BioScience Trends. 2014;8(2):126-131. (DOI: 10.5582/bst.8.126)

Substrate specificity of human granzyme 3: Analyses of the P3-P2-P1 triplet using fluorescence resonance energy transfer substrate libraries.

Hirata Y, Inagaki H, Shimizu T, Kawada T


Granzyme 3 (Gr3) is known as a tryptase-type member of the granzyme family and exists in the granules of immunocompetent cells. Granule proteases including granzymes, are transported into the cytoplasm of tumor cells or virus-infected cells by perforin function, degrade cytoplasmic or nuclear proteins and subsequently cause the death of the target cells. Recently, although several substrates of Gr3 in vivo have been reported, these hydrolyzed sites were unclear or lacked consistency. Our previous study investigated the optimal amino acid triplet (P3-P2-P1) as a substrate for Gr3 using a limited combination of amino acids at the P2 and P3 positions. In the present study, new fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) substrate libraries to screen P2 and P3 positions were synthesized, respectively. Using these substrate libraries, the optimal amino acid triplet was shown to be Tyr-Phe-Arg as a substrate for human Gr3. Moreover, kinetic analyses also showed that the synthetic substrate FRETS-YFR had the lowest Km value for human Gr3. A substantial number of membrane proteins possessed the triplet Tyr-Phe-Arg and some of them might be in vivo substrates for Gr3. The results might also be a great help for preparing specific inhibitors to manipulate Gr3 activity both in vitro and in vivo.

KEYWORDS: Granzyme, serine protease, cytotoxic T lymphocytes

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