Modulation of red cell glycolysis: Interactions between vertebrate hemoglobins and cytoplasmic domains of band 3 red cell membrane proteins

Roy E. Weber, Wolfgang Voelter, Angela Fago, Hartmut Echner, Estela Campanella, Philip S. Low

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

67 Scopus citations


Several vital functions/physical characteristics of erythrocytes (including glycolysis, the pentose phosphate pathway, ion fluxes, and cellular deformability) display dependence on the state of hemoglobin oxygenation. The molecular mechanism proposed involves an interaction between deoxyhemoglobin and the cytoplasmic domain of the anion-exchange protein, band 3 (cdB3). Given that band 3 also binds to membrane proteins 4.1 and 4.2, several kinases, hemichromes, and integral membrane proteins, and at least three glycolytic enzymes, it has been suggested that the cdB3-deoxyhemoglobin interaction might modulate the pathways mediated by these associated proteins in an O 2-dependent manner. We have investigated this mechanism by synthesizing 10-mer peptides corresponding to the NH2-terminal fragments of various vertebrate cdB3s, determining their effects on the oxygenation reactions of hemoglobins from the same and different species and examining binding of the glycolytic enzyme glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase to the erythrocytic membrane of mouse erythrocytes. The cdB3 interaction is strongly dependent on pH and the number of negative and positive charges of the peptide and at the effector binding site, respectively. It lowers the O2 association equilibrium constant of the deoxygenated (Tense) state of the hemoglobin and is inhibited by magnesium ions, which neutralize cdB3's charge and by 2,3-diphosphoglycerate, which competes for the cdB3-binding site. The interaction is stronger in humans (whose erythrocytes derive energy predominantly from glycolysis and exhibit higher buffering capacity) than in birds and ectothermic vertebrates (whose erythrocytes metabolize aerobically and are poorly buffered) and is insignificant in fish, suggesting that its role in the regulation of red cell glycolysis increased with phylogenetic development in vertebrates.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)R454-R464
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Regulatory Integrative and Comparative Physiology
Issue number2 56-2
StatePublished - Aug 2004


  • Allosteric interaction
  • Erythrocyte
  • Glycolytic enzymes
  • Oxygen binding

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology


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