Halo Enol Lactones: Studies on the Mechanism of Inactivation of α-Chymotrypsin

Scott B. Daniels, John A. Katzenellenbogen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In a previous investigation [Daniels, S. B., Cooney, E., Sofia, M. J., Chakravartv, P. K., & Katzenellenbogen, J. A. (1983) J. Biol. Chem. 258, 15046–15053], we demonstrated that a-aryl-substituted five- and six-membered ring halo enol lactones were effective inhibitors of chymotrypsin, and we proposed that they reacted by an enzyme-activated mechanism: acyl transfer to the active site serine generates a halomethyl ketone that remains tethered in the catalytic site until it alkylates an accessible nucleophilic residue. In this study, we have investigated in greater detail the process of chymotrypsin inactivation by an a-naphthyl-substituted five- and six-membered bromo enol lactone. Inactivation by both compounds appears to be active site directed, since the time-dependent inactivation is retarded by competing substrate. The possible involvement of a paracatalytic mechanism for inactivation (generation of a free, rather than active site bound, inactivating species) was investigated by comparing the inactivation efficiencies of the lactones with that of the bromomethyl keto acid hydrolysis products. The bromomethyl ketone derived from the five-membered lactone is ineffective, whereas that derived from the six-membered lactone is highly efficient. However, the possible involvement of the free keto acid in chymotrypsin inactivation by the six-membered lactone is ruled out by experiments involving selective scavenging. The long-term inactivation of chymotrypsin requires the presence of the bromine substituent and appears to involve an alkylation rather than an acylation reaction (hydrazine resistant). Furthermore, a 1:1 lactone:enzyme stoichiometry is demonstrated with the14C-labeled six-membered lactone. These results are consistent with the mechanism-based inactivation process previously presented.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1436-1444
Number of pages9
Issue number6
StatePublished - 1986

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry


Dive into the research topics of 'Halo Enol Lactones: Studies on the Mechanism of Inactivation of α-Chymotrypsin'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this