Myoepithelial-specific CD44 shedding is mediated by a putative chymotrypsin-like sheddase.
Our previous studies have demonstrated that myoepithelial cells, which surround incipient carcinomas in situ of the breast and other organs, exert antiinvasive and antiangiogenic effects in vitro through the elaboration of a number of different suppressor molecules among which include the shed membrane CD44. The present study addresses the mechanism of this myoepithelial CD44 shedding. This CD44 shedding is enhanced by PMA pretreatment, is specific for myoepithelial CD44, and inhibited by chymotrypsin-like inhibitors (chymostatin, alpha(1)-antichymotrypsin, TPCK, and SCCA-2) but not by trypsin-like inhibitors (TLCK), nor papain-like inhibitors (SCCA-1) nor hydroxamate-based or general metalloproteinase inhibitors (BB2516 (marimastat), 1,10-phenanthroline, and TIMP-1). The effect of PMA can be mimicked by exogenous chymotrypsin but not by other proteases. The CD44 shedding activity cannot be transferred by conditioned media, cell-cell contact, peripheral membrane, or integral membrane fractions. However, cell-free purified integral plasma membrane fractions obtained from myoepithelial cells pretreated with PMA also exhibit CD44 shedding which is inhibited by chymotrypsin-like inhibitors. These findings support the presence and activation of a putative chymotrypsin-like sheddase as the mechanism of CD44 shedding in myoepithelial cells.
Lee, MC; Alpaugh, ML; Nguyen, M; Deato, M; Dishakjian, L; Barsky, SH
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