Probing protein-protein interactions using asymmetric labeling and carbonyl-carbon selective heteronuclear NMR spectroscopy

Erik K. Larsen, Cristina Olivieri, Caitlin Walker, V. S. Manu, Jiali Gao, David A. Bernlohr, Marco Tonelli, John L. Markley, Gianluigi Veglia

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Protein-protein interactions (PPIs) regulate a plethora of cellular processes and NMR spectroscopy has been a leading technique for characterizing them at the atomic resolution. Technically, however, PPIs characterization has been challenging due to multiple samples required to characterize the hot spots at the protein interface. In this paper, we review our recently developed methods that greatly simplify PPI studies, which minimize the number of samples required to fully characterize residues involved in the protein-protein binding interface. This original strategy combines asymmetric labeling of two binding partners and the carbonyl-carbon label selective (CCLS) pulse sequence element implemented into the heteronuclear single quantum correlation (1H-15N HSQC) spectra. The CCLS scheme removes signals of the J-coupled 15N–13C resonances and records simultaneously two individual amide fingerprints for each binding partner. We show the application to the measurements of chemical shift correlations, residual dipolar couplings (RDCs), and paramagnetic relaxation enhancements (PRE). These experiments open an avenue for further modifications of existing experiments facilitating the NMR analysis of PPIs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number1937
Issue number8
StatePublished - 2018

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Funding: This research was funded by the Foundation for the National Institutes of Health grant numbers GM100310 and P41 GM103399.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018 by the authors.


  • Carbonyl carbon label selective (CCLS)
  • Dual carbon label selective (DCLS)
  • Nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR)
  • Paramagnetic relaxation enhancement (PRE)
  • Protein-protein interactions (PPI)
  • Residual dipolar coupling (RDC)


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