Date of Award:

5-1978

Document Type:

Thesis

Degree Name:

Master of Science (MS)

Department:

Chemistry and Biochemistry

Committee

Elizabeth A. Boeker

Abstract

The purpose of this paper was to develop a single assay system for the enzymes which regulate GABA and glutamate concentrations in brain and nerve tissue. Since all the enzymes produce L-glutamate, their activities were measured by coupling them to L-glutamate decarboxylase. Enzymatic activity was determined by measuring the release of co2 from radioactive substrates. The glutamate decarboxylase was obtained from a commercial acetone powder by simplifying existing procedures. The glutamate decarboxylase produced was of sufficient purity to be used in the coupled assays, which were checked with commercial preparations of each enzyme, where available, and with crude brain homogenates. All of the assays were shown to be linear with respect to both time and enzyme concentration, thus assuring the feasibility of the technique.

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