Effect of pH on the conformation of bovine serume albumin - gold bioconjugates

Bence Fehér, Jeppe Lyngsø, Boróka Bartók, Judith Mihály, Zoltán Varga, Róbert Mészáros, Jan Skov Pedersen, Attila Bóta, Imre Varga

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Biodegradable, biocompatible nanoparticles with tuneable fluorescence - due to their great potential in biology, medicine and sensor development - are widely studied nowadays. Recently it was shown that the complex red emitting spectroscopic feature of Bovine Serum Albumin - gold (BSA[sbnd]Au) bioconjugates can be related to the versatility of conformational changes of the BSA protein. In our study, we performed a comprehensive study on the structural changes of the host BSA molecules by infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) and small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS). Both methods revealed that the BSA structure is not reversible after a neutral - alkali - neutral pH cycle and this behaviour is more pronounced in the presence of the gold salt (HAuCl4). The changes in the monitored secondary structural elements of BSA-(HAuCl4) system, with the fitted molecular shapes indicate that all steps in the synthesis route influence both the fine and the global structures of BSA and result in a complex structural prehistory dependent hindering of the total structural reversibility. A robust connection exists between the structural/conformational changes and the fluorescence behaviours.

Original languageEnglish
Article number113065
JournalJournal of Molecular Liquids
Publication statusPublished - Jul 1 2020


  • BSA
  • Gold
  • Reversibility
  • SAXS
  • pH

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Spectroscopy
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Materials Chemistry

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Effect of pH on the conformation of bovine serume albumin - gold bioconjugates'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this