Splice variants of the β-site APP-cleaving enzyme BACE1 in human brain and pancreas

Robert Ehehalt, Beate Michel, Davide De Pietri Tonelli, Daniele Zacchetti, Kai Simons, Patrick Keller

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


BACE is the β-secretase responsible for the first step in amyloidogenic processing of the amyloid precursor protein APP. We have identified two BACE isoforms, BACE1B and BACE1C, lacking 25 and 44 amino acids, respectively. Whereas the BACE1B transcript is present in human pancreas and brain, the BACE1C transcript is found in pancreas only. In transfected cells both BACE1A, which encodes the originally described full-length BACE1 protein and the close homolog BACE2 localized mainly to post-Golgi membranes. In contrast, the two shorter isoforms were found in the endoplasmic reticulum only, and they did not display β-secretase activity. Using RNase protection we in addition show that the major pancreatic transcript is BACE1A. This suggests that the known absence of β-secretase activity in the pancreas is not due to a missing BACE1A transcript.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)30-37
Number of pages8
JournalBiochemical and Biophysical Research Communications
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2002


  • β-Secretase
  • Alzheimer
  • Amyloid precursor protein
  • APP
  • BACE isoforms

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Biophysics
  • Molecular Biology


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