Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10316/17917
Title: Importance of Entropy in the Conformational Equilibrium of Phenylalanine:  A Matrix-Isolation Infrared Spectroscopy and Density Functional Theory Study
Authors: Kaczor, A. 
Reva, I. D. 
Proniewicz, L. M. 
Fausto, R. 
Issue Date: Jan-2006
Publisher: American Chemical Society
Serial title, monograph or event: J. Phys. Chem. A
Volume: 110
Abstract: The conformational behavior and infrared spectrum of l-phenylalanine were studied by matrix-isolation infrared spectroscopy and DFT [B3LYP/6-311++G(d,p)] calculations. The fourteen most stable structures were predicted to differ in energy by less than 10 kJ mol-1, eight of them with abundances higher than 5% at the temperature of evaporation of the compound (423 K). Experimental results suggest that six conformers contribute to the spectrum of the isolated compound, whereas two conformers (IIb3 and IIIb3) relax in matrix to a more stable form (IIb2) due to low energy barriers for conformational isomerization (conformational cooling). The two lowest-energy conformers (Ib1, Ia) differ only in the arrangement of the amino acid group relative to the phenyl ring; they exhibit a relatively strong stabilizing intramolecular hydrogen bond of the O−H···N type and the carboxylic group in the trans configuration (OC−O−H dihedral angle ca. 180°). Type II conformers have a weaker H-bond of the N−H···OC type, but they bear the more favorable cis arrangement of the carboxylic group. Being considerably more flexible, type II conformers are stabilized by entropy and the relative abundances of two conformers of this type (IIb2 and IIc1) are shown to significantly increase with temperature due to entropic stabilization. At 423 K, these conformers are found to be the first and third most abundant species present in the conformational equilibrium, with relative populations of ca. 15% each, whereas their populations could be expected to be only ca. 5% if entropy effects were not taken into consideration. Indeed, phenylalanine can be considered a notable example of a molecule where entropy plays an essential role in determining the relative abundance of the possible low-energy conformational states and then, the thermodynamics of the compound, even at moderate temperatures. Upon UV irradiation (λ > 235 nm) of the matrix-isolated compound, unimolecular photodecomposition of phenylalanine is observed with production of CO2 and phenethylamine.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10316/17917
DOI: 10.1021/jp0550715
Rights: openAccess
Appears in Collections:FCTUC Química - Artigos em Revistas Internacionais

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