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J Biochem Biophys Methods. 2002 Jan 4;50(2-3):129-40.

A radioassay for phosphofructokinase-1 activity in cell extracts and purified enzyme.

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Laboratório de Enzimologia e Controle do Metabolismo (LabECoM), Departamento de Fármacos, Faculdade de Farmácia, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro, Ilha do Fundão, Rio de Janeiro, RJ 21944-910, Brazil.


Phosphofructokinase-1 plays a key role in the regulation of carbohydrate metabolism. Its activity can be used as an indicator of the glycolytic flux in a tissue sample. The method most commonly employed to determine phosphofructokinase-1 activity is based on oxidation of NADH by the use of aldolase, triosephosphate isomerase, and alpha-glycerophosphate dehydrogenase. This method suffers from several disadvantages, including interactions of the auxiliary enzymes with phosphofructokinase-1. Other methods that have been used also require auxiliary enzymes or are less sensitive than a coupled assay. Here, we propose a direct method to determine phosphofructokinase-1 activity, without the use of auxiliary enzymes. This method employs fructose-6-phosphate and ATP labeled with 32P in the gamma position ([gamma-32P]ATP), and leads to the formation of ADP and fructose-1,6-bisphosphate labeled with 32P ([1-32P]fructose-1,6-bisphosphate). Activated charcoal is used to adsorb unreacted [gamma-32P]ATP, and the radioactive product in the supernatant, [1-32P]fructose-1,6-bisphosphate, is analyzed on a liquid scintillation counter. The proposed method is precise and relatively inexpensive, and can be applied to determine phosphofructokinase-1 activity in cellular extracts as well as in the purified enzyme.

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