Send to

Choose Destination
Biochemistry. 2008 Dec 2;47(48):12844-52. doi: 10.1021/bi800860k.

Effects of tryptophan microenvironment, soluble domain, and vesicle size on the thermodynamics of membrane protein folding: lessons from the transmembrane protein OmpA.

Author information

Department of Chemistry & Biochemistry, University of California at San Diego, La Jolla, California 92093, USA.


Refolding curves of the integral membrane protein outer membrane protein A (OmpA) were measured to determine the conformational stabilities of this model system for membrane protein folding. Wild-type OmpA exhibits a free energy of unfolding (DeltaG degrees H2O) of 10.5 kcal/mol. Mutants, containing a single tryptophan residue at the native positions 7, 15, 57, 102, or 143, are less stable than wild-type OmpA, with DeltaG degrees H2O values of 6.7, 4.8, 2.4, 4.7, and 2.8 kcal/mol, respectively. The trend observed here is discussed in terms of noncovalent interactions, including aromatic interactions and hydrogen bonding. The effect of the soluble tail on the conformational stability of the transmembrane domain of OmpA was also investigated via truncated single-Trp mutants; DeltaG degrees H2O values for four of the five truncated mutants are greater by >2.7 kcal/mol relative to the full-length versions, suggesting that the absence of the soluble domain may destabilize the unfolded transmembrane domain. Finally, dynamic light scattering experiments were performed to measure the effects of urea and protein on vesicle size and stability. Urea concentrations greater than 1 M cause an increase in vesicle size, and these diameters are unaltered in the presence of protein. These dynamic light scattering results complement the fluorescence studies and illustrate the important effects of vesicle size on protein conformational stability.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for American Chemical Society Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center