The subunits of the stimulatory regulatory component of adenylate cyclase. Resolution of the activated 45,000-dalton (alpha) subunit.


Activation of the stimulatory guanine nucleotide-binding regulatory component (G/F) of adenylate cyclase by guanine nucleotides or by Al3+, Mg2+, and F-stabilizes the protein to thermal denaturation or to inactivation by LiBr, guanidine HCl, or urea. Such activation allows the resolution of the active 45,000-Da alpha subunit from the 35,000-Da beta subunit by a high performance gel filtration procedure. Separation of the active alpha subunit has allowed definitive evaluation of the subunit dissociation model for the activation of G/F. The resolved alpha subunit is sufficient to reconstitute the adenylate cyclase activity of the cyc-S49 cell mutant. The alpha subunit alone is also sufficient to activate a preparation of the catalyst of adenylate cyclase that had been resolved from all other identified components of the enzyme system. The resolved alpha subunit displays hydrodynamic properties characteristic of activated G/F. The alpha subunit contains a high affinity guanine nucleotide-binding site. Activation of G/F by guanine nucleotides or by Al3+ + Mg2+ + F- allows resolution of the activated alpha subunit. Reversal of the activated state of the resolved alpha subunit occurs only slowly. Addition of beta subunit enhances the rate of deactivation. Deactivation of the activated alpha subunit by the beta subunit changes the S20,w for G/F activity from 2.0 to 4.0 (in Lubrol), consistent with a formation of the alpha X beta heterodimer. These data, taken in aggregate, constitute proof for the proposed mechanism of activation of G/F by non-hydrolyzable analogs of GTP and by Al3+, Mg2+, and F-. They are analogous to data obtained for transducin, the GTP-binding regulatory protein from vertebrate rod outer segment discs, and for the putative inhibitory guanine nucleotide-binding regulatory component of adenylate cyclase (the substrate for islet-activating protein). The model provides several powerful tests for study of mechanisms of hormonal regulation of adenylate cyclase in membranes.

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