Analysis of Various Metalloprotein Stoichiometry’s with Simultaneous PIXE and NRA
Dr. Paul DeYoung
Approximately one-third of all proteins contain metal cofactors or bind to various metals. Determining the absolute number of metals contained in these proteins has proven to be difficult. We hope to accurately characterize a protein’s stoichiometry with two common ion beam analysis methods along with a standard preparation technique. A combination of Particle Induced X-ray Emission spectroscopy (PIXE) and Nuclear Reaction Analysis (NRA) is being developed to determine the areal density of a thin protein target along with the target’s concentration of heavy elements. The results of this analytical method yield a stoichiometric ratio, along with the absolute numbers of the metal ions contained in a certain metalloprotein. Current work focuses refining the present method of protein preparation to yield the most consistent results while reducing uncertainty in the metallic ratios and absolute values.
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