Primary amino acid sequence of follicle-stimulating hormone from human pituitary glands. I. alpha subunit

J Biol Chem. 1975 Sep 10;250(17):6735-46.


Follicle-stimulating hormone of a high state of physicochemical and biological purity was isolated from acetone-preserved human pituitary glands. The follicle-stimulating hormone was dissociated into alpha and beta subunits by treatment with 8 M urea and the subunits were separated by ion exchange chromatography on DEAE-Sephadex A-25. The subunits were freed of undissociated or reassociated follicle-stimulating hormone by gel filtration on Sephadex G-100. For the establishment of the primary amino acid sequence, the alpha subunit was reduced and either carboxyamidomethylated or S-aminoethylated prior to a thermolytic or a tryptic digestion. Each digest was gel filtered on a column of Sephadex G-50 to separate the glycopeptides from the peptides. The glycopeptides and the peptides were purified further by sequential gel filtration on Sephadex G-25, G-15, and Bio-Gel-P-2 and were isolated by high voltage electrophoresis at pH 6, 3.5, and 2. The purity of the isolated peptides was ascertained further by amino acid analysis. The amino acid sequences of the peptides were determined by Edman degradation followed by subtractive amino acid analysis. COOH-terminal sequences were established by digestion with carboxypeptidases A and B. The primary amino acid sequence of human follicle-stimulating hormone-alpha is identical to that of human chorionic gonadotropin-alpha and differs from that of human luteinizing hormone-alpha in having the tripeptide Ala-Pro-Asx- at the NH2-terminal end.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Follicle Stimulating Hormone* / isolation & purification
  • Humans
  • Macromolecular Substances
  • Pituitary Gland / analysis*


  • Macromolecular Substances
  • Follicle Stimulating Hormone