Effects of succinylation on thermal induced amyloid formation in Concanavalin A
We have recently shown that upon slight thermal destabilization the legume lectin Concanavalin A may undergo two different aggregation processes, leading, respectively, to amyloid fibrils at high pH and amorphous aggregates at low pH. Here we present an experimental study on the amyloid aggregation of Succinyl Concanavalin A, which is a dimeric active variant of Concanavalin. The results show that, as for the native protein, the fibrillation process appears to be favoured by alkaline pH, far from the isoelectric point of the protein. Moreover, it strongly depends on temperature and requires large conformational changes both at secondary and tertiary structure level. With respect to the native protein, the succinyl derivative forms amyloid fibrils in considerably longer times and with a minor exposure of hydrophobic regions. At physiological conditions, Concanavalin A still displays a sizeable tendency to form amyloid fibril, while the succinyl variant does not. A close correlation was observed between the progress of amyloid formation and a narrowing of the tryptophans fluorescence emission band, indicating a reduction of protein conformational heterogeneity in amyloid fibrils.
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