The effects of copper depletion on structural aspects of cytochrome c oxidase.

S. T. Weintraub, B. B. Muhoberac, D. C. Wharton

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9 Scopus citations


The removal of copper from beef heart cytochrome c oxidase by either dialysis against potassium cyanide or by treatment with bathocuproine sulfonate produced changes in the enzyme which are indicative of a spin state transition. In the Soret region of the CD spectrum copper depletion of the enzyme caused a significant decrease in amplitude in combination with a red shift of the peak maximum for oxidized samples, while reduced copper-depleted samples exhibited decreased amplitude and a blue shift of the peak maximum. In the magnetic CD spectra of oxidized copper-depleted samples the peak at 420 nm was shifted to lower wave-length along with a significant increase in amplitude. In reduced samples the peak at 446 nm exhibited a slight red shift concomitant with a substantial decrease in amplitude. The conformational changes indicated by the CD and magnetic CD spectra when copper is removed from the enzyme were supported by the EPR spectra of the NO complex of the reduced copper-depleted enzyme. The removal of copper from cytochrome c oxidase caused the NO complex to exhibit a 3-line splitting pattern of gz in the EPR spectrum instead of the 9 lines seen in the NO complex of the native enzyme. When [15N]NO was used, a 2-line pattern was seen at gz when copper was removed from the enzyme. The changes in the CD and magnetic CD spectra and in the EPR spectra of the NO derivatives of cytochrome c oxidase can be explained by the rearrangement of the axial ligands to iron in cytochrome a3 as a result of copper depletion. These results emphasize the close structural interdependence of the metallic components of this enzyme.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4940-4946
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number9
StatePublished - May 10 1982

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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