Glassy Dynamics and Memory Effects in an Intrinsically Disordered Protein Construct

Ian L. Morgan, Ram Avinery, Gil Rahamim, Roy Beck, Omar A. Saleh

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Glassy, nonexponential relaxations in globular proteins are typically attributed to conformational behaviors that are missing from intrinsically disordered proteins. Yet, we show that single molecules of a disordered-protein construct display two signatures of glassy dynamics, logarithmic relaxations and a Kovacs memory effect, in response to changes in applied tension. We attribute this to the presence of multiple independent local structures in the chain, which we corroborate with a model that correctly predicts the force dependence of the relaxation. The mechanism established here likely applies to other disordered proteins.

Original languageEnglish
Article number058001
JournalPhysical Review Letters
Issue number5
StatePublished - 31 Jul 2020
Externally publishedYes

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© 2020 American Physical Society.


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