An overview of theories related to vibrational energy relaxation (VER) in proteins is presented. VER of a selected mode in cytochrome c is studied by using two theoretical approaches. One approach is the equilibrium simulation approach with quantum correction factors, and the other is the reduced model approach, which describes the protein as an ensemble of normal modes interacting through nonlinear coupling elements. Both methods result in similar estimates of the VER time (subpicoseconds) for a CD stretching mode in the protein at room temperature. The theoretical predictions are in accord with previous experimental data. A perspective on directions for the detailed study of time scales and mechanisms of VER in proteins is presented.
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