The sedimentation behavior of aqueous solutions of digitonin and of cattle rhodopsin in digitonin has been examined in the ultracentrifuge. In confirmation of earlier work, digitonin was found to sediment as a micelle (D-1) with an s20 of about 6.35 Svedberg units, and containing at least 60 molecules. The rhodopsin solutions sediment as a stoichiometric complex of rhodopsin with digitonin (RD-1) with an s20 of about 9.77 Svedberg units. The s20 of the RD-1 micelle is constant between pH 6.3 and 9.6, and in the presence of excess digitonin.

RD-1 travels as a single boundary also in the electrophoresis apparatus at pH 8.5, and on filter paper at pH 8.0. The molecular weight of the RD-1 micelle lies between 260,000 and 290,000. Of this, only about 40,000 gm. are due to rhodopsin; the rest is digitonin (180 to 200 moles).

Comparison of the relative concentrations of RD-1 and retinene in solutions of rhodopsin-digitonin shows that RD-1 contains only one retinene equivalent. It can therefore contain only one molecule of rhodopsin with a molecular weight of about 40,000. Cattle rhodopsin therefore contains only one chromophore consisting of a single molecule of retinene. It is likely that frog rhodopsin has a similar molecular weight and also contains only one chromophore per molecule.

The molar extinction coefficient of rhodopsin is therefore identical with the extinction coefficient per mole of retinene (40,600 cm.2 per mole) and the E(1 per cent, 1 cm., 500 mµ) has a value of about 10.

Rhodopsin constitutes about 14 per cent of the dry weight, and 3.7 per cent of the wet weight of cattle outer limbs. This corresponds to about 4.2 x 106 molecules of rhodopsin per outer limb. The rhodopsin content of frog outer limbs is considerably higher: about 35 per cent of the dry weight, and 10 per cent of the wet weight, corresponding to about 2.1 x 109 molecules per outer limb. Thus the frog outer limb contains about five hundred times as much rhodopsin as the cattle outer limb. But the relative volumes of these structures are such that the ratio of concentrations is only about 2.5 to 1 on a weight basis. Rhodopsin accounts for at least one-fifth of the total protein of the cattle outer limb; for the frog, this value must be higher. The extinction (K500) along its axis is about 0.037 cm.2 for the cattle outer limb, and about 0.50 cm.2 for the frog outer limb.

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