The exceptionally high protein concentration in living cells can favor functional protein-protein interactions that can be difficult to detect with purified proteins. In this study we describe specific interactions between mammalian D-glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase (GAPDH) and L-lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) isozymes from heart and muscle. We use poly(ethylene-glycol) (PEG)-induced coprecipitation and native agarose electrophoresis as two independent methods uniquely suited to mimic some of the conditions that can favor protein-protein interaction in living cells. We found that GAPDH interacts with heart or muscle isozymes of LDH with approximately one-to-one stoichiometry. The interaction is specific; GAPDH shows interaction with two LDH isozymes that have very different net charge and solubility in PEG solution, while no interaction is observed with GAPDH from other species, other NAD(H) dehydrogenases, or other proteins that have very similar net charge and molecular mass. Analytical ultracentrifugation showed that the LDH and GAPDH complex is insoluble in PEG solution. The interaction is abolished by saturation with NADH, but not by saturation with NAD(+) in correlation with GAPDH solubility in PEG solution. The crystal structures show that GAPDH and LDH isozymes share complementary size, shape, and electric potential surrounding the active sites. The presented results suggest that GAPDH and LDH have a functional interaction that can affect NAD(+)/NADH metabolism and glycolysis in living cells.
(c) 2006 Wiley-Liss, Inc.