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Biochem J. Feb 1, 1985; 225(3): 629–638.
PMCID: PMC1144637

Relations between high-affinity binding sites of markers for binding regions on human serum albumin.


Binding of warfarin, digitoxin, diazepam, salicylate and Phenol Red, individually or in different pair combinations, to defatted human serum albumin at ligand/protein molar ratios less than 1:1 was studied at pH 7.0. The binding was determined by ultrafiltration. Some of the experiments were repeated with the use of equilibrium dialysis in order to strengthen the results. Irrespective of the method used, all ligands bind to one high-affinity binding site with an association constant in the range 10(4)-10(6) M-1. High-affinity binding of the following pair of ligands took place independently: warfarin-Phenol Red, warfarin-diazepam, warfarin-digitoxin and digitoxin-diazepam. Simultaneous binding of warfarin and salicylate led to a mutual decrease in binding of one another, as did simultaneous binding of digitoxin and Phenol Red. Both effects could be accounted for by a coupling constant. The coupling constant is the factor by which the primary association constants are affected; in these examples of anti-co-operativity the factor has a value between 0 and 1. In the first example it was calculated to be 0.8 and in the latter 0.5. Finally, digitoxin and salicylate were found to compete for a common high-affinity binding site. The present findings support the proposal of four separate primary binding sites for warfarin, digitoxin (and salicylate), diazepam and Phenol Red. An attempt to correlate this partial binding model for serum albumin with other models in the literature is made.

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Selected References

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