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Sample records for flexible protein loops

  1. Intrinsic flexibility of snRNA hairpin loops facilitates protein binding.

    PubMed

    Rau, Michael; Stump, W Tom; Hall, Kathleen B

    2012-11-01

    Stem-loop II of U1 snRNA and Stem-loop IV of U2 snRNA typically have 10 or 11 nucleotides in their loops. The fluorescent nucleobase 2-aminopurine was used as a substitute for the adenines in each loop to probe the local and global structures and dynamics of these unusually long loops. Using steady-state and time-resolved fluorescence, we find that, while the bases in the loops are stacked, they are able to undergo significant local motion on the picosecond/nanosecond timescale. In addition, the loops have a global conformational change at low temperatures that occurs on the microsecond timescale, as determined using laser T-jump experiments. Nucleobase and loop motions are present at temperatures far below the melting temperature of the hairpin stem, which may facilitate the conformational change required for specific protein binding to these RNA loops. PMID:23012481

  2. Structure of the Neisserial outer membrane protein Opa₆₀: loop flexibility essential to receptor recognition and bacterial engulfment.

    PubMed

    Fox, Daniel A; Larsson, Per; Lo, Ryan H; Kroncke, Brett M; Kasson, Peter M; Columbus, Linda

    2014-07-16

    The structure and dynamics of Opa proteins, which we report herein, are responsible for the receptor-mediated engulfment of Neisseria gonorrheae or Neisseria meningitidis by human cells and can offer deep understanding into the molecular recognition of pathogen-host receptor interactions. Such interactions are vital to understanding bacterial pathogenesis as well as the mechanism of foreign body entry to a human cell, which may provide insights for the development of targeted pharmaceutical delivery systems. The size and dynamics of the extracellular loops of Opa60 required a hybrid refinement approach wherein membrane and distance restraints were used to generate an initial NMR structural ensemble, which was then further refined using molecular dynamics in a DMPC bilayer. The resulting ensemble revealed that the extracellular loops, which bind host receptors, occupy compact conformations, interact with each other weakly, and are dynamic on the nanosecond time scale. We predict that this conformational sampling is critical for enabling diverse Opa loop sequences to engage a common set of receptors. PMID:24813921

  3. Structure of the Neisserial Outer Membrane Protein Opa60: Loop Flexibility Essential to Receptor Recognition and Bacterial Engulfment

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    The structure and dynamics of Opa proteins, which we report herein, are responsible for the receptor-mediated engulfment of Neisseria gonorrheae or Neisseria meningitidis by human cells and can offer deep understanding into the molecular recognition of pathogen–host receptor interactions. Such interactions are vital to understanding bacterial pathogenesis as well as the mechanism of foreign body entry to a human cell, which may provide insights for the development of targeted pharmaceutical delivery systems. The size and dynamics of the extracellular loops of Opa60 required a hybrid refinement approach wherein membrane and distance restraints were used to generate an initial NMR structural ensemble, which was then further refined using molecular dynamics in a DMPC bilayer. The resulting ensemble revealed that the extracellular loops, which bind host receptors, occupy compact conformations, interact with each other weakly, and are dynamic on the nanosecond time scale. We predict that this conformational sampling is critical for enabling diverse Opa loop sequences to engage a common set of receptors. PMID:24813921

  4. Deployable radiator with flexible line loop

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Keeler, Bryan V. (Inventor); Lehtinen, Arthur Mathias (Inventor); McGee, Billy W. (Inventor)

    2003-01-01

    Radiator assembly (10) for use on a spacecraft (12) is provided including at least one radiator panel assembly (26) repeatably movable between a panel stowed position (28) and a panel deployed position (36), at least two flexible lines (40) in fluid communication with the at least one radiator panel assembly (26) and repeatably movable between a stowage loop (42) and a flattened deployed loop (44).

  5. Protein-protein docking with backbone flexibility.

    PubMed

    Wang, Chu; Bradley, Philip; Baker, David

    2007-10-19

    Computational protein-protein docking methods currently can create models with atomic accuracy for protein complexes provided that the conformational changes upon association are restricted to the side chains. However, it remains very challenging to account for backbone conformational changes during docking, and most current methods inherently keep monomer backbones rigid for algorithmic simplicity and computational efficiency. Here we present a reformulation of the Rosetta docking method that incorporates explicit backbone flexibility in protein-protein docking. The new method is based on a "fold-tree" representation of the molecular system, which seamlessly integrates internal torsional degrees of freedom and rigid-body degrees of freedom. Problems with internal flexible regions ranging from one or more loops or hinge regions to all of one or both partners can be readily treated using appropriately constructed fold trees. The explicit treatment of backbone flexibility improves both sampling in the vicinity of the native docked conformation and the energetic discrimination between near-native and incorrect models. PMID:17825317

  6. Fast loop modeling for protein structures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Jiong; Nguyen, Son; Shang, Yi; Xu, Dong; Kosztin, Ioan

    2015-03-01

    X-ray crystallography is the main method for determining 3D protein structures. In many cases, however, flexible loop regions of proteins cannot be resolved by this approach. This leads to incomplete structures in the protein data bank, preventing further computational study and analysis of these proteins. For instance, all-atom molecular dynamics (MD) simulation studies of structure-function relationship require complete protein structures. To address this shortcoming, we have developed and implemented an efficient computational method for building missing protein loops. The method is database driven and uses deep learning and multi-dimensional scaling algorithms. We have implemented the method as a simple stand-alone program, which can also be used as a plugin in existing molecular modeling software, e.g., VMD. The quality and stability of the generated structures are assessed and tested via energy scoring functions and by equilibrium MD simulations. The proposed method can also be used in template-based protein structure prediction. Work supported by the National Institutes of Health [R01 GM100701]. Computer time was provided by the University of Missouri Bioinformatics Consortium.

  7. Principles of Flexible Protein-Protein Docking

    PubMed Central

    Andrusier, Nelly; Mashiach, Efrat; Nussinov, Ruth; Wolfson, Haim J.

