Lecture 28: Protein folding and unfolding

Nathan S. Winter, St. Cloud State University

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Abstract

This lecture in Biochemistry addressees denaturation and the folding problem. Some of the means to denature a protein are mentioned, including temperature, pH, hydrophobic solvents, detergents and chaotropic reagents (urea and the guanidinium ion). How proteins (which are synthesized like beads on a string) fold to functional tertiary structures are examined with particular attention spent on ribonuclease A.. The steps and energetics of the folding process are discussed.