Polymerization Pattern of Insulin at pH 7.0

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Journal Article
Biochemistry, 1976, 15 (21), pp. 4660 - 4665
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Sedimentation equilibrium results, obtained with bovine zinc-free insulin (with and without a component of proinsulin) at pH 7.0/0.2, 25 °C, and up to a total concentration of 0.8 g/1., are shown to be consistent with three different polymerization patterns, all involving an isodesmic indefinite self-association of specified oligomeric species. The analysis procedure, based on closed solutions formed by summing infinite series, yields for each pattern a set of equilibrium constants. It is shown that a distinction between the possible patterns can be made by analyzing sedimentation equilibrium results obtained in a higher total concentration range (up to 4 g/1.) with insulin freed of zinc and proinsulin, account being taken of the composition dependence of activity coefficients. The favored pattern, which differs from that previously reported in the literature, involves the dimerization of monomeric insulin (mol wt 5734), governed by a dimerization constant of 11 × 104 M-1 and the isodesmic indefinite self-association of the dimer, described by an association constant of 1.7 ×104 M-1. This polymerization pattern is also shown to be consistent with the reaction boundary observed in sedimentation velocity experiments. © 1976, American Chemical Society. All rights reserved.
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