Simulations of the temperature dependence of amide I vibration

J Phys Chem A. 2011 Jan 13;115(1):30-4. doi: 10.1021/jp1084839. Epub 2010 Dec 9.


For spectroscopic studies of peptide and protein thermal denaturation it is important to single out the contribution of the solvent to the spectral changes from those originated in the molecular structure. To obtain insights into the origin and size of the temperature solvent effects on the amide I spectra, combined molecular dynamics and density functional simulations were performed with the model N-methylacetamide molecule (NMA). The computations well reproduced frequency and intensity changes previously observed in aqueous NMA solutions. An empirical correction of vacuum frequencies in single NMA molecule based on the electrostatic potential of the water molecules provided superior results to a direct density functional average obtained for a limited number of solute-solvent clusters. The results thus confirm that the all-atom quantum and molecular mechanics approach captures the overall influence of the temperature dependent solvent properties on the amide I spectra and can improve the accuracy and reliability of molecular structural studies.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Acetamides / chemistry
  • Amides / chemistry*
  • Electric Impedance
  • Molecular Conformation
  • Molecular Dynamics Simulation*
  • Quantum Theory*
  • Solvents / chemistry
  • Spectrophotometry, Infrared
  • Temperature*
  • Vibration*


  • Acetamides
  • Amides
  • Solvents
  • N-methylacetamide