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Shedding light on protein folding, structural and functional dynamics by single molecule studies

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Krutika Bavishi, Nikos Hatzakis

The advent of advanced single molecule measurements unveiled a great wealth of dynamic information revolutionizing our understanding of protein dynamics and behavior in ways unattainable by conventional bulk assays. Equipped with the ability to record distribution of behaviors rather than the mean property of a population, single molecule measurements offer observation and quantification of the abundance, lifetime and function of multiple protein states. They also permit the direct observation of the transient and rarely populated intermediates in the energy landscape that are typically averaged out in non-synchronized ensemble measurements. Single molecule studies have thus provided novel insights about how the dynamic sampling of the free energy landscape dictates all aspects of protein behavior; from its folding to function. Here we will survey some of the state of the art contributions in deciphering mechanisms that underlie protein folding, structural and functional dynamics by single molecule fluorescence microscopy techniques. We will discuss a few selected examples highlighting the power of the emerging techniques and finally discuss the future improvements and directions.

OriginalsprogEngelsk
TidsskriftMolecules
Vol/bind19
Tidsskriftsnummer12
Sider (fra-til)19407-19434
Antal sider28
ISSN1420-3049
DOI
StatusUdgivet - 2014

ID: 130979845