Pressure Studies of Protein Dynamics
Annual rept. Mar 1989-Feb 1990
ILLINOIS UNIV AT URBANA DEPT OF PHYSICS
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Our work during the past decade has shown conclusively that the energy landscape of proteins is complex The ground state of proteins is highly degenerate and consists of a very large number of energy valleys separated by energy mountains and ridges. Moreover, the energy landscape may be hierarchical and contain valleys within valleys. Evidence is mounting that many, maybe all, complex systems are characterized by a highly degenerate and hierarchicaly arranged ground state. Among such systems and problems are glasses, spin glasses, evolution, learning, neural networks, computer and chip design, and the traveling salesman problem. Proteins consequently may be models for many other systems and progress in protein dynamics may have impact on these other fields. We investigate three aspects of protein dynamics 1 the structure and organization of the energy landscape, 2 conformational motions dynamics, and 3 the laws governing the motions reaction theory. In all three aspects, we intend to study the phenomena in one protein myoglobin in detail and then explore how the phenomena depend on changes in protein structure. Keywords Pressure, Protein dynamics, Myoglobin, Heme proteins, Conformational substates, Photolysis, Fourier spectroscopy.