Isolation and sequence analysis of cDNA for rat carboxypeptidase E [EC], a neuropeptide processing enzyme

Lloyd D. Fricker, John P. Adelman, James Douglass, Robert C. Thompson, Ralph P. von Strandmann, John Hutton

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

83 Scopus citations


Carboxypeptidase E (CPE) is the carboxypeptidase B-like enzyme associated with the biosynthesis of numerous peptide hormones and neurotransmitters. This enzyme has been previously purified to homogeneity from bovine tissues, and cDNA clones (nonfull length) isolated from a bovine pituitary cDNA library. In the present study, cDNA encoding full-length rat CPE has been isolated and sequenced. Both the nucleotide and amino acid sequences of rat CPE show substantial homology with the bovine sequences. The bovine and rat nucleotide sequences are homologous within the entire coding region, as well as within several portions of the 3´-untranslated region. The predicted amino acid sequence of rat CPE is greater than 90% homologous with the bovine enzyme. Northern blot analyses indicate a single species of CPE mRNA approximately 2100 nucleotides in length to be present in many neural and endocrine tissues. High levels of CPE mRNA are present in rat hypothalamus, hippocampus, midbrain, striatum, and cerebral cortex; and moderate levels are present in the brain stem, cerebellum, heart, adrenal, and eye. Low levels are detected in testis and duodenum, but not in liver or thymus. This tissue-specific expression of CPE mRNA is consistent with the proposed role for this enzyme in the production of numerous peptide hormones and neurotransmitters.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)666-673
Number of pages8
JournalMolecular Endocrinology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1989

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Endocrinology


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