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Elasticity and Strength of Biomacromolecular Crystals: LysozymeThe static Young modulus, E = 0.1 to 0.5 GPa, the crystal critical strength (sigma(sub c)) and its ratio to E,sigma(sub c)/E is approximately 10(exp 3), were measured for the first time for non cross-linked lysozyme crystals in solution. By using a triple point bending apparatus, we also demonstrated that the crystals were purely elastic. Softness of protein crystals built of hard macromolecules (26 GPa for lysozyme) is explained by the large size of the macromolecules as compared to the range of intermolecular forces and by the weakness of intermolecular bonds as compared to the peptide bond strength. The relatively large reported dynamic elastic moduli (approximately 8 GPa) from resonance light scattering should come from averaging over the moduli of intracrystalline water and intra- and intermolecular bonding.
Document ID
Document Type
Preprint (Draft being sent to journal)
Holmes, A. M.
(Alabama Univ. Huntsville, AL, United States)
Witherow, W. K.
(NASA Marshall Space Flight Center Huntsville, AL, United States)
Chen, L. Q.
(Alabama Univ. Huntsville, AL, United States)
Chernov, A. A.
(NASA Marshall Space Flight Center Huntsville, AL, United States)
Date Acquired
August 21, 2013
Publication Date
January 1, 2003
Subject Category
Nonmetallic Materials
Funding Number(s)
Distribution Limits

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