The ability of phospholipase A2 from porcine pancreas to degrade all of the available dilauroylphosphatidylcholine in mixed monolayers with galactocerebroside, sulfatide, or ganglioside GM1 was investigated at different constant surface pressures. Under the conditions used the interfacial glycosphingolipid composition was continuously enriched as the enzyme action proceeded. The total percentage of phospholipid degradation depends on the surface pressure and on the type of glycosphingolipid. The presence of sulfatide activates the enzyme while galactocerebroside and ganglioside GM1 are inhibitory. The extent of phospholipid hydrolysis is independent of the effect of glycosphingolipids on the enzyme velocity. This is so when the latter is measured either in conditions of constant glycosphingolipid composition and zero-order kinetics [Bianco, I. D., Fidelio, G. D., & Maggio, B. (1989) Biochem. J. 258, 95-99] or under variable surface composition as in the present work. The modulation of phospholipase A2 activity by glycosphingolipids operates at two independent levels. One controls the rate of enzyme activity, and the other modulates the total extent of substrate degradation. This depends on the initial interaction of the enzyme with the interface. The glycosphingolipid effect on the activity is different depending on whether the enzyme has access to the substrate from the subphase or is already adsorbed to the lipid interface.
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