Modification of the Conformational Equilibria in the Sodium and Potassium Dependent Adenosinetriphosphatase with Glutaraldehyde

David M. Chipman, Anat Lev

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Glutaraldehyde treatment of electroplax membrane preparations of Na,K-ATPase leads to irreversible changes in the enzymic behavior of the protein, which are not due to modification of the active site. When the glutaraldehyde treatment is carried out in a medium containing K+ and without Na+, the “K+-modified enzyme” so produced shows the following changes in enzymic properties: The steady-state phosphorylation by ATP and the rate of ATP-ADP exchange are decreased to ∼40% of control, while Na,K-ATPase activity decreases to ∼15% of control. Phosphatase activity is decreased very little, but the potassium activation parameters of the reaction are changed, from K0.5 5 mM and nH = 1.9 in control to K0.5 ∼ 0.5 mM and nH = 1 in K+-modified enzyme. KI(app) for nucleotide inhibition of phosphatase activity is increased significantly. Changes in the cation dependence of the ATPase reaction are also observed. All of these effects can be explained by assuming that the cross-linking of surface groups in protein subunits when they are in conformation E2 shifts the intrinsic conformational equilibrium of the enzyme toward E2. We considered the simplest mathematical model for the coupling between K+ binding and the conformational equilibrium, with equivalent potassium sites that must be simultaneously in the same state. If one assumes that the potassium activation of phosphatase activity in the K+-modified enzyme reflects the affinity for K+ of E2, the behavior of the phosphatase activity in the native enzyme can be fit if there are only two potassium sites, whose affinity is 80-fold higher in E2 than in E1 and the equilibrium constant for E2 ⇌ E1 is about 250. The same sites can explain the activation of dephosphorylation during ATP hydrolysis. Independent of the model chosen, potassium ions must be required for the catalytic action of form E2 and cannot be merely “allosteric activators”. The enzyme modified with glutaraldehyde in a medium containing Na+ also has interesting properties, but their rationalization is less straightforward. The Na,K-ATPase activity is inhibited more than the “partial reactions”, as in the K+-modified enzyme. We suggest that this is a generally expected result of modifications of the enzyme.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4450-4459
Number of pages10
Issue number19
StatePublished - 1 Jan 1983

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry


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