    2008-01-01

    Treating flexibility in molecular docking is a major challenge in cell biology research. Here we describe the background and the principles of existing flexible protein-protein docking methods, focusing on the algorithms and their rational. We describe how protein flexibility is treated in different stages of the docking process: in the preprocessing stage, rigid and flexible parts are identified and their possible conformations are modeled. This preprocessing provides information for the subsequent docking and refinement stages. In the docking stage, an ensemble of pre-generated conformations or the identified rigid domains may be docked separately. In the refinement stage, small-scale movements of the backbone and side-chains are modeled and the binding orientation is improved by rigid-body adjustments. For clarity of presentation, we divide the different methods into categories. This should allow the reader to focus on the most suitable method for a particular docking problem. PMID:18655061

  8. Protein short loop prediction in terms of a structural alphabet.

    PubMed

    Tyagi, Manoj; Bornot, Aurélie; Offmann, Bernard; de Brevern, Alexandre G

    2009-08-01

    Loops connect regular secondary structures. In many instances, they are known to play crucial biological roles. To bypass the limitation of secondary structure description, we previously defined a structural alphabet composed of 16 structural prototypes, called Protein Blocks (PBs). It leads to an accurate description of every region of 3D protein backbones and has been used in local structure prediction. In the present study, we used our structural alphabet to predict the loops connecting two repetitive structures. Thus, we showed interest to take into account the flanking regions, leading to prediction rate improvement up to 19.8%, but we also underline the sensitivity of such an approach. This research can be used to propose different structures for the loops and to probe and sample their flexibility. It is a useful tool for ab initio loop prediction and leads to insights into flexible docking approach. PMID:19625218

  9. [Prediction of short loops in the proteins with internal disorder].

    PubMed

    Deriusheva, E I; Galzitskaia, O V; Serdiuk, I N

    2008-01-01

    New possibility of the FoldUnfold program for prediction of short disordered regions (loops), which appears by using the short window width (3 amino acid residues), was described. For three representatives of the proteins G family the FoldUnfold program predicted almost all short loops and yield results are well compatible with the X-ray structure data. We have classified the loops predicted in the protein Ras-p21 structure in two types. In the first type, loops have high values of the Debye-Waller factor typical of the so-called functional loops (flexible loops). In the other type, loops have lower values of the Debye-Waller factor and can be considered as loops connecting secondary structure elements (rigid loops). When the results of prediction with the use of our program are compared with the results of other programs (PONDR, RONN, DisEMBL, PreLINK, IUPred, GlobPlot 2, FoldIndex), it is seen that the first enables far better prediction of short loop positions. Use of FoldUnfold for ubiquitin-like domain h-PLIC-2 allows to resolve such task as definition of boundary between the structured and unstructured regions in proteins with a big portion of disordered regions. The FoldUnfold program defines a clear boundary between the structured and unstructured regions at amino acid residues 30-31,whereas each of the other programs outlines the boundary from the 28-th amino acid residues through the 70th. PMID:19140328

  10. Conformational Sampling in Template-Free Protein Loop Structure Modeling: An Overview

    PubMed Central

    Li, Yaohang

    2013-01-01

    Accurately modeling protein loops is an important step to predict three-dimensional structures as well as to understand functions of many proteins. Because of their high flexibility, modeling the three-dimensional structures of loops is difficult and is usually treated as a “mini protein folding problem” under geometric constraints. In the past decade, there has been remarkable progress in template-free loop structure modeling due to advances of computational methods as well as stably increasing number of known structures available in PDB. This mini review provides an overview on the recent computational approaches for loop structure modeling. In particular, we focus on the approaches of sampling loop conformation space, which is a critical step to obtain high resolution models in template-free methods. We review the potential energy functions for loop modeling, loop buildup mechanisms to satisfy geometric constraints, and loop conformation sampling algorithms. The recent loop modeling results are also summarized. PMID:24688696

  11. Stochastic model for protein flexibility analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xia, Kelin; Wei, Guo-Wei

    2013-12-01

    Protein flexibility is an intrinsic property and plays a fundamental role in protein functions. Computational analysis of protein flexibility is crucial to protein function prediction, macromolecular flexible docking, and rational drug design. Most current approaches for protein flexibility analysis are based on Hamiltonian mechanics. We introduce a stochastic model to study protein flexibility. The essential idea is to analyze the free induction decay of a perturbed protein structural probability, which satisfies the master equation. The transition probability matrix is constructed by using probability density estimators including monotonically decreasing radial basis functions. We show that the proposed stochastic model gives rise to some of the best predictions of Debye-Waller factors or B factors for three sets of protein data introduced in the literature.

  12. Heterodimer Autorepression Loop: A Robust and Flexible Pulse-Generating Genetic Module

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lannoo, B.; Carlon, E.; Lefranc, M.

    2016-07-01

    We investigate the dynamics of the heterodimer autorepression loop (HAL), a small genetic module in which a protein A acts as an autorepressor and binds to a second protein B to form an A B dimer. For suitable values of the rate constants, the HAL produces pulses of A alternating with pulses of B . By means of analytical and numerical calculations, we show that the duration of A pulses is extremely robust against variation of the rate constants while the duration of the B pulses can be flexibly adjusted. The HAL is thus a minimal genetic module generating robust pulses with a tunable duration, an interesting property for cellular signaling.

  13. Mechanics of Protein-Mediated DNA Looping

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meiners, Jens-Christian

    2009-03-01

    The formation of looped DNA-protein complexes in which a protein or protein assembly binds to multiple distant operator sites on the DNA is a common feature for many regulatory schemes on the transcriptional level. In a living cell, a multitude of mechanical forces and constraints act on these complexes, and it is imperative to understand their effects on biological function. For this aim, we study the lactose repressor as a model system for protein-mediated DNA looping in single-molecule experiments. Using a novel axial constant-force optical trapping scheme that allows us to manipulate sub-micron DNA fragments with well-controlled forces down to the 10 fN range, we show that mechanical tension in the substrate DNA of hundred femtonewton is sufficient to disrupt the loop formation process, which suggests that such mechanical tension may provide a mechanical pathway to controlling gene expression in vivo. From the force sensitivity of the loop formation process, we can also infer the topology of the looped complex; in our case an antiparallel conformation. In addition, we will present new tethered-particle microscopy data that shows lifetimes of the looped complexes that are two to three orders of magnitude shorter than those measured in biochemical competition assays and discuss possible interpretations, including the suggestion that operator binding of the lactose repressor tetramer leads to a destabilization of the dimer-dimer interface and that thus the loop breakdown process is mostly a dissociation of the tetramer into two dimers, instead, as widely assumed, an unbinding of the tetramer from the DNA.

