Journal article

Glasslike structure of globular proteins and the boson peak

Vibrational spectra of proteins and topologically disordered solids display a common anomaly at low frequencies, known as boson peak. We show that such feature in globular proteins can be deciphered in terms of an energy landscape picture, as it is for glassy systems. Exploiting the tools of Euclidean random matrix theory, we clarify the physical origin of such anomaly in terms of a mechanical instability of the system. As a natural explanation, we argue that such instability is relevant for proteins in order for their molecular functions to be optimally rooted in their structures.


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