Pathways of adenine nucleotide catabolism in primary rat muscle cultures

Ester Zoref-Shani, Asher Shainberg, Oded Sperling

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


The pathways of AMP degradation and the metabolic fate of adenosine were studied in cultured myotubes under physiological conditions and during artificially induced enhanced degradation of ATP. The metabolic pathways were gauged by tracing the flow of radioactivity from ATP, prelabelled by incubation of the cultures with [14C]adenine, into the various purine derivatives. The fractional flow from AMP to inosine through adenosine was estimated by the use of the adenosine deaminase (EC inhibitors, coformycin and 2′-deoxycoformycin. The activities of the enzymes involved with AMP and adenosine metabolism were determined flow of label from ATP to diffusible bases and nucleosides, most of which are effluxed to the incubation medium. This catabolic flow is mediated almost exclusively by the activity of AMP deaminase (EC, rather than by AMP 5′-nucleotidase (EC, reflecting the markedly higher Vmax/Km ratio for the deaminase. Enhancement of ATP degradation by inhibition of glycolysis or by combined inhibition of glycolysis and of electron transport resulted in a markedly greater flux of label from adenine nucleotides to nucleosides and bases, but did not alter significantly the ratio between AMP deamination and AMP dephosphorylation, which remained around 19:1. Combined inhibition of glycolysis and of electron transport resulted, in addition, in accumulation of label in IMP, reaching about 20% of total AMP degraded. In the intact myotubes at low adenosine concentration, the anabolic activity of adenosine kinase was at least 4.9-fold the catabolic activity of adenosine deaminase, in accord with the markedly higher Vmax/Km ratio of the kinase for adenosine. The results indicate the operation in the myotube cultures, under various rates of ATP degradation, of the AMP to IMP limb of the purine nucleotide cycle. On the other hand, the formation of purine bases and nucleosides, representing the majority of degraded ATP, indicates inefficient activity of the IMP to AMP limb of the cycle, as well as inefficient salvage of hypoxanthine under these conditions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)287-295
Number of pages9
JournalBiochimica et Biophysica Acta - General Subjects
Issue number3
StatePublished - 7 Dec 1987

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We thank Mrs. M. Sesler for her technical assistance and Mrs. M. Lotan for secretarial assistance. This study was supported by a grant from the Tel-Aviv University (Reckanati).


  • (Rat muscle)
  • AMP degradation
  • Adenine nucleotide metabolism
  • Adenosine


Dive into the research topics of 'Pathways of adenine nucleotide catabolism in primary rat muscle cultures'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this