(1/2037) UV irradiation of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons in ices: production of alcohols, quinones, and ethers.

Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in water ice were exposed to ultraviolet (UV) radiation under astrophysical conditions, and the products were analyzed by infrared spectroscopy and mass spectrometry. Peripheral carbon atoms were oxidized, producing aromatic alcohols, ketones, and ethers, and reduced, producing partially hydrogenated aromatic hydrocarbons, molecules that account for the interstellar 3.4-micrometer emission feature. These classes of compounds are all present in carbonaceous meteorites. Hydrogen and deuterium atoms exchange readily between the PAHs and the ice, which may explain the deuterium enrichments found in certain meteoritic molecules. This work has important implications for extraterrestrial organics in biogenesis.  (+info)

(2/2037) Influence of vesicular storage and monoamine oxidase activity on [11C]phenylephrine kinetics: studies in isolated rat heart.

[11C]Phenylephrine (PHEN) is a radiolabeled analogue of norepinephrine that is transported into cardiac sympathetic nerve varicosities by the neuronal norepinephrine transporter and taken up into storage vesicles localized within the nerve varicosities by the vesicular monoamine transporter. PHEN is structurally related to two previously developed sympathetic nerve markers: [11C]-meta-hydroxyephedrine and [11C]epinephrine. To better characterize the neuronal handling of PHEN, particularly its sensitivity to neuronal monoamine oxidase (MAO) activity, kinetic studies in an isolated working rat heart system were performed. METHODS: Radiotracer was administered to the isolated working heart as a 10-min constant infusion followed by a 110-min washout period. Two distinctly different approaches were used to assess the sensitivity of the kinetics of PHEN to MAO activity. In the first approach, oxidation of PHEN by MAO was inhibited at the enzymatic level with the MAO inhibitor pargyline. In the second approach, the two hydrogen atoms on the a-carbon of the side chain of PHEN were replaced with deuterium atoms ([11C](-)-alpha-alpha-dideutero-phenylephrine [D2-PHEN]) to inhibit MAO activity at the tracer level. The importance of vesicular uptake on the kinetics of PHEN and D2-PHEN was assessed by inhibiting vesicular monoamine transporter-mediated storage into vesicles with reserpine. RESULTS: Under control conditions, PHEN initially accumulated into the heart at a rate of 0.72+/-0.15 mL/min/g wet. Inhibition of MAO activity with either pargyline or di-deuterium substitution did not significantly alter this rate. However, MAO inhibition did significantly slow the clearance of radioactivity from the heart during the washout phase of the study. Blocking vesicular uptake with reserpine reduced the initial uptake rates of PHEN and D2-PHEN, as well as greatly accelerated the clearance of radioactivity from the heart during washout. CONCLUSION: These studies indicate that PHEN kinetics are sensitive to neuronal MAO activity. Under normal conditions, efficient vesicular storage of PHEN serves to protect the tracer from rapid metabolism by neuronal MAO. However, it is likely that leakage of PHEN from the storage vesicles and subsequent metabolism by MAO lead to an appreciable clearance of radioactivity from the heart.  (+info)

(3/2037) Solid-state NMR and hydrogen-deuterium exchange in a bilayer-solubilized peptide: structural and mechanistic implications.

Hydrogen-deuterium exchange has been monitored by solid-state NMR to investigate the structure of gramicidin M in a lipid bilayer and to investigate the mechanisms for polypeptide insertion into a lipid bilayer. Through exchange it is possible to observe 15N-2H dipolar interactions in oriented samples that yield precise structural constraints. In separate experiments the pulse sequence SFAM was used to measure dipolar distances in this structure, showing that the dimer is antiparallel. The combined use of orientational and distance constraints is shown to be a powerful structural approach. By monitoring the hydrogen-deuterium exchange at different stages in the insertion of peptides into a bilayer environment it is shown that dimeric gramicidin is inserted into the bilayer intact, i.e., without separating into monomer units. The exchange mechanism is investigated for various sites and support for a relayed imidic acid mechanism is presented. Both acid and base catalyzed mechanisms may be operable. The nonexchangeable sites clearly define a central core to which water is inaccessible or hydroxide or hydronium ion is not even momentarily stable. This provides strong evidence that this is a nonconducting state.  (+info)

(4/2037) Low C18 to C20 fatty acid elongase activity and limited conversion of stearidonic acid, 18:4(n-3), to eicosapentaenoic acid, 20:5(n-3), in a cell line from the turbot, Scophthalmus maximus.

