Exploring DNA groove water dynamics through hydrogen bond lifetime and orientational relaxation

Pal, Subrata ; Maiti, Prabal K. ; Bagchi, Biman (2006) Exploring DNA groove water dynamics through hydrogen bond lifetime and orientational relaxation Journal of Chemical Physics, 125 (23). 234903_1-234903_11. ISSN 0021-9606

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Official URL: http://jcp.aip.org/jcpsa6/v125/i23/p234903_s1

Related URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1063/1.2403872


Dynamics of water molecules in the grooves of DNA are of great interest both for practical (functionality of DNA) and fundamental (as examples of confined systems) interest. Here the authors employ atomistic molecular dynamics simulations to understand varying water dynamics at the minor and the major grooves of a 38 base-pair long DNA duplex in water. In order to understand and quantify the diversity in the nature of hydrogen bond due to many hydrogen bond donors and acceptors present in the four bases, they have undertaken study of hydrogen bond lifetime (HBLT) correlation functions of all the specific hydrogen bonds between the base atoms and water molecules. They find that the HBLT correlation functions are in general multiexponential, with the average lifetime depending significantly on the specificity and may thus be biologically relevant. The average hydrogen bond lifetime is longer in the minor groove than that in the major groove by almost a factor of 2. Analysis further shows that water hydrogen bonds with phosphate oxygen have substantially shorter lifetimes than those with the groove atoms. They also compute two different orientational time correlation functions (OTCFs) of the water molecules present at the major and the minor grooves and attempt to correlate OTCF with HBLT correlation function. The OTCFs in the minor groove exhibit three time scales, with the time constant of the slowest component one to two orders of magnitude longer than what is observed for bulk water. A slow component is also present for the major groove water but with shorter time constant. Interestingly, correlation between reformations allowed HBLT correlation function [CHB(t)] and the OTCF markedly deviates from each other in the grooves, indicating enhanced rigidity of water molecules in the grooves.

Item Type:Article
Source:Copyright of this article belongs to American Institute of Physics.
ID Code:4011
Deposited On:13 Oct 2010 07:00
Last Modified:07 Jan 2011 09:31

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