A kinetic study of the subunit dissociation and reassembly of rabbit muscle phosphofructokinase.
The kinetics of dissociation and reassembly of rabbit skeletal muscle phosphofructokinase has been studied using fluorescence, stopped-flow fluorescence and enzyme activity measurements. The dissociation of the fully active tetramer in 0.8 M guanidine hydrochloride (0.1 M potassium phosphate, pH 8.0) occurs in three kinetic phases as measured by changes in the protein fluorescence emission intensity: dissociation of tetramer to dimer with a relaxation time of a few milliseconds; dissociation of dimer to monomer with a relaxation time of a few seconds; and a conformational change of the monomer with a relaxation time of a few minutes. All three phases exhibit first-order kinetics; ATP (0.05 mM) retards the second step but does not influence the rate of the other two processes. The rate of the second process increases with decreasing temperature; this may be due to the involvement of hydrophobic interactions in the stabilization of the dimeric enzyme. A further unfolding of the monomer polypeptide chain occurs at higher guanidine concentrations, and the relaxation time associated with this process was found to be 83 ms in 2.5 M guanidine, 0.1 M potassium phosphate (pH 8.0) at 23 degrees C. The phosphofructokinase monomers were reassembled from 0.8 M guanidine chloride by 1:10 dilution of the guanidine hydrochloride concentration and yielded a protein with 70-94% of the original activity, depending on the protein concentration. The reactivation process follows second-order kinetics; ATP (5 mM) increases the rate of reactivation without altering the reaction order, while fructose 6-phosphate does not influence the rate of reaction. The rate-determining step is probably the association of monomers to form the dimer.
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