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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

The reduction of acetylpyridine adenine dinucleotide by NADH: is it a significant reaction of proton-translocating transhydrogenase, or an artefact?

Transhydrogenase is a proton pump. It has separate binding sites for NAD+/NADH (on domain I of the protein) and for NADP+/NADPH (on domain III). Purified, detergent-dispersed transhydrogenase from Escherichia coli catalyses the reduction of the NAD+ analogue, acetylpyridine adenine dinucleotide (AcPdAD+), by NADH at a slow rate in the absence of added NADP+ or NADPH. Although it is slow, this reaction is surprising, since transhydrogenase is generally thought to catalyse hydride transfer between NAD(H)--or its analogues and NADP(H)--or its analogues, by a ternary complex mechanism. It is shown that hydride transfer occurs between the 4A position on the nicotinamide ring of NADH and the 4A position of AcPdAD+. On the basis of the known stereospecificity of the enzyme, this eliminates the possibilities of transhydrogenation(a) from NADH in domain I to AcPdAD+ wrongly located in domain III; and (b) from NADH wrongly located in domain III to AcPdAD+ in domain I. In the presence of low concentrations of added NADP+ or NADPH, detergent-dispersed E. coli transhydrogenase catalyses the very rapid reduction of AcPdAD+ by NADH. This reaction is cyclic; it takes place via the alternate oxidation of NADPH by AcPdAD+ and the reduction of NADP+ by NADH, while the NADPH and NADP+ remain tightly bound to the enzyme. In the present work, it is shown that the rate of the cyclic reaction and the rate of reduction of AcPdAD+ by NADH in the absence of added NADP+/NADPH, have similar dependences on pH and on MgSO4 concentration and that they have a similar kinetic character. It is therefore suggested that the reduction of AcPdAD+ by NADH is actually a cyclic reaction operating, either with tightly bound NADP+/NADPH on a small fraction (< 5%) of the enzyme, or with NAD+/NADH (or AcPdAD+/AcPdADH) unnaturally occluded within the domain III site. Transhydrogenase associated with membrane vesicles (chromatophores) of Rhodospirillum rubrum also catalyses the reduction of AcPdAD+ by NADH in the absence of added NADP+/NADPH. When the chromatophores were stripped of transhydrogenase domain I, that reaction was lost in parallel with 'normal reverse' transhydrogenation (e.g., the reduction of AcPdAD+ by NADPH). The two reactions were fully recovered upon reconstitution with recombinant domain I protein. However, after repeated washing of the domain I-depleted chromatophores, reverse transhydrogenation activity (when assayed in the presence of domain I) was retained, whereas the reduction of AcPdAD+ by NADH declined in activity. Addition of low concentrations of NADP+ or NADPH always supported the same high rate of the NADH-->AcPdAD+ reaction independently of how often the membranes were washed. It is concluded that, as with the purified E. coli enzyme, the reduction of AcPdAD+ by NADH in chromatophores is a cyclic reaction involving nucleotides that are tightly bound in the domain III site of transhydrogenase. However, in the case of R. rubrum membranes it can be shown with some certainty that the bound nucleotides are NADP+ or NADPH. The data are thus adequately explained without recourse to suggestions of multiple nucleotide-binding sites on transhydrogenase.[1]


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