Inhibition of NADPH oxidase activation by 4-(2-aminoethyl)- benzenesulfonyl fluoride and related compounds

Valery Diatchuk, Ofra Lotan, Vasilij Koshkin, Peter Wikstroem, Edgar Pick*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The elicitation of an oxidative burst in phagocytes rests on the assembly of a multicomponental complex (NADPH oxidase) consisting of a membrane-associated flavocytochrome (cytochrome b559), representing the redox element responsible for the NADPH-dependent reduction of oxygen to superoxide (O2/-·), two cytosolic components (p47(phox), p67(phox)), and the small GTPase Rac (1 or 2). We found that 4-(2-aminoethyl)-benzenesulfonyl fluoride (AEBSF), an irreversible serine protease inhibitor, prevented the elicitation of O2/-· production in intact macrophages and the amphiphile- dependent activation of NADPH oxidase in a cell-free system, consisting of solubilized membrane or purified cytochrome b559 combined with total cytosol or a mixture of recombinant p47(phox), p67(phox), and Rac1. AEBSF acted at the activation step and did not interfere with the ensuing electron flow. It did not scavenge oxygen radicals and did not affect assay reagents. Five other serine protease inhibitors (three irreversible and two reversible) were found to lack an inhibitory effect on cell-free activation of NADPH oxidase. A structure-function study of AEBSF analogues demonstrated that the presence of a sulfonyl fluoride group was essential for inhibitory activity and that compounds containing an aminoalkylbenzene moiety were more active than amidinobenzene derivatives. Exposure of the membrane fraction or of purified cytochrome b559, but not of cytosol or recombinant cytosolic components, to AEBSF, in the presence of a critical concentration of the activating amphiphile lithium dodecyl sulfate, resulted in a marked impairment of their ability to support cell-free NADPH oxidase activation upon complementation with untreated cytosol or cytosolic components. Kinetic analysis of the effect of varying the concentration of each of the three cytosolic components on the inhibitory potency of AEBSF indicated that this was inversely related to the concentrations of p47(phox) and, to a lesser degree, p67(phox). AEBSF also prevented the amphiphile-elicited translocation of p47(phox) and p67(phox) to the membrane. These results are interpreted as indicating that AEBSF interferes with the binding of p47(phox) and/or p67(phox) to cytochrome b559, probably by a direct effect on cytochrome b559.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)13292-13301
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number20
StatePublished - 16 May 1997


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