The semicarbazide-sensitive amine oxidases constitute a group of copper-containing enzymes whose physiological function is unclear. The enzymes are present in various tissues, including blood plasma. At present, the source of the plasma enzyme in humans is not known. Results of a recent study suggested that semicarbazide-sensitive amine oxidase is expressed in the skeleton, e.g. in the spine. Using an indirect autoradiographic method in mice, we provide evidence that semicarbazide-sensitive amine oxidase is present in high abundance in bone tissue. Specific activities of semicarbazide-sensitive amine oxidase were estimated in blood samples from subjects with femoral bone fractures. Moreover, enzyme activities were also measured in patients suffering from prostate cancer with skeletal metastases. The level of specific semicarbazide-sensitive amine oxidase activity in serum was significantly elevated in patients with skeletal metastases compared with both healthy controls and patients having prostate cancer without signs of skeletal metastases. Based on the results of the present study, we propose that semicarbazide-sensitive amine oxidase in blood plasma may originate, at least in part, from the skeleton.

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