Is Newly-Secreted Elastin Cleaved to a Smaller Molecule Before Being Incorporated Into Crosslinked Elastin Fibers?

  • Giorgio M. Bressan
  • Darwin J. Prockop
Part of the Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology book series (AEMB, volume 79)


The biosynthesis of elastin was examined in matrix-free cells isolated by enzymic digestion of aortas from 17 day old chick embryos. When the cells were incubated with (14C) proline and then were rapidly boiled in buffer containing high concentrations of protease inhibitors and sodium dodecyl sulfate, about one-quarter of the intra-cellular 14C-protein was recovered as an elastin component with an apparent molecular weight of about 72,000. Examination of the medium from the cell suspension indicated that the largest elastin component secreted by the cells also had an apparent molecular weight of about 72,000.

Experiments with intact aorta were carried out in order to study the conversion of the elastin component of 72,000 daltons to crosslinked fibers. Pulse-chase experiments indicated that about two-thirds of the component was converted to crosslinked material in 2 hours. When the tissues were incubated with either penicillamine or β-aminopropionitrile, the conversion to insoluble fibers was inhibited. With penicillamine, the elastin component remained in the tissue as a Polypeptide of about 72,000 daltons for up to 5 hours. With β-aminopropionitrile, the elastin component of 72,000 daltons persisted for about 2 hours, but thereafter it was gradually degraded to small peptides which were recovered in the incubation medium. The results suggest that the elastin component synthesized and secreted by cells in chick aorta is incorporated into elastin fibers without cleavage to a protein of considerably smaller size.


Chick Embryo Apparent Molecular Weight Cyanogen Bromide Elastin Fiber Chase Experiment 
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.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Steiner, D.F., Kemmler, W., Tager, H.S., Peterson, J.P. (1974) Fed. Proc. 33, 2105.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Desmelle, P., and Rovery, M. (1961) Adv. Protein Chem. 16, 139.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Doolittle, R.F. (1973) Adv. Protein Chem. 27, 1.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Prockop, D.J., Berg, R.A., Kivirikko, K.I., and Uitto, J. (1976) in Biochemistry of Collagen (Ramachandran, G.N. and Reddi, A.H., eds.), Plenum Publishing Co., New York (in press).Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Foster, J.A., Shapiro, R., Voynow, P., Crombie, G., Furis, B., and Franzblau, K. (1976), Biochemistry 14, 5343.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Uitto, J., Hoffmann, H.P., and Prockop, D.J. (1976) Arch. Biochem. Biophys. 173, 187.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Sandberg, L.B., Bruenger, E., Cleary, E.G. (1975) Anal. Biochem. 64, 249.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Rucker, R.B., Toru, K., Tanaka, M., Hanin, M., and Yasunobu, K.T. (1975), Biochem. Biophys. Res. Commun. 66, 287.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Olsen, B.R., Hoffmann, H.P., and Prockop, D.J. (1976) Arch. Biochem. Biophys. 175, 341.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    Studier, F.W. (1973) J. Mol. Biol. 79, 237.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    King, J., and Laemmli, U.K. (1971) J. Mol. Biol. 63, 465.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Bonner, W.M., and Laskey, B.A. (1974) Eur.J. Biochem. 46, 83.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Abraham, A., Smith, D.W., and Carnes, W.H. (1974) Biochem. Biophys. Res. Commun. 58, 597.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Harayanan, A.S., Sandberg, L.B., Ross, R., and Layman, D.L. (1976) J. Cell. Biol. 68, 411.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    Rosenbloom, J. and Cywinski, A. (1976) Biochem. Biophys. Res. Comm. 69, 613.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    Bressan, G.M. and Prockop, D.J. (submitted for publication).Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1977

Authors and Affiliations

  • Giorgio M. Bressan
    • 1
  • Darwin J. Prockop
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of BiochemistryCollege of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey-Rutgers Medical SchoolPiscatawayUSA

Personalised recommendations