Crystal structure of wild-type human procathepsin K.
Cathepsin K is a lysosomal cysteine protease belonging to the papain superfamily. It has been implicated as a major mediator of osteoclastic bone resorption. Wild-type human procathepsin K has been crystallized in a glycosylated and a deglycosylated form. The latter crystals diffract better, to 3.2 A resolution, and contain four molecules in the asymmetric unit. The structure was solved by molecular replacement and refined to an R-factor of 0.194. The N-terminal fragment of the proregion forms a globular domain while the C-terminal segment is extended and shows substantial flexibility. The proregion interacts with the enzyme along the substrate binding groove and along the proregion binding loop (residues Ser138-Asn156). It binds to the active site in the opposite direction to that of natural substrates. The overall binding mode of the proregion to cathepsin K is similar to that observed in cathepsin L, caricain, and cathepsin B, but there are local differences that likely contribute to the specificity of these proregions for their cognate enzymes. The main observed difference is in the position of the short helix alpha3p (67p-75p), which occupies the S' subsites. As in the other proenzymes, the proregion utilizes the S2 subsite for anchoring by placing a leucine side chain there, according to the specificity of cathepsin K toward its substrate. (+info)
Characterization of novel cathepsin K mutations in the pro and mature polypeptide regions causing pycnodysostosis.
Cathepsin K, a lysosomal cysteine protease critical for bone remodeling by osteoclasts, was recently identified as the deficient enzyme causing pycnodysostosis, an autosomal recessive osteosclerotic skeletal dysplasia. To investigate the nature of molecular lesions causing this disease, mutations in the cathepsin K gene from eight families were determined, identifying seven novel mutations (K52X, G79E, Q190X, Y212C, A277E, A277V, and R312G). Expression of the first pro region missense mutation in a cysteine protease, G79E, in Pichia pastoris resulted in an unstable precursor protein, consistent with misfolding of the proenzyme. Expression of five mature region missense defects revealed that G146R, A277E, A277V, and R312G precursors were unstable, and no mature proteins or protease activity were detected. The Y212C precursor was activated to its mature form in a manner similar to that of the wild-type cathepsin K. The mature Y212C enzyme retained its dipeptide substrate specificity and gelatinolytic activity, but it had markedly decreased activity toward type I collagen and a cathepsin K-specific tripeptide substrate, indicating that it was unable to bind collagen triple helix. These studies demonstrated the molecular heterogeneity of mutations causing pycnodysostosis, indicated that pro region conformation directs proper folding of the proenzyme, and suggested that the cathepsin K active site contains a critical collagen-binding domain. (+info)
Expression of cathepsin K messenger RNA in giant cells and their precursors in human osteoarthritic synovial tissues.
OBJECTIVE: To investigate the expression of cathepsin K messenger RNA (mRNA) in the giant cells found in human osteoarthritic (OA) synovium and associated reparative connective tissues, and to compare this with mRNA expression of cathepsins B, L, and S, which are cysteine proteases known to be highly expressed by cells of the monocyte/macrophage lineage. METHODS: Sections of human OA synovium were processed for in situ hybridization and probed for cathepsins K, B, L, and S. Serial sections were reacted for tartrate-resistant acid phosphatase (TRAP) and nonspecific esterase (NSE) activity, which are selective markers for the osteoclast and cells of the macrophage/monocyte lineage, respectively. RESULTS: At 3 sites of monocyte infiltration/giant cell formation (granulation tissue, the intimal and subintimal synovial layers, and deep stroma extending to the periphery of osteophytic tissue), both TRAP-positive mono- and multinucleated cells and TRAP-negative, NSE-positive mononuclear precursors were identified. Cells containing both enzyme activities were also found, potentially indicating an intermediate stage of differentiation. The TRAP-positive mononuclear/giant cells, and the occasional NSE-positive precursor, expressed an intense signal for cathepsin K mRNA, but did not express cathepsins B, L, and S. In contrast, the deep zone of phagocytic-like cells adjacent to sites of ossification expressed high levels of mRNA for cathepsins L, B, and S as well as cathepsin K mRNA. CONCLUSION: Giant cells that form within OA synovial tissue express high levels of cathepsin K mRNA. It appears that cathepsin K acts principally to digest the bone (and cartilage) fragments sheered from the joint surface during OA. The high TRAP activity and the undetectable expression of the macrophage-associated degradative proteases (cathepsins B, L, and S) by synovial giant cells strengthens the hypothesis that cathepsin K is the primary protease involved in bone degradation. At sites of synovial osteogenesis, a population of phagocytic-like cells expressed TRAP and cathepsins B, L, S, and K, and may represent blood-derived macrophages pushed toward an osteoclast phenotype. (+info)
Osteopetrosis and osteoporosis: two sides of the same coin.
Together, osteoporosis and osteopetrosis comprise a substantial proportion of the bone diseases that severely affect humans. In order to understand and effectively treat these disorders, an understanding of the mechanisms controlling bone remodelling is essential. While numerous animal models of bone disease have been generated, the lack of correlation between these animal models and human disease has limited their utility in terms of defining therapeutic strategies. The generation and analysis of cathepsin K knockout mice has resulted in a model for pycnodysostosis, a rare human osteopetrotic disease, and is now providing considerable insights into both osteoclast function and potential therapeutic strategies for the treatment of bone disease. This review highlights the importance of genes such as cathepsin K in understanding bone remodelling and illustrates a new trend towards understanding bone disease as a complete entity rather than as a series of unrelated disorders. (+info)
Cathepsin P, a novel protease in mouse placenta.
