Degrades bioactive fatty acid amides to their corresponding acids, with the following preference: N-palmitoylethanolamine > N-myristoylethanolamine > N-lauroylethanolamine = N-stearoylethanolamine > N-arachidonoylethanolamine > N-oleoylethanolamine. Also exhibits weak hydrolytic activity against the ceramides N-lauroylsphingosine and N-palmitoylsphingosine.
Expressed in numerous tissues, with highest levels in liver and kidney, followed by pancreas.
Belongs to the acid ceramidase family.
N-glycosylated. Tunicamycin treatment causes a reduction in specific activity against N-palmitoylethanolamine. Autoproteolytic cleavage in the acidic lumen of the lysosome activates the enzyme.