Comparison of the Reaction Progress of Calcineurinwith Mn2+ and Mg2+

Document Type


Journal/Book Title


Publication Date




First Page


Last Page



Activation of calcineurin by Mn2+ and Mg2+ was compared using a heavy atom isotope analogue of the substrate p-nitrophenyl phosphate (pNPP). Heavy atom isotope effects were measured for Mg2+ activation and compared to published results of the isotope effects with Mn2+ as the activating metal. Isotope effects were measured for the kinetic parameter Vmax/Km at the nonbridging oxygen atoms [18(V/K)nonbridge]; at the position of bond cleavage in the bridging oxygen atom [18(V/K)bridge]; and at the nitrogen atom in the nitrophenol leaving group [15(V/K)]. The isotope effects increased in magnitude upon changing from an optimal pH to a nonoptimal pH; the 18(V/K)bridge effect increased from 1.0154 (±0.0007) to 1.0198 (±0.0002), and the 15(V/K) effect increased from 1.0018 (±0.0002) to 1.0021 (±0.0003). The value for 18(V/K)nonbridge is 0.9910 (±0.0003) at pH 7.0. As with Mn2+, the 18(V/K)nonbridge isotope effect indicated that the dianion was the substrate for catalysis, and that a dissociative transition state was operative for the phosphoryl transfer. Comparison to results for Mn2+ activation suggested that chemistry was more rate-limiting with Mg2+ than with Mn2+. Changing the activating metal concentration showed opposite trends with increasing Mg2+ increasing the commitment factor and seemingly making the chemistry less rate-limiting. The influence of viscosity was evaluated as well to gauge the role of chemistry. The activation of calcineurin-catalyzed hydrolysis of pNPP1 by Mg2+ or Mn2+ at pH 7.0 was compared in the presence of viscogens, glycerol and poly(ethylene glycol). Increasing glycerol caused different effects with the two activators. With Mn2+ as the activator, calcineurin activity showed a normal response with kcat and kcat/Km decreasing with viscosity. There was an inverse response with Mg2+ as the activator as values of kcat/Km increased with viscosity. From values of the normalized kcat/Km with Mn2+, the chemistry was found to be partially rate-limiting, consistent with previous heavy atom isotope studies (22). The effect observed for Mg2+ seems consistent with a change in the rate-limiting step for the two different metals at pH 7.0.

This document is currently not available here.