Integrated SequencePhysics Chemistry Organic Biology

Web Resources

Purdue University - The Chemistry of Hemoglobin and Myoglobin
Characterization of the structure of hemoglobin and myoglobin. Nice clear basic explanation of cooperative interaction.

  click if a link is broken

Special points of emphasis



Many transport proteins bind small molecules and transport them to other locations in the body. These proteins typically have a high binding affinity when their ligand is present in high concentrations and a low binding affinity at the target tissues. Hemoglobin is the quintessential transport protein, which transports oxygen from the lungs to the tissues. The binding of oxygen by hemoglobin is a cooperative process. Binding affinity is increased by the degree of oxygen saturation, with the first oxygens bound causing steric changes that facilitate binding for the next oxygens. Furthermore, low pH and high CO2 levels in the tissues decrease binding capacity of hemoglobin for oxygen, a phenomenon known as the Bohr effect.

The WikiPremed MCAT Course is a free comprehensive course in the undergraduate level general sciences. Undergraduate level physics, chemistry, organic chemistry and biology are presented by this course as a unified whole within a spiraling curriculum.

Please read our policies on privacy and shipping & returns.  Contact Us.
MCAT is a registered trademark of the Association of American Medical Colleges, which does not endorse the WikiPremed Course.

Creative Commons License
The work of WikiPremed is published under a Creative Commons Attribution Share Alike 3.0 License. There are elements of work here, such as a subset of the images in the archive from WikiPedia, that originated as GNU General Public License works, so take care to follow the unique stipulations of that license in printed reproductions. You can use the resources here for commercial or non-commercial purposes, but please give attribution and a link to the production credits and edit history of the resource. For the works here which began as my individual work, please attribute "John Wetzel, an author at".