Type II transmembrane serine proteases (TTSPs) are involved in important physiological processes, such as pro-hormone processing, cellular signaling, host immune defense, and cancer development. The diversity of functions is reflected by the multidomain architecture of these proteases, which are composed of a variety of functional domains in addition to the catalytic domain. Recently, we identified rat DESC4, a member of the HAT/DESC1-like subfamily of TTSPs. Intriguingly, DESC4 gene expression is confined to few tissues including gustatory papillae. In the current publication we present the purification of the catalytic domain of recombinant rat DESC4. Subsequently, the catalytic domain was subjected to a refolding procedure. During refolding we observed endogenous catalytic activity leading to smaller fragments, which were analyzed by peptide sequencing. The identified cleavage-sites are typical for trypsin-like serine proteases. For further analyses a homology-based model of the DESC4 catalytic domain was generated enabling us to investigate protease-substrate interaction in more detail.