A number of proteases have been immobilized on alumina in a two-step procedure: the first step converted them into semisynthetic phosphoproteins which, in the second step, spontaneously bonded to alumina through their phosphate function. The immobilized enzymes thus obtained showed the physical properties typical of the inorganic carrier and a high activity on low molecular weight substrates.
Compounds containing the −PO 3 H 2 function, such as monoesters of phosphoric acid and phosphonic acids, specifically bind to aluminium oxide in aqueous solution under experimental conditions where non-phosphorylated compounds are completely desorbed. The bound organic phosphate can be specifically displaced by aqueous solution of inorganic phosphates thus allowing their separation or detection by a technique similar to that of affinity chromatography. The consequences of this finding for phosphate compound biochemistry are discussed.
Rat blood was shown to contain an aminopeptidase which rapidly hydrolyses short peptides containing an aromatic amino acid as N-terminal residue. Using tetragastrin (Trp-Met-Asp-PheNH 2) as substrate, we showed that some amino acid hydroxamates inhibit rat aminopeptidase activity ‘in vitro’ in the following order: HTrpNHOH > HPheNHOH ≫ HAIaNHOH. The same hydroxamates markedly enhanced the biological activity of tetragastrin ‘in vivo’. The amplification of the secretory effect, correlated with the amount of the hydroxamate used, strongly suggests that these compounds can stabilize a number of active peptides in vivo by inhibiting their proteolytic degradation.