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Biochemistry. 1981 Mar 31;20(7):1949-61.

Fluorescence quenching in model membranes. 3. Relationship between calcium adenosinetriphosphatase enzyme activity and the affinity of the protein for phosphatidylcholines with different acyl chain characteristics.


The dependence of function and lipid binding affinity of an integral transport protein on the fatty acyl chain characteristics of a membrane-forming phospholipid have been determined. When a newly developed fluorescence quenching technique [London, E., & Feigenson, G. W. (1981) Biochemistry (first paper of three in this issue); London, E., & Feigenson, G. W. (1981) Biochemistry (preceding paper in this issue)] is used for examining lipid-protein interactions in membranes, the Ca2+ ATPase from rabbit sarcoplasmic reticulum is found to bind with equal affinity a large variety of phosphatidylcholines used to reconstitute the protein into enzymatically active vesicles, regardless of fatty acyl chain length or details of unsaturation. In parallel with the lipid binding studies, we have measured the sensitivity of the catalytic activity of the Ca2+ ATPase to the fatty acyl chain characteristics of the phosphatidylcholine membranes in which the enzyme was reconstituted. The enzyme appears to be sensitive only to the effective fatty acyl chain length, which determines the thickness of the bilayer in which the protein is inserted and displays little sensitivity to such details of unsaturation as degree, position, and isomeric type. Both ATP hydrolyzing and Ca2+ transporting activities of the enzyme were similarly affected by bilayer thickness, and maximum activity was observed in membranes of intermediate thickness. These observations are reconciled in a number of possible models for the manner in which this integral protein interacts with membranes of varying thickness. A freeze-thaw method was used to reconstitute the Ca2+ ATPase, and the vesicles so obtained have been characterized by gel permeation chromatography, density gradient centrifugation, and electron microscopy, (thin section). Convenient methods are described for (a) rapidly separating reconstituted Ca2+ ATPase from unincorporated protein simultaneously in a large number of small samples, giving good recovery of fractionated vesicles without significant dilution, and (b) measuring leakiness to Ca2+ of reconstituted vesicles. Additionally, the gel and liquid-crystal phase transition temperature and bilayer thickness have been determined respectively by differential thermal analysis and low-angle X-ray diffraction for some of the synthetic phosphatidylcholines, which range in chain length from 12 to 24 carbon atoms.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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