  14. Mutational analysis of sclerostin shows importance of the flexible loop and the cystine-knot for Wnt-signaling inhibition.

    PubMed

    Boschert, Verena; van Dinther, Maarten; Weidauer, Stella; van Pee, Katharina; Muth, Eva-Maria; Ten Dijke, Peter; Mueller, Thomas D

    2013-01-01

    The cystine-knot containing protein Sclerostin is an important negative regulator of bone growth and therefore represents a promising therapeutic target. It exerts its biological task by inhibiting the Wnt (wingless and int1) signaling pathway, which participates in bone formation by promoting the differentiation of mesenchymal stem cells to osteoblasts. The core structure of Sclerostin consists of three loops with the first and third loop (Finger 1 and Finger 2) forming a structured β-sheet and the second loop being unstructured and highly flexible. Biochemical data showed that the flexible loop is important for binding of Sclerostin to Wnt co-receptors of the low-density lipoprotein related-protein family (LRP), by interacting with the Wnt co-receptors LRP5 or -6 it inhibits Wnt signaling. To further examine the structural requirements for Wnt inhibition, we performed an extensive mutational study within all three loops of the Sclerostin core domain involving single and multiple mutations as well as truncation of important regions. By this approach we could confirm the importance of the second loop and especially of amino acids Asn92 and Ile94 for binding to LRP6. Based on a Sclerostin variant found in a Turkish family suffering from Sclerosteosis we generated a Sclerostin mutant with cysteines 84 and 142 exchanged thereby removing the third disulfide bond of the cystine-knot. This mutant binds to LRP6 with reduced binding affinity and also exhibits a strongly reduced inhibitory activity against Wnt1 thereby showing that also elements outside the flexible loop are important for inhibition of Wnt by Sclerostin. Additionally, we examined the effect of the mutations on the inhibition of two different Wnt proteins, Wnt3a and Wnt1. We could detect clear differences in the inhibition of these proteins, suggesting that the mechanism by which Sclerostin antagonizes Wnt1 and Wnt3a is fundamentally different. PMID:24312339

  15. Modeling of protein loops by simulated annealing.

    PubMed Central

    Collura, V.; Higo, J.; Garnier, J.

    1993-01-01

    A method is presented to model loops of protein to be used in homology modeling of proteins. This method employs the ESAP program of Higo et al. (Higo, J., Collura, V., & Garnier, J., 1992, Biopolymers 32, 33-43) and is based on a fast Monte Carlo simulation and a simulated annealing algorithm. The method is tested on different loops or peptide segments from immunoglobulin, bovine pancreatic trypsin inhibitor, and bovine trypsin. The predicted structure is obtained from the ensemble average of the coordinates of the Monte Carlo simulation at 300 K, which exhibits the lowest internal energy. The starting conformation of the loop prior to modeling is chosen to be completely extended, and a closing harmonic potential is applied to N, CA, C, and O atoms of the terminal residues. A rigid geometry potential of Robson and Platt (1986, J. Mol. Biol. 188, 259-281) with a united atom representation is used. This we demonstrate to yield a loop structure with good hydrogen bonding and torsion angles in the allowed regions of the Ramachandran map. The average accuracy of the modeling evaluated on the eight modeled loops is 1 A root mean square deviation (rmsd) for the backbone atoms and 2.3 A rmsd for all heavy atoms. PMID:8401234

  16. Disparate Degrees of Hypervariable Loop Flexibility Control T-Cell Receptor Cross-Reactivity, Specificity, and Binding Mechanism

    SciTech Connect

    Scott, Daniel R.; Borbulevych, Oleg Y.; Piepenbrink, Kurt H.; Corcelli, Steven A.; Baker, Brian M.

    2012-06-19

    {alpha}{beta} T-cell receptors (TCRs) recognize multiple antigenic peptides bound and presented by major histocompatibility complex molecules. TCR cross-reactivity has been attributed in part to the flexibility of TCR complementarity-determining region (CDR) loops, yet there have been limited direct studies of loop dynamics to determine the extent of its role. Here we studied the flexibility of the binding loops of the {alpha}{beta} TCR A6 using crystallographic, spectroscopic, and computational methods. A significant role for flexibility in binding and cross-reactivity was indicated only for the CDR3{alpha} and CDR3{beta} hypervariable loops. Examination of the energy landscapes of these two loops indicated that CDR3{beta} possesses a broad, smooth energy landscape, leading to rapid sampling in the free TCR of a range of conformations compatible with different ligands. The landscape for CDR3{alpha} is more rugged, resulting in more limited conformational sampling that leads to specificity for a reduced set of peptides as well as the major histocompatibility complex protein. In addition to informing on the mechanisms of cross-reactivity and specificity, the energy landscapes of the two loops indicate a complex mechanism for TCR binding, incorporating elements of both conformational selection and induced fit in a manner that blends features of popular models for TCR recognition.

  17. Structural Study of a Flexible Active Site Loop in Human Indoleamine 2,3-Dioxygenase and Its Functional Implications.

