Terbium probe of calcium-binding sites on the prothrombin-membrane complex

L. E. Sommerville, R. M. Resnick, D. D. Thomas, G. L. Nelsestuen

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Terbium was used as a probe of Ca2+-binding sites on the prothrombin-phospholipid complex. Stoichiometric titrations of prothrombin binding to phospholipid vesicles with either Tb3+ or Ca2+ showed that a minimum of 8 metal ions were needed for binding prothrombin to vesicles (3 Mn2+ + 5 Ca2+ for prothrombin or 8 Tb3+ for F-1). When Ca2+ alone was used, a total of about 11 metal ions were needed for complete binding. These stoichiometries indicated 3 classes of metal ions: one class needed to induce the conformational change, a second required for protein-membrane contact, and a third class bound at other sites on the protein that are not involved in membrane binding. By adding Tb3+ to solutions containing both protein and phospholipid, undesirable Tb3+-induced events, such as irreversible aggregation of prothrombin or vesicle fusion, were avoided. Protein-vesicle binding apparently prevented protein aggregation or vesicle fusion. The protein-vesicle binding affinity was severalfold greater in the presence of Tb3+ compared to Ca2+. CoEDTA quenching of Tb3+ bound to the prothrombin-phospholipid complexes indicated that all metal ions were at least partially exposed to the quencher. Some populations of Tb3+ showed lower quenching constants when all of the prothrombin was bound. Tb3+ emission lifetimes revealed that some Tb3+ ions in the protein-membrane complex were in a different environment from those bound to the protein alone. The results indicated that the metal ions in the prothrombin-membrane complex are relatively open to the solvent yet do affect the characteristics of the protein-membrane binding equilibrium.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)6222-6229
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number14
StatePublished - 1986


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