The low-spin heme of cytochrome c oxidase as the driving element of the proton-pumping process.Tsukihara, T., Shimokata, K., Katayama, Y., Shimada, H., Muramoto, K., Aoyama, H., Mochizuki, M., Shinzawa-Itoh, K., Yamashita, E., Yao, M., Ishimura, Y., Yoshikawa, S.
(2003) Proc.Natl.Acad.Sci.Usa 100: 15304-15309
- PubMed: 14673090
- DOI: 10.1073/pnas.2635097100
- Primary Citation of Related Structures:
- PubMed Abstract:
Mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase plays an essential role in aerobic cellular respiration, reducing dioxygen to water in a process coupled with the pumping of protons across the mitochondrial inner membrane. An aspartate residue, Asp-51, located nea ...
Mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase plays an essential role in aerobic cellular respiration, reducing dioxygen to water in a process coupled with the pumping of protons across the mitochondrial inner membrane. An aspartate residue, Asp-51, located near the enzyme surface, undergoes a redox-coupled x-ray structural change, which is suggestive of a role for this residue in redox-driven proton pumping. However, functional or mechanistic evidence for the involvement of this residue in proton pumping has not yet been obtained. We report that the Asp-51 --> Asn mutation of the bovine enzyme abolishes its proton-pumping function without impairment of the dioxygen reduction activity. Improved x-ray structures (at 1.8/1.9-A resolution in the fully oxidized/reduced states) show that the net positive charge created upon oxidation of the low-spin heme of the enzyme drives the active proton transport from the interior of the mitochondria to Asp-51 across the enzyme via a water channel and a hydrogen-bond network, located in tandem, and that the enzyme reduction induces proton ejection from the aspartate to the mitochondrial exterior. A peptide bond in the hydrogen-bond network critically inhibits reverse proton transfer through the network. A redox-coupled change in the capacity of the water channel, induced by the hydroxyfarnesylethyl group of the low-spin heme, suggests that the channel functions as an effective proton-collecting region. Infrared results indicate that the conformation of Asp-51 is controlled only by the oxidation state of the low-spin heme. These results indicate that the low-spin heme drives the proton-pumping process.
Institute for Protein Research, Osaka University, 3-2 Yamada-oka, Suita 565-0871, Japan.