    PubMed

    Álvarez, Lucía; Lewis-Ballester, Ariel; Roitberg, Adrián; Estrin, Darío A; Yeh, Syun-Ru; Marti, Marcelo A; Capece, Luciana

    2016-05-17

    Human indoleamine 2,3-dioxygenase catalyzes the oxidative cleavage of tryptophan to N-formyl kynurenine, the initial and rate-limiting step in the kynurenine pathway. Additionally, this enzyme has been identified as a possible target for cancer therapy. A 20-amino acid protein segment (the JK loop), which connects the J and K helices, was not resolved in the reported hIDO crystal structure. Previous studies have shown that this loop undergoes structural rearrangement upon substrate binding. In this work, we apply a combination of replica exchange molecular dynamics simulations and site-directed mutagenesis experiments to characterize the structure and dynamics of this protein region. Our simulations show that the JK loop can be divided into two regions: the first region (JK loop(C)) displays specific and well-defined conformations and is within hydrogen bonding distance of the substrate, while the second region (JK loop(N)) is highly disordered and exposed to the solvent. The peculiar flexible nature of JK loop(N) suggests that it may function as a target for post-translational modifications and/or a mediator for protein-protein interactions. In contrast, hydrogen bonding interactions are observed between the substrate and Thr379 in the highly conserved "GTGG" motif of JK loop(C), thereby anchoring JK loop(C) in a closed conformation, which secures the appropriate substrate binding mode for catalysis. Site-directed mutagenesis experiments confirm the key role of this residue, highlighting the importance of the JK loop(C) conformation in regulating the enzymatic activity. Furthermore, the existence of the partially and totally open conformations in the substrate-free form suggests a role of JK loop(C) in controlling substrate and product dynamics. PMID:27112409

  18. Multiple copy sampling in protein loop modeling: computational efficiency and sensitivity to dihedral angle perturbations.

    PubMed Central

    Zheng, Q.; Rosenfeld, R.; DeLisi, C.; Kyle, D. J.

    1994-01-01

    Multiple copy sampling and the bond scaling-relaxation technique are combined to generate 3-dimensional conformations of protein loop segments. The computational efficiency and sensitivity to initial loop copy dispersion are analyzed. The multicopy loop modeling method requires approximately 20-50% of the computational time required by the single-copy method for the various protein segments tested. An analytical formula is proposed to estimate the computational gain prior to carrying out a multicopy simulation. When 7-residue loops within flexible proteins are modeled, each multicopy simulation can sample a set of loop conformations with initial dispersions up to +/- 15 degrees for backbone and +/- 30 degrees for side-chain rotatable dihedral angles. The dispersions are larger for shorter and smaller for longer and/or surface loops. The degree of convergence of loop copies during a simulation can be used to complement commonly used target functions (such as potential energy) for distinguishing between native and misfolded conformations. Furthermore, this convergence also reflects the conformational flexibility of the modeled protein segment. Application to simultaneously building all 6 hypervariable loops of an antibody is discussed. PMID:8019420

  19. Protein Flexibility in Docking and Surface Mapping

    PubMed Central

    Lexa, Katrina W.; Carlson, Heather A.

    2012-01-01

    Structure-based drug design has become an essential tool for rapid lead discovery and optimization. As available structural information has increased, researchers have become increasingly aware of the importance of protein flexibility for accurate description of the native state. Typical protein–ligand docking efforts still rely on a single rigid receptor, which is an incomplete representation of potential binding conformations of the protein. These rigid docking efforts typically show the best performance rates between 50 and 75%, while fully flexible docking methods can enhance pose prediction up to 80–95%. This review examines the current toolbox for flexible protein–ligand docking and receptor surface mapping. Present limitations and possibilities for future development are discussed. PMID:22569329

  20. Structural domains and main-chain flexibility in prion proteins.

    PubMed

    Blinov, N; Berjanskii, M; Wishart, D S; Stepanova, M

    2009-02-24

    In this study we describe a novel approach to define structural domains and to characterize the local flexibility in both human and chicken prion proteins. The approach we use is based on a comprehensive theory of collective dynamics in proteins that was recently developed. This method determines the essential collective coordinates, which can be found from molecular dynamics trajectories via principal component analysis. Under this particular framework, we are able to identify the domains where atoms move coherently while at the same time to determine the local main-chain flexibility for each residue. We have verified this approach by comparing our results for the predicted dynamic domain systems with the computed main-chain flexibility profiles and the NMR-derived random coil indexes for human and chicken prion proteins. The three sets of data show excellent agreement. Additionally, we demonstrate that the dynamic domains calculated in this fashion provide a highly sensitive measure of protein collective structure and dynamics. Furthermore, such an analysis is capable of revealing structural and dynamic properties of proteins that are inaccessible to the conventional assessment of secondary structure. Using the collective dynamic simulation approach described here along with a high-temperature simulations of unfolding of human prion protein, we have explored whether locations of relatively low stability could be identified where the unfolding process could potentially be facilitated. According to our analysis, the locations of relatively low stability may be associated with the beta-sheet formed by strands S1 and S2 and the adjacent loops, whereas helix HC appears to be a relatively stable part of the protein. We suggest that this kind of structural analysis may provide a useful background for a more quantitative assessment of potential routes of spontaneous misfolding in prion proteins. PMID:19178154

  1. Including Ligand Induced Protein Flexibility into Protein Tunnel Prediction

    PubMed Central

    Kingsley, Laura J.; Lill, Markus A.

    2014-01-01

    In proteins with buried active sites, understanding how ligands migrate through the tunnels that connect the exterior of the protein to the active site can shed light on substrate specificity and enzyme function. A growing body of evidence highlights the importance of protein flexibility in the binding site upon ligand binding; however, the influence of protein flexibility throughout the body of the protein during ligand entry and egress is much less characterized. We have developed a novel tunnel prediction and evaluation method named IterTunnel, which includes the influence of ligand-induced protein flexibility, guarantees ligand egress, and provides detailed free energy information as the ligand proceeds along the egress route. IterTunnel combines geometric tunnel prediction with steered MD in an iterative process to identify tunnels that open as a result of ligand migration and calculates the potential of mean force (PMF) of ligand egress through a given tunnel. Applying this new method to cytochrome P450 2B6 (CYP2B6), we demonstrate the influence of protein flexibility on the shape and accessibility of tunnels. More importantly, we demonstrate that the ligand itself, while traversing through a tunnel, can reshape tunnels due to its interaction with the protein. This process results in the exposure of new tunnels and the closure of pre-existing tunnels as the ligand migrates from the active site. PMID:25043499

