Oct 28, 1998

The mechanism of proton pumping by cytochrome c oxidasex127e [comments

Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Hartmut Michel


Cytochrome c oxidase catalyzes the reduction of oxygen to water that is accompanied by pumping of four protons across the mitochondrial or bacterial membrane. Triggered by the results of recent x-ray crystallographic analyses, published data concerning the coupling of individual electron transfer steps to proton pumping are reanalyzed: Conversion of the conventional oxoferryl intermediate F to the fully oxidized form O is connected to pumping of only one proton. Most likely one proton is already pumped during the double reduction of O, and only three protons during conversion of the "peroxy" forms P to O via the oxoferryl form F. Based on the available structural, spectroscopic, and mutagenesis data, a detailed mechanistic model, carefully considering electrostatic interactions, is presented. In this model, each of the four reductions of heme a during the catalytic cycle is coupled to the uptake of one proton via the D-pathway. These protons, but never more than two, are temporarily stored in the regions of the heme a and a3 propionates and are driven to the outside ("pumped") by electrostatic repulsion from protons entering the active site during turnover. The first proton is pumped by uptake of one proton via the K-pathway du...Continue Reading

Mentioned in this Paper

Biochemical Pathway
Conserved Sequence
Cytochrome C Oxidase
Cytochrome c Oxidase Subunit VIa
Plain X-ray
Electron Transport
Mitochondria, Heart

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