Regulation of Chemerin Bioactivity by Plasma Carboxypeptidase N, Carboxypeptidase B (Activated Thrombin-activable Fibrinolysis Inhibitor), and Platelets
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Chemerin is a potent chemoattractant for cells expressing the serpentine receptor CMKLR1 (chemokine-like receptor 1), such as plasmacytoid dendritic cells and tissue macrophages. The bioactivity of chemerin is post-translationally regulated; the attractant circulates in blood in a relatively inactive form (prochemerin) and is activated by carboxyl-terminal proteolytic cleavage. We discovered that plasma carboxypeptidase N (CPN) and B (CPB or activated thrombin-activable fibrinolysis inhibitor, TAFIa) enhanced the bioactivity of 10-mer chemerin peptide NH(2)-YFPGQFAFSK-COOH by removing the carboxyl-terminal lysine (K). Sequential cleavages of either a prochemerin peptide (NH(2)-YFPGQFAFSKALPRS-COOH) or recombinant full-length prochemerin by plasmin and CPN/CPB substantially increased their chemotactic activities. Endogenous CPN present in circulating plasma enhanced the activity of plasmin-cleaved prochemerin. In addition, we discovered that platelets store chemerin protein and release it upon stimulation. Thus circulating CPN/CPB and platelets may potentially contribute to regulating the bioactivity of leukocyte chemoattractant chemerin, and further extend the molecular link between blood coagulation/fibrinolysis and CMKLR1-mediated immune responses.
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