-3-quinuclidinyl benzilate ( -QNB ) binds with high affinity and specificity to the receptors present in the homogenate of rat encephalon membrane. These receptors exhibit resemblance to muscarinic cholinergic receptors. Specific binding of QNB is saturable and depends on the concentration of the membrane homogenate and the clip of incubation. The saturability and specificity of -QNB adhering to receptors present in the rat membrane is demonstrated. There is concentration dependent supplanting of the radiolabeled QNB from their binding sites in the presence of atropine. In this survey, IC50, Bmax and Kd are calculated and compared with those published by Yamamura et Al.

Keywords: binding affinity, dissociation invariable, radioligand adhering check, -QNB, cholinergic receptors, quantification, QNB adhering sites, IC50, BSA.


Nerve cells communicate with each other by let go ofing neurotransmitters. Binding of these neurotransmitters to specific receptors on next nerve cells, modulate the look of figure of receptors at the cell surface. The binding of neurotransmitter to receptors plays a really important function and efforts have been made to quantify them by chemical measurings of direct binding.

Receptors for acetylcholine are present in many tissues and can be classified as muscarinic or nicotinic cholinergic receptors severally. Substances which bind to the receptor and arouse a response are known as agonists whereas substances which bind but do non arouse a response are known as adversaries. The interaction between an agonist or an adversary can be quantified in ligand binding checks.

Ligand adhering surveies of muscarinic every bit good as nicotinic cholinergic receptors have been reported in literature. Muscarinic adversaries have 3 to 5 times more affinity for QNB adhering sites than do cholinergic agonists. The binding of -QNB appears closely similar to the binding of a benzilylcholine mustard homologue , and may resemble -atropine binding to a rat encephalon homogenate . Albanus and Meyerhoffer independently reported that QNB is a powerful cardinal muscarinic adversary.

In the present probe, radioactive -QNB was taken for receptor labelling surveies as reported by Yamamura et al. , due to its authority, specificity and continuity of action. In this study, we describe a quantitative attack for in-vitro measuring of receptor densenesss based on equilibrium distribution of radiolabeled ligand. The ultimate intent of this experiment is to place maximum receptor denseness ( Bmax ) and dissociation invariable ( Kd ) . Extra experiments bespeaking IC50 were besides performed.

Materials and Methods


Sodium K phosphate ( NaPK ) 50mM, pH 7.4 ; -QNB ( 1.3nM and 6.5nM ) , specific activity 11.2 ten 102 Bq /pmol ; Atropine solution ( 10Aµm ) ; Sucrose ( 0.32M ) ; Phenylmethylsulphonyl fluoride ( PMSF ) ( 0.1mM ) ; standard solution of bovine serum albumen ( BSA ) 1mg/ml.


Rat encephalons were homogenized in 10 volumes of ice-cold 0.32M sucrose /0.1mM PMSF with a Teflon-glass potter-Elvehjem glass homogeniser. The whole homogenate was centrifuged at 12000g for 10 proceedingss and the pellet was resuspended in original volume of sucrose and frozen in aliquots.

QNB was tritiated and purified by the standard process reported by Yamamura et al .

Lowry Assay for protein appraisal

50Aµl of rat membrane homogenate was taken in a trial tubing and the volume was made upto 1.0ml with H2O. Assorted concentrations of BSA ( in the scope of 0-200Aµg ) were prepared from the standard BSA solution. 1.5ml of reagent 1 were added to the above trial tubings incorporating BSA and rat membrane homogenate and allowed to stand for 10min at room temperature. Further, 0.3ml of reagent 2 ( commercial Folin-ciocalteau reagent, 1:1 in H2O ) was added and left for 30min with occasional swirling. The optical density for all the samples was recorded at 660nm utilizing UV-Visible spectrophotometer. The informations were plotted from the standard BSA tubing and the protein concentration in the membrane was extrapolated.

In the present probe, all checks have a concluding volume of 2.0ml, made up of 1.5ml -QNB assay mix and 0.3ml of either H2O or atropine.

Impregnation adhering surveies of -QNB

Binding of -QNB to encephalon homogenates was determined as described by Yamamura et Al, with little alterations. In-vitro QNB adhering to homogenates of rat encephalon was measured with a filtration check. Incubation clip for binding of -QNB was determined by incubating 4ml of rat membrane to 1.3nM -QNB mix and measurement radiation at assorted clip intervals as shown in auxiliary information ( sheet 1 of MS Excel speadsheet ) , by taking 2.0ml aliquots to glaze filter fibers ( GF/B ) positioned over a vacuity. Incubations were terminated by increasing the volume utilizing 20ml NaPK, followed by rapid vacuity filtration and subsequent lavation with 5ml NaPK. Every finding of binding was performed in triplicate. Filters were placed in scintillation phials incorporating 5ml of scintillation cocktail for atleast one hr at room temperature. Entire radiation on the filters were counted by liquid scintillation spectroscopy utilizing a Beckman LS 9000 scintillation counter with external quench rectification at a numbering efficiency of 50 % in the displaced person. The rectification factor was introduced as the “ counts ” may non hold registered all the decompositions in the sample ( the flashes of visible radiation in the scintillant may be quenched by coloring material in the solution or other artefacts ) . These values of radiation were plotted against clip in the impregnation clip dynamicss graph ( Figure 1 ) .

