Cyanamides (NCN) have been shown to have a larger transition dipole strength than cyano-probes. In addition, they have similar structural characteristics and vibrational lifetimes to the azido-group, suggesting their utility as infrared (IR) spectroscopic reporters for structural dynamics in biomolecules. To access the efficacy of NCN as an IR probe to capture the changes in the local environment, several model systems were evaluated via 2D IR spectroscopy. Previous work by Cho [G. Lee, D. Kossowska, J. Lim, S. Kim, H. Han, K. Kwak, and M. Cho, J. Phys. Chem. B 122(14), 4035–4044 (2018)] showed that phenylalanine analogues containing NCN show strong anharmonic coupling that can complicate the interpretation of structural dynamics. However, when NCN is embedded in 5-membered ring scaffolds, as in N-cyanomaleimide and N-cyanosuccinimide, a unique band structure is observed in the 2D IR spectrum that is not predicted by simple anharmonic frequency calculations. Further investigation indicated that electron delocalization plays a role in the origins of the band structure. In particular, the origin of the lower frequency transitions is likely a result of direct interaction with the solvent.
2D-IR studies of cyanamides (NCN) as spectroscopic reporters of dynamics in biomolecules: Uncovering the origin of mysterious peaks
Farzaneh Chalyavi, Olajumoke Adeyiga, Julia M. Weiner, Judith N. Monzy, Andrew J. Schmitz, Justin K. Nguyen, Edward E. Fenlon, Scott H. Brewer, Samuel O. Odoh, Matthew J. Tucker; 2D-IR studies of cyanamides (NCN) as spectroscopic reporters of dynamics in biomolecules: Uncovering the origin of mysterious peaks. J. Chem. Phys. 21 February 2020; 152 (7): 074201. https://doi.org/10.1063/1.5138654
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