Metabolism of vasoactive peptides by plasma and purified renal aminopeptidase M

Biochem Pharmacol. 1990 Oct 15;40(8):1725-32. doi: 10.1016/0006-2952(90)90348-o.


Aminopeptidase M (AmM; EC is a membrane-bound peptidase present on renal brush border and vascular plasma membrane. In the present study, AmM, purified from rabbit kidney cortex, produced a single immunoprecipitin line against AmM antisera, hydrolyzed alanyl-, leucyl- and arginyl-beta-naphthylamides at rates of 5.1 +/- 0.5, 3.9 +/- 0.5 and 2.6 +/- 0.3 mumol/min/mg, respectively, exhibited little or no alpha-glutamyl-, aspartyl- or glycyl-prolyl-naphthylamidase activities (less than or equal to 0.14 mumol/min/mg), and was inhibited by o-phenanthroline, amastatin (IC50 = 400 nM) and bestatin (IC50 = 6 microM). The alanyl-naphthylamidase activity of unfractionated rabbit plasma was found to be identical to purified AmM regarding relative rates of hydrolysis of alanyl-, leucyl- and arginyl-naphthylamides (100:79:42), pH optimum, and inhibition profile. In comparative studies with the purified enzyme, immunoreactive AmM accounted for essentially all of the alanyl-2-naphthylamidase activity of rabbit plasma. N-Terminal metabolism of (Met5)enkephalin by purified renal AmM was 3.92 +/- 0.69 mumol/min/mg, followed by somatostatin (1.25 mumol/min/mg), hepta(5-11)substance P (1.14 +/- 0.13 mumol/min/mg), (Asn1)angiotensin II (1.11 +/- 0.06 mumol/min/mg), angiotensin III (0.45 +/- 0.04 mumol/min/mg) and des(Asp1)-angiotensin I (0.36 +/- 0.04 mumol/min/mg). In contrast, substance P, bradykinin, (Sar1,Ala8)angiotensin II and neurokinin analogs containing modified N-termini (e.g. Ac-Arg) were resistant to hydrolysis by AmM. Peptide degradation was optimal at neutral pH and was inhibited by amastatin (IC50 = 200 nM) and bestatin (IC50 = 5 microM). Apparent Km values ranged from 15.7 +/- 0.4 microM for angiotensin III to 102 +/- 2 microM for (Met5)enkephalin. These data support a significant role for vascular and plasma AmM in the metabolism of circulating vasoactive peptides.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Aminopeptidases / isolation & purification
  • Aminopeptidases / metabolism*
  • Animals
  • Binding Sites
  • CD13 Antigens
  • Chromatography, High Pressure Liquid
  • Chromatography, Thin Layer
  • Electrophoresis, Polyacrylamide Gel
  • Endorphins / metabolism
  • Immunoelectrophoresis, Two-Dimensional
  • Kidney Cortex / enzymology*
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Rabbits
  • Vasoactive Intestinal Peptide / blood
  • Vasoactive Intestinal Peptide / metabolism*


  • Endorphins
  • Vasoactive Intestinal Peptide
  • Aminopeptidases
  • CD13 Antigens