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J Biol Chem. 1975 Aug 25;250(16):6320-7.

Purification and properties of the light-activated cyclic nucleotide phosphodiesterase of rod outer segments.


Frog (Rana catesbiana) rod outer segment disc membranes contain a cyclic nucleotide phosphodiesterase (EC which is activated by light in the presence of ATP. This enzyme is firmly bound to the disc membrane, but can be eluted from the membrane with 10 mM Tris-HCl buffer, pH 7.4 and 2 mM EDTA. The eluted phosphodiesterase has reduced activity, but can be activated approximately 10-fold by polycations such as protamine and polylysine. The eluted phosphodiesterase can no longer be activated by light in the presence of ATP, that is, activation by light apparently depends on the native orientation of phosphodiesterase in relationship to other disc membrane components. The eluted phosphodiesterase was purified to homogeneity as judged by analytical polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis and polyacrylamide gel isoelectric focusing. The over-all purification from intact retina was approximately 925-fold. The purification of phosphodiesterase from the isolated rod outer segment preparation was about 185-fold with a 28% yield. Phosphodiesterase accounts for approximately 0.5% of the disc membrane protein. The eluted phosphodiesterase (inactive form) has a sedimentation coefficient of 12.4 S corresponding to an approximate molecular weight of 240,000. Sodium dodecyl sulfate polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis separates the purified phosphodiesterase into two subunits of 120,000 and 110,000 daltons. With cyclic 3':5'-GMP (cGMP) as substrate the Km for the purified phosphodiesterase is 70 muM. Protamine increases the Vmax without changing the Km for cGMP. The isoelectric point (pI) of the native dimer is 5.7. Limited exposure of the eluted phosphodiesterase (inactive form) to trypsin produces a somewhat greater activation than is obtained with 0.5 mg/ml of protamine. The trypsin-activated phosphodiesterase has a sedimentation coefficient of 7.8 S corresponding to an approximate molecular weight of 170,000. The 110,000-dalton subunit is much less sensitive to trypsin hydrolysis and the 120,000-dalton subunit is rapidly replaced by smaller fragments. On the basis of the molecular weight of the purified phosphodiesterase (240,000) and the concentrations of phosphodiesterase and rhodopsin in the rod outer segment, it is estimated that the molar ratio ophosphodiesterase to rhodopsin in the rod outer segment is approximately 1:900. Since all of the disc phosphodiesterase molecules are activated when 0.1% of the rhodopsins are bleached, we conclude that in the presence of ATP 1 molecule of bleached rhodopsin can activate 1 molecule of phosphodiesterase.

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