Jun 1, 1979

Unusual chemical properties of the amino groups of insulin: implications for structure-function relationship

Canadian Journal of Biochemistry
M G Sheffer, H Kaplan


The chemical properties of the three amino groups of insulin were obtained at 10 and 37 degrees C using the competitive labelling technique with acetic anhydride as the labelling reagent. At 10 degrees C, pK values of 7.9, 7.2, and 7.8 were found for the glycyl A1, phenylalanyl B1, and lysyl B29 amino groups. When compared with standard amino compounds by means of a Brønsted plot, the two amino-termini were found to be 'super-reactive' and the lysyl epsilon-amino group buried. In the presence of carbon dioxide at physiological pH values, all three amino groups became much less reactive indicating that they had reacted to form carbamino derivatives. Above pH 8 the reactivities of the glycyl amino terminus and epsilon-amino group increase sharply indicating that insulin is undergoing a conformational change which is most likely a change in its association state. At 37 degrees C the amino groups do not titrate normally but exhibit sharp increases in reactivity over the physiological pH range with the midpoints in the pH reactivity profiles between pH values of 7.0 and 7.3. This behaviour is interpreted as a rapid disaggregation of insulin to form monomers as a result of the ionization of the amino groups. It is concluded that at p...Continue Reading

  • References
  • Citations2


  • We're still populating references for this paper, please check back later.
  • References
  • Citations2


Mentioned in this Paper

Acetic Anhydrides
Structure-Activity Relationship
Macromolecular Alteration
Carbon Dioxide
Hydrogen-Ion Concentration
AT 10
Acetic anhydride

About this Paper

Trending Feeds


Coronaviruses encompass a large family of viruses that cause the common cold as well as more serious diseases, such as the ongoing outbreak of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19; formally known as 2019-nCoV). Coronaviruses can spread from animals to humans; symptoms include fever, cough, shortness of breath, and breathing difficulties; in more severe cases, infection can lead to death. This feed covers recent research on COVID-19.

Bone Marrow Neoplasms

Bone Marrow Neoplasms are cancers that occur in the bone marrow. Discover the latest research on Bone Marrow Neoplasms here.

IGA Glomerulonephritis

IgA glomerulonephritis is a chronic form of glomerulonephritis characterized by deposits of predominantly Iimmunoglobin A in the mesangial area. Discover the latest research on IgA glomerulonephritis here.

Cryogenic Electron Microscopy

Cryogenic electron microscopy (Cryo-EM) allows the determination of biological macromolecules and their assemblies at a near-atomic resolution. Here is the latest research.

STING Receptor Agonists

Stimulator of IFN genes (STING) are a group of transmembrane proteins that are involved in the induction of type I interferon that is important in the innate immune response. The stimulation of STING has been an active area of research in the treatment of cancer and infectious diseases. Here is the latest research on STING receptor agonists.

LRRK2 & Immunity During Infection

Mutations in the LRRK2 gene are a risk-factor for developing Parkinson’s disease. However, LRRK2 has been shown to function as a central regulator of vesicular trafficking, infection, immunity, and inflammation. Here is the latest research on the role of this kinase on immunity during infection.

Antiphospholipid Syndrome

Antiphospholipid syndrome or antiphospholipid antibody syndrome (APS or APLS), is an autoimmune, hypercoagulable state caused by the presence of antibodies directed against phospholipids.

Meningococcal Myelitis

Meningococcal myelitis is characterized by inflammation and myelin damage to the meninges and spinal cord. Discover the latest research on meningococcal myelitis here.

Alzheimer's Disease: MS4A

Variants within membrane-spanning 4-domains subfamily A (MS4A) gene cluster have recently been implicated in Alzheimer's disease by recent genome-wide association studies. Here is the latest research.