Séminaire de Physique Théorique

(GREMAN - IDP) Protein dynamics from a quantum energy landscape perspective – a facette of quantum biology

by Prof. Gerald Kneller (Université d'Orléans)

Salle 1180, bâtiment E2 (Salle des séminaires )

Salle 1180, bâtiment E2

Salle des séminaires


In different fields of science and technology, quantum physics is currently perceived as a key element for substantial progress. Although quantum effects are usually experimentally observed at extremely low temperatures and clean laboratory conditions, they are believed to also play an essential role in biological systems, going beyond quantum chemistry [1]. An example is presented in this lecture, which shows that a wave-mechanical description of proteins as quantum many-body systems leads to a conceptually very simple interpretation of protein dynamics probed through neutron scattering experiments and naturally to a space-resolved energy landscape picture of protein dynamics [2]. A semiclassical interpretation is obtained for the quasielastic regime, which reflects the slow relaxation dynamics of proteins,
and a corresponding a ”minimalistic” three-parameter model is proposed for the observed scattering functions. The relaxation dynamics is here accounted for by a stretched Mittag-Leffler function, φ(t) ≡ E_α(−[t/τ ]^α) (0 < α < 1), where α can be related to the “roughness” of the protein energy landscape. Several applications are presented [3, 4].

[1] Philip Ball. The Dawn of Quantum Biology. Nature, 474(7351):272–274, 2011.
[2] Gerald R. Kneller. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA, 115(38):9450–9455, 2018.
[3] Melek Saouessi, Judith Peters, and Gerald R. Kneller. J. Chem. Phys., 150(16):161104, 2019.
[4] Abir N. Hassani, Luman Haris, Markus Appel, Tilo Seydel, Andreas M. Stadler, and Gerald R. Kneller. J. Chem. Phys., 156(2):025102, 2022.