Isolation and characterization of two distinct forms of liver fatty acid binding protein from the rat. Academic Article uri icon


  • Liver fatty acid binding protein (L-FABP) appears to contain several different forms that may result from post-translational modification or bound ligand. To further assess this possibility, L-FABP was purified from rat liver homogenate and two putative isoforms separated using a sulfonyl column, a strong cation exchange resin. Fraction I eluted at 0.2 M NaCl, had a pI of 7.59, and following a final size exclusion step contained > 98% L-FABP. Fraction II eluted at 1.0 M NaCl, had a pI of 7.59, and following a final size exclusion step contained > 99% L-FABP. Both fractions contained approx. 0.15 moles of endogenous bound fatty acid per mole of protein, while L-FABP not subjected to the cation exchange step contained 0.75 moles of fatty acid per mole of protein. Fractions I and II had a greater proportion of saturated and monounsaturated fatty acids with a large reduction in polyunsaturated fatty acids compared to L-FABP not fractionated by cation exchange. Mass spectral analysis indicated the molecular mass of Fraction I was 14,315.02 +/- 0.35 Da and Fraction II was 14,315.86 +/- 0.34 Da. The peptide map for each fraction was determined by limited digestion of each fraction with either trypsin, Asp-N, or chymotrypsin to yield overlapping peptide fragments. Mass spectral analysis of these digests indicated the two proteins had identical amino acid fragments and that Cys69 was reduced and there were no Asn to Asp exchanges. Hence, these two forms of L-FABP were not isoforms and were not the result of differences in bound fatty acid. It is proposed that these two distinct forms of rat L-FABP were structural conformers based on two alternative folding pathways.

published proceedings

  • Biochim Biophys Acta

author list (cited authors)

  • Murphy, E. J., Edmondson, R. D., Russell, D. H., Colles, S., & Schroeder, F.

citation count

  • 47

complete list of authors

  • Murphy, EJ||Edmondson, RD||Russell, DH||Colles, S||Schroeder, F

publication date

  • January 1999