Reduced Bovine Pancreatic Trypsin Inhibitor Has a Compact Structure1

Dan Amir, Elisha Haas

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The conformation of reduced bovine pancreatic trypsin inhibitor (R-BPTI) under reducing conditions was monitored by measurements of nonradiative excitation energy-transfer efficiencies (E) between a donor probe attached to the N-terminal Arg1residue and an acceptor attached to one of the lysine residues (15, 26, 41, or 46) [Amir, D., & Haas, E. (1987) Biochemistry 26, 2162–2175]. High-excitation ener-gy-transfer efficiencies that approach those found in the native state were obtained for the reduced labeled BPTI derivatives in 0.5 M guanidine hydrochloride (Gdn.HCl) and 4 mM DTT. Unlike the dependence expected for a random coil chain, E does not decrease as a function of the number of residues between the labeled sites. The efficiency of energy transfer between probes attached to residues 1 and 15 in the reduced state is higher than that found for the same pair of sites in the native state or reduced unfolded (in 6 M Gdn•HC1) state. This segment also shows high dynamic flexibility. These results indicate that the overall structure of reduced BPTI under folding (but still reducing) conditions shows a high population of conformers with interprobe distances similar to those of the native state. Reduced BPTI seems to be in a molten globule state characterized by a flexible, compact structure, which probably reorganizes into the native structure when the folding is allowed to proceed under oxidizing conditions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)8889-8893
Number of pages5
Issue number25
StatePublished - 13 Dec 1988


FundersFunder number
National Institute of General Medical SciencesR01GM039372


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