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Pressure and protein denaturation

Abstract

Kinetic analyses have indicated that moderate hydrostatic pressures, up to some 700 atmospheres, oppose reversible and irreversible denaturations of certain enzyme systems, apparent at temperatures above the normal optimum of the enzyme reaction, as well as at lower temperatures in the presence of denaturants such as alcohol (1-4). Qualitative observations have shown that such pressures also retard the precipitation of highly purified human serum globulin and egg albumin at 65Β° (5) and slow the destruction of specific antitoxic activity at the same temperature (6). In this study we have obtained quantitative data with regard to the influence of various pressures, up to 10,000 pounds per sq. in., and of low concentrations of ethyl alcohol on the time course of precipitation of human serum globulin (1) at 65Β° and pH 6.0

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