The TF cell line, derived from a top predatory, carnivorous marine teleost, the turbot (Scophthalmus maximus), is known to have a limited conversion of C18 to C20 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA). To illuminate the underlying processes, we studied the conversions of stearidonic acid, 18:4(n-3), and its elongation product, 20:4(n-3), in TF cells and also in a cell line, AS, derived from Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar), by adding unlabelled (25 microM), U-14C (1 microM) or deuterated (d5; 25 microM) fatty acids. Stearidonic acid, 18:4(n-3), was metabolised to 20:5(n-3) in both cells lines, but more so in AS than in TF cells. Delta5 desaturation was more active in TF cells than in AS cells, whereas C18 to C20 elongation was much reduced in TF as compared to AS cells. Only small amounts of docosahexaenoic acid (22:6(n-3)) were produced by both cell lines, although there was significant production of 22:5(n-3) in both cultures, especially when 20:4(n-3) was supplemented. We conclude that limited elongation of C18 to C20 fatty acids rather than limited fatty acyl Delta5 desaturation accounts for the limited rate of conversion of 18:3(n-3) to 20:5(n-3) in the turbot cell line, as compared to the Atlantic salmon cell line. The results can account for the known differences in conversions of C18 to C20 PUFA by the turbot and the Atlantic salmon in vivo.  (+info)

(5/2037) Chronic protein undernutrition and an acute inflammatory stimulus elicit different protein kinetic responses in plasma but not in muscle of piglets.

The changes in protein metabolism of severe childhood malnutrition are generally perceived as a metabolic adaptation to chronic protein undernutrition. However, severe malnutrition is invariably accompanied by infections which also have profound effects on protein metabolism. This study aimed to distinguish the effect of protein undernutrition from that of an inflammatory stimulus on muscle and plasma protein synthesis rates. Two groups of five piglets consumed diets containing either 23% or 3% protein for 4 wk. They then were infused intravenously with 2H3-leucine before and 48 h after subcutaneous injections of turpentine to measure the fractional synthesis rates (FSR) of muscle protein and both the FSR and the absolute synthesis rates (ASR) of albumin and fibrinogen. Prior to turpentine injection, compared to control piglets, protein-deficient piglets had significantly lower muscle FSR and plasma concentrations of both albumin and fibrinogen, although only albumin had lower FSR and ASR. Turpentine injection decreased muscle FSR but increased the FSR, ASR and plasma concentrations of both albumin and fibrinogen in control piglets. In protein-deficient piglets, the inflammatory stress caused a further decrease in muscle protein FSR and in plasma albumin concentration despite marked increases in albumin FSR and ASR. Fibrinogen FSR, ASR and plasma concentration were increased. We conclude that protein undernutrition and inflammation elicit the same kinetic response in muscle protein but different kinetic responses in plasma proteins. Furthermore, whereas protein deficiency reduces the plasma albumin pool via a reduction in albumin synthesis, inflammation reduces it through a stimulation of catabolism and/or loss from the intravascular space.  (+info)

(6/2037) Lignocellulose degradation by Phanerochaete chrysosporium: purification and characterization of the main alpha-galactosidase.

