Relationship between protein structure and methionine oxidation in recombinant human α1-antitrypsin

Steven W. Griffiths, Charles L. Cooney

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

86 Scopus citations


α1-Antitrypsin is a metastable and conformationally flexible protein that belongs to the serpin family of protease inhibitors. Although it is known that methionine oxidation in the protein's active site results in a loss of biological activity, there is little specific knowledge regarding the reactivity of each of the protein's methionine residues. In this study, we have used, peptide mapping to study the oxidation kinetics of each of α1-antitrypsin's methionines in α1-AT(C232S) as well as M351L and M358V mutants. These kinetic studies establish that Met1, Met226, Met242, Met351, and Met358 are reactive with hydrogen peroxide at neutral pH and that each reactive methionine is oxidized in a bimolecular, rather than coupled, mechanism. Analysis of Met226, Met351, and Met358 oxidation provides insights regarding the structure of α1-antitrypsin's active site that allow us to relate conformation to experimentally observed reactivity. The relationship between solution pH and methionine oxidation was also examined to evaluate methionine reactivity under conditions that perturb the native structure. Methionine oxidation data show that at pH 5, global conformational changes occur that alter the oxidation susceptibility of each of α1-antitrypsin's 10 methionine residues. Between pH 6 and 9, however, more localized conformational changes occur that affect primarily the reactivity of Met242. In sum, this work provides a detailed analysis of methionine oxidation in α1-antitrypsin and offers new insights into the protein's solution structure.

Original languageBritish English
Pages (from-to)6245-6252
Number of pages8
Issue number20
StatePublished - 21 May 2002


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