Indexed on: 02 Jul '98Published on: 02 Jul '98Published in: Biochemistry
Ceruloplasmin is unique among the multicopper oxidases in that in addition to the usual copper stoichiometry of one Type 1 copper site and a Type 2/Type 3 trinuclear copper cluster, it contains two other Type 1 sites. This assignment of copper sites, based on copper quantitation, sequence alignment, and crystallography, is difficult to reconcile with the observed spectroscopy. Furthermore, some chemical or spectroscopic differences in ceruloplasmin have been reported depending on the method of purification. We have studied the resting (as isolated by a fast, one-step procedure) and peroxide-oxidized forms of human ceruloplasmin. Using a combination of X-ray absorption spectroscopy, a chemical assay, magnetic susceptibility, electron paramagnetic resonance spectroscopy, and absorption spectroscopy, we have determined that peroxide-oxidized ceruloplasmin contains one permanently reduced Type 1 site. This site is shown to have a reduction potential of approximately 1.0 V. Thus, one of the additional Type 1 sites in ceruloplasmin cannot be catalytically relevant in the form of the enzyme studied. Furthermore, the resting form of the enzyme contains an additional reducing equivalent, which is distributed among the remaining five copper sites as expected from their relative potentials. This may indicate that the resting form of ceruloplasmin in plasma under aerobic conditions is a four-electron oxidized form, which is consistent with its function in the four-electron reduction of dioxygen to water.