Activation Profile Analysis of CruCA4, an α-Carbonic Anhydrase Involved in Skeleton Formation of the Mediterranean Red Coral, Corallium rubrum

Molecules. 2017 Dec 28;23(1):66. doi: 10.3390/molecules23010066.


CruCA4, a coral α-carbonic anhydrase (CA, EC involved in the biomineralization process of the Mediterranean red coral, Corallium rubrum, was investigated for its activation with a panel of amino acids and amines. Most compounds showed considerable activating properties, with a rather well defined structure-activity relationship. The most effective CruCA4 activators were d-His, 4-H₂N-l-Phe, Histamine, Dopamine, Serotonin, 1-(2-Aminoethyl)-piperazine, and l-Adrenaline, with activation constants in the range of 8-98 nM. Other amines and amino acids, such as d-DOPA, l-Tyr, 2-Pyridyl-methylamine, 2-(2-Aminoethyl) pyridine and 4-(2-Aminoethyl)-morpholine, were submicromolar CruCA4 activators, with KA ranging between 0.15 and 0.93 µM. Since it has been shown that CA activators may facilitate the initial phases of in-bone mineralization, our study may be relevant for finding modulators of enzyme activity, which can enhance the formation of the red coral skeleton.

Keywords: activators; amine; amino acid; biomineralization; calcification; carbonic anhydrase; coral.

MeSH terms

  • Amines / chemistry
  • Amino Acids / chemistry
  • Animals
  • Anthozoa / chemistry*
  • Anthozoa / physiology
  • Calcification, Physiologic
  • Carbonic Anhydrases / analysis*
  • Carbonic Anhydrases / metabolism
  • Kinetics
  • Molecular Structure
  • Skeleton / metabolism*


  • Amines
  • Amino Acids
  • Carbonic Anhydrases