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Surface-Mediated Protein Unfolding as a Search Process for Denaturing Sites.


ABSTRACT: Surface-induced protein denaturation has important implications for the development of materials that are resistant and/or innocuous to biomolecules. Here, we studied the mechanism of lysozyme (T4L) unfolding on fused silica (FS) using single-molecule methods that provided direct insight into the cause of denaturation. Unfolding of T4L was monitored by Förster resonance energy transfer while simultaneously tracking the adsorption, diffusion, and desorption of individual molecules at the solid-solution interface. Results of high-throughput single-molecule analysis suggested that the unfolding of T4L on FS was mediated by surface diffusion and occurred on isolated nanoscale sites, which were relatively rare and distinct from the majority of the surface. These observations suggest that surface-mediated protein unfolding is a search process that is based on the exploration for denaturing sites by the protein. Ultimately, these findings have important implications for the design of protein-compatible surfaces.

SUBMITTER: Weltz JS 

PROVIDER: S-EPMC4729621 | BioStudies | 2016-01-01

SECONDARY ACCESSION(S): 1L63

REPOSITORIES: biostudies

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