An evidence for the equilibrium unfolding intermediates of ribonuclease A by tritium labeling method

International Journal of Biological Macromolecules
Aleftina V VolynskayaVitalii I Goldanskii


A formation of a molten globule in the unfolding of ribonuclease A could be considered as an evidence supporting a hypothesis on the existence of such intermediates on the pathway of a protein folding. Using a novel technique (tritium labeling method) we have showed that the ribonuclease A equilibrium unfolding in urea and guanidinium chloride (GuCl) solutions proceeds through a formation of intermediates whose properties (compactness, retention of the larger part hydrophobic core, secondary structure, and native-like folding pattern) correspond to the fundamental characteristics of the molten globule state. The both intermediates are the "wet" molten globules (the globule interior contains the water molecules). The results reveal the noticeable distinctions in intermediates structure, first of all, in the extent of their compactness. The urea intermediate is less compact than that in GuCl. It is shown that the refolding of the protein denatured by GuCl results in the formation of the intermediate which enzyme activity is virtually the same as the activity of the native protein.


Jun 1, 1993·Proteins·D T Haynie, E Freire
Mar 31, 1999·Trends in Biochemical Sciences·R L Baldwin, G D Rose
May 16, 2000·Nature·D Baker

Related Concepts

Protein Conformation
Protein Denaturation
Pancreatic ribonuclease
Protein Conformation, beta-Strand
Protein Folding, Globular
Lithium Chloride
Guanidine Sulfite (1: 1)

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