Chris McCracken
Mössbauer Spectroscopy: Examining the Reaction between Nitric Oxide and Sickle Cell Hemoglobin

The purpose of my research is to apply Mössbauer spectroscopy in a way never done before, looking at a chemical reaction pertaining to a biological system. The reaction of interest is that of nitric-oxide (NO) with deoxygenated sickle-cell hemoglobin, an important interaction for experimental treatments of sickle-cell crises. The site of interaction for NO on the hemoglobin is unknown, be it the iron or some other allosteric site. Mössbauer spectroscopy looks at the atomic environment around iron and thus could be used to examine any bonding or lack there of with NO. Preliminary results of 57Fe enriched hemoglobin were completed, as well as preliminary spectra on Hb S in He and in NO. A comparison of the two spectra indicates that the nitric oxide does interact with the iron.