Characterization of protoporphyrin in red blood cells of patients with erythropoietic protoporphyria.Clin Chim Acta. 1975 Sep 16; 63(3):355-62.CC
It was investigated whether the protoporphyrin that can be extracted from red blood cells of erythropoietic protoporphyria (E.P.P.) patients is present in the cells as free molecules or protein-bound. With isoelectric focusing and with starch gel electrophoresis it could be shown that virtually all protoporphyrin in the erythrocytes is protein-bound. It is very likely that the protoporphyrin is bound to hemoglobin at heme-binding sites. This was indicated by several observations: 1. With isoelectric focusing the protoporphyrin-protein complex is focused at a pH only slightly higher than the isoelectric point of hemoglobin. 2. With chromatography on Sephadex columns it appeared that hemoglobin and the protopotphyrin-protein complex have the same molecular weight. 3. A Heme-protoporphyrin exchange occurred when the heme-globin bond was labialized by conversion to hemiglobin. The resulting protoporphyrin-hemoglobin complex had the same electrophoretic mobility with starch gel electrophoresis as the protoporphyrin-protein complex, extracted from red blood cells of E.P.P. patients.