Mol Biochem Parasitol. 2011 Dec 7. [Epub ahead of print]
New insights into parasite rhomboid proteases.
Santos JM, Graindorge A, Soldati-Favre D.
Department of Microbiology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Geneva, 1 Rue-Michel Servet, 1211 Geneva 4, Switzerland.
The rhomboid-like proteins constitute a large family of intramembrane serine proteases that are present in all branches of life. First studied in Drosophila, these enzymes catalyse the release of the active forms of proteins from the membrane and hence trigger signalling events. In protozoan parasites, a limited number of rhomboid-like proteases have been investigated and some of them are associated to pathogenesis. In Apicomplexans, rhomboid-like protease activity is involved in shedding adhesins from the surface of the zoites during motility and host cell entry. Recently, a Toxoplasma gondii rhomboid was also implicated in an intracellular signalling mechanism leading to parasite proliferation. In Entamoeba histolytica, the capacity to adhere to host cells and to phagocytose cells is potentiated by a rhomboid-like protease. Survey of a small number of protozoan parasite genomes has uncovered species-specific rhomboid-like protease genes, many of which are predicted to encode inactive enzymes. Functional investigation of the rhomboid-like proteases in other protozoan parasites will likely uncover novel and unexpected implications for this family of proteases.
Copyright © 2011. Published by Elsevier B.V.
PMID: 22173057 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]