Furin is the major processing enzyme of the cardiac-specific growth factor bone morphogenetic protein 10.
Susan-Resiga D., Essalmani R., Hamelin J., Asselin MC., Benjannet S., Chamberland A., Day R., Szumska D., Constam D., Bhattacharya S., Prat A., Seidah NG.
Bone morphogenetic protein 10 (BMP10) is a member of the TGF-β superfamily and plays a critical role in heart development. In the postnatal heart, BMP10 is restricted to the right atrium. The inactive pro-BMP10 (∼60 kDa) is processed into active BMP10 (∼14 kDa) by an unknown protease. Proteolytic cleavage occurs at the RIRR(316)↓ site (human), suggesting the involvement of proprotein convertase(s) (PCs). In vitro digestion of a 12-mer peptide encompassing the predicted cleavage site with furin, PACE4, PC5/6, and PC7, showed that furin cleaves the best, whereas PC7 is inactive on this peptide. Ex vivo studies in COS-1 cells, a cell line lacking PC5/6, revealed efficient processing of pro-BMP10 by endogenous PCs other than PC5/6. The lack of processing of overexpressed pro-BMP10 in the furin- and PACE4-deficient cell line, CHO-FD11, and in furin-deficient LoVo cells, was restored by stable (CHO-FD11/Fur cells) or transient (LoVo cells) expression of furin. Use of cell-permeable and cell surface inhibitors suggested that endogenous PCs process pro-BMP10 mostly intracellularly, but also at the cell surface. Ex vivo experiments in mouse primary hepatocytes (wild type, PC5/6 knock-out, and furin knock-out) corroborated the above findings that pro-BMP10 is a substrate for endogenous furin. Western blot analyses of heart right atria extracts from wild type and PACE4 knock-out adult mice showed no significant difference in the processing of pro-BMP10, implying no in vivo role of PACE4. Overall, our in vitro, ex vivo, and in vivo data suggest that furin is the major convertase responsible for the generation of BMP10.