Mechanisms of lipase maturation

Clin Lipidol. 2010 Feb 1;5(1):71-85. doi: 10.2217/clp.09.8.


Lipases are acyl hydrolases that represent a diverse group of enzymes present in organisms ranging from prokaryotes to humans. This article focuses on an evolutionarily related family of extracellular lipases that include lipoprotein lipase, hepatic lipase and endothelial lipase. As newly synthesized proteins, these lipases undergo a series of co- and post-translational maturation steps occurring in the endoplasmic reticulum, including glycosylation and glycan processing, and protein folding and subunit assembly. This article identifies and discusses mechanisms that direct early and late events in lipase folding and assembly. Lipase maturation employs the two general chaperone systems operating in the endoplasmic reticulum, as well as a recently identified lipase-specific chaperone termed lipase maturation factor 1. We propose that the two general chaperone systems act in a coordinated manner early in lipase maturation in order to help create partially folded monomers; lipase maturation factor 1 then facilitates final monomer folding and subunit assembly into fully functional homodimers. Once maturation is complete, the lipases exit the endoplasmic reticulum and are secreted to extracellular sites, where they carry out a number of functions related to lipoprotein and lipid metabolism.