Iron-catalyzed oxidative modification of glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase from Leuconostoc mesenteroides. Structural and functional changes

L. I. Szweda, E. R. Stadtman

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58 Scopus citations


As a variety of eukaryotic cells age, the specific activity of glucose-6- phosphate dehydrogenase (Glu-6-PDH) declines as much as 50%. Because of the central role of this enzyme in metabolism, it is important to define factors responsible for this loss in enzyme activity. We report that Glu-6-PDH from Leuconostoc mesenteroides is rapidly inactivated by micromolar concentrations of Fe2+ and H2O2. Inactivation correlated with the formation of one carbonyl functionality/enzyme subunit, indicating that inactivation is the result of site-specific oxidative modification. Our results suggest that Fe2+ binds to the glucose 6-phosphate binding site and that interaction of the enzyme-bound Fe2+ with H2O2 leads to the oxidative modification of amino acids essential for enzyme activity. Partially inactivated enzyme remained predominantly in the dimeric form, and no change in the apparent affinity of the remaining active subunits for substrate was observed. Partial inactivation did, however, lead to a decrease in the thermal stability of the remaining activity. This decrease in thermal stability could be largely overcome by the addition of glucose 6-phosphate. Thus, although exposure to H2O2 and Fe2+ results in the irreversible inactivation of Glu-6-PDH, the resulting modification is selective, leads to the formation of heterodimers of both active and inactive subunits, and does not appear to cause large scale structural changes. Our results demonstrate the inherent susceptibility of Glu-6-PDH from L. mesenteroides to modification by an oxidation system known to exist in vivo. An assessment of the physiological significance of Fe2+-catalyzed oxidation of Glu-6-PDH awaits extension of these studies to mammalian sources known to accumulate less active or inactive forms of the enzyme as a function of age.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3096-3100
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1992

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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