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21 p.

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Methods in Enzymology

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DOI: 10.1016/bs.mie.2015.06.030


Abstract: Copper has many roles in biology that involve the change of coordination sphere and/or oxidation state of the copper ion. Consequently, the study of copper in heterogeneous environments is an important area in biophysics. EPR is a primary technique for the investigation of paramagnetic copper, which is usually the isolated Cu(II) ion, but sometimes as Cu(II) in different oxidation states of multitransition ion clusters. The gross geometry of the coordination environment of Cu(II) can often be determined from a simple inspection of the EPR spectrum, recorded in the traditional X-band frequency range (9–10 GHz). Identification and quantitation of the coordinating ligand atoms, however, is not so straightforward. In particular, analysis of the superhyperfine structure on the EPR spectrum, to determine the number of coordinated nitrogen atoms, is fraught with difficulty at X-band, despite the observation that the overwhelming number of EPR studies of Cu(II) in the literature have been carried out at X-band. Greater reliability has been demonstrated at S-band (3–4 GHz), using the low-field parallel (gz) features. However, analysis relies on clear identification of the outermost superhyperfine line, which has the lowest intensity of all the spectral features. Computer simulations have subsequently indicated that the much more intense perpendicular region of the spectrum can be reliably interpreted at L-band (2 GHz). The present work describes the development of L-band EPR of Cu(II) into a routine method that is applicable to biological samples.


Accepted version. Methods in Enzymology, Vol. 563, (2015): 341-361. DOI. © 2015 Elsevier Inc. Used with permission

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