Modulation of the Electron Redistribution in Mixed Valence Cytochrome c Oxidase by Protein Conformational Changes

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The redistribution of two electrons in the four redox centers of cytochrome c oxidase following photodissociation of CO from the CO-bound mixed valence species has been examined by resonance Raman spectroscopy. To account for both the kinetic data, obtained from 5 μs to 2 ms, and the equilibrium results, a model is proposed in which the electron redistribution is modulated by a protein conformation transition from a nascent P1, state to a relaxed P2 state in a time window longer than 2 ms. In this model, all six possible two-electron reduced species are considered. The high population of species with a one-electron reduced binuclear center, in which the spectrum of heme a3 is perturbed by the redox state of Cu B, accounts for the significant residuals in the fitting of the kinetic data with four standard spectra derived from redox species with either zero or two electrons in the binuclear center. Under equilibrium conditions, the conformational change to the P2 state destabilizes the redox states with only one electron in the binuclear center with respect to those with either zero or two electrons. As a result, the redox equilibrium is perturbed, and the electrons are redistributed. A simulation based on the new kinetics scheme, in which the electron redistribution is modulated by the protein conformation, gives reasonable agreement with both the equilibrium and the kinetic data, demonstrating the validity of this model.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)9392-9399
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - Mar 5 2004


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology

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