Structural requirements for specific inhibition of microsomal aminopeptidase by mercaptoamines
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L-Leucinthiol, a synthetic derivative of mercaptoethylamine with a hydrophobic side chain, was recently reported to be a potent inhibitor of microsomal aminopeptidase. The structural features necessary for interaction of mercaptoamines with this enzyme have now been explored more systematically. Optimal binding requires a primary amine linked to the mercapto group via two carbon atoms. Only a substituent with L-configuration at the 1 position increased the affinity toward the enzyme. The high degree of specificity and other evidence suggest that the mode of binding of these inhibitors is similar to that of substrates. Comparison of leucinthiol with other amino compounds suggest that the mercapto group makes a much greater contribution to the binding than the hydrophobic side chain. L-Leucinthiol is fairly specific for aminopeptidase although some inhibition of thermolysin and carboxypeptidase A is observed.
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