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Biochemistry. 1993 Aug 10;32(31):8004-13.

Detection and identification of a chromophoric intermediate during the medium-chain fatty acyl-CoA dehydrogenase-catalyzed reaction via rapid-scanning UV/visible spectroscopy.

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  • 1Biochemistry Department, North Dakota State University, Fargo 58105.


We have investigated the medium-chain fatty acyl-CoA dehydrogenase (MCAD)-catalyzed reaction via rapid-scanning stopped-flow (RSSF) UV/vis spectroscopy, combined with the single-wavelength stopped-flow technique, utilizing 3-indolepropionyl-CoA (IPCoA) and trans-3-indoleacryloyl-CoA (IACoA) as chromophoric pseudosubstrates. The RSSF spectral data reveal that formation of an intermediary species with an absorbance maximum at 400 nm and a broad charge-transfer band around 600 nm accompanies the reduction of MCAD-FAD by IPCoA. In the presence of high concentrations of enzyme ([MCAD] >> [IPCoA]) the intermediary spectral band at 400 nm remains unperturbed, whereas in the presence of low concentrations of enzyme ([MCAD] << [IPCoA]) it slowly shifts to an absorption band with an absorbance maximum at 370 nm. Appearance and disappearance of this intermediary species coincides with the appearance and disappearance of the charge-transfer band. Single-wavelength stopped-flow studies, performed under similar high and low enzyme conditions, were consistent with one (1/tau 1) and two (1/tau 1 > 1/tau 2) relaxation rate constants, respectively. These findings, combined with relaxation studies performed in the reverse directions as well as substrate and product binding studies with the oxidized and reduced forms of the enzyme, have allowed us to conclude the following: (1) the intermediary species possesses the properties of reduced flavin and highly conjugated reaction product IACoA (absorbance maximum = 400 nm); (2) this intermediary species collapses into an MCAD-FADH2-IACoA complex (absorbance maximum = 370 nm) in the presence of excessive concentrations of IPCoA; the collapse is being driven by the competitive binding of IPCoA with the reduced form of the enzyme; (3) the 400-nm absorption band and the charge-transfer band are given by the same intermediary species formed during the enzyme-catalyzed reaction pathway. The role of protein conformational changes in modulating the substrate/product structures during the MCAD-catalyzed reaction is discussed.

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