Mössbauer Spectroscopy

  • Boi Hanh HuynhEmail author
Part of the Methods in Molecular Biology book series (MIMB, volume 766)


Mössbauer spectroscopy has contributed significantly to the studies of Fe-containing proteins. Early applications yielded detailed electronic characterizations of hemeproteins, and thus enhanced our understanding of the chemical properties of this important class of proteins. The next stage of the applications was marked by major discoveries of several novel Fe clusters of complex structures, including the 8Fe7S P cluster and the mixed metal 1Mo7Fe M center in nitrogenase. Since early 1990 s, rapid kinetic techniques have been used to arrest enzymatic reactions for Mössbauer studies. A number of reaction intermediates were discovered and characterized, both spectroscopically and kinetically, providing unprecedented detailed molecular-level mechanistic information. This chapter gives a brief summary of the historical accounts and a concise description of some experimental and theoretical elements in Mössbauer spectroscopy that are essential for understanding Mössbauer spectra. Major biological applications are summarized at the end.

Key words

Mössbauer spectroscopy electronic information nitrogenase cofactors Fe–S proteins 


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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PhysicsEmory UniversityAtlantaUSA

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