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Open Access Research article

Effects of spermine NONOate and ATP on protein aggregation: light scattering evidences

Rasha Bassam1*, Ilya Digel1, Juergen Hescheler2, Ayseguel Temiz Artmann1 and Gerhard M Artmann1

Author affiliations

1 Institute of Bioengineering (IFB), Aachen University of Applied Sciences, 52428 Juelich, Germany

2 Institute of Neurophysiology, University of Cologne, 50931 Cologne, Germany

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Citation and License

BMC Biophysics 2013, 6:1  doi:10.1186/2046-1682-6-1

Published: 4 January 2013

Abstract

Background and objective

Regulating protein function in the cell by small molecules, provide a rapid, reversible and tunable tool of metabolic control. However, due to its complexity the issue is poorly studied so far. The effects of small solutes on protein behavior can be studied by examining changes of protein secondary structure, in its hydrodynamic radius as well as its thermal aggregation. The study aim was to investigate effects of adenosine-5’-triphosphate (ATP), spermine NONOate (NO donor) as well as sodium/potassium ions on thermal aggregation of albumin and hemoglobin. To follow aggregation of the proteins, their diffusion coefficients were measured by quasi-elastic light scattering (QELS) at constant pH (7.4) in the presence of solutes over a temperature range from 25°C to 80°C.

Results and discussion

1) Spermine NONOate persistently decreased the hemoglobin aggregation temperature Tairrespectively of the Na+/K+ environment, 2) ATP alone had no effect on the protein’s thermal stability but it facilitated protein’s destabilization in the presence of spermine NONOate and 3) mutual effects of ATP and NO were strongly influenced by particular buffer ionic compositions.

Conclusion

The ATP effect on protein aggregation was ambiguous: ATP alone had no effect on the protein’s thermal stability but it facilitated protein’s destabilization in the presence of nitric oxide. The magnitude and direction of the observed effects strongly depended on concentrations of K+ and Na+ in the solution.