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J Am Chem Soc. 2006 Aug 23;128(33):10652-3.

Cold denaturation of encapsulated ubiquitin.

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  • 1Johnson Research Foundation and Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19104-6059, USA.

Abstract

Theoretical considerations suggest that protein cold denaturation can potentially provide a means to explore the cooperative substructure of proteins. Protein cold denaturation is generally predicted to occur well below the freezing point of water. Here NMR spectroscopy of ubiquitin encapsulated in reverse micelles dissolved in low viscosity alkanes is used to follow cold-induced unfolding to temperatures below -25 degrees C. Comparison of cold-induced structural transitions in a variety of reverse micelle-buffer systems indicate that protein-surfactant interactions are negligible and allow the direct observation of the multistate cold-induced unfolding of the protein.

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