- Protease Inhibitors (Dr. Bart Frank, Arthritis and Immunology Program, OMRF)
There are four groups of proteases: serine, cysteine, aspartic and metallo-proteases. Proteases can be either reversible or irreversible. Reversible proteases react in the absence or above critical concentrations of their inhibitors. Often in the literature, cocktails of inhibitors are made up and little thought goes into what they are effective against, what concentrations are needed, and how long they are stable in an aqueous environment. A case in point is PMSF, a widely used serine protease. This has a half-life in water of 15-60 minutes (depending on your reference source). So it should be added just before the cell lysis.
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