Water interfacing hydrated proteins carry properties distinct from those of the bulk and is often described as a separate entity, a "biological water." We address here the question of which dynamical and structural properties of hydration water deserve this distinction. The study focuses on different aspects of the density and orientational fluctuations of hydration water and the ability to separate them experimentally by combining depolarized light scattering with dielectric spectroscopy. We show that the dynamics of the density fluctuations of the hydration shells reflect the coupled dynamics of the solute and solvent and do not require a special distinction as "biological water." The orientations of shell water molecules carry dramatically different physics and do require a separation into a sub-ensemble. Depending on the property considered, the perturbation of water's orientational structure induced by the protein propagates 3-5 hydration shells into the bulk at normal temperature.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physics and Astronomy(all)
- Physical and Theoretical Chemistry