Thymosin α1

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Prothymosin, alpha
2l9i thymosin alpha-1.png
NMR structure of thymosin alpha-1. PDB 2l9i [1]
Available structures
PDB Ortholog search: PDBe, RCSB
Symbols PTMA ; TMSA
External IDs OMIM188390 MGI97803 HomoloGene136511 GeneCards: PTMA Gene
Species Human Mouse
Entrez 5757 100504173
Ensembl ENSG00000187514 ENSMUSG00000026238
UniProt P06454 P26350
RefSeq (mRNA) NM_001099285 n/a
RefSeq (protein) NP_001092755 n/a
Location (UCSC) Chr 2:
231.71 – 231.71 Mb
Chr 1:
86.53 – 86.53 Mb
PubMed search [1] [2]

Thymosin α1 is a peptide fragment derived from prothymosin alpha, a protein that in humans is encoded by the PTMA gene.[2]


Thymosin α1 is believed to be a major component of Thymosin Fraction 5 responsible for the activity of that preparation in restoring immune function in animals lacking thymus glands. It was the first of the peptides from Thymosin Fraction 5 to be completely sequenced and synthesized. Unlike β thymosins, to which it is genetically and chemically unrelated, thymosin α1 is produced as a 28-amino acid fragment, from a longer, 113-amino acid precursor, prothymosin α.[3] It has been found to enhance cell-mediated immunity in humans as well as experimental animals.[4]

Therapeutic application[edit]

Thymosin α1 is now approved in 35 under developed or developing countries for the treatment of Hepatitis B and C, and it is also used to boost the immune response in the treatment of other diseases.[5][6]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Elizondo-Riojas, M. A.; Chamow, S. M.; Tuthill, C. W.; Gorenstein, D. G.; Volk, D. E. (2011). "NMR structure of human thymosin alpha-1". Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications 416 (3–4): 356–361. doi:10.1016/j.bbrc.2011.11.041. PMC 3419376. PMID 22115779. 
  2. ^ Manrow RE, Leone A, Krug MS, Eschenfeldt WH, Berger SL (Jul 1992). "The human prothymosin alpha gene family contains several processed pseudogenes lacking deleterious lesions". Genomics 13 (2): 319–31. doi:10.1016/0888-7543(92)90248-Q. PMID 1612591. 
  3. ^ Garaci E (September 2007). "Thymosin alpha1: a historical overview". Ann. N. Y. Acad. Sci. 1112: 14–20. doi:10.1196/annals.1415.039. PMID 17567941. 
  4. ^ Wara DW, Goldstein AL, Doyle NE, Ammann AJ (January 1975). "Thymosin activity in patients with cellular immunodeficiency". N. Engl. J. Med. 292 (2): 70–4. doi:10.1056/NEJM197501092920204. PMID 1078552. 
  5. ^ Garaci E, Favalli C, Pica F, et al. (September 2007). "Thymosin alpha 1: from bench to bedside". Ann. N. Y. Acad. Sci. 1112: 225–34. doi:10.1196/annals.1415.044. PMID 17600290. 
  6. ^ Goldstein AL, Goldstein AL (May 2009). "From lab to bedside: emerging clinical applications of thymosin alpha 1". Expert Opin Biol Ther 9 (5): 593–608. doi:10.1517/14712590902911412. PMID 19392576. 

Further reading[edit]