Normal red blood cell (RBC) membranes were compared with (1) RBC membranes from six patients with hereditary spherocytosis (HS), (2) normal membranes after hemolysis of the RBC in the presence of calcium, or (3) normal membranes after incubation of RBC for 24 hr in phosphate- buffered saline containing calcium without added glucose. When compared with normal controls, polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis with sodium dodecyl sulfate (PAGE SDS) of all three preparations showed an increase in membrane binding of globin and protein band 4.5 (60,000 molecular weight). In an attempt to identify band 4.5, 14 enzymes were assayed in the RBC membranes. Of these, catalase and lactate dehydrogenase were increased in membranes from HS RBC and from normal cells exposed to calcium. Only catalase, however, was present in sufficient quantity and had the correct subunit molecular weight on PAGE SDS and calcium- dependent membrane binding to account for an appreciable portion of 4.5. Caralase was further identified with a component of band 4.5 by double immunodiffusion using a specific anti-catalase antibody.

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