Inactivation of human glutamate dehydrogenase by aluminum

S. J. Yang, J. W. Huh, J. E. Lee, S. Y. Choi, T. U. Kim, S. W. Cho

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25 Citations (Scopus)


Aluminum inactivated glutamate dehydrogenase (GDH) by a pseudo-first-order reaction at micromolar concentrations. A double-reciprocal plot gave a straight line with a kinact, of 2.7 min-1 and indicated the presence of a binding step prior to inactivation. The inactivation was strictly pH dependent and a marked increase in sensitivity to aluminum was observed as the pH decreased. At a pH higher than 8.5, no inactivation was observed. The completely inactivated GDH contained 2 mol of aluminum per mole of enzyme subunit monomer. When preincubated with enzyme, several chelators such as citrate, NaF, N-(2-hydroxyethyl) ethylenediaminetriacetic acid or ethylenediaminetriacetic acid efficiently protected the enzyme against the aluminum inactivation. In a related experiment, only citrate and NaF released the aluminum from the completely inactivated aluminum-enzyme complex and fully recovered the enzyme activity. Ferritin, NADP+, or nerve growth factor did not show any effects on the recovery of the aluminum-inactivated GDH activity. The dissociation constant for the aluminum-enzyme complex was calculated to be 5.3 μM. Although aluminum has been known to form a complex with nucleotides, no such effects were observed in the inactivation of GDH by aluminum as determined using GDHs mutated at the ADP-binding site, NAD +-binding site or GTP-binding site. Circular dichroism studies showed that the binding of aluminum to the enzyme induced a decrease in α helices and β sheets and an increase in random coil. Therefore, inactivation of GDH by aluminum is suggested to be due to the conformational change induced by aluminum binding. These results suggest a possibility that aluminum-induced alterations in enzymes of the glutamate system may be one of the causes of aluminum-induced neurotoxicity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2538-2546
Number of pages9
JournalCellular and Molecular Life Sciences
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 2003 Nov

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Molecular Medicine
  • Molecular Biology
  • Pharmacology
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
  • Cell Biology


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