Upon exposure of human red blood cells to hypertonic sucrose, the fluorescence of the potentiometric indicator 3,3'-dipropylthiadicarbocyanine iodide, denoted diS-C3(5), displays a biphasic time course indicating the rapid development of an inside-positive transmembrane voltage, followed by a slow DIDS (4,4'-diisothiocyano-2,2'-disulfonic acid stilbene)-sensitive decline of the voltage. In addition to monitoring membrane potential, proton (or hydroxide) fluxes were measured by a pH stat method, cell volume was monitored by light scattering, and cell electrolytes were measured directly when red cells were shrunken either with hypertonic NaCl or sucrose. Shrinkage by sucrose induced an initial proton efflux (or OH- influx) of 5.5 mu eq/g Hb.min and a Cl shift of 21-31 mu eq/g Hb in 15 min. Upon shrinkage with hypertonic NaCl, the cells are initially close to Donnan equilibrium and exhibit no detectable shift of Cl or protons. Experiments with the carbonic anhydrase inhibitor ethoxzolamide demonstrate that for red cell suspensions exposed to air and shrunken with sucrose, proton fluxes mediated by the Jacobs-Stewart cycle contribute to dissipation of the increased outward Cl concentration gradient. With maximally inhibitory concentrations of ethoxzolamide, a residual proton efflux of 2 mu eq/g Hb.min is insensitive to manipulation of the membrane potential with valinomycin, but is completely inhibited by DIDS. The ethoxzolamide-insensitive apparent proton efflux may be driven against the electrochemical gradient, and is thus consistent with HCl cotransport (or Cl/OH exchange). The data are consistent with predictions of equations describing nonideal osmotic and ionic equilibria of human red blood cells. Thus osmotic equilibration after shrinkage of human red blood cells by hypertonic sucrose occurs in two time-resolved steps: rapid equilibration of water followed by slower equilibration of chloride and protons (or hydroxide). Under our experimental conditions, about two-thirds of the osmotically induced apparent proton efflux is mediated by the Jacobs-Stewart cycle, with the remainder being consistent with mediation via DIDS-sensitive HCl cotransport (or Cl/OH exchange).
The inhibitor of anion exchange 4,4'-dibenzoamido-2,2'-disulfonic stilbene (DBDS) binds to band 3, the anion transport protein in human red cell ghost membranes, and undergoes a large increase in fluorescence intensity when bound to band 3. Equilibrium binding studies performed in the absence of transportable anions show that DBDS binds to both a class of high-affinity (65 nM) and low-affinity (820 nM) sites with stoichiometry equivalent to 1.6 nmol/mg ghost protein for each site, which is consistent with one DBDS site on each band 3 monomer. The kinetics of DBDS binding were studied both by stopped-flow and temperature-jump experiments. The stopped-flow data indicate that DBDS binding to the apparent high-affinity site involves association with a low-affinity site (3 microM) followed by a slow (4 s-1) conformational change that locks the DBDS molecule in place. A detailed, quantitative fit of the temperature-jump data to several binding mechanisms supports a sequential-binding model, in which a first DBDS molecule binds to one monomer and induces a conformational change. A second DBDS molecule then binds to the second monomer. If the two monomers are assumed to be initially identical, thermodynamic characterization of the binding sites shows that the conformational change induces an interaction between the two monomers that modifies the characteristics of the second DBDS binding site.