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Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2000 Mar 28;97(7):3195-200.

Alphabeta protomers of Na+,K+-ATPase from microsomes of duck salt gland are mostly monomeric: formation of higher oligomers does not modify molecular activity.

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Department of Medicine, State University of New York, Stony Brook, NY 11794, USA. Dwight.Martin@Sunysb.Edu


The distance that separates alphabeta protomers of the Na(+), K(+)-ATPase in microsomes and in purified membranes prepared from duck nasal salt glands was estimated by measuring fluorescence resonance energy transfer between anthroylouabain bound to a population of alphabeta protomers and either N-[7-nitrobenz-2-oxa-1, 3-diazol-4-yl]-6-aminohexyl ouabain or 5-(and-6)-carboxyfluorescein-6-aminohexyl ouabain bound to the rest. Energy transfer between probes bound in the microsomal preparation was less than in the purified membranes. The efficiency of energy transfer between anthroylouabain and N-[7-nitrobenz-2-oxa-1, 3-diazol-4-yl]-6-aminohexyl ouabain was 29.2% in the microsomes compared with 62.6% in the purified preparation. Similar results were obtained with 5-(and-6)-carboxyfluorescein-6-aminohexyl ouabain as acceptor. We calculate that either the protomer bound probes were on the average 13 A farther apart in the microsomes than in the purified membranes, or that 53% of the protomers are monomeric in the microsome preparation. Microsomes prepared in the presence of phalloidin (a toxin that binds to F actin and stabilizes the actin-based cytoskeleton) showed less quench than those prepared in its absence. The data support the hypothesis that protomers are kept apart by their association with the cytoskeleton. The turnover rate while hydrolyzing ATP is the same in the microsomal and purified preparations; higher oligomer formation has no significant effect on the enzyme reaction mechanism.

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