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Alkaline ceramidase 2 (EC 3.5.1.-) (EC (AlkCDase 2) (Alkaline CDase 2) (haCER2) (Acylsphingosine deacylase 3-like) (N-acylsphingosine amidohydrolase 3-like) [ASAH3L] [PP11646]


Alkaline ceramidase family: The first two decades.

Ceramidases are a group of enzymes that catalyze the hydrolysis of ceramide, dihydroceramide, and phytoceramide into sphingosine (SPH), dihydrosphingosine (DHS), and phytosphingosine (PHS), respectively, along with a free fatty acid. Ceramidases are classified into the acid, neutral, and alkaline ceramidase subtypes according to the pH optima for their catalytic activity. YPC1 and YDC1 were the first alkaline ceramidase genes to be identified and cloned from the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae two decades ago. Subsequently, alkaline ceramidase genes were identified from other species, including one Drosophila melanogaster ACER gene (Dacer), one Arabidopsis thaliana ACER gene (AtACER), three Mus musculus ACER genes (Acer1, Acer2, and Acer3), and three Homo sapiens ACER genes (ACER1, ACER2, and ACER3). The protein products of these genes constitute a large protein family, termed the alkaline ceramidase (ACER) family. All the biochemically characterized members of the ACER family are integral membrane proteins with seven transmembrane segments in the Golgi complex or endoplasmic reticulum, and they each have unique substrate specificity. An increasing number of studies suggest that the ACER family has diverse roles in regulating sphingolipid metabolism and biological processes. Here we discuss the discovery of the ACER family, the biochemical properties, structures, and catalytic mechanisms of its members, and its role in regulating sphingolipid metabolism and biological processes in yeast, insects, plants, and mammals.


  • Aging
  • Alkaline ceramidase
  • Cancer
  • Inflammation
  • Neurodegeneration
  • Placenta
  • Reproduction
  • Skin
  • Sphingolipids
  • Stress response