Aurintricarboxylic acid (ATA) was found to be a very potent inhibitor of purified rabbit liver phosphofructokinase (PFK), giving 50% inhibition at 0.2 microM. The inhibition was in a manner consistent with interaction at the citrate-inhibitory site of the enzyme. The data suggest that inhibition of PFK by ATA was not due to denaturation of the enzyme or the irreversible binding of inhibitor, since the inhibition could be reversed by addition of allosteric activators of PFK, i.e. fructose 2,6-bisphosphate or AMP. Two other tricarboxylic acids, agaric acid and (-)-hydroxycitrate, were found to inhibit PFK. ATA at much higher concentrations (500 microM) was shown to inhibit fatty acid synthesis from endogenous glycogen in rat hepatocytes; however, protein synthesis was not altered.

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