• U W Kenkare

      Articles written in Journal of Biosciences

    • Biophysical investigations on the active site of brain hexokinase

      U W Kenkare G K Jarori S R Kasturi A Mehta M P Pitale

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      Replacement of Mg (II), the natural activator of brain hexokinase (EC 2.7.1.1) by paramagnetic Mn (II) without affecting the physiological properties of the enzyme, has rendered brain hexokinase accessible to investigations by magnetic resonance methods. Based on such studies, a site on the enzyme, where Mn (II) binds directly with high affinity has been identified and characterized in detail. Use ofβ,γ-bidentate Cr (III) ATP as an exchange-inert analogue for Mn (II) ATP has shown that Mn (II) binding directly to the enzyme has no catalytic role but another Mn (II) ion binding simultaneously and independently to the enzyme through the nucleotide bridge participates in enzyme function. However, using this direct binding Mn (II) ion and a covalently bound spin label as paramagnetic probes a beginning has been made in mapping the ligand binding sites of the enzyme. Ultra-violet difference spectroscopy has revealed the presence of at least two glucose 6-phosphate locations on the enzyme one of which presumably is the high affinity regulatory site modulated by substrate glucose. Elution behaviour of the enzyme on a phosphocellulose column suggests that glucose induces a specific phosphate site on the enzyme to which the phosphate bearing regulatory ligands of the enzyme may bind.

    • High affinity uptake of L-glutamate and γ-aminobutyric acid inDrosophila melanogaster

      C S Ramarao S R Acharya K S Krishnan U W Kenkare

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      Preparations having properties resembling those of synaptosomes have been isolated from whole fly homogenates ofDrosophila melanogaster using ficoll gradient floatation technique. These have been characterized by marker enzymes and electron microscopy and binding of muscarinic antagenist3H Quinuclidinyl benzilate. An uptake system for neurotransmitter, ã-Aminobutyric acid has been demonstrated in these preparations.

      A high affinity uptake system for L-glutamate has also been studied in these subcellular fractions. This uptake of glutamate is transport into an osmotically sensitive compartment and not due to binding of glutamate to membrane components. The transport of glutamate has an obligatory requirements for either sodium or potassium ions. Kinetic experiments show that two transport systems, withKm values 0.33 X 10-6M and 2.0 X 10-6M, respectively, function in the accumulation of glutamate. ATP stimulates lower affinity transport of glutamate. Inhibition of glutamate uptake by L-aspartate but not by phenylalanine and tyrosine indicates that a common carrier mediates the transport of both glutamate and aspartate. β-N-oxalyl-L-β β-diamino propionic acid and kainic acid, both inhibitors of glutamate transport in mammalian brain preparations, strongly inhibited transport of glutamate inDrosophila preparations

      Comparison with uptake of ã-aminobutyric acid and glutamate in isolated larval brain is presented to show that the synaptosome-like preparations we have isolated are rich in central nervous system derived structures, and presynaptic endings from neuromuscular junctions.

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