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J Am Chem Soc. 2009 Sep 16;131(36):12970-8. doi: 10.1021/ja902012x.

Coupled decomposition of four-dimensional NOESY spectra.

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Department of Biological Chemistry and Molecular Pharmacology, Harvard Medical School, 240 Longwood Avenue, Boston Massachusetts 02115, USA.


Four-dimensional (4D) NOESY spectra provide unambiguous distance information at a resolution that cannot be achieved in fewer dimensions and thus increase the quality of biomolecular structure determination substantially. Since the degree of chemical shift degeneracy increases with protein size, the use of 4D NOESY spectra is particularly important for large proteins. The potential high resolution in 4D spectra cannot be achieved in a reasonable time with conventional acquisition routines that sample the Nyquist grid uniformly. It can, however, be obtained with nonuniform sampling of the data grid, but optimal processing of such data has not yet been established. Here we describe a processing method for a pair of sparsely sampled 4D NOESY spectra, a methyl-methyl and an amide-methyl NOESY, recorded on a perdeuterated protein with protonated isoleucine, leucine, and valine methyl groups. The coupled multidimensional decomposition (Co-MDD) of these two spectra together with a 2D template spectrum results in a substantial increase in sensitivity, evidenced by 50-100% additional cross peaks, when compared to alternative processing schemes. At the same time, Co-MDD allows the use of low sparse levels of 10-15% of the full data grid for NOESY spectra. For the 283-residue integral human membrane protein VDAC-1, which has a rotational correlation time of about 70 ns in detergent micelles, the two 4D Co-MDD NOESYs yielded a total of 366 NOEs, resulting in 139 unambiguous upper limit distance constraints for the structure calculation.

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