Tropomyosin (Tm) is a dimeric coiled-coil protein that polymerizes through head-to-tail interactions. These polymers bind along actin filaments and play an important role in the regulation of muscle contraction. Analysis of its primary structure shows that Tm is rich in acidic residues, which are clustered along the molecule and may from sites for divalent cation binding. In a previous study, we showed that the Mg(2+)-induced increase in stability of the C-terminal half of Tin is sensitive to imitations near the C-terminus. In the present report, we study the interaction between Mg(2+) and full-length Tin and smaller fragments corresponding to the last 65 and 26 Tin residues. Although the smaller Tin peptide (Tm(259-284(W269))) is flexible and to large extent unstructured, the larger Tm(220-284(W269)) fragments forms a coiled coil in solution whose stability increases significantly in the presence of Mg(2+). NMR analysis shows thin Mg(2+) induces chemical shift perturbations in both Tm(220-284(W269)) and Tm(259-284(W269)) in the vicinity of His276, in which are located several negatively charged residues. (C) 2009 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Biopolymers 91: 583-590, 2009.