Oxygen Carriers as Molecular Models of Allosteric Behavior

  • M. Brouwer
Part of the Advances in Comparative and Environmental Physiology book series (COMPARATIVE, volume 13)


Cooperative phenomena, in which events at one place determine what happens at another, are best known in physics, with the phenomenon of phase transitions as a classic example. Cooperative phenomena also have an important function in biology that was first defined and analyzed in a seminal paper published a quarter century ago (Monod et al. 1965). The classic example of cooperativity among biological macromolecules is that of the binding of oxygen by hemoglobin. According to simple mass action law, with the assumption that the four oxygen-binding sites on Hb are identical and independent or noninteracting:
$${\text{HbO}_2 \longleftarrow \text{K}_{\text{diss}}\longrightarrow}\text{Hb} +\text{O}_2\;\text{and}\; [\text{Hb}][\text{O}_2]\: =\text{K}_{\text{diss}}[{\text{HbO}_2}]$$


Oxygen Carrier Allosteric Transition Oxygen Binding Human Hemoglobin Hill Plot 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1992

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. Brouwer
    • 1
  1. 1.Duke University Marine Laboratory BeaufortUSA

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