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Analysis of 31P nuclear magnetic resonance lineshapes and transversal relaxation of bacteriophage M13 and tobacco mosaic virus

By P.C. Magusin and M.A. Hemminga


The experimentally observed 31P lineshapes and transversal relaxation of 15% (wt/wt) M13, 30% M13, and 30% tobacco mosaic virus (TMV) are compared with lineshapes and relaxation curves that are simulated for various types of rotational diffusion using the models discussed previously (Magusin, P. C. M. M., and M. A. Hemminga. 1993. Biophys. J. 64:1851–1860). It is found that isotropic diffusion cannot explain the observed lineshape effects. A rigid rod diffusion model is only successful in describing the experimental data obtained for 15% M13. For 30% M13 the experimental lineshape and relaxation curve cannot be interpreted consistently and the TMV lineshape cannot even be simulated alone, indicating that the rigid rod diffusion model does not generally apply. A combined diffusion model with fast isolated motions of the encapsulated nucleic acid dominating the lineshape and a slow overall rotation of the virion as a whole, which mainly is reflected in the transversal relaxation, is able to provide a consistent picture for the 15 and 30% M13 samples, but not for TMV. Strongly improved lineshape fits for TMV are obtained assuming that there are three binding sites with different mobilities. The presence of three binding sites is consistent with previous models of TMV. The best lineshapes are simulated for a combination of one mobile and two static sites. Although less markedly, the assumption that two fractions of DNA with different mobilities exist within M13 also improves the simulated lineshapes. The possible existence of two 31P fractions in M13 sheds new light on the nonintegral ratio 2.4:1 between the number of nucleotides and protein coat subunits in the phage: 83% of the viral DNA is less mobile, suggesting that the binding of the DNA molecule to the protein coat actually occurs at the integral ratio of two nucleotides per protein subunit

Publisher: The Biophysical Society. Published by Elsevier Inc.
Year: 1993
DOI identifier: 10.1016/S0006-3495(93)81557-1
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