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Neutral cholesterol ester hydrolase 1
External IDs OMIM613234 HomoloGene23251 ChEMBL: 5048 GeneCards: NCEH1 Gene
EC number 3.1.1.-
Species Human Mouse
Entrez 57552 320024
Ensembl ENSG00000144959 ENSMUSG00000027698
UniProt Q6PIU2 Q8BLF1
RefSeq (mRNA) NM_001146276 NM_178772
RefSeq (protein) NP_001139748 NP_848887
Location (UCSC) Chr 3:
172.35 – 172.43 Mb
Chr 3:
27.18 – 27.28 Mb
PubMed search [1] [2]

Neutral cholesterol ester hydrolase 1 (NCEH) also known as arylacetamide deacetylase-like 1 (AADACL1) or KIAA1363 is an enzyme that in humans is encoded by the NCEH1 gene.[1]

NCEH is an enzyme located in the endoplasmic reticulum. NCEH hydrolyzes 2-acetyl monoalkylglycerol ether, as part of an enzymatic pathway regulating the levels of platelet activating factor and lysophospholipids that may be involved in cancer development.[2][3]


The enzymatic reaction catalyzed by NCEH is:[2]

  • 2-acetyl monoalkylglycerol ether → monoalkylglycerol ether

Monoalkylglycerol ethers (MAGEs) can then be converted to lysophospholipids alkyl-lysophosphatidic acid (alkyl-LPA) and alkyl-lysophosphatidylcholine (alkyl-LPC).

Controversial studies by one group also implicate the protein in the hydrolysis of cholesterol esters.[4] However, loss of the protein in mice selectively reduces 2-acetyl monoalkylglycerol ether activity throughout the body.[3]

Clinical significance[edit]

Evidence suggests a role for NCEH in cancer. Cancer cell lines contain unusually high levels of the protein.[5] Reduction of the amount of NCEH1 in cancer cells reduces tumor migration and growth in mice and addition of alkyl-LPA restores these processes.[2]

NCEH can break down organophosphates like the pesticide metabolite chlorpyrifos oxon.[6] Conversely, enzymatic activity can be inhibited by organophosphates.[7]


NCEH is a serine hydrolase that contains an N-terminal transmembrane domain, a central catalytic domain and a lipid-binding domain at its C-terminus.[4] The protein exists in three isoforms that result from differences in mRNA splicing. Transcripts encode a protein for isoform a of 448, b of 440 and c of 275 amino acids long.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Entrez Gene: Neutral cholesterol ester hydrolase 1". 
  2. ^ a b c Chiang KP, Niessen S, Saghatelian A, Cravatt BF (Oct 2006). "An enzyme that regulates ether lipid signaling pathways in cancer annotated by multidimensional profiling". Chemistry & Biology 13 (10): 1041–50. doi:10.1016/j.chembiol.2006.08.008. PMID 17052608. 
  3. ^ a b Buchebner M, Pfeifer T, Rathke N, Chandak PG, Lass A, Schreiber R et al. (Oct 2010). "Cholesteryl ester hydrolase activity is abolished in HSL-/- macrophages but unchanged in macrophages lacking KIAA1363". Journal of Lipid Research 51 (10): 2896–908. doi:10.1194/jlr.M004259. PMC 2936755. PMID 20625037. 
  4. ^ a b Igarashi M, Osuga J, Uozaki H, Sekiya M, Nagashima S, Takahashi M et al. (Nov 2010). "The critical role of neutral cholesterol ester hydrolase 1 in cholesterol removal from human macrophages". Circulation Research 107 (11): 1387–95. doi:10.1161/CIRCRESAHA.110.226613. PMID 20947831. 
  5. ^ Jessani N, Liu Y, Humphrey M, Cravatt BF (Aug 2002). "Enzyme activity profiles of the secreted and membrane proteome that depict cancer cell invasiveness". Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 99 (16): 10335–40. doi:10.1073/pnas.162187599. PMC 124915. PMID 12149457. 
  6. ^ Nomura DK, Leung D, Chiang KP, Quistad GB, Cravatt BF, Casida JE (Apr 2005). "A brain detoxifying enzyme for organophosphorus nerve poisons". Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 102 (17): 6195–200. doi:10.1073/pnas.0501915102. PMC 1087944. PMID 15840715. 
  7. ^ Quistad GB, Liang SN, Fisher KJ, Nomura DK, Casida JE (May 2006). "Each lipase has a unique sensitivity profile for organophosphorus inhibitors". Toxicological Sciences : An Official Journal of the Society of Toxicology 91 (1): 166–72. doi:10.1093/toxsci/kfj124. PMID 16449251. 

Further reading[edit]