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Intermediate Scattering Function for Macromolecules in Solutions Probed by Neutron Spin Echo



Yun Liu


Neutron spin echo (NSE) instrument is a powerful technique to study the internal dynamics of proteins, membranes, polymers, and micelles due to its capability of simultaneously probing the length and time scale comparable to the intra-molecular density fluctuation of macromolecules. Typically, NSE measures the coherent intermediate scattering function (ISF) that contains the contribution from both the internal, rotational, and the translational motions of macromolecules in solutions. It is thus critical, but highly non-trivial, to separate the translational motion from other motions to properly understand the internal dynamics. Even though many experiments are performed at relatively high concentrations, the current theory of calculating the ISF for the concentrated protein solution has critical flaws. A new and rigorous theoretical framework is developed to interpret the ISF measured by NSE. This new theory is applicable at a wide range of protein concentration including dilute concentration case. It is also, in general, useful for studying many other types of macromolecule systems studied by NSE.
Physical Review E


neutron spin echo, protein, internal motion, intermediate scattering function


Liu, Y. (2017), Intermediate Scattering Function for Macromolecules in Solutions Probed by Neutron Spin Echo, Physical Review E, [online], (Accessed June 15, 2024)


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Created February 16, 2017, Updated November 3, 2017