Papers Published

  1. Xie, T. D. and Chen, Y. D. and Marszalek, P. and Tsong, T. Y., Fluctuation-driven directional flow in biochemical cycle: Further study of electric activation of Na,K pumps, Biophysical Journal, vol. 72 no. 6 (1997), pp. 2496-2502 .
    (last updated on 2007/11/30)

    Directional flow of information and energies is characteristic of many types of biochemical reactions, for instance, ion transport, energy coupling during ATP synthesis, and muscle contraction. Can a fluctuating force field, or a noise, induce such a directional flux? Previous work has shown that Na,K-ATPase of human erythrocyte can absorb free energy from an externally applied random-telegraph-noise (RTN) electric field to pump Rb+ up its concentration gradient, However, the RTN field used in these experiments was constant in amplitude and would not mimic fluctuating electric fields of a cell membrane. Here we show that electric fields which fluctuate both in life time and in amplitude, and thus, better mimicking the transmembrane electric fields of a cell, can also induce Rb+ pumping by Na,K-ATPase. A Gaussian-RTN-electric field, or a field with amplitude fluctuating according to the Gaussian distribution, with varied standard deviation (sigma), induced active pumping of Rb+ in human erythrocyte, which was completely inhibited by ouabain. Increased values for sigma led to a nonmonotonic reduction in pumping efficiency. A general formula for calculating the ion transport in a biochemical cycle induced by fluctuating electric field has been derived and applied to a simple four-state electroconformational coupling (ECC) model. It was found that the calculated efficiency in the energy coupling decreased with increasing sigma value, and this effect was relatively small and monotonic, whereas experimental data were more complex: monotonic under certain sets of conditions but nonmonotonic under different sets. The agreement in general features but disagreement in some fine features suggest that there are other properties of the electric activation process for Na,K-ATPase that cannot be adequately described by the simple ECC model, and further refinement of the ECC model is required.