Equilibrium Thermodynamic Effects of Sugar-based Polymers on Protein-complex Formation Public Deposited

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  • September 22, 2022
  • Redvanly, Thomas
    • Affiliation: College of Arts and Sciences, Department of Chemistry
  • The insides of cells are crowded. To model these conditions, synthetic crowders like Ficoll can be used to create crowded environments in vitro. Classic crowding models suggest that hard-core repulsions have the only effect on protein-complex stability. However, these theories neglect the contribution of “soft” chemical interactions. Such interactions can be stabilizing, if repulsive, and destabilizing, if attractive. To study how protein-protein interactions are affected by crowding, I investigated the effects of Ficoll on the equilibrium thermodynamics of protein complexes. Specifically, I quantified the temperature-dependence of this interaction to determine the enthalpic contribution. I found that Ficoll has a measurable enthalpic contribution to protein complex stability that was otherwise disregarded in classic crowding theories.
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