* To whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received May 7, 2007; Revision received July 18, 2007
This review considers properties of secreted cysteine proteinases of protozoa, bacteria, and viruses and presents information on the contemporary taxonomy of cysteine proteinases. Literature data on the structure and physicochemical and enzymatic properties of these enzymes are reviewed. High interest in cysteine proteinases is explained by the discovery of these enzymes mostly in pathogenic organisms. The role of the proteinases in pathogenesis of several severe diseases of human and animals is discussed.
KEY WORDS: cysteine proteinases, properties, protozoa, bacteria, viruses