The "tailed" molecules of Electrophorus (electric eel) acetylcholinesterase aggregate under conditions of low ionic strength. These aggregates have been studied by sedimentation analysis and high-resolution electron microscopy. They consist of bundles of at least half a dozen molecules, the tails of which are packed side by side, to form the core of the structure. Although aggregation is normally fully reversible, aggregates were irreversibly stabilized by methylene blue-sensitized photo-oxidation. This process was shown to consist of a singlet oxygen oxidation reaction and probably involves methionine or histidine residues. It did not modify the structural or hydrodynamic characteristics of the aggregates.

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