The structure of Na,K-ATPase has been studied by electron microscopy and image reconstruction. A three-dimensional structure of this enzyme has been obtained to an overall resolution of 2.5 nm using data from specimens of negatively stained dimer sheets tilted through a range of angles +/- 60 degrees. The reconstruction shows a complex mass distribution consisting of ribbons of paired molecules extending approximately 6.0 nm from the cytoplasmic side of the membrane. The molecular envelope consists of a massive "body" with "lobe" and "arm" structures projecting from it. The body has a columnar shape and is tilted with respect to the plane of the membrane. The region of interaction responsible for dimer formation is located between two bodies and is clearly visible in the reconstruction. It has been identified as a segment in the amino-terminal portion of the alpha subunit. The arms that interconnect the ribbons are located close to the membrane and are most probably formed by the beta subunits.

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