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Arch Biochem Biophys. 1986 Sep;249(2):588-95.

Effects of metal ions on sphingomyelinase activity of Bacillus cereus.


Some divalent metal ions were examined for their effects on sphingomyelinase activity of Bacillus cereus. The enzyme activity toward mixed micelles of sphingomyelin and Triton X-100 proved to be stimulated by Co2+ and Mn2+, as well as by Mg2+. Km's for Co2+ and Mn2+ were 7.4 and 1.7 microM, respectively, being smaller than the Km for Mg2+ (38 microM). Sr2+ proved to be a competitive inhibitor against Mg2+, with a Ki value of 1 mM. Zn2+ completely abolished the enzyme activity at concentrations above 0.5 mM. The concentration of Zn2+ causing 50% inhibition of the enzyme activity was 2.5 microM. Inhibition by Zn2+ was not restored by increasing concentrations of Mg2+ when the concentration of Zn2+ was above 10 microM. Ba2+ was without effect. When sphingomyelinase was incubated with unsealed ghosts of bovine erythrocytes at 37 degrees C, the enzyme was significantly adsorbed onto the membrane in the presence of Mn2+, Co2+, Sr2+ or Ba2+. Incubation with intact or Pronase-treated erythrocytes caused enzyme adsorption only in the presence of Mn2+. In the course of incubation, the enzyme was first adsorbed on the membranes of intact bovine erythrocytes in the presence of Mn2+; then sphingomyelin breakdown proceeded with ensuing desorption of adsorbed enzyme. Hot-cold hemolysis occurred in parallel with sphingomyelin breakdown. In this case, the hydrolysis of membranous sphingomyelin as well as the initial enzyme adsorption took place in the following order: unsealed ghosts greater than Pronase-treated erythrocytes greater than intact erythrocytes.

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