The main alpha-galactosidase was purified to homogeneity, in 30% yield, from a solid culture of Phanerochaete chrysosporium on 1 part wheat bran/2 parts thermomechanical softwood pulp. It is a glycosylated tetramer of 50 kDa peptide chains, which gives the N-terminal sequence ADNGLAITPQMG(?W)NT(?W)NHFG(?W)DIS(?W)DTI. It is remarkably stable, with crude extracts losing no activity over 3 h at 80 degrees C, and the purified enzyme retaining its activity over several months at 4 degrees C. The kinetics of hydrolysis at 25 degrees C of various substrates by this retaining enzyme were measured, absolute parameters being obtained by active-site titration with 2',4',6'-trinitrophenyl 2-deoxy-2, 2-difluoro-alpha-D-galactopyranoside. The variation of kcat/Km for 1-naphthyl-alpha-D-galactopyranoside with pH is bell-shaped, with pK1=1.91 and pK2=5.54. The alphaD(V/K) value for p-nitrophenyl-alpha-D-glucopyranoside is 1.031+/-0.007 at the optimal pH of 3.75 and 1.114+/-0.006 at pH7.00, indicating masking of the intrinsic effect at optimal pH. There is no alpha-2H effect on binding galactose [alphaD(Ki)=0.994+/-0.013]. The enzyme hydrolyses p-nitrophenyl beta-L-arabinopyranoside approximately 510 times slower than the galactoside, but has no detectable activity on the alpha-D-glucopyranoside or alpha-D-mannopyranoside. Hydrolysis of alpha-galactosides with poor leaving groups is Michaelian, but that of substrates with good leaving groups exhibits pronounced apparent substrate inhibition, with Kis values similar to Km values. We attribute this to the binding of the second substrate molecule to a beta-galactopyranosyl-enzyme intermediate, forming an E.betaGal. alphaGalX complex which turns over slowly, if at all. 1-Fluoro-alpha-D-galactopyranosyl fluoride, unlike alpha-D-galactopyranosyl fluoride, is a Michaelian substrate, indicating that the effect of 1-fluorine substitution is greater on the first than on the second step of the enzyme reaction.  (+info)

(7/2037) Denatured states of human carbonic anhydrase II: an NMR study of hydrogen/deuterium exchange at tryptophan-indole-H(N) sites.

Hydrogen/deuterium (H/D) exchange measurements in low and moderate concentrations of GuHCI were conducted on the side chain H(N) atoms of the seven tryptophans of pseudo wild-type human carbonic anhydrase II. Tryptophans 5, 16 and 245, situated in or close to the N-terminal domain were found to have little protection against exchange. The H/D exchange results for Trp-123, Trp-192 and Trp-209 showed that a previously identified molten globule and the native state gave a similar protection against exchange. Global unfolding of the protein is necessary for the efficient exchange at Trp-97, which is located in the central part of the beta-sheet.  (+info)

(8/2037) Transfer of the 1-pro-R and the 1-pro-S hydrogen atoms of ethanol in metabolic reductions in vivo.

The transfer of deuterium from [1 R-2H]ethanol and [1 S-2H]-ethanol to reduced metabolites of administered compounds was measured in female rats provided with bile fistulas. Administered cyclohexanone was reduced to cyclohexanol, and in this reduction hydrogen was transferred only from the 1-pro-R position of the ethanol. The deuterium content in the cyclohexanol was about 67% of that in the ethanol. In the reduction of the 17-oxo group in 3beta-hydroxy-5alpha-androstan-17-one, hydrogen was transferred both from the 1-pro-R position and the 1-pro-S position, resulting in degrees of labelling that were about 25% and 2%, respectively, of those in the specific positions of the ethanols. The 1-pro-R and 1-pro-S positions of ethanol contributed about 9% and 5%, respectively, of the 3beta hydrogen in lithocholic acid formed from 3-oxo-5beta-cholanoic acid. The results indicate that alcohol dehydrogenase and aldehyde dehydrogenase do not share a common pool of NAD, and that NADH formed during acetaldehyde oxidation is utilized for reductions in the cytosol to a smaller extent than the NADH formed in the alcohol dehydrogenase reaction. This result supports the concept that aldehyde oxidation is mainly an intramitochondrial process. The relatively extensive utilization of the 1-pro-S hydrogen of ethanol in the reduction of 3-oxo-5beta-cholanoic acid, that is probably NADPH-dependent, indicates that cytosolic NADPH may be produced from malate or isocitrate formed intramitochondrially.  (+info)