Discovery of most stable structures of neutral and anionic phenylalanine through automated scanning of tautomeric and conformational spaces

Zibo Goabaone Keolopile, Maciej Gutowski, Maciej Haranczyk

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

5 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

We have developed a software tool for combinatorial generation of tautomers and conformers of small molecules. We have demonstrated it by performing a systematic search for the most stable structures of neutral and anionic phenylalanine (Phe) using electronic structure methods. For the neutral canonical tautomer we found out that the conformers with and without the intramolecular (O)H center dot center dot center dot NH2 hydrogen bond are similarly stable, within the error bars of our method. A unique IR signature of the conformer without the hydrogen bond has been identified. We also considered anions of Phe, both valence type and dipole-bound. We have found out that tautomers resulting from proton transfer from the carboxylic OH to the phenyl ring do support valence anions that are vertically strongly bound, with electron vertical detachment energies (VDE) in a range of 3.2-3.5 eV. The most stable conformer of these valence anions remains adiabatically unbound with respect to the canonical neutral by only 2.17 kcal/mol at the CCSD(T)/aug-cc-pVDZ level. On the basis of our past experience with valence anions of nucleic acid bases, we suggest that the valence anions of Phe identified in this report can be observed experimentally. The most stable conformer of canonical Phe is characterized by an adiabatic electron affinity of 53 meV (a dipole-bound state).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4374-4381
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Chemical Theory and Computation
Volume9
Issue number10
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 8 Oct 2013

Keywords

  • DIPOLE-BOUND ANIONS
  • AB-INITIO
  • EXCESS ELECTRON
  • CONFORMER GENERATION
  • RARE TAUTOMERS
  • AMINO-ACID
  • DENSITY
  • SPECTROSCOPY
  • ATOMS
  • ZWITTERION

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