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Molecular and Cellular Biochemistry

, Volume 47, Issue 1, pp 35–43 | Cite as

Degradation of enkephalins: the search for an enkephalinase

  • L. B. Hersh
Article

Summary

The opioid peptides methionine-enkephalin and leucine-enkephalin appear to exert their biological effects through a receptor mediated mechanism. There appears to be three potential mechanisms for enkephalin degradation which could serve to control enkephalin levels in the vicinity of enkephalin receptors. These are, 1) cleavage of the tyrosyl-glycine bond by aminopeptidases, 2) cleavage of the glycyl-glycine bond by a dipeptidyl aminopeptidase, and 3) cleavage of the glycyl-phenylalanine bond by a dipeptidyl carboxypeptidase. In this review the biochemical properties of these potential enkephalinases are described, and the evidence for each acting as an enkephalinase is reviewed.

Keywords

Peptide Biological Effect Potential Mechanism Biochemical Property Opioid Peptide 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Martinus Nijhoff/Dr W. Junk Publishers 1982

Authors and Affiliations

  • L. B. Hersh
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of BiochemistryUniversity of Texas Health Science Center at DallasDallasUSA

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