Cystatin-S, also known as Cystatin-4, Salivary acidic protein 1, Cystatin-SA-III and CST4, is a secreted protein which belongs to thecystatin family. Cystatin-4 / CST4 is expressed in submandibular and sublingual saliva but not in parotid saliva (at protein level). It is also expressed in saliva, tears, urine and seminal fluid. The cystatin superfamily encompasses proteins that contain multiple cystatin-like sequences. Some of the members are active cysteine protease inhibitors, while others have lost or perhaps never acquired this inhibitory activity. There are three inhibitory families in the superfamily, including the type 1 cystatins (stefins), type 2 cystatins and the kininogens. The type 2 cystatin proteins are a class of cysteine proteinase inhibitors found in a variety of human fluids and secretions. Cystatin-4 / CST4 strongly inhibits papain and ficin, partially inhibits stem bromelain and bovine cathepsin C, but does not inhibit porcine cathepsin B or clostripain. Papain is inhibited non-competitively. Cystatin-4 / CST4 is an S-type cystatin, based on its high level of expression in saliva, tears and seminal plasma. The specific role in these fluids is unclear but antibacterial and antiviral activity is present, consistent with a protective function.