To determine the biochemical events of Na+ transport, we studied the interactions of Na+, Tris+, and K+ with the phosphorylated intermediates of Na,K-ATPase from ox brain. The enzyme was phosphorylated by incubation at 0 degrees C with 1 mM Mg2+, 25 microM [32P]ATP, and 20-600 mM Na+ with or without Tris+, and the dephosphorylation kinetics of [32P]EP were studied after addition of (1) 1 mM ATP, (2) 2.5 mM ADP, (3) 1 mM ATP plus 20 mM K+, and (4) 2.5 mM ADP plus Na+ up to 600 mM. In dephosphorylation types 2-4, the curves were bi- or multiphasic. "ADP-sensitive EP" and "K+-sensitive EP" were determined by extrapolation of the slow phase of the curves to the ordinate and their sum was always larger than Etotal. These results required a minimal model consisting of three consecutive EP pools, A, B, and C, where A was ADP sensitive and both B and C were K+ sensitive. At high [Na+], B was converted rapidly to A (type 4 experiment). The seven rate coefficients were dependent on [Na+], [Tris+], and [K+], and to explain this we developed a comprehensive model for cation interaction with EP. The model has the following features: A, B, and C are equilibrium mixtures of EP forms; EP in A has two to three Na ions bound at high-affinity (internal) sites, pool B has three, and pool C has two to three low-affinity (external) sites. The putative high-affinity outside Na+ site may be on E2P in pool C. The A leads to B conversion is blocked by K+ (and Tris+). We conclude that pool A can be an intermediate only in the Na-ATPase reaction and not in the normal operation of the Na,K pump.

This content is only available as a PDF.