With the aim of extending our knowledge on the reaction pathways of Zn-metallothionein (MT) and apo-MT species in the presence of Hg(II), we monitored the titration of Zn7-MT, Zn4-αMT and Zn3-βMT proteins, at pH 7 and 3, with either HgCl2 or Hg(ClO4)2 by CD and UV-vis spectroscopy. Detailed analysis of the optical data revealed that standard variables, such as the pH of the solution, the binding ability of the counter-ion (chloride or perchlorate), and the time elapsed between subsequent additions of Hg(II) to the protein, play a determinant role in the stoichiometry, stereochemistry and degree of folding of the Hg-MT species. Despite the fact that the effect of these variables is unquestionable, it is difficult to generalize. Overall, it can be concluded that the reaction conditions [pH, time elapsed between subsequent additions of Hg(II) to the protein] affect the structural properties more substantially than the stoichiometry of the Hg-MT species, and that the role of the counter-ion becomes particularly apparent on the structure of overloaded Hg-MT.
|Journal||European Journal of Biochemistry|
|Publication status||Published - 1 Dec 2004|
- Mercury(II) binding