[phenixbb] B-factors vs resolution

miket at chem.ucla.edu miket at chem.ucla.edu
Wed Apr 6 13:24:10 PDT 2011

Usually one will describe ordered parts of a protein vs disordered 
parts based on B factors. Is the higher resolution protein more ordered 
and that may have contributed to its stronger diffraction?


Are the two crystals with different max resolution isomorphous? B-factors contain contributions from both dynamic and static disorder. Your difference in b-factors and resolution are both likely due to the fact that your higher-resolution data comes from a more ordered crystal, not a less dynamic protein. More ordered crystals diffract better, but if the two crystals were grown in the same conditions and the crystals are isomorphous I doubt that there is any difference in the dynamics of the molecules. If you are interested in which parts of your protein are more dynamically disordered you may want to consider (within a single dataset) which atoms have high b-factors relative to the average b-factor for all the atoms in that dataset.


Michael C. Thompson

Graduate Student

Biochemistry & Molecular Biology Division

Department of Chemistry & Biochemistry

University of California, Los Angeles

miket at chem.ucla.edu

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