The Protein Journal

, Volume 27, Issue 2, pp 88–96 | Cite as

Purification and Characterization of Four New Cysteine Endopeptidases From Fruits of Bromelia pinguin L. Grown in Cuba

  • Juan Abreu Payrol
  • Walter D. Obregón
  • Sebastián A. Trejo
  • Néstor O. Caffini


Bromelia pinguin L. is a plant broadly distributed in Central America and Caribbean islands. The fruits have been used in traditional medicine as anthelmintic, probably owed to the presence of a mixture of cysteine endopeptidases, initially termed pinguinain. This work deals with the purification and characterization of the four main components of that mixture, two of them showing acid pI and the other two alkaline pI. Molecular masses (SDS-PAGE and MALDI-TOF), N-terminal sequence and the reactivity and kinetic parameters versus synthetic substrates (p-nitrophenyl-N-α-CBZ-amino acid esters, PFLNA, Z-Arg-Arg-p-NA, and Z-Phe-Arg-p-NA) of the studied peptidases are given, as well as the N-terminal sequences of the enzymes and the homology degree with other plant endopeptidases.


Bromelia pinguin L. Bromeliaceae Plant cysteine endopeptidases Pinguinain 









Ethylenediaminetetracetic acid


Fast protein liquid chromatography


Isoelectric focusing


Matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization-time of flight mass spectrometry




Partially purified pinguinain


Polyvinylidene fluoride


Sodium dodecylsulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis




Caseinolytic unit











This work was supported by grants from CYTED (Project IV.22), ANPCyT (PICT 9-9916), UNLP and CIC. NOC belongs to the CIC Researcher Career. WDB and SAT are CONICET fellows.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Juan Abreu Payrol
    • 1
  • Walter D. Obregón
    • 2
  • Sebastián A. Trejo
    • 2
    • 3
  • Néstor O. Caffini
    • 2
  1. 1.Instituto de Farmacia y AlimentosUniversidad de La HabanaCiudad de La HabanaCuba
  2. 2.LIPROVE, Depto de Cs. Biológicas, Fac. Cs. ExactasUniversidad Nacional de La PlataLa PlataArgentina
  3. 3.Institut de Biomedicina i BiotecnologiaUniversitat Autònoma de BarcelonaBellaterra, BarcelonaSpain

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