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J Phys Chem B. 2014 Jul 17;118(28):8118-27. doi: 10.1021/jp501132z. Epub 2014 May 29.

Heterogeneous preferential solvation of water and trifluoroethanol in homologous lysozymes.

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Department of Chemistry and ‡Biophysics Program, University of Michigan , 930 N. University Avenue , Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109-1055, USA.


Cytoplasmic osmolytes can significantly alter the thermodynamic and kinetic properties of proteins relative to those under dilute solution conditions. Spectroscopic experiments of lysozymes in cosolvents indicate that such changes may arise from the heterogeneous, site-specific hydrophobic interactions between protein surface residues and individual solvent molecules. In pursuit of an accurate and predictive model for explaining biomolecular interactions, we study the averaged structural characteristics of mixed solvents with homologous lysozyme solutes using all-atom molecular dynamics. By observing the time-averaged densities of different aqueous solutions of trifluoroethanol, we deduce trends in the heterogeneous solvent interactions over each protein's surface, and investigate how the homology of protein structure does not necessarily translate to similarities in solvent structure and composition-even when observing identical side chains.

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