Determination of the rotational diffusion tensor of macromolecules in solution from NMR relaxation data with a combination of exact and approximate methods - Application to the determination of interdomain orientation in multidomain proteins

Ranajeet Ghose, David Fushman, David Cowburn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

50 Scopus citations


In this paper we present a method for determining the rotational diffusion tensor from NMR relaxation data using a combination of approximate and exact methods. The approximate method, which is computationally less intensive, computes values of the principal components of the diffusion tensor and estimates the Euler angles, which relate the principal axis frame of the diffusion tensor to the molecular frame. The approximate values of the principal components are then used as starting points for an exact calculation by a downhill simplex search for the principal components of the tensor over a grid of the space of Euler angles relating the diffusion tensor frame to the molecular frame. The search space of Euler angles is restricted using the tensor orientations calculated using the approximate method. The utility of this approach is demonstrated using both simulated and experimental relaxation data. A quality factor that determines the extent of the agreement between the measured and predicted relaxation data is provided. This approach is then used to estimate the relative orientation of SH3 and SH2 domains in the SH(32) dual-domain construct of Abelson kinase complexed with a consolidated ligand.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)204-217
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Magnetic Resonance
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 1 2001
Externally publishedYes


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Biochemistry
  • Nuclear and High Energy Physics
  • Condensed Matter Physics

Cite this