The complete cDNA nucleotide sequence of a novel cathepsin derived from mouse placenta, termed cathepsin P, was determined. mRNA for cathepsin P was expressed in placenta and at lower levels in visceral yolk sac, but could not be detected in a range of adult tissues. The expression pattern of this protease indicates that it probably plays an important role during implantation and fetal development. (+info)
Expression of cathepsin K in the human embryo and fetus.
Cathepsin K is a protease with high collagenolytic and elastinolytic activity. Its cellular expression was previously thought to be restricted to osteoclasts and osteoclast-mediated bone resorption. In this study, the expression of cathepsin K in the human embryo and fetus was demonstrated by immunohistochemistry, in situ hybridization, and by Northern blotting of fetal tissue extracts. Besides osteoclasts and chondroclasts and their precursors, epithelial cells of various organ systems expressed significant amounts of this enzyme. Respiratory and gastrointestinal mucosa, including bile duct epithelia and urothelia, showed high levels of cathepsin K expression. With the exception of the urothelium, showing a more homogenous expression pattern, the protease was usually accentuated in the surface cell layers of pithelia. In summary, these findings in the human embryo and early fetus demonstrated a significant expression of cathepsin K in different epithelial cell types besides osteoclasts. The functional aspects of cathepsin K expression in nonosteoclastic cells and potential conclusions on physiological and pathological conditions in the embryo-fetal or adult organism remain to be investigated. Dev Dyn 1999;216:89-95. (+info)
Synovial tissue in rheumatoid arthritis is a source of osteoclast differentiation factor.
OBJECTIVE: Osteoclast differentiation factor (ODF; also known as osteoprotegerin ligand, receptor activator of nuclear factor kappaB ligand, and tumor necrosis factor-related activation-induced cytokine) is a recently described cytokine known to be critical in inducing the differentiation of cells of the monocyte/macrophage lineage into osteoclasts. The role of osteoclasts in bone erosion in rheumatoid arthritis (RA) has been demonstrated, but the exact mechanisms involved in the formation and activation of osteoclasts in RA are not known. These studies address the potential role of ODF and the bone and marrow microenvironment in the pathogenesis of osteoclast-mediated bone erosion in RA. METHODS: Tissue sections from the bone-pannus interface at sites of bone erosion were examined for the presence of osteoclast precursors by the colocalization of messenger RNA (mRNA) for tartrate-resistant acid phosphatase (TRAP) and cathepsin K in mononuclear cells. Reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) was used to identify mRNA for ODF in synovial tissues, adherent synovial fibroblasts, and activated T lymphocytes derived from patients with RA. RESULTS: Multinucleated cells expressing both TRAP and cathepsin K mRNA were identified in bone resorption lacunae in areas of pannus invasion into bone in RA patients. In addition, mononuclear cells expressing both TRAP and cathepsin K mRNA (preosteoclasts) were identified in bone marrow in and adjacent to areas of pannus invasion in RA erosions. ODF mRNA was detected by RT-PCR in whole synovial tissues from patients with RA but not in normal synovial tissues. In addition, ODF mRNA was detected in cultured adherent synovial fibroblasts and in activated T lymphocytes derived from RA synovial tissue, which were expanded by exposure to anti-CD3. CONCLUSION: TRAP-positive, cathepsin K-positive osteoclast precursor cells are identified in areas of pannus invasion into bone in RA. ODF is expressed by both synovial fibroblasts and by activated T lymphocytes derived from synovial tissues from patients with RA. These synovial cells may contribute directly to the expansion of osteoclast precursors and to the formation and activation of osteoclasts at sites of bone erosion in RA. (+info)
Cloning and function of rabbit peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor delta/beta in mature osteoclasts.
Osteoclasts modulate bone resorption under physiological and pathological conditions. Previously, we showed that both estrogens and retinoids regulated osteoclastic bone resorption and postulated that such regulation was directly mediated through their cognate receptors expressed in mature osteoclasts. In this study, we searched for expression of other members of the nuclear hormone receptor superfamily in osteoclasts. Using the low stringency homologous hybridization method, we isolated the peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor delta/beta (PPARdelta/beta) cDNA from mature rabbit osteoclasts. Northern blot analysis showed that PPARdelta/beta mRNA was highly expressed in highly enriched rabbit osteoclasts. Carbaprostacyclin, a prostacyclin analogue known to be a ligand for PPARdelta/beta, significantly induced both bone-resorbing activities of isolated mature rabbit osteoclasts and mRNA expression of the cathepsin K, carbonic anhydrase type II, and tartrate-resistant acid phosphatase genes in these cells. Moreover, the carbaprostacyclin-induced bone resorption was completely blocked by an antisense phosphothiorate oligodeoxynucleotide of PPARdelta/beta but not by the sense phosphothiorate oligodeoxynucleotide of the same DNA sequence. Our results suggest that PPARdelta/beta may be involved in direct modulation of osteoclastic bone resorption. (+info)