High resolution 4D HPCH experiment for sequential assignment of 13C-labeled RNAs via phosphodiester backbone
Saurabh Saxena, Jan Stanek, Mirko Cevec, Janez Plavec, Wiktor Koźmiński
The three-dimensional structure determination of RNAs by NMR spectroscopy requires sequential resonance assignment, often hampered by assignment ambiguities and limited dispersion of 1H and 13C chemical shifts, especially of C4′/H4′. Here we present a novel through-bond 4D HPCH NMR experiment involving phosphate backbone where C4′–H4′ correlations are resolved along the 1H3′–31P spectral planes. The experiment provides high peak resolution and effectively removes ambiguities encountered during assignments. Enhanced peak dispersion is provided by the inclusion of additional 31P and 1H3′ dimensions and constant-time evolution of chemical shifts. High spectral resolution is obtained by using non-uniform sampling in three indirect dimensions. The experiment fully utilizes the isotopic 13C-labeling with evolution of C4′ carbons. Band selective 13C inversion pulses are used to achieve selectivity and prevent signal dephasing due to the C4′–C3′ and C4′–C5′ homonuclear couplings. Multiple quantum line narrowing is employed to minimize sensitivity loses. The 4D HPCH experiment is verified and successfully applied to a non-coding 34-nt RNA consisting typical structure elements and a 14-nt RNA hairpin capped by cUUCGg tetraloop.