Chromogranin A (CgA) and chromogranin B (CgB) are acidic proteins stored in and released from hormone granules in endocrine and neuroendocrine tissue. The chromogranins are postulated to serve as pro-hormones to generate biologically active peptides, which may influence hormonal release and vascular functions or have antibacterial functions. Although N-terminal and C-terminal regions show some species amino acid hornology; the chromogranins as a whole display considerable interspecies differences, which prevents their use in comparative studies of biological functions. We present four new radioimmunoassays for the measurement of defined N-terminal regions of CgA and CgB. A new radioimmunoassay for measurement of intact bovine CgA has also been developed. With these assays and two previously published ones, we have compared the cross-reactivity of chromogranins from man, cattle, sheep, goat, pig and horse and compared adrenomedullar content and serum levels of CgA from these species. We have also studied the influence of peptide concentrations and the ionic strength of the mobile phase on molecular weight estimations. Assays with antibodies directed against the N-terminal parts of CgA and CgB showed sufficient interspecies cross-reactivity to allow comparative quantification of the circulating levels in man, cattle, sheep, goat, pig and horse. Assays measuring the intact human or bovine CgA were not suitable for comparative purposes in samples from sheep, goat, pig and horse. Molecular interactions between vasostatin immunoreactive material and intact bovine CgA were demonstrated in gel permeation studies, suggesting that conclusions about the degree of N-terminal processing from elution profiles should be made with caution. Reliable interspecies comparison of chromogranins is difficult, but measurements with region-specific assays may be helpful to study concentrations of chromogranins and chromogranin-related peptides.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism