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Quasi-hexagonal molecular packing in collagen fibrils.

Abstract : Collagen molecules in native 66.8 nm (D) periodic fibrils are widely believed to be assembled into discrete, rope-like substructures, or microfibrils. Several types of microfibril have been proposed (2, 4, 5, 7- and 8-stranded) mainly on the basis of information contained in the medium angle X-ray diffraction patterns of native tendon fibres. These patterns show a series of equatorial and near-equatorial Bragg reflections which indicate that the collagen molecules are arranged on a three-dimensional crystalline lattice. The 4-stranded, 5-stranded and 8-stranded microfibrils are D-periodic with approximate diameter 3.8 nm, and these and the 2-stranded model are supposed to be packed on a three-dimensional lattice whose basal unit cell, (approximately) perpendicular to the fibril axis, is tetragonal (or quasi-tetragonal)with side a, a square root 2 or 2a, where a is approximately 3.8 nm. In this paper we describe a re-interpretation of the X-ray data which leads to a new model for the crystalline regions of the fibril, based on quasi-hexagonal molecular packing without microfibrillar sub-structures, and hence having the character of a molecular crystal.Collagen molecules in native 66.8 nm (D) periodic fibrils are widely believed to be assembled into discrete, rope-like substructures, or microfibrils. Several types of microfibril have been proposed (2, 4, 5, 7- and 8-stranded) mainly on the basis of information contained in the medium angle X-ray diffraction patterns of native tendon fibres. These patterns show a series of equatorial and near-equatorial Bragg reflections which indicate that the collagen molecules are arranged on a three-dimensional crystalline lattice. The 4-stranded, 5-stranded and 8-stranded microfibrils are D-periodic with approximate diameter 3.8 nm, and these and the 2-stranded model are supposed to be packed on a three-dimensional lattice whose basal unit cell, (approximately) perpendicular to the fibril axis, is tetragonal (or quasi-tetragonal)with side a, a square root 2 or 2a, where a is approximately 3.8 nm. In this paper we describe a re-interpretation of the X-ray data which leads to a new model for the crystalline regions of the fibril, based on quasi-hexagonal molecular packing without microfibrillar sub-structures, and hence having the character of a molecular crystal.
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https://hal.archives-ouvertes.fr/hal-00313862
Contributor : Gilbert Deleage <>
Submitted on : Wednesday, August 27, 2008 - 2:34:29 PM
Last modification on : Thursday, November 21, 2019 - 2:13:40 AM

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Dj Hulmes, A. Miller. Quasi-hexagonal molecular packing in collagen fibrils.. Nature, Nature Publishing Group, 1979, 282, pp.878-880. ⟨hal-00313862⟩

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