This chapter discusses the application of modern immunology and molecular biology to the study of cholinesterases. The combined approaches of immunology and molecular biology may resolve many problems concerning the structure, function, localization, and dynamics of these enzymes. The homologies between butyrylcholine esterase (BuChE) and acetylcholinesteras (AChE) and the precursor-product relations among the molecular forms of these enzymes are discussed. Rapid and convenient purification procedures, perhaps starting with genetically engineered organisms, make it easy to obtain enzyme preparations suitable for large-scale structural studies. It will become feasible to observe particular enzyme forms specifically and directly or even to induce their synthesis in certain types of cells, aiding attempts to clarify their physiological significance. Sensitive immunoassays are available for experiments in which measurements of enzyme activity are an unreliable guide. It is possible to track enzyme molecules as they make their way through the cell, to gain increased understanding of the regulation of their synthesis, assembly into complex forms, delivery to destinations, and metabolism.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Clinical Neurology
- Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience