Journal of Biological Chemistry vol:268 issue:11 pages:8284-9
The mechanism of activation of human plasminogen by recombinant staphylokinase (STAR) was studied using the active site titrant p-nitrophenyl-p'-guanidinobenzoate (NPGB). NPGB prevented active site exposure in equimolar mixtures of plasminogen and STAR but reacted stoichiometrically with mixtures preincubated in the absence of titrant. Active site generation occurred progressively, with a marked initial lag phase followed by an exponential growth phase, and was associated with the conversion of single-chain plasminogen to two-chain plasmin. Incubation of mixtures of plasminogen and STAR with catalytic amounts (< 0.2% molar ratio) of preformed plasmin.STAR complex or of urokinase shortened the lag hase, whereas catalytic amounts (5% molar ratio) of the plasmin inhibitor alpha 2-antiplasmin delayed active site generation. The following kinetic model for the activation of plasminogen (P) by STAR (S) fits the experimental data, [formula: see text] and is described by [formula: see text] or [formula: see text] In this model, plasminogen and STAR produce an inactive complex (P.S), in which active plasmin.STAR (p.S) is generated in a rate limiting step, which is accelerated by plasminogen activators and delayed by plasmin inhibitors. At room temperature in a 0.1 M Veronal buffer, pH 8.3, containing 0.1 M arginine, the data are adequately fitted by the integrated equation with k1 = 4.0 x 10(-7) s-1 and k2 = 1.3 x 10(-2) microM-1 s-1. The k1 value could be explained by contamination of the plasminogen preparation with 3 ppm plasmin, converted by S to p.S. It is concluded that STAR activates plasminogen via a mechanism which differs in several essential aspects from that of streptokinase.