Phasor approaches simplify the analysis of tryptophan fluorescence data in protein denaturation studies

A.N. Bader, N.V. Visser, H. van Amerongen, A.J.W.G. Visser

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The intrinsic fluorescence of tryptophan is frequently used to investigate the structure of proteins. The analysis of tryptophan fluorescence data is challenging: fluorescence (anisotropy) decays typically have multiple lifetime (correlation time) components and fluorescence spectra are broad and exhibit only minor shifts. In this work, we show that phasor approaches can substantially simplify tryptophan fluorescence analysis. To demonstrate this, we re-analyse previously recorded datasets of the denaturant (guanidinium hydrochloride, GuHCl) induced unfolding of a single-tryptophan-containing variant of apoflavodoxin from Azotobacter vinelandii. For three methods-(1) time-resolved fluorescence, (2) time-resolved fluorescence anisotropy and (3) steady-state fluorescence spectroscopy-we show that the phasor analysis can readily identify the presence of a folding intermediate. Moreover, the fractional contributions of protein states at various stages of unfolding and the values of the free energy difference of the unfolding process (¬GUN) 0 are obtained. The outcomes are compared to the global analysis results published previously.
Original languageEnglish
Article number045001
Number of pages8
JournalMethods and Applications in Fluorescence
Volume2
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2014

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