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Biochemistry. 2002 Jul 30;41(30):9672-9.

Allosteric activation of cGMP-specific, cGMP-binding phosphodiesterase (PDE5) by cGMP.

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  • 1Laboratory for Memory and Learning, Brain Science Institute, RIKEN 2-1 Hirosawa, Wako, Saitama 351-0198, Japan.


The effects of cGMP binding on the catalytic activity of cGMP-specific, cGMP-binding phosphodiesterase (PDE5) are unclear because cGMP interacts with both allosteric and catalytic sites specifically. We studied the effects of cGMP on the hydrolysis of a fluorescent substrate analogue, 2'-O-anthraniloyl cGMP, by PDE5 partially purified from rat cerebella. The preparation contained PDE5 as the major cGMP-PDE activity and was not contaminated with cAMP- or cGMP-dependent protein kinases. The Hill coefficients for hydrolysis of the analogue substrate were around 1.0 in the presence of cGMP at concentrations <0.3 microM, while they increased to 1.5 at cGMP concentrations >1 microM, suggesting allosteric activation by cGMP at concentrations close to the bulk binding constant of the enzyme. Consistent with an allosteric activation, increasing concentrations of cGMP enhanced the hydrolysis rate of fixed concentrations of 2'-O-anthraniloyl cGMP, which overcame competition between the two substrates. Such activation was not observed with cAMP, cyclic inosine 3',5'-monophosphate, or 2'-O-monobutyl cGMP, indicating specificity of cGMP. These results demonstrate that cGMP is a specific and allosteric activator of PDE5, and suggest that in cells containing PDE5, such as cerebellar Purkinje cells, intracellular cGMP concentrations may be regulated autonomously through effects of cGMP on PDE5.

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