Phosphatidylserine (PS), a relatively abundant component of mammalian cell membranes, plays important roles in biological processes including apoptosis and cell signaling. It is believed that phosphatidyl-l-serine is the only naturally occurring PS. Here, we describe for the first time the occurrence of phosphatidyl-d-serine (d-PS) in rat cerebrum. Quantitative HPLC analysis of the derivatives of serine liberated from PS by hydrolysis revealed that the amount of d-PS was approximately 1% of the total PS in the cerebrum. Enzymatic cleavage of cerebrum PS with phospholipase D and phospholipase C resulted in the release of both isomers of serine and phosphoserine, respectively, providing additional evidence for the existence of d-PS. Free d-serine was incorporated into PS in an in vitro system using a cerebrum extract, and this activity was inhibited by EDTA, suggesting the occurrence of a divalent cation-dependent enzyme that synthesizes d-PS by a base-exchange reaction. © 2009 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
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