Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Biochemistry. 2012 Apr 3;51(13):2652-61. doi: 10.1021/bi300195b. Epub 2012 Mar 20.

A paradigm for enzyme-catalyzed proton transfer at carbon: triosephosphate isomerase.

Author information

Department of Chemistry, University at Buffalo, State University of New York, Buffalo, New York 14260-3000, United States.


Triosephosphate isomerase (TIM) catalyzes the stereospecific 1,2-proton shift at dihydroxyacetone phosphate (DHAP) to give (R)-glyceraldehyde 3-phosphate through a pair of isomeric enzyme-bound cis-enediolate phosphate intermediates. The chemical transformations that occur at the active site of TIM were well understood by the early 1990s. The mechanism for enzyme-catalyzed isomerization is similar to that for the nonenzymatic reaction in water, but the origin of the catalytic rate acceleration is not understood. We review the results of experimental work that show that a substantial fraction of the large 12 kcal/mol intrinsic binding energy of the nonreacting phosphodianion fragment of TIM is utilized to activate the active site side chains for catalysis of proton transfer. Evidence is presented that this activation is due to a phosphodianion-driven conformational change, the most dramatic feature of which is closure of loop 6 over the dianion. The kinetic data are interpreted within the framework of a model in which activation is due to the stabilization by the phosphodianion of a rare, desolvated, loop-closed form of TIM. The dianion binding energy is proposed to drive the otherwise thermodynamically unfavorable desolvation of the solvent-exposed active site. This reduces the effective local dielectric constant of the active site, to enhance stabilizing electrostatic interactions between polar groups and the anionic transition state, and increases the basicity of the carboxylate side chain of Glu-165 that functions to deprotonate the bound carbon acid substrate. A rebuttal is presented to the recent proposal [Samanta, M., Murthy, M. R. N., Balaram, H., and Balaram, P. (2011) ChemBioChem 12, 1886-1895] that the cationic side chain of K12 functions as an active site electrophile to protonate the carbonyl oxygen of DHAP.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

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