γ-Glutamyl leukotrienase, a γ-glutamyl transpeptidase gene family member, is expressed primarily in spleen
Alveolitis, Extrinsic Allergic
We have recently identified a mouse enzyme termed gamma-glutamyl leukotrienase (GGL) that converts leukotriene C4 (LTC4) to leukotriene D4 (LTD4). It also cleaves some other glutathione (GSH) conjugates, but not GSH itself (Carter, B. Z., Wiseman, A. L., Orkiszewski, R., Ballard, K. D., Ou, C.-N., and Lieberman, M. W. (1997) J. Biol. Chem. 272, 12305-12310). We have now cloned a full-length mouse cDNA coding for GGL activity and the corresponding gene. GGL and gamma-glutamyl transpeptidase constitute a small gene family. The two cDNAs share a 57% nucleotide identity and 41% predicted amino acid sequence identity. Their corresponding genes have a similar intron-exon organization and are located 3 kilobases apart. A search of Genbank and reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction analysis failed to identify additional family members. Mapping of the GGL transcription start site revealed that the GGL promoter is TATA-less but contains an initiator, a control element for transcription initiation. Northern blots for GGL expression were negative. As judged by ribonuclease protection, in situ hybridization, and measurement of enzyme activity, spleen had the highest level of GGL expression. GGL is also expressed in thymic lymphocytes, bronchiolar epithelial cells, pulmonary interstitial cells, renal proximal convoluted tubular cells, and crypt cells of the small intestine as well as in cerebral, cerebellar, and brain stem neurons but not in glial cells. GGL is widely distributed in mice, suggesting an important role for this enzyme.