Identity of maleate stimulated glutaminase with γ glutamyl transpeptidase in rat kidney Academic Article uri icon


MeSH Major

  • Glutaminase
  • Kidney
  • Maleates
  • gamma-Glutamyltransferase


  • Gamma-Glutamyl transpeptidase was purified from rat kidney by a procedure involving Lubrol extraction, acetone precipitation, ammonium sulfate fractionation, treatment with bromelain, and column chromatography on DEAE-cellulose and Sephadex G-100. The final preparation (enzyme III), which exhibits a specific activity about 8-fold higher than that of the purified rat kidney transpeptidase previously obtained in this laboratory (enzyme I), was apparently homogeneous on polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. Enzyme III is a glycoprotein containing 10% hexose, 7% aminohexose, and 1.5% sialic acid; a tentative molecular weight value of about 70,000 was obtained by gel filtration. Enzyme III has a much lower molecular weight and a different amino acid and carbohydrate content than the less active rat kidney transpeptidase preparation previously obtained, but obtained, but the catalytic properties of these preparations are virtually identical. It is suggested that bromelain treatment may liberate the transpeptidase from a brush border complex that contains other proteins. An improved method is described for the isolation of the higher molecular weight form of the enzyme (enzyme I) in which affinity chromatography on concanavalin A-Sephrose is employed. The purified transpeptidase (enzyme III) is similar to the phosphate-independent maleate-stimulated glutaminase preparation obtained from rat kidney by Katunuma and colleagues with respect to amino acid and carbohydrate content, apparent molecular weight, and relative transpeptidase and maleate-stimulated "glutaminase" activities. Both of these enzyme preparations are much more active in transpeptidation reactions with glutathione and related gamma-glutamyl compounds than with glutamine. In the absence of maleate, the enzyme catalyzes the utilization of glutamine (by conversion to gamma-glutamylglutamine, glutamate, and ammonia) at about 2% of the rate observed for catalysis of transpeptidation between glutathione and glycylglycine; the utilization of glutamine occurs about 8 times more rapidly in the presence of 0.1 M maleate. The transpeptidation and maleate-stimulated glutaminase reactions catalyzed by both enzyme preprations are inhibited by 5 mM L-serine in the presence of 5 mM sodium borate. Studies on gamma-glutamyl transpeptidase and maleate-stimulated glutaminase in the kidneys of fetal rats, newborn rats, and rats after weaning showed parallel development of these activities. The evidence reported here and earlier work in this laboratory strongly support the conclusion that maleate-stimulated glutaminase activity is a catalytic function of gamma-glutamyl transpeptidase. The studies on the ontogeny of gamma-glutamyl transpeptidase and other data are considered in relation to the proposal that this enzyme is involved in amino acid and peptide transport. Its possible role in renal formation of ammonia is also discussed.

publication date

  • December 1975



  • Academic Article



  • eng

PubMed ID

  • 237905

Additional Document Info

start page

  • 4619

end page

  • 27


  • 250


  • 12