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Protein–protein Interactions, Collective Diffusion, Self-diffusion, DLVO Theory, Vink Theory, Spheroidal Proteins

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One of the commonly accepted approaches to estimate protein–protein interactions (PPI) in aqueous solutions is the analysis of their translational diffusion. The present review article observes a phenomenological approach to analyze PPI effects via concentration dependencies of self- and collective translational diffusion coefficient for several spheroidal proteins derived from the pulsed field gradient NMR (PFG NMR) and dynamic light scattering (DLS), respectively. These proteins are rigid globular α-chymotrypsin (ChTr) and human serum albumin (HSA), and partly disordered α-casein (α-CN) and β-lactoglobulin (β-Lg). The PPI analysis enabled us to reveal the dominance of intermolecular repulsion at low ionic strength of solution (0.003–0.01 M) for all studied proteins. The increase in the ionic strength to 0.1–1.0 M leads to the screening of protein charges, resulting in the decrease of the protein electrostatic potential. The increase of the van der Waals potential for ChTr and α-CN characterizes their propensity towards unstable weak attractive interactions. The decrease of van der Waals interactions for β-Lg is probably associated with the formation of stable oligomers by this protein. The PPI, estimated with the help of interaction potential and idealized spherical molecular geometry, are in good agreement with experimental data.

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International Journal of Molecular Sciences, v. 23, issue 16, art. 9240