Characterization of the Aldehyde Binding Site of Bacterial Luciferase by Photoaffinity Labeling

Shiao Chun Tu*, Jack Henkin

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


A photoaffinity probe 1-diazo-2-oxoundecane has been synthesized and used to examine the aldehyde-binding site of the nonidentical dimeric luciferase (αβ) from Vibrio harveyi cells. In the dark, the probe competes against aldehyde in binding to luciferase. Irradiation of luciferase and the probe at 254 nm resulted in primarily specific labeling of both α and β subunits with concomitant enzyme inactivation, but significant (≃40%) nonspecific labeling of mainly the β subunit also occurred. The addition of decanal to protect the active center reduced the rate of inactivation. When 2-mercaptoethanol was included to quench the nonspecific labeling, the amounts of probe incorporated into α and β correlated stoichiometrically with the quantities of enzyme photoinactivated. On the basis of these findings, we postulate that the aldehyde binding site is at or near the subunit interface of luciferase.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)519-523
Number of pages5
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1983

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry


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