Spectroscopic Studies

David Randall (Chemistry)

Spectroscopic Studies Towards Understanding Metal-ion Containing Enzymes

This research proposes to investigate the specific place within an enzyme where a chemical reaction occurs with the purpose of learning more about how the reaction occurs. Enzymes are proteins that facilitate very specific chemical reactions on substrate molecules. Many biologically important chemical reactions involve electrons moving either to or from molecules. Metal ions (iron, manganese, copper, etc.) or specialized organic molecules are often intimately involved in reactions where electrons are added to or removed from the substrate molecules on which the enzyme reacts. The particular location where the chemistry occurs can be studied by a variety of advanced spectroscopic and theoretical methods including electron paramagnetic resonance, resonance Raman, magnetic circular dichroism and/or quantum chemistry. We propose to use one or more of these experimental spectroscopic methods to study the active site of a protein or a model for a protein to gain insight into the mechanisms for the truly unique chemistry these systems perform.

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