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Biochim Biophys Acta. 1981 Feb 6;640(3):710-20.

Temperature adaptation of biological membranes. Compensation of the molar activity of cytochrome c oxidase in the mitochondrial energy-transducing membrane during thermal acclimation of the carp (Cyprinus carpio L.).


The acclimation temperature of carp does not affect the amount of cytochrome c oxidase per mg mitochondrial protein as revealed from the reduced-minus-oxidized difference spectra of red muscle mitochondria from cold- and warm-acclimated carp. There are no differences between cold- and warm-acclimated fish in the substrate binding properties of the enzyme as judged from the Km values for cytochrome c at 30 degrees C (3.34 +/- microM, acclimation temperature 10 degrees C and 3.55 +/- 0.31 microM, acclimation temperature 30 degrees C). The molar activities of the enzyme, however, differ for both acclimation temperatures: when intercalated in the 10 degrees C-acclimated mitochondrial membrane, the enzyme can catalyze the oxidation of 117.6 +/- 17.2 mol ferrocytochrome c/s per mol heme a as compared with 85.6 +/- 17.2 in the 30 degrees C-acclimated membrane (experimental temperature 30 degrees C). Correspondingly, higher specific activities of the succinate oxidase system are observed in mitochondria from cold-acclimated carp as compared with those obtained from warm-acclimated carp. The results indicate that cold acclimation of the eurythermic carp is accompanied by a partial compensation of the acute effect of decreasing temperature on the activity of cytochrome c oxidase in red muscle mitochondria. Based on the temperature-induced lipid adaptation reported for carp red muscle mitochondria (Wodtke, E. (1980) Biochim. Biophys. Acta 640, 698--709), it is concluded that during thermal acclimation the molar activity of cytochrome c oxidase is controlled by viscotropic regulation. The results fit to the conception that cardiolipin constitutes a lipid shell (annulus) surrounding the oxidase within the native membrane, but that it is the bilayer fluidity and not the annular fluidity which determines the activity of cytochrome c oxidase.

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