• histidine decarboxylase;
  • histamine;
  • Tetrahymena;
  • evolution;
  • regulation

Histidine decarboxylase (HDC) enzyme and its function under hormonal influences were studied in a low level of phylogeny. HDC protein is present in the unicellular ciliate Tetrahymena and its expression was not altered by insulin or histamine treatment. Starvation for 24h enormously decreased the quantity of histamine in the cells. However, insulin influenced the activity of the HDC enzyme, demonstrated by the seven-fold quantity of histamine in the starved cells after insulin treatment. Insulin also increased the uptake of histamine from the tryptone-yeast extract medium. HDC was found in different parts of the cytoplasm, mainly in the periphery (epiplasm) of the cells. The experiments demonstrated the uptake and synthesis of histamine by Tetrahymena as well as the possibility of hormonal regulation of HDC activity.