Digitalis receptor sugar binding site characteristics: A model based upon studies of Na+, K+-ATPase preparations with differing digitalis sensitivities

Arthur H From, Dwight S. Fullerton, Khalil Ahmed

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


The structure-activity relationships of the genin moieties of digitalis glycosides are commonly elucidated by determining the inhibitory potency of a variety of genins toward the plasma membrane Na+, K+-ATPase; qualitatively these relationships appear to be fairly independent of the specific Na+, K+-ATPase preparation utilized for the analysis. To determine whether this is the case with regard to the sugar moieties of glycosides, the inhibitory effects of 12 monoglycosides of digitoxigenin toward four Na+, K+-ATPase preparations of different origin were measured. It was found that while recognition of the major structural determinants of sugar activity appeared to be independent of enzyme source, recognition of the minor structural determinants of activity showed some source dependence. It was also observed that the intrinsic sensitivity to sugar potentiation may be source dependent and unrelated to intrinsic sensitivity to inhibition by digitoxigenin. These observations are compatible with a model of the Na+, K+-ATPase sugar binding site(s) in which intrinsic sensitivity to sugar attachment as well as recognition characteristics (for sugar structural features) both determine the extent to which a sugar moiety may contribute to the activity of monoglycosides. Further, in these studies one of the Na+, K+-ATPase preparations employed was obtained from rat brain, a tissue known to contain a mixture of ouabain sensitive and insensitive isoforms. We have observed that the rigorous purification techniques employed appear to have selectively removed from or denatured the less ouabain sensitive al isoform found in this enzyme preparation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)157-165
Number of pages9
JournalMolecular and cellular biochemistry
Issue number2
StatePublished - May 1990
Externally publishedYes


  • Na, K-ATPase sugar binding site
  • intrinsic sensitivity
  • recognition characteristics


Dive into the research topics of 'Digitalis receptor sugar binding site characteristics: A model based upon studies of Na<sup>+</sup>, K<sup>+</sup>-ATPase preparations with differing digitalis sensitivities'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this