Tapping mode atomic force microscopy was employed to study the surface structure of different protein crystals in a liquid environment. The (101) face of hen egg-white lysozyme crystals and the (111) face of horse spleen ferritin crystals were studied. On the (101) face of lysozyme crystals we observed islands delimitated by micro-steps and elongated in the  direction. The elongation direction coincides with the preferential growth direction predicted by a growth model reported in the literature. The islands observed on the ferritin (111) face are also delimitated by micro-steps but have circular symmetry. Sectioning of the images allowed us to measure the step heights. The surface free energy was estimated from the growth step morphology. Molecular resolution was achieved for ferritin crystals, showing a hexagonal surface packing, as expected for the molecular lattice of a (111) face in a fcc crystal.
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|Titolo:||An atomic force microscopy investigation of protein crystal surface topography|
|Data di pubblicazione:||2001|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||01.01 - Articolo su rivista|