Determination of IC50 and Ki

IC50 is that atropine concentration ( viing drug ) which displaces 50 % of -QNB binding. It was determined by incubating 200Aµl rat membrane readying with assorted concentrations of atropine obtained by spiking solutions ( consecutive dilution ) of atropine as shown in auxiliary information ( sheet 2 of MS Excel speadsheet ) in the presence of saturating ( 1.3nM ) concentration of -QNB for 45min in triplicate. This incubation period was chosen since kinetic experiments shows that impregnation is reached after 45min. The incubation was terminated by vacuity filtration over GF/B filters, followed by rinsing. The radiation was determined as described above. The mean radiation edge to each triplicate set of filters was calculated in nanomoles or picomoles of QNB edge. Further, Lowry check was performed to cipher the sum of edge QNB in femtomoles per milligram of the protein. These values were plotted against log10 and to find the IC50 from the mid-point of the curve.

The by experimentation determined IC50 was so used to cipher the affinity changeless Ki of the atropine utilizing the Cheng-Prusoff equation, Ki = IC50 / ( 1 + /Kd ) , where Ki is the evident equilibrium affinity invariable of atropine for QNB adhering site, Kd is the equilibrium dissociation invariable of QNB for the binding site and is the concentration of the radioactive QNB used.

Determination of Bmax and Kd for -QNB

To assay the entire binding ( Bmax ) of -QNB, 200Aµl rat membrane readying was incubated in triplicate with changing concentrations of -QNB auxiliary information ( sheet 3 of MS Excel spreadsheet ) . The incubation was terminated by filtration followed by rinsing. The radiation was determined as described above. -QNB can adhere merely non-specifically in the presence of atropine as all the receptors are occupied by the atropine. Therefore, non-specific binding of -QNB were determined in the presence of atropine ( 10Aµm ) . Linear arrested development was carried out to cipher corrected non-specific binding. Non-specific binding is relative to the concentration of QNB ( within the scope it is used ) . The specific binding of -QNB is so calculated by taking the difference between the entire binding and the corrected non-specific values.

Data analysis to cipher Kd and Bmax

The affinity ( Kd ) and maximum denseness ( Bmax ) of receptors in a sample were determined by impregnation surveies. In this, increasing concentrations of QNB were used and the edge ( B ) and free ( F ) ligand concentrations were measured at the clip when the system is assumed to hold reached an equilibrium province. Using the equation, B /F = ( Bmax – Bacillus ) /Kd, a spread graph was plotted between B/F ( Y-axis ) and B ( X-axis ) and a consecutive line was fit. The incline of this consecutive line is equal to the negative opposite of the equilibrium dissociation invariable ( Kd ) and whose intercept on X axis when Y is equal to zero gives the entire receptor concentration ( Bmax ) .

In order to get the better of the restriction of scatchard secret plans in giving the most accurate analysis of Bmax and Kd because of the deformation of experimental errorby additive transmutation, non-linear arrested development method was employed.

An algorithm “ Solver ” in Microsoft excel was used to optimize the parametric quantities in order to minimise the amount of the squares of divergences of estimated and ascertained values of edge QNB. This was achieved by altering the values of antecedently calculated Bmax and Kd. This resulted in the reduced estimated values of edge which were so plotted to measure the tantrum along with the ascertained edge values.

Further, to cipher the standard divergence of Pt ( Bmax ) and Kd, assorted parametric quantities, Fio, FPt, FKd, FL, FPL and Wi were calculated utilizing the expression mentioned in the auxiliary information ( MS Excel spreadsheet ) . Then, the matrix and the reverse matrix of the above mentioned parametric quantities were created to cipher the I”Pt and I”Kd ; and I?2Pt and I?2Kd severally.

Radioactivity taint cheque

Six different samples from the work bench, baseball mitts and other points that might hold come in contact with hot -QNB were taken utilizing swabs for look intoing any radioactive taint. To make so, each swab was put into a separate phial incorporating 5ml of scintillant, and its radiation was determined as describes above.

Consequences and Discussion

Incubation clip for binding of -QNB to rat membrane homogenate was found to be 45 min utilizing the impregnation adhering surveies ( Figure 1 ) . In farther experiments, rat membrane homogenate was incubated with -QNB for 45 min.

IC50 for atropine was determined by incubating atropine in the presence of saturating concentrations of -QNB. By plotting the graph between bound concentrations of -QNB and -log , IC50 of atropine was found to be 1.778 nM ( Figure 2 ) . This is similar ( 1-2nM ) to the 1 reported by Yamamura et al .

To distinguish between the specific and non-specific binding sites, a radioactive muscarinic adversary QNB with high affinity and selectivity for adhering site was incubated with a known measure of rat membrane homogenate in vitro in the absence and presence of a concentration of atropine that will displace QNB from the receptors. Since both QNB and atropine are viing for the same receptor site, as the concentration of atropine addition the sum of edge QNB decreases.

In adhering survey with -QNB entirely entire binding was observed. And in the presence of 10AµM atropine, binding was reduced as shown in Figure 3. Consequences from incubation in the presence of atropine suggest that atropine displaces the QNB from its binding sites. At t = 0, more sites are available on the receptor to adhere to the ligand but near impregnation the figure of free sites handiness lessenings. Specific binding is saturable with increasing concentrations of -QNB. Non-specific binding ( weak interactions because of hydrophobic interactions ) of QNB in the presence of atropine is non saturable and increases linearly with increasing concentration of -QNB ( Figure 3 ) . The supplanting of QNB from its receptors by atropine in this survey corroborated the fact that QNB binds to receptors that are similar to muscarinic cholinergic receptors ( explained in Appendix 3 ) .

Using the consecutive line that fits the consequences in the presence of atropine, the sum of non-specific binding for each QNB concentration was estimated ( Figure 3 ) . The specific binding was calculated as described in Materials and Methods subdivision. The concentration of free QNB was calculated by taking specific edge QNB from the entire concentration of QNB ( auxiliary information, sheet 3 of MS Excel speadsheet ) .

A binding curve is non a additive equation but a rectangular hyperbola. In rectangular hyperbola, it is hard to acquire a impregnation value. So, the information from this experiment was further analysed utilizing scatchard secret plan ( Figure 4 ) . From this analysis, Kd and Bmax were calculated as 0.609nM and 0.259nM severally. These values were used to cipher the estimated bound utilizing the expression B = Bmax / ( Kd + ) . The graph of edge vs free was plotted for both the observed and estimated values ( Figure 5 ) .

To get the better of the restriction of scatchard secret plan non-linear arrested development analysis was performed. Use of “ convergent thinker ” algorithm in Microsoft Excel minimized the amount of the divergences which changes the Kd and Bmax value as 0.612 nanometers and 0.257 nanometer. The value reported by Yamamura et Al for Kd is in the scope of 0.4 -0.5 nanometer. Then with the aid of matrix we solved for the alteration of our estimation of Kd and Pt, I”Kd and I”Pt. Finally, the standard divergence of the parametric quantities which are square root of component ( 1,1 ) and ( 2,2 ) of the opposite matrix were calculated.

Further, a new Kd and Pt was calculated with the I”Kd and I”Pt values utilizing the expression I”Kd = ( Kdo – Kd ) and I”Pt = ( Pto – Platinum ) , where Kdo is the initial estimation of Kd and Pto is the initial estimation of Pt ( auxiliary information, sheet 3 of MS Excel speadsheet ) . These are the most of import consequences because compared to other techniques of curve suiting they gave us the estimations of discrepancies.

In decision, a radioligand adhering check has been demonstrated. The method might be suited for high throughput showing of drug interaction with muscarinic cholinergic receptors.


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Books referred:

1. LE Limbird, Cell surface receptors: A short class on theory and methods, Kluwer Academic Publishers, 2nd edition, 1996.

2. HI Yamamura, et. Al. Methods in neurotransmitter receptor analysis, Raven Press, 1990.

3. T Kenakin, Pharmacologic analysis of drug-receptor interaction, 2nd edition, Raven Press, 1993.

4. Radioligand adhering checks by Anthony P. Davenport and Fraser D. Russell Current waies in radiopharmaceutical research and development, Kluwer Academic Publishers.


Figure 2: The graph between concentration of QNB ( nmol ) and -Log to cipher the IC50 of atropine

Figure 1: The graph demoing the impregnation dynamicss to cipher the incubation clip

Figure 3: Graph demoing natural counts per minute ( CPM ) edge against concentration of QNB. A consecutive line is fitted through the atropine values to obtain an equation that can be used to change over deliberate non-specific values to corrected non-specific values.

Figure 4: Scatchard secret plan between bound/free and free -QNB. A consecutive line is fitted to cipher Bmax and Kd utilizing the equation mentioned.

Figure 5: Graph of edge Vs free for both the observed and estimated values of edge QNB.

Appendix 1

3-quinuclidinyl benzilate ( QNB )

QNB is an anticholinergic compound structurally similar to atropine. It acts as a competitory inhibitor of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine at postsynaptic and postjunctional muscarinic receptors in cardiac and smooth musculus, exocrine secretory organs, autonomic ganglia, and the encephalon. It decreases the effectual concentration of acetylcholine at these receptors sites as the proportion of receptors available for adhering to acetylcholine lessenings.


Atropine is a monocyclic tropane alkaloid which is found in workss of the Solanaceae household like lifelessly nightshade ( Atropa deadly nightshade ) , jimson weed ( Datura stramonium ) , mandrake ( Mandragora officinarum ) . It is a secondary metabolite of these workss and is a competitory adversary for the muscarinic acetylcholine receptor.

Atropine increases fire of the sinoatrial node and conductivity through the auriculoventricular node of the bosom, opposes the actions of the pneumogastric nervus, blocks acetylcholine receptor sites, and decreases bronchial secernments.

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