Peptidases Compartmentalized to the Ascaris suum Intestinal Lumen and Apical Intestinal Membrane.

PLoS Negl Trop Dis. 2015 Jan 8;9(1):e3375. doi: 10.1371/journal.pntd.0003375. eCollection 2015.


The nematode intestine is a tissue of interest for developing new methods of therapy and control of parasitic nematodes. However, biological details of intestinal cell functions remain obscure, as do the proteins and molecular functions located on the apical intestinal membrane (AIM), and within the intestinal lumen (IL) of nematodes. Accordingly, methods were developed to gain a comprehensive identification of peptidases that function in the intestinal tract of adult female Ascaris suum. Peptidase activity was detected in multiple fractions of the A. suum intestine under pH conditions ranging from 5.0 to 8.0. Peptidase class inhibitors were used to characterize these activities. The fractions included whole lysates, membrane enriched fractions, and physiological- and 4 molar urea-perfusates of the intestinal lumen. Concanavalin A (ConA) was confirmed to bind to the AIM, and intestinal proteins affinity isolated on ConA-beads were compared to proteins from membrane and perfusate fractions by mass spectrometry. Twenty-nine predicted peptidases were identified including aspartic, cysteine, and serine peptidases, and an unexpectedly high number (16) of metallopeptidases. Many of these proteins co-localized to multiple fractions, providing independent support for localization to specific intestinal compartments, including the IL and AIM. This unique perfusion model produced the most comprehensive view of likely digestive peptidases that function in these intestinal compartments of A. suum, or any nematode. This model offers a means to directly determine functions of these proteins in the A. suum intestine and, more generally, deduce the wide array functions that exist in these cellular compartments of the nematode intestine.


Jasmer DP, Rosa BA, Mitreva M.