ADAMTS13, a von Willebrand factor (VWF)-cleaving metalloprotease, causes thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura. When analyzed with VWF multimers, but not with an abbreviated VWF peptide (VWF73) as the substrate, the plasma ADAMTS13 activity levels of mouse strains segregated into a high and a low group that differed by approximately 10 fold. Low ADAMTS13 activity was detected in mice containing 2 alleles of intracisternal A-type particle (IAP) retrotransposon sequence in the ADAMTS13 gene. Molecular cloning of mouse ADAMTS13 identified 2 truncated variants (IAP-a and IAP-b) in the low-activity mice. Both of the IAP variants lacked the 2 carboxyl terminus thrombospondin type 1 repeat (TSR) and CUB domains of full-length ADAMTS13. The IAP-b variant also had splicing abnormalities affecting the spacer domain sequence and had miniscule enzymatic activity. Compared with full-length ADAMTS13, the IAP-a variant was approximately one ninth as active in cleaving VWF multimers but was only slightly less active in cleaving VWF73 peptide. Recombinant human ADAMTS13 was also less effective in cleaving VWF multimers than VWF73 when the C-terminal TSR sequence was deleted. In summary, the carboxyl terminus TSR sequence is important for cleaving VWF multimers. Assay results should be interpreted with caution when peptide substrates are used for analysis of variant ADAMTS13 proteins.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)886-893
Number of pages8
Issue number3
StatePublished - Aug 1 2007


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Immunology
  • Hematology
  • Cell Biology

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