  2. PDBFlex: exploring flexibility in protein structures.

    PubMed

    Hrabe, Thomas; Li, Zhanwen; Sedova, Mayya; Rotkiewicz, Piotr; Jaroszewski, Lukasz; Godzik, Adam

    2016-01-01

    The PDBFlex database, available freely and with no login requirements at http://pdbflex.org, provides information on flexibility of protein structures as revealed by the analysis of variations between depositions of different structural models of the same protein in the Protein Data Bank (PDB). PDBFlex collects information on all instances of such depositions, identifying them by a 95% sequence identity threshold, performs analysis of their structural differences and clusters them according to their structural similarities for easy analysis. The PDBFlex contains tools and viewers enabling in-depth examination of structural variability including: 2D-scaling visualization of RMSD distances between structures of the same protein, graphs of average local RMSD in the aligned structures of protein chains, graphical presentation of differences in secondary structure and observed structural disorder (unresolved residues), difference distance maps between all sets of coordinates and 3D views of individual structures and simulated transitions between different conformations, the latter displayed using JSMol visualization software. PMID:26615193

  3. PDBFlex: exploring flexibility in protein structures

    PubMed Central

    Hrabe, Thomas; Li, Zhanwen; Sedova, Mayya; Rotkiewicz, Piotr; Jaroszewski, Lukasz; Godzik, Adam

    2016-01-01

    The PDBFlex database, available freely and with no login requirements at http://pdbflex.org, provides information on flexibility of protein structures as revealed by the analysis of variations between depositions of different structural models of the same protein in the Protein Data Bank (PDB). PDBFlex collects information on all instances of such depositions, identifying them by a 95% sequence identity threshold, performs analysis of their structural differences and clusters them according to their structural similarities for easy analysis. The PDBFlex contains tools and viewers enabling in-depth examination of structural variability including: 2D-scaling visualization of RMSD distances between structures of the same protein, graphs of average local RMSD in the aligned structures of protein chains, graphical presentation of differences in secondary structure and observed structural disorder (unresolved residues), difference distance maps between all sets of coordinates and 3D views of individual structures and simulated transitions between different conformations, the latter displayed using JSMol visualization software. PMID:26615193

  4. Conformational Flexibility in the Transmembrane Protein TSPO.

    PubMed

    Jaremko, Łukasz; Jaremko, Mariusz; Giller, Karin; Becker, Stefan; Zweckstetter, Markus

    2015-11-01

    The translocator protein (TSPO) is an integral membrane protein that interacts with a wide variety of endogenous ligands, such as cholesterol and porphyrins, and is also the target for several small molecules with substantial in vivo efficacy. When complexed with the TSPO-specific radioligand (R)-PK11195, TSPO folds into a rigid five-helix bundle. However, little is known about the structure and dynamics of TSPO in the absence of high-affinity ligands. By means of NMR spectroscopy, we show that TSPO exchanges between multiple conformations in the absence of (R)-PK11195. Extensive motions on time scales from pico- to microseconds occur all along the primary sequence of the protein, leading to a loss of stable tertiary interactions and local unfolding of the helical structure in the vicinity of the ligand-binding site. The flexible nature of TSPO highlights the importance of conformational plasticity in integral membrane proteins. PMID:26394723

  5. Mapping flexible protein domains at subnanometer resolution with the atomic force microscope.

    PubMed

    Müller, D J; Fotiadis, D; Engel, A

    1998-06-23

    The mapping of flexible protein domains with the atomic force microscope is reviewed. Examples discussed are the bacteriorhodopsin from Halobacterium salinarum, the head-tail-connector from phage phi29, and the hexagonally packed intermediate layer from Deinococcus radiodurans which all were recorded in physiological buffer solution. All three proteins undergo reversible structural changes that are reflected in standard deviation maps calculated from aligned topographs of individual protein complexes. Depending on the lateral resolution (up to 0.8 nm) flexible surface regions can ultimately be correlated with individual polypeptide loops. In addition, multivariate statistical classification revealed the major conformations of the protein surface. PMID:9678604

  6. Exploring the energy landscapes of flexible molecular loops using higher-dimensional continuation.

    PubMed

    Porta, Josep M; Jaillet, Léonard

    2013-01-30

    The conformational space of a flexible molecular loop includes the set of conformations fulfilling the geometric loop-closure constraints and its energy landscape can be seen as a scalar field defined on this implicit set. Higher-dimensional continuation tools, recently developed in dynamical systems and also applied to robotics, provide efficient algorithms to trace out implicitly defined sets. This article describes these tools and applies them to obtain full descriptions of the energy landscapes of short molecular loops that, otherwise, can only be partially explored, mainly via sampling. Moreover, to deal with larger loops, this article exploits the higher-dimensional continuation tools to find local minima and minimum energy transition paths between them, without deviating from the loop-closure constraints. The proposed techniques are applied to previously studied molecules revealing the intricate structure of their energy landscapes. PMID:23015474

  7. Fast Protein Loop Sampling and Structure Prediction Using Distance-Guided Sequential Chain-Growth Monte Carlo Method

    PubMed Central

    Tang, Ke; Zhang, Jinfeng; Liang, Jie

    2014-01-01

    Loops in proteins are flexible regions connecting regular secondary structures. They are often involved in protein functions through interacting with other molecules. The irregularity and flexibility of loops make their structures difficult to determine experimentally and challenging to model computationally. Conformation sampling and energy evaluation are the two key components in loop modeling. We have developed a new method for loop conformation sampling and prediction based on a chain growth sequential Monte Carlo sampling strategy, called Distance-guided Sequential chain-Growth Monte Carlo (DiSGro). With an energy function designed specifically for loops, our method can efficiently generate high quality loop conformations with low energy that are enriched with near-native loop structures. The average minimum global backbone RMSD for 1,000 conformations of 12-residue loops is Å, with a lowest energy RMSD of Å, and an average ensemble RMSD of Å. A novel geometric criterion is applied to speed up calculations. The computational cost of generating 1,000 conformations for each of the x loops in a benchmark dataset is only about cpu minutes for 12-residue loops, compared to ca cpu minutes using the FALCm method. Test results on benchmark datasets show that DiSGro performs comparably or better than previous successful methods, while requiring far less computing time. DiSGro is especially effective in modeling longer loops (– residues). PMID:24763317

