The size, shape and stability of complement component C9.

Abstract:

:Electron microscopy of specimens of C9 tilted through 90 degrees visualized this protein to be a globular ellipsoid with dimensions of 77 x 70 x 52 A. To check the congruence of this observation with physical properties of the molecule, hydrodynamic parameters for C9 were determined. From this work a frictional ratio of 1.32 was calculated. C9 was compared with several other proteins of similar frictional ratios whose tertiary structures are known. All examples found of such proteins whose frictional ratios were between 1.26 and 1.37 are either heart-shaped or globular ellipsoids, but none are prolate ellipsoids. By comparison the size and shape of C9 determined by electron microscopy are congruent with its hydrodynamic parameters. Both electron microscopy and physical measurements suggest that the length (110-120 A) of C9 determined by neutron and X-ray scattering experiments is an overestimate. The source of the discrepancy was identified by the demonstration that the high concns of C9 employed in neutron and X-ray scattering work lead to aggregation of the protein. Thus, investigations involving neutron and X-ray scattering were measuring polydisperse solutions of C9. The deduced value of the radius of gyration from that work (33-35 A) is now recognized as being statistical and significantly higher than the correct value of monomeric C9 (26 A), which was calculated from electron microscopy measurements. Also high-resolution electron microscopy clearly visualized poly(C9) to be a barrel-stave construct. These results suggest that monomeric C9 must undergo a major conformational alteration to extend by 55-70 A in order to self-associate laterally in order to fashion the cylindrical poly(C9).

journal_name

Mol Immunol

journal_title

Molecular immunology

authors

DiScipio RG

doi

10.1016/0161-5890(93)90156-6

subject

Has Abstract

pub_date

1993-08-01 00:00:00

pages

1097-106

issue

12

eissn

0161-5890

issn

1872-9142

journal_volume

30

pub_type

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