Demethylases are enzymes that remove methyl groups from lysine and arginine residues of proteins, the most commonly studied being histone demethylases. Methylation of histones is essential for regulating transcription and maintaining chromatin structure, and demethylases, like all histone modifying enzymes, play an important role in development and gene regulation. All of the demethylases, with the exception of LSD1, contain a catalytic jumonji domain. Many of these enzymes require a cofactor such as FAD, Fe(II), or α-ketoglutarate.
Like, methyltransferases, demethylases exhibit a high level of substrate specificity with respect to their target lysine. In addition, they are sensitive to the specific type of methylation that they recognize and subsequently demethylate. For example, some demethylases are only capable of demethylating mono- and dimethyl substrates, whereas others are capable of demethylating all states of lysine methylation.
Given the critical role that demethylases play in gene regulation, it is not surprising that they have been linked to many human cancers. BPS was the first company to supply active, high purity histone demethylases for life science research. We provide a unique and comprehensive offering of enzymes, assay kits, and inhibitors/activators to meet all of your research needs. Our large portfolio of substrates, which includes and a number of modified histones, makes it easy to study histone demethylase substrate specificity.
1. Pedersen, M.T., et al., Trends Cell Biol. 2010; 20(11): 662-671.