  8. The Effect of Loops on the Structural Organization of α-Helical Membrane Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Tastan, Oznur; Klein-Seetharaman, Judith; Meirovitch, Hagai

    2009-01-01

    Loops connecting the transmembrane (TM) α-helices in membrane proteins are expected to affect the structural organization of the thereby connected helices and the helical bundles as a whole. This effect, which has been largely ignored previously, is studied here by analyzing the x-ray structures of 41 α-helical membrane proteins. First we define the loop flexibility ratio, R, and find that 53% of the loops are stretched, where a stretched loop constrains the distance between the two connected helices. The significance of this constraining effect is supported by experiments carried out with bacteriorhodopsin and rhodopsin, in which cutting or eliminating their (predominately stretched) loops has led to a decrease in protein stability, and for rhodopsin, in most cases, also to the destruction of the structure. We show that for nonstretched loops in the extramembranous regions, the fraction of hydrophobic residues is comparable to that for soluble proteins; furthermore (as is also the case for soluble proteins), the hydrophobic residues in these regions are preferentially buried. This is expected to lead to the compact structural organization of the loops, which is transferred to the TM helices, causing them to assemble. We argue that a soluble protein complexed with a membrane protein similarly promotes compactness; other properties of such complexes are also studied. We calculate complementary attractive interactions between helices, including hydrogen bonds and van der Waals interactions of sequential motifs, such as GXXXG. The relative and combined effects of all these factors on the association of the TM helices are discussed and protein structures with only a few of these factors are analyzed. Our study emphasizes the need for classifying membrane proteins into groups according to structural organization. This classification should be considered when procedures for structural analysis or prediction are developed and applied. Detailed analysis of each structure

  9. Differential utilization of binding loop flexibility in T cell receptor ligand selection and cross-reactivity.

    PubMed

    Ayres, Cory M; Scott, Daniel R; Corcelli, Steven A; Baker, Brian M

    2016-01-01

    Complementarity determining region (CDR) loop flexibility has been suggested to play an important role in the selection and binding of ligands by T cell receptors (TCRs) of the cellular immune system. However, questions remain regarding the role of loop motion in TCR binding, and crystallographic structures have raised questions about the extent to which generalizations can be made. Here we studied the flexibility of two structurally well characterized αβ TCRs, A6 and DMF5. We found that the two receptors utilize loop motion very differently in ligand binding and cross-reactivity. While the loops of A6 move rapidly in an uncorrelated fashion, those of DMF5 are substantially less mobile. Accordingly, the mechanisms of binding and cross-reactivity are very different between the two TCRs: whereas A6 relies on conformational selection to select and bind different ligands, DMF5 uses a more rigid, permissive architecture with greater reliance on slower motions or induced-fit. In addition to binding site flexibility, we also explored whether ligand-binding resulted in common dynamical changes in A6 and DMF5 that could contribute to TCR triggering. Although binding-linked motional changes propagated throughout both receptors, no common features were observed, suggesting that changes in nanosecond-level TCR structural dynamics do not contribute to T cell signaling. PMID:27118724

  10. Differential utilization of binding loop flexibility in T cell receptor ligand selection and cross-reactivity

    PubMed Central

    Ayres, Cory M.; Scott, Daniel R.; Corcelli, Steven A.; Baker, Brian M.

    2016-01-01

    Complementarity determining region (CDR) loop flexibility has been suggested to play an important role in the selection and binding of ligands by T cell receptors (TCRs) of the cellular immune system. However, questions remain regarding the role of loop motion in TCR binding, and crystallographic structures have raised questions about the extent to which generalizations can be made. Here we studied the flexibility of two structurally well characterized αβ TCRs, A6 and DMF5. We found that the two receptors utilize loop motion very differently in ligand binding and cross-reactivity. While the loops of A6 move rapidly in an uncorrelated fashion, those of DMF5 are substantially less mobile. Accordingly, the mechanisms of binding and cross-reactivity are very different between the two TCRs: whereas A6 relies on conformational selection to select and bind different ligands, DMF5 uses a more rigid, permissive architecture with greater reliance on slower motions or induced-fit. In addition to binding site flexibility, we also explored whether ligand-binding resulted in common dynamical changes in A6 and DMF5 that could contribute to TCR triggering. Although binding-linked motional changes propagated throughout both receptors, no common features were observed, suggesting that changes in nanosecond-level TCR structural dynamics do not contribute to T cell signaling. PMID:27118724

  11. The incorporation of protein flexibility and conformational energy penalties in docking screens to improve ligand discovery

    PubMed Central

    Fischer, Marcus; Coleman, Ryan G.; Fraser, James S.; Shoichet, Brian K.

    2014-01-01

    Proteins fluctuate between alternative conformations, which presents a challenge for ligand discovery because such flexibility is difficult to treat computationally owing to problems with conformational sampling and energy weighting. Here, we describe a flexible-docking method that samples and weights protein conformations using experimentally-derived conformations as a guide. The crystallographically refined occupancies of these conformations, which are observable in an apo receptor structure, define energy penalties for docking. In a large prospective library screen, we identified new ligands that target specific receptor conformations of a cavity in Cytochrome c Peroxidase, and we confirm both ligand pose and associated receptor conformation predictions by crystallography. The inclusion of receptor flexibility led to ligands with new chemotypes and physical properties. By exploiting experimental measures of loop and side chain flexibility, this method can be extended to the discovery of new ligands for hundreds of targets in the Protein Data Bank where similar experimental information is available. PMID:24950326

  12. Taxonomy and conformational analysis of loops in proteins.

    PubMed

    Ring, C S; Kneller, D G; Langridge, R; Cohen, F E

    1992-04-01

    We propose a general classification scheme for loops, aperiodic segments of protein structure. In an effort to avoid the geometric complexity created by non-repeating phi psi angles, a morphologic definition that focuses upon the linearity and planarity of loops is utilized. Out of 432 loops (4 to 20 residues in length) extracted from 67 proteins, 205 are classified as linear (straps), 133 as non-linear and planar (omegas), and 86 as non-linear and non-planar (zetas). The remaining 8 are classified as compound loops because they contain a combination of strap, omega, and zeta morphologies. We introduce a structural alphabet as a shorthand notation for describing local conformation. The symbols of this alphabet are based on the virtual dihedral angle joining four consecutive alpha carbons. The notation is used to provide a compact description of loop motifs in phosphate binding and calcium binding proteins. Since similar loop conformations form similar "words", the structural sequence facilitates the search for common structural motifs in a family of loops. Contrary to the view of loops as "random coils", we find loops to have positional preferences for amino acid residues analogous to those previously described for beta-turns. PMID:1569550

  13. Distributed flow sensing for closed-loop speed control of a flexible fish robot.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Feitian; Lagor, Francis D; Yeo, Derrick; Washington, Patrick; Paley, Derek A

    2015-12-01

    Flexibility plays an important role in fish behavior by enabling high maneuverability for predator avoidance and swimming in turbulent flow. This paper presents a novel flexible fish robot equipped with distributed pressure sensors for flow sensing. The body of the robot is molded from soft, hyperelastic material, which provides flexibility. Its Joukowski-foil shape is conducive to modeling the fluid analytically. A quasi-steady potential-flow model is adopted for real-time flow estimation, whereas a discrete-time vortex-shedding flow model is used for higher-fidelity simulation. The dynamics for the flexible fish robot yield a reduced model for one-dimensional swimming. A recursive Bayesian filter assimilates pressure measurements to estimate flow speed, angle of attack, and foil camber. The closed-loop speed-control strategy combines an inverse-mapping feedforward controller based on an average model derived for periodic actuation of angle-of-attack and a proportional-integral feedback controller utilizing the estimated flow information. Simulation and experimental results are presented to show the effectiveness of the estimation and control strategy. The paper provides a systematic approach to distributed flow sensing for closed-loop speed control of a flexible fish robot by regulating the flapping amplitude. PMID:26495855

  14. Zinc ion coordination as a modulating factor of the ZnuA histidine-rich loop flexibility: A molecular modeling and fluorescence spectroscopy study

    SciTech Connect

    Castelli, Silvia; Stella, Lorenzo; Petrarca, Patrizia; Battistoni, Andrea; Desideri, Alessandro; Falconi, Mattia

    2013-01-11

    Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Fluorescence data indicate that the His-loop of ZnuA interacts with Zn{sup +2} ions. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer The ZnuA structural model proposed validates these spectroscopic findings. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer It is proposed that a zinc loaded His-loop may facilitate the ZnuA-ZnuB recognition. -- Abstract: ZnuA is the soluble component of the high-affinity ZnuABC zinc transporter belonging to the ATP-binding cassette-type periplasmic Zn-binding proteins. The zinc transporter ZnuABC is composed by three proteins: ZnuB, the membrane permease, ZnuC, the ATPase component and ZnuA, the soluble periplasmic metal-binding protein which captures Zn and delivers it to ZnuB. The ZnuA protein contains a charged flexible loop, rich in histidines and acidic residues, showing significant species-specific differences. Various studies have established that this loop contributes to the formation of a secondary zinc binding site, which has been proposed to be important in the acquisition of periplasmic Zn for its delivery to ZnuB or for regulation of zinc uptake. Due to its high mobility the structure of the histidine-rich loop has never been solved by X-ray diffraction studies. In this paper, through a combined use of molecular modeling, mutagenesis and fluorescence spectroscopy, we confirm the presence of two zinc binding sites characterized by different affinities for the metal ion and show that the flexibility of the loop is modulated by the binding of the zinc ions to the protein. The data obtained by fluorescence spectroscopy have then be used to validate a 3D model including the unsolved histidine-rich loop.

  15. Dissecting protein-induced DNA looping dynamics in real time

    PubMed Central

    Laurens, Niels; Bellamy, Stuart R. W.; Harms, August F.; Kovacheva, Yana S.; Halford, Stephen E.; Wuite, Gijs J. L.

    2009-01-01

    Many proteins that interact with DNA perform or enhance their specific functions by binding simultaneously to multiple target sites, thereby inducing a loop in the DNA. The dynamics and energies involved in this loop formation influence the reaction mechanism. Tethered particle motion has proven a powerful technique to study in real time protein-induced DNA looping dynamics while minimally perturbing the DNA–protein interactions. In addition, it permits many single-molecule experiments to be performed in parallel. Using as a model system the tetrameric Type II restriction enzyme SfiI, that binds two copies of its recognition site, we show here that we can determine the DNA–protein association and dissociation steps as well as the actual process of protein-induced loop capture and release on a single DNA molecule. The result of these experiments is a quantitative reaction scheme for DNA looping by SfiI that is rigorously compared to detailed biochemical studies of SfiI looping dynamics. We also present novel methods for data analysis and compare and discuss these with existing methods. The general applicability of the introduced techniques will further enhance tethered particle motion as a tool to follow DNA–protein dynamics in real time. PMID:19586932

  16. ArchDB 2014: structural classification of loops in proteins

    PubMed Central

    Bonet, Jaume; Planas-Iglesias, Joan; Garcia-Garcia, Javier; Marín-López, Manuel A.; Fernandez-Fuentes, Narcis; Oliva, Baldo

    2014-01-01

    The function of a protein is determined by its three-dimensional structure, which is formed by regular (i.e. β-strands and α-helices) and non-periodic structural units such as loops. Compared to regular structural elements, non-periodic, non-repetitive conformational units enclose a much higher degree of variability—raising difficulties in the identification of regularities, and yet represent an important part of the structure of a protein. Indeed, loops often play a pivotal role in the function of a protein and different aspects of protein folding and dynamics. Therefore, the structural classification of protein loops is an important subject with clear applications in homology modelling, protein structure prediction, protein design (e.g. enzyme design and catalytic loops) and function prediction. ArchDB, the database presented here (freely available at http://sbi.imim.es/archdb), represents such a resource and has been an important asset for the scientific community throughout the years. In this article, we present a completely reworked and updated version of ArchDB. The new version of ArchDB features a novel, fast and user-friendly web-based interface, and a novel graph-based, computationally efficient, clustering algorithm. The current version of ArchDB classifies 149,134 loops in 5739 classes and 9608 subclasses. PMID:24265221

  17. On the dynamics and control of flexible multibody systems with closed loops

    SciTech Connect

    Damaren, C.J.

    2000-03-01

    The motion control problem for cooperating flexible robot arms manipulating a large rigid payload is considered. An output that depends on the payload position and contributions form the joint motion of each arm is constructed whose rate yields the passivity property with respect to a special input. The input is a combination of the torques from each arm and contains a free load-sharing parameter. The passivity property is shown to depend on the payload mass properties, and in cases where the payload is large, a passivity-based controller combining feedforward and feedback as elements is devised, which yields tracking. An experimental facility consisting of two planar 3-DoF arms is used to implement the strategies. Good tracking is observed and compared with simulation predictions for closed-loop flexible multibody systems.

  18. Experimental Study of Flexible Plate Vibration Control by Using Two-Loop Sliding Mode Control Strategy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Jingyu; Lin, Jiahui; Liu, Yuejun; Yang, Kang; Zhou, Lanwei; Chen, Guoping

    2016-06-01

    It is well known that intelligent control theory has been used in many research fields, novel modeling method (DROMM) is used for flexible rectangular active vibration control, and then the validity of new model is confirmed by comparing finite element model with new model. In this paper, taking advantage of the dynamics of flexible rectangular plate, a two-loop sliding mode (TSM) MIMO approach is introduced for designing multiple-input multiple-output continuous vibration control system, which can overcome uncertainties, disturbances or unstable dynamics. An illustrative example is given in order to show the feasibility of the method. Numerical simulations and experiment confirm the effectiveness of the proposed TSM MIMO controller.

  19. Protein flexibility in the light of structural alphabets

    PubMed Central

    Craveur, Pierrick; Joseph, Agnel P.; Esque, Jeremy; Narwani, Tarun J.; Noël, Floriane; Shinada, Nicolas; Goguet, Matthieu; Leonard, Sylvain; Poulain, Pierre; Bertrand, Olivier; Faure, Guilhem; Rebehmed, Joseph; Ghozlane, Amine; Swapna, Lakshmipuram S.; Bhaskara, Ramachandra M.; Barnoud, Jonathan; Téletchéa, Stéphane; Jallu, Vincent; Cerny, Jiri; Schneider, Bohdan; Etchebest, Catherine; Srinivasan, Narayanaswamy; Gelly, Jean-Christophe; de Brevern, Alexandre G.

    2015-01-01

    Protein structures are valuable tools to understand protein function. Nonetheless, proteins are often considered as rigid macromolecules while their structures exhibit specific flexibility, which is essential to complete their functions. Analyses of protein structures and dynamics are often performed with a simplified three-state description, i.e., the classical secondary structures. More precise and complete description of protein backbone conformation can be obtained using libraries of small protein fragments that are able to approximate every part of protein structures. These libraries, called structural alphabets (SAs), have been widely used in structure analysis field, from definition of ligand binding sites to superimposition of protein structures. SAs are also well suited to analyze the dynamics of protein structures. Here, we review innovative approaches that investigate protein flexibility based on SAs description. Coupled to various sources of experimental data (e.g., B-factor) and computational methodology (e.g., Molecular Dynamic simulation), SAs turn out to be powerful tools to analyze protein dynamics, e.g., to examine allosteric mechanisms in large set of structures in complexes, to identify order/disorder transition. SAs were also shown to be quite efficient to predict protein flexibility from amino-acid sequence. Finally, in this review, we exemplify the interest of SAs for studying flexibility with different cases of proteins implicated in pathologies and diseases. PMID:26075209

  20. Protein flexibility in the light of structural alphabets.

    PubMed

    Craveur, Pierrick; Joseph, Agnel P; Esque, Jeremy; Narwani, Tarun J; Noël, Floriane; Shinada, Nicolas; Goguet, Matthieu; Leonard, Sylvain; Poulain, Pierre; Bertrand, Olivier; Faure, Guilhem; Rebehmed, Joseph; Ghozlane, Amine; Swapna, Lakshmipuram S; Bhaskara, Ramachandra M; Barnoud, Jonathan; Téletchéa, Stéphane; Jallu, Vincent; Cerny, Jiri; Schneider, Bohdan; Etchebest, Catherine; Srinivasan, Narayanaswamy; Gelly, Jean-Christophe; de Brevern, Alexandre G

    2015-01-01

    Protein structures are valuable tools to understand protein function. Nonetheless, proteins are often considered as rigid macromolecules while their structures exhibit specific flexibility, which is essential to complete their functions. Analyses of protein structures and dynamics are often performed with a simplified three-state description, i.e., the classical secondary structures. More precise and complete description of protein backbone conformation can be obtained using libraries of small protein fragments that are able to approximate every part of protein structures. These libraries, called structural alphabets (SAs), have been widely used in structure analysis field, from definition of ligand binding sites to superimposition of protein structures. SAs are also well suited to analyze the dynamics of protein structures. Here, we review innovative approaches that investigate protein flexibility based on SAs description. Coupled to various sources of experimental data (e.g., B-factor) and computational methodology (e.g., Molecular Dynamic simulation), SAs turn out to be powerful tools to analyze protein dynamics, e.g., to examine allosteric mechanisms in large set of structures in complexes, to identify order/disorder transition. SAs were also shown to be quite efficient to predict protein flexibility from amino-acid sequence. Finally, in this review, we exemplify the interest of SAs for studying flexibility with different cases of proteins implicated in pathologies and diseases. PMID:26075209

  1. Trains, tails and loops of partially adsorbed semi-flexible filaments.

    PubMed

    Welch, David; