Characterization of peptides self-assembly by low frequency Raman spectroscopy†
Low Frequency Vibrational (LFV) modes of peptides and proteins are attributed to the lattice vibrations and are dependent on their structural organization and self-assembly. Studies taken in order to assign specific absorption bands in the low frequency range to self-assembly behavior of peptides and proteins have been challenging. Here we used a single stage Low Frequency Raman (LF-Raman) spectrometer to study a series of diastereomeric analogue peptides to investigate the effect of peptides self-assembly on the LF-Raman modes. The structural variation of the diastereomeric analogues resulted in distinct self-assembly groups, as confirmed by transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and dynamic light scattering (DLS) data. Using LF-Raman spectroscopy, we consistently observed discrete peaks for each of the self-assembly groups. The correlation between the spectral features and structural morphologies was further supported by principal component analysis (PCA). The LFV modes provide further information on the degrees of freedom of the entire peptide within the higher order organization, reflecting the different arrangement of its hydrogen bonding and hydrophobic interactions. Thus, our approach provides a simple and robust complementary method to structural characterization of peptides assemblies.