Send to

Choose Destination
Biochemistry. 1991 Aug 13;30(32):7990-8000.

Binding and fluorescence studies of the relationship between neurophysin-peptide interaction and neurophysin self-association: an allosteric system exhibiting minimal cooperativity.

Author information

Department of Biochemistry, Cornell University Medical College, New York, New York 10021.


The mechanism of peptide-enhanced neurophysin self-association was investigated to address questions raised by the crystal structure of a neurophysin-dipeptide complex. The dependence on protein concentration of the binding of a broad range of peptides to the principal hormone-binding site confirmed that occupancy of this site alone, and not a site that bridges the monomer-monomer interface, is the trigger for enhanced dimerization. For the binding of most peptides to the principal hormone-binding site on bovine neurophysin I, the affinity of each dimer site was at least 10 times that of monomer under the conditions used. No interactions between the two sites of the dimer were evident. Fluorescence polarization studies of pressure-induced dimer dissociation indicated that the volume change for this reaction was almost 4 times greater in the liganded than in the unliganded state, pointing to a significant alteration of the monomer-monomer interface upon peptide binding. Novel conformational changes in the vicinity of the single neurophysin tyrosine, Tyr-49, induced by pressures lower than required for subunit dissociation, were also observed. The bovine neurophysin I dimer therefore appears to represent an allosteric system in which there is thermodynamic and functional communication between each binding site and the monomer-monomer interface, but no communication across the interface to the binding site of the other subunit. A model for the peptide-enhanced dimerization is proposed in which intersubunit contacts between monomers reduce the large unfavorable free energy associated with binding-induced intrasubunit conformational change. Structural origins of the lack of communication across the interface are suggested on the basis of the low volume change associated with dimerization in the unliganded state and monomer-monomer contacts in the crystal structure. Potential roles for the peptide alpha-amino group and position 2 phenyl ring in triggering conformational change are discussed.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Loading ...
Support Center