The reaction of glycogen phosphorylase b and creatine kinase with glutathione disulfide, cystine, and cystamine was compared by direct analysis on electrofocusing gels. This method was useful for individual proteins or for mixtures of the proteins. Millimolar concentrations of glutathione disulfide were required for both proteins and the rate of modification of each protein was similar. The reaction of glutathione disulfide with creatine kinase was inhibited by reduced glutathione (GSH), but the effect on the reaction with phosphorylase was minimal. Cystine and cystamine were required in micromolar amounts to effectively form the disulfide adducts. Both proteins were modified by cystine but cystamine reacted only with phosphorylase. Cystamine (10 μm) was an effective inhibitor of the reaction of phosphorylase b with 2 mm glutathione disulfide. S-thiolation of creatine kinase inactivated the enzyme and a direct assay of the enzyme activity could be used to quantitate S-thiolation of this protein by each of the disulfides. The effect of each disulfide on enzyme activity confirmed the results obtained by gel electrofocusing. Glutathione disulfide and cystine both inactivated the enzyme while cystamine had no effect on the activity. S-thiolation of phosphorylase had no observable effect on any activity parameter, but it effectively prevented binding of phosphorylase to high-molecular-weight glycogen, probably at the glycogen storage site of phosphorylase. The rate of S-thiolation of a mixture of phosphorylase and creatine kinase by thiol-disulfide exchange with glutathione disulfide was compared to the rate of S-thiolation of these proteins by a xanthine oxidase-initiated process (presumably due to protein sulfhydryl activation by reactive oxygen species). The xanthine oxidase-initiated mechanism was somewhat faster than thiol-disulfide exchange with both proteins. It was shown that GSH inhibited S-thiolation of creatine kinase by this mechanism as well as by thiol-disulfide exchange. It is suggested that both mechanisms may play a role in protein S-thiolation in vivo. For proteins that are typified by creatine kinase, the concentration of GSH in the cells may determine whether the S-thiolated form of the protein accumulates. For proteins typified by phosphorylase b, the accumulation of S-thiolated forms may be more independent of GSH.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Molecular Biology