Analysis of heme oxygenase isomers in rat.


AIM To purify and identify heme oxygenase (HO) isomers which exist in rat liver, spleen and brain treated with hematin and phenylhydrazine and in untreated rat liver and to investigate the characteristics of HO isomers, to isolate and confirm the rat HO-1 cDNA that actually encodes HO-1 by expressing cDNA in monkey kidney cells (COS-1 cells), to prepare the rat heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1) mutant and to detect inhibition of HO-1 mutated enzyme. METHODS First, rat liver, spleen and brain microsomal fractions were purified by DEAE-Sephacel and hydroxylapatite. The characteristics including activity, immunity and inducibility of two isomers (HO-1 and HO-2), and their apparent molecular weight were measured by detecting enzymatic activities, SDS-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE) and Western blotting analysis, respectively. Second, plasmid pcDNA3HO1 containing native rat HO-1 cDNA and pcDNA3HO1D25 carrying mutated rat HO-1 cDNA (His25Ala) were constructed by site-directed mutagenesis. COS-1 cells transfected with pcDNA3HO1 and pcDNA3HO1D25 were collected and disrupted by sonication, the microsomes were prepared by ultracentrifugation. Third, the inhibition of rat HO-1 mutant was analyzed. RESULTS Two isomers were purified and identified in treated rat liver, spleen, brain and untreated rat liver. HO-1 was the predominant form with a ratio of 2.0:1 and 3.2:1 of HO-1 and HO-2 in liver and spleen, respectively, but only the activity of HO-2 in the brain and untreated liver could be detected. The apparent molecular weights of HO-1 and HO-2 were about M(r)30 000 and M(r) 36 000 under reducing conditions, respectively. The antiserum against liver HO-2 was employed in Western blotting analysis, the reactivity of HO-1 in the liver was not observed. The plasmid pcDNA3HO1 was highly expressed in endoplasmic reticulum of transfected COS-1 cells. The specific activity was -5-fold higher than that of the control. However, the enzyme activity of mutated HO-1 declined. While an equal amount of mutant was added to the enzyme reaction system, the levels of bilirubin decreased 42 %. CONCLUSION The studies suggest that HO-1 and HO-2 exist in the hematin and phenylhydrazine treated rat liver and spleen, but only HO-2 in the brain and untreated liver. Two constitutive forms are different in molecular weight, inducibility and immunochemical properties. The activity of expressed HO-1 in COS-1 cells is higher than that of purified enzyme from rat spleen tissue. It suggests that this clone has an insert of 1030 base-pairs encodes HO-1. His25Ala mutant reduced the formation of bilirubin and it suggests that the mutant could completely bind the heme with native enzyme.


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