Chorion hardening is triggered by the contents of cortical alveoli that are released upon fertilization of medaka (Oryzias latipes) eggs. We purified the chorion hardening-inducing activity as a single protein from the exudate of cortical alveoli of medaka eggs. This activity was co-purified with proteolytic activity of the chorion protein ZI-1,2. Based on the amino acid sequence of purified protein, we cloned the cDNA of this protein from a medaka ovarian cDNA library. Sequence analyses revealed typical sequence features, a zinc-binding motif and a methionine turn motif, of the astacin metalloproteinase family. We termed this protein 'alveolin.' Alveolin has a molecular mass of 21.5 kDa deduced by the amino acid sequence and neutral optimal pH range. Alveolin hydrolyzes ZI-1,2. Alveolin activity was strongly inhibited by metal-chelating agents but not by various proteinase inhibitors. To our knowledge, this is the first description of the isolation and identification of the chorion hardening-inducing factor from cortical alveoli exudate of teleost eggs.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Molecular Biology
- Cell Biology