We determined the cDNA and gene structures of guinea pig caltrin II, a unique member of the calcium transporter inhibitors containing a whey acidic protein (WAP) motif, and we established that it is a secretory protein with a potential 21-amino acid signal peptide in its N-terminus. Northern blot analysis and in situ hybridization histochemistry indicated that the expression of caltrin II is restricted to luminal epithelial cells in the seminal vesicles. Its message levels markedly decreased either after castration (and were restored by simultaneous administration of testosterone) or after treatment of the animals with estradiol, suggesting that the expression of caltrin II is androgen-dependent. Recombinant caltrin II had an elastase-inhibitor activity. Comparison of sequence between the caltrin II and related genes and their molecular evolutionary analyses revealed that caltrin II and seminal vesicle secretory proteins (SVPs) appear to be evolved from a common ancestor gene that is made by the fusion of semenogelin and trappin genes. Caltrin II and SVPs lost the transglutaminase substrate domain and the WAP motif, respectively, within a single exon, resulting in the exertion of different functions.
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