Human complement protein C9 is a calcium binding protein. Structural and functional implications

N M Thielens, K Lohner, A F Esser
1988 Journal of Biological Chemistry  
Human complement protein C9 is shown to be a metalloprotein that binds 1 mol of Ca2+/mol of C9 with a dissociation constant of 3 micron as measured by equilibrium dialysis. Incubation with EDTA removes the bound calcium, resulting in a apoprotein with decreased thermal stability. This loss in stability leads to aggregation and, therefore, to loss of hemolytic activity upon heating to a few degrees above the physiological temperature. Heat-induced aggregation of apoC9 can be prevented by salts
more » ... revented by salts that stabilize proteins according to the Hofmeister series of lyotropic ions, suggesting that the ion in native C9 may ligand with more than one structural element or domain of the protein. Ligand blotting indicates that the calcium binding site is located in the amino-terminal half of the protein. Removal of calcium by inclusion of EDTA in assay mixtures has no effect on the hemolytic activity of C9, and its capacity to bind to C8 in solution, or to small unilamellar lipid vesicles at temperatures at or below the physiological range. Although we do not know yet the precise structural and functional role of the bound calcium, it is clear that it provides thermal stability to C9 and it may have a function in regulation of membrane insertion.
pmid:3360798 fatcat:5uksiro6xff67eszem4exlj5ye