Conformation of Met5-enkephalin determined by high field PMR spectroscopy

  • An Erratum to this article was published on 28 October 1976


THE discovery by Hughes et al.1 that peptides (the enkephalins) could be the endogenous agonists of opiates in brain represents a challenge to medical chemistry both in its fundamental aspects and for the possible development of new therapeutic approaches. To understand how non-peptidic substances belonging to various chemical classes can mimic the action of the pentapeptide enkephalins it is first necessary to determine the spatial arrangement of the latter. We have thus synthesised large quantities of Met5-enkephalin (H–Tyr–Gly–Gly–Phe–Met–OH) and determined its preferential conformation in solution using high field proton magnetic resonance (PMR) spectroscopy at variable temperatures, coupling constants in relation with Karplus–Bystrov curves2 and conformational energy steric maps3.

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  1. 1

    Hughes, J., et al., Nature, 258, 577–579 (1975).

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    Cung, M. T., Marraud, M., and Neel, J., Macromolecules, 7, 606–613 (1974).

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    Goodman, M., Verdini, A. S., Choi, N. S., and Masuda, Y., in Topics in Stereochemistry, 5 (edit. by Eliel, E. L., and Allinger, N. L.), 69–166 (Wiley-Interscience, New York, 1970).

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    Lewis, P. N., Momany, F. A., and Shcheraga, H. A., Biochim. biophys. Acta, 303, 211–229 (1973).

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    Bradbury, A. F., Smyth, D. G., and Snell, C. R., Nature, 260, 165–166 (1976).

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    Goldstein, A., Goldstein, J. S., and Cox, B. M., Life Sci., 17, 1643–1654 (1975).

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    Iversen, L., Nature, 258, 567–568 (1975).

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