Allosteric effectors influence the tetramer stability of both R- and T-states of hemoglobin A

Gusztáv Schay, László Smeller, Antonio Tsuneshige, Takashi Yonetani, Judit Fidy

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21 Citations (Scopus)


The contribution of heterotropic effectors to hemoglobin allostery is still not completely understood. With the recently proposed global allostery model, this question acquires crucial significance, because it relates tertiary conformational changes to effector binding in both the R- and T-states. In this context, an important question is how far the induced conformational changes propagate from the binding site(s) of the allosteric effectors. We present a study in which we monitored the inter-dimeric interface when the effectors such as Cl-, 2,3-diphosphoglycerate, inositol hexaphosphate, and bezafibrate were bound. We studied oxy-Hb and a hybrid form (αFeO 2)2-(βZn)2 as the T-state analogue by monitoring heme absorption and Trp intrinsic fluorescence under hydrostatic pressure. We observed a pressure-dependent change in the intrinsic fluorescence, which we attribute to a pressure-induced tetramer to dimer transition with characteristic pressures in the 70-200-mega-pascal range. The transition is sensitive to the binding of allosteric effectors. We fitted the data with a simple model for the tetramer-dimer transition and determined the dissociation constants at atmospheric pressure. In the R-state, we observed a stabilizing effect by the allosteric effectors, although in the T-analogue a stronger destabilizing effect was seen. The order of efficiency was the same in both states, but with the opposite trend as inositol hexaphosphate > 2,3-diphosphoglycerate > Cl-. We detected intrinsic fluorescence from bound bezafibrate that introduced uncertainty in the comparison with other effectors. The results support the global allostery model by showing that conformational changes propagate from the effector binding site to the interdimeric interfaces in both quaternary states.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)25972-25983
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number36
Publication statusPublished - Sep 8 2006


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology

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