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Issue 4, 2019
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The effect of protein backbone hydration on the amide vibrations in Raman and Raman optical activity spectra

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Abstract

Raman and specifically Raman optical activity (ROA) spectroscopy are very sensitive to the solution structure and conformation of biomolecules. Because of this strong conformational sensitivity, density functional theory (DFT) calculations are often used to get a better understanding of the experimentally observed spectral patterns. While e.g. for carbohydrate structure the water molecules that surround the solute have been demonstrated to be of vital importance to get accurate modelled ROA spectra, the effect of explicit water molecules on the calculated ROA patterns of peptides and proteins is less well studied. Here, the effect of protein backbone hydration was studied using DFT calculations of HCO–(L-Ala)5–NH2 in specific secondary structure conformations with different treatments of the solvation. The effect of the explicit water molecules on the calculated spectra mainly arises from the formation of hydrogen bonds with the amide C[double bond, length as m-dash]O and N–H groups. Hydrogen bonding of water with the C[double bond, length as m-dash]O group determines the shape and position of the amide I band. The C[double bond, length as m-dash]O bond length increases upon formation of C[double bond, length as m-dash]O⋯H2O hydrogen bonds. The effect of the explicit water molecules on the amide III vibrations arises from hydrogen bonding of the solvent with both the C[double bond, length as m-dash]O and N–H group, but their contributions to this spectral region differ: geometrically, the formation of a C[double bond, length as m-dash]O⋯H2O bond decreases the C–N bond length, while upon forming a N–H⋯H2O hydrogen bond, the N–H bond length increases.

Graphical abstract: The effect of protein backbone hydration on the amide vibrations in Raman and Raman optical activity spectra

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Publication details

The article was received on 15 Oct 2018, accepted on 04 Jan 2019 and first published on 05 Jan 2019


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C8CP06423G
Citation: Phys. Chem. Chem. Phys., 2019,21, 1988-2005

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    The effect of protein backbone hydration on the amide vibrations in Raman and Raman optical activity spectra

    C. Mensch, P. Bultinck and C. Johannessen, Phys. Chem. Chem. Phys., 2019, 21, 1988
    DOI: 10.1039/C8CP06423G

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