Isolation and properties of various molecular forms of aequorin. Academic Article uri icon


  • The photoprotein aequorin emits light by an intramolecular reaction when a trace of Ca2+ is added. The samples of aequorin that were purified by the conventional methods of column chromatography were separated by high-performance liquid chromatography into eight molecular forms (isoaequorins), which were designated aequorins A-H. Aequorins A, C and F were obtained in crystalline states. A wide range of properties were studied with aequorins A-F, which were essentially pure. These six isoaequorins showed relatively small differences in their spectroscopic properties, but their values of A0.1%/1 cm, 280 were found to be close to 3.0, about 10% more than the previously reported value of 2.70-2.71 that was obtained with the samples of conventionally purified aequorin. The Mr values ranged from 20,100 (aequorin F) to 22,800 (aequorin A), the luminescence activities ranged from 4.35 X 10(15) photons/mg (aequorin A) to 5.16 X 10(15) photons/mg (aequorin F), and the first-order reaction rate constants of luminescence ranged from 0.95 s-1 (aequorin A) to 1.33 s-1 (aequorin F). As regards sensitivity to Ca2+, aequorin D was the most sensitive, having a sensitivity about 0.4-0.5 pCa unit above that of the least sensitive kind (aequorin A).

publication date

  • March 1, 1986