ADAM 12 is a member of a family of disintegrin-containing metalloproteases that have been implicated in a variety of diseases including Alzheimer's disease, arthritis, and cancer. We purified ADAM 12 from the urine of breast cancer patients via Q-Sepharose anion exchange and gelatin-Sepharose affinity chromatography followed by protein identification by matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization-time of flight mass spectrometry. Four peptides were identified that spanned the amino acid sequence of ADAM 12. Immunoblot analysis using ADAM 12-specific antibodies detected an approximately 68-kDa band identified as the mature form of ADAM 12. To characterize catalytic properties of ADAM 12, full-length ADAM 12-S was expressed in COS-7 cells and purified. Substrate specificity studies demonstrated that ADAM 12-S degrades gelatin, type IV collagen, and fibronectin but not type I collagen or casein. Gelatinase activity of ADAM 12 was completely abrogated by zinc chelators 1,10-phenanthroline and EDTA and was partially inhibited by the hydroxamate inhibitor Marimastat. Endogenous matrix metalloprotease inhibitor TIMP-3 inhibited activity. To validate our initial identification of this enzyme in human urine, 117 urine samples from breast cancer patients and controls were analyzed by immunoblot. The majority of samples from cancer patients were positive for ADAM 12 (67 of 71, sensitivity 0.94) compared with urine from controls in which ADAM 12 was detected with significantly lower frequency. Densitometric analyses of immunoblots demonstrated that ADAM 12 protein levels were higher in urine from breast cancer patients than in control urine. In addition, median levels of ADAM 12 in urine significantly increased with disease progression. These data demonstrate for the first time that ADAM 12 is a gelatinase, that it can be detected in breast cancer patient urine, and that increased urinary levels of this protein correlate with breast cancer progression. They further support the possibility that detection of urinary ADAM 12 may prove useful in the development of noninvasive diagnostic and prognostic tests for breast and perhaps other cancers.
Journal of Biological Chemistry, 2004, Vol 279, Issue 49, p. 51323-30
ADAM Proteins; Adult; Aged; Amino Acid Sequence; Animals; Blotting, Western; Breast Neoplasms; COS Cells; Caseins; Catalysis; Chelating Agents; Chromatography, Affinity; Chromatography, Ion Exchange; Collagen Type I; Collagen Type IV; Databases as Topic; Densitometry; Disease Progression; Edetic Acid; Electrophoresis, Polyacrylamide Gel; Enzyme Inhibitors; Extracellular Matrix; Female; Fibronectins; Gelatin; Humans; Hydroxamic Acids; Immunoblotting; Membrane Proteins; Metalloendopeptidases; Middle Aged; Molecular Sequence Data; Neoplasm Metastasis; Peptides; Phenanthrolines; Plasmids; Recombinant Proteins; Sensitivity and Specificity; Sepharose; Spectrometry, Mass, Matrix-Assisted Laser Desorption-Ionization; Substrate Specificity; Ultracentrifugation; Zinc