The inhibition of carnitine palmitoyltransferase (CPT, EC by malonyl-CoA, acetyl-CoA and free CoA was studied in sonicated skeletal-muscle homogenates from normal human subjects and from five patients with a mutant CPT [Zierz & Engel (1985) Eur. J. Biochem. 149, 207-214]. (1) Malonyl-CoA, acetyl-CoA and CoA were competitive inhibitors of CPT with palmitoyl-CoA. (2) Acetyl-CoA and CoA inhibited normal and mutant CPT to the same degree, whereas malonyl-CoA inhibited mutant CPT more than normal CPT. (3) Triton X-100 abolished the inhibition of normal CPT by malonyl-CoA, but not by acetyl-CoA or CoA. Triton X-100 by itself caused loss of activity of the mutant CPT. (4) In the concentration range 0.1-0.4 mM, the inhibitory effects of any two of the three inhibitors were synergistic. (5) The inhibitory constants (Ki) for acetyl-CoA and CoA were close to 45 microM. The Ki for malonyl-CoA was 200-fold lower, or 0.22 microM. Addition of 40 microM-acetyl-CoA or CoA resulted in a 3-fold increase in the Ki for acetyl-CoA. Addition of 20 microM-CoA resulted in a 3-fold increase in the Ki for acetyl-CoA. (6) The findings indicate that acetyl-CoA and CoA can inhibit CPT at the catalytic site or a nearby site which is different from that at which malonyl-CoA inhibits CPT. (7) The fact that small changes in the concentration of acetyl-CoA and CoA can antagonize the inhibitory effect of malonyl-CoA suggests that these compounds could modulate the inhibition of CPT by malonyl-CoA.

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