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J Am Chem Soc. 2008 Nov 26;130(47):15805-7. doi: 10.1021/ja803794g.

Multiple-timescale dynamics of side-chain carboxyl and carbonyl groups in proteins by 13C nuclear spin relaxation.

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  • 1Département de Chimie, associé au CNRS, Ecole Normale Supérieure, 24, rue Lhomond, 75231 Paris Cedex 05, France.


Side-chain carboxyl and carbonyl groups play a major role in protein interactions and enzyme catalysis. A series of (13)C relaxation experiments is introduced to study the dynamics of carboxyl and carbonyl groups in protein side chains on both fast (sub-ns) and slower (micros-ms) time scales. This approach is illustrated on the protein calbindin D(9k). Fast dynamics features correlate with hydrogen- and ion-binding patterns. We also identify chemical dynamics on micros time scales in solvent-exposed carboxyl groups, most probably due to exchange between the carboxylate and carboxylic acid forms.

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