Optional Readings

Additional textbooks that may be helpful for specific topics:

Campbell, Iain D. Biophysical Techniques. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2012. ISBN: 9780199642144

This book has an excellent discussion of many currently used techniques to characterize macromolecules. It is a very useful text for those of you who are doing (or plan to do) biochemical research.

Branden, Carl, and John Tooze. Introduction to Protein Structure, 2nd ed. New York: Garland Publishing, 2009. ISBN: 9780815323051

Provides an elegant description of a variety of protein structures, including many of the proteins we discuss in class such as G-proteins, proteases, and nucleic acid-binding proteins. Use this book if you want to get a different, somewhat better understanding of the structural basis for how these proteins work than that provided in the Stryer textbook. Carl Branden is the inventor of the so-called “Branden Rules” that allow ligand binding sites to be predicted in α/β proteins by looking at the α-helix cross-over positions on the β-sheet, and places in the sheet where the order of β-strands reverses itself.

Rhodes, Gale. Crystallography Made Crystal Clear: A Guide for Users of Macromolecular Models, 3rd ed. Academic Press, 2006. ISBN: 9780125870733

This is an outstanding introduction to how protein structures are solved using crystallography. If the handwaving explanation of the phase problem that I provide in class is not satisfying enough for you, and you really want to understand how Fourier transforms are used to solve X-ray structures, this is the book for you.

Tanford, Charles, and Jacqueline A. Reynolds. Nature's Robots: A History of Proteins. Oxford University Press, 2004. ISBN: 9780198606949

This is a classic book on the history of protein discovery and characterization, written by a pioneer in the field of biophysical chemistry. Prof. Tanford is also the author of two classic textbooks in chemistry and biochemistry, and he has a very unique and deep knowledge of the field. If you are a fan of the history of science, this is the kind of book you take on vacation to read for fun.