CRYSTAL STRUCTURE OF CLEAVED ANTITRYPSIN POLYMER
[A1AT_HUMAN] Defects in SERPINA1 are the cause of alpha-1-antitrypsin deficiency (A1ATD) [MIM:613490]. A disorder whose most common manifestation is emphysema, which becomes evident by the third to fourth decade. A less common manifestation of the deficiency is liver disease, which occurs in children and adults, and may result in cirrhosis and liver failure. Environmental factors, particularly cigarette smoking, greatly increase the risk of emphysema at an earlier age.  
[A1AT_HUMAN] Inhibitor of serine proteases. Its primary target is elastase, but it also has a moderate affinity for plasmin and thrombin. Irreversibly inhibits trypsin, chymotrypsin and plasminogen activator. The aberrant form inhibits insulin-induced NO synthesis in platelets, decreases coagulation time and has proteolytic activity against insulin and plasmin.[:]  Short peptide from AAT: reversible chymotrypsin inhibitor. It also inhibits elastase, but not trypsin. Its major physiological function is the protection of the lower respiratory tract against proteolytic destruction by human leukocyte elastase (HLE).[:] 
Publication Abstract from PubMed
Alpha1-antitrypsin deficiency, which can lead to both emphysema and liver disease, is a result of the accumulation of alpha1-antitrypsin polymers within the hepatocyte. A wealth of biochemical and biophysical data suggests that alpha1-antitrypsin polymers form via insertion of residues from the reactive center loop of one molecule into the beta-sheet of another. However, this long-standing hypothesis has not been confirmed by direct structural evidence. Here, we describe the first crystallographic evidence of a beta-strand linked polymer form of alpha1-antitrypsin: the crystal structure of a cleaved alpha1-antitrypsin polymer.
Cleaved antitrypsin polymers at atomic resolution.,Dunstone MA, Dai W, Whisstock JC, Rossjohn J, Pike RN, Feil SC, Le Bonniec BF, Parker MW, Bottomley SP Protein Sci. 2000 Feb;9(2):417-20. PMID:10716194
From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine.