Probing the structural dynamics of proteins and nucleic acids with optical tweezers

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DOIResolve DOI: http://doi.org/10.1016/j.sbi.2015.06.006
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TypeArticle
Journal titleCurrent Opinion in Structural Biology
ISSN0959-440X
Volume34
Pages4351
AbstractConformational changes are an essential feature of most molecular processes in biology. Optical tweezers have emerged as a powerful tool for probing conformational dynamics at the single-molecule level because of their high resolution and sensitivity, opening new windows on phenomena ranging from folding and ligand binding to enzyme function, molecular machines, and protein aggregation. By measuring conformational changes induced in a molecule by forces applied by optical tweezers, new insight has been gained into the relationship between dynamics and function. We discuss recent advances from studies of how structure forms in proteins and RNA, including non-native structures, fluctuations in disordered proteins, and interactions with chaperones assisting native folding. We also review the development of assays probing the dynamics of complex protein–nucleic acid and protein–protein assemblies that reveal the dynamic interactions between biomolecular machines and their substrates.
Publication date
PublisherElsevier
LanguageEnglish
AffiliationNational Institute for Nanotechnology; National Research Council Canada
Peer reviewedYes
NPARC number23001587
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Record identifier2cd00a35-e883-4186-8d65-2f37127dd8c0
Record created2017-03-08
Record modified2017-03-08
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