Site A-Mediated Partial Unfolding of Cytochrome c on Cardiolipin Vesicles Is Species-Dependent and Does Not Require Lys72

Margaret M. Elmer-Dixon, Bruce E. Bowler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Measurements at pH 8 allow evaluation of binding of 100% cardiolipin vesicles to site A of cytochrome c without interference from other known binding sites. Site A encompasses Lys72, Lys73, Lys86, and Lys87, located in or adjacent to I-loop D (residues 70-85), which positions Met80 for binding to the heme. Binding of cytochrome c to cardiolipin disrupts Met80 heme binding, permitting peroxidase activity. Binding of cardiolipin to yeast iso-1-cytochrome c versus human cytochrome c is compared to assess how binding of cardiolipin to site A has evolved for cytochrome c from species that do not have a complete intrinsic apoptotic pathway to species that do. Using a nondestructive method of quantifying cardiolipin concentration, highly reproducible binding curves are obtained. The results indicate two sequential structural rearrangements on the surface of 100% cardiolipin vesicles. The first, more modest, structural rearrangement occurs at an exposed (outer leaflet) lipid:protein ratio of 8-10 for both cytochromes c. The second, occurring at higher lipid:protein ratios, causes significant unfolding of cytochrome c and requires a much higher lipid:protein ratio for human versus yeast cytochrome c. Higher lipid:protein ratios enhance the peroxidase activity of cytochrome c, suggesting that human cytochrome c has evolved a more stringent on/off switch for cardiolipin peroxidation in the early stages of apoptosis. For both human and yeast cytochrome c, the K72A mutation has only minor effects on binding to site A, suggesting that other nearby lysines can compensate for the lack of Lys72.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4830-4839
Number of pages10
JournalBiochemistry
Volume56
Issue number36
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 12 2017

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