Tryptase is a member of the serine protease S1 family. It is the predominant neutral protease of the mast cell granules. Within the mast cell granule it exists as a heparin-stabilized active tetramer. Stabilization is a result of the high negative charge density of the glycosaminoglycan. This stabilization activity is observed with heparins with a MW > 6 kDa as well as other glycosaminoglycans such as dextran sulfate or chondroitin sulfates. Removal of heparin results in dissociation of the tetramer and inactivation of the enzyme. High concentrations of NaCl will result in the dissociation of heparin.

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