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The carbonic anhydrases (or carbonate dehydratases) are classified as metalloenzyme for its zinc ion prosthetic group and form a family of enzymes that catalyze the rapid interconversion of carbon dioxide and water to bicarbonate and protons, a reversible reaction that takes part in maintaining acid-base balance in blood and other tissues. The carbonic anhydrasekl (CA) family consists of at least 11 enzymatically active members and a few inactive homologous proteins. Carbonic anhydrase protein (CA) VIII, which is a member of the CA gene family, has been shown to have no catalytic CA activity and its biological function is still unknown. Increased expression of CA-RP VIII was observed in 78% of colorectal carcinomas. It suggested that CA-RP VIII plays a role in the process of invasion in colorectal cancer.
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