Dynamics of hydration in hen egg white lysozyme

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TitleDynamics of hydration in hen egg white lysozyme
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2001
AuthorsSterpone F, Ceccarelli M, Marchi M
JournalJ. Mol. Biol.
Date Publishedaug

We investigate the hydration dynamics of a small globular protein, hen egg-white lysozyme. Extensive simulations (two trajectories of 9 ns each) were carried out to identify the time-scales and mechanism of water attachment to this protein. The location of the surface and integral water molecules in lysozyme was also investigated. Three peculiar temporal scales of the hydration dynamics can be discerned: two among these, with sub-nanosecond mean residence time, tau(w), are characteristic of surface hydration water; the slower time-scale (tau(w) approximately 2/3 ns) is associated with buried water molecules in hydrophilic pores and in superficial clefts. The computed tau(w) values in the two independent runs fall in a similar range and are consistent with each other, thus adding extra weight to our result. The tau(w) of surface water obtained from the two independent trajectories is 20 and 24 ps. In both simulations only three water molecules are bound to lysozyme for the entire length of the trajectories, in agreement with nuclear magnetic relaxation dispersion estimates. Locations other than those identified in the protein crystal are found to be possible for these long-residing water molecules. The dynamics of the hydration water molecules observed in our simulations implies that each water molecule visits a multitude of residues during the lifetime of its bound with the protein. The number of residues seen by a single water molecule increases with the time-scale of its residence time and, on average, is equal to one only for the water molecules with shorter residence time. Thus, tau(w) values obtained from inelastic neutron scattering and based on jump-diffusion models are likely not to account for the contribution of water molecules with longer residence time.

Citation Key2001|1823