Tracking the structural dynamics of proteins in solution using time-resolved wide-angle X-ray scattering

Nat Methods. 2008 Oct;5(10):881-6. doi: 10.1038/nmeth.1255. Epub 2008 Sep 21.


We demonstrate tracking of protein structural changes with time-resolved wide-angle X-ray scattering (TR-WAXS) with nanosecond time resolution. We investigated the tertiary and quaternary conformational changes of human hemoglobin under nearly physiological conditions triggered by laser-induced ligand photolysis. We also report data on optically induced tertiary relaxations of myoglobin and refolding of cytochrome c to illustrate the wide applicability of the technique. By providing insights into the structural dynamics of proteins functioning in their natural environment, TR-WAXS complements and extends results obtained with time-resolved optical spectroscopy and X-ray crystallography.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Intramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Crystallography, X-Ray
  • Cytochromes c / chemistry*
  • Hemoglobins / chemistry*
  • Myoglobin / chemistry*
  • Protein Conformation
  • Scattering, Radiation
  • Sensitivity and Specificity
  • X-Rays


  • Hemoglobins
  • Myoglobin
  • Cytochromes c