Journal of Biomolecular NMR

, Volume 10, Issue 3, pp 289–292 | Cite as

High-resolution heteronuclear NMR of human ubiquitin in an aqueous liquid crystalline medium

  • Ad Bax
  • Nico Tjandra


A mixture of dihexanoyl phosphatidylcholine and dimyristoylphosphatidylcholine in water forms disc-shaped particles, often referred toas bicelles [Sanders and Schwonek (1992) Biochemistry, 31, 8898–8905].These adopt an ordered, liquid crystalline phase, which can be maintained atvery low concentrations of the bicelles (down to 3% w/v). At thisconcentration the spacing between individual bicelles, on average, exceeds300 Å. The bicelles are shown to have a negligible effect on therotational diffusion of ubiquitin as judged by the 15NT values of the backbone amides relative to those inisotropic aqueous solution. The protein exhibits a residual degree ofalignment which is proportional to the bicelle concentration, andapproximately collinear with ubiquitin's rotational diffusion tensor. Thedegree of alignment obtained offers unique opportunities for studying theprotein's structure and dynamics.

Alignment Bicelle Dipolar coupling Lipid Liquid crystal 15N relaxation 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1997

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ad Bax
    • 1
  • Nico Tjandra
    • 2
  1. 1.Laboratory of Chemical PhysicsNational Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney DiseasesBethesdaU.S.A
  2. 2.Laboratory of Biophysical ChemistryNational Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, National Institutes of HealthBethesda

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