1. A method is described for the estimation of thiol ester groups. The thiol ester is converted into the corresponding thiol by reaction with ammonia; the thiol is then titrated amperometrically with mercuric chloride. 2. The method may be used in the presence of SH and S.S groups. The SH groups are titrated at pH3 in the presence of excess of chloride; under these conditions thiol esters do not react with mercuric chloride. Thiol ester plus thiol is then estimated by titration after reaction with ammonia. Finally, titration after reaction with ammonia and sulphite gives the thiol ester plus thiol plus disulphide. 3. The procedure has been applied to glyceraldehyde phosphate dehydrogenase. The enzyme was found to contain 15-16 SH groups/mol. and no S.S groups. After reaction with acetyl phosphate 1.8-3.5 thiol ester groups were detected, the number depending on the conditions of acetylation. In the absence of bound NAD, the number of thiol ester groups formed was 1.8/mol., although a value of 2.9 labile acetyl groups/mol. was given by the method of Lipmann & Tuttle (1945). The presence of thiol ester groups in the S-(d-3-phosphoglyceryl)-enzyme was also demonstrated.
- © 1965 The Biochemical Society