Research from over the past 20 years has implicated dipeptidyl peptidase (DPP) IV and its family members in many processes and different pathologies of the immune system. Most research has been focused on either DPPIV or just a few of its family members. It is, however, essential to consider the entire DPP family when discussing any one of its members. There is a substantial overlap between family members in their substrate specificity, inhibitors, and functions. In this review, we provide a comprehensive discussion on the role of prolyl-specific peptidases DPPIV, FAP, DPP8, DPP9, dipeptidyl peptidase II, prolyl carboxypeptidase, and prolyl oligopeptidase in the immune system and its diseases. We highlight possible therapeutic targets for the prevention and treatment of atherosclerosis, a condition that lies at the frontier between inflammation and cardiovascular disease.
Keywords: atherosclerosis; dipeptidyl peptidase; fibroblast activation protein α; immunophysiology; inflammation; prolyl carboxypeptidase; prolyl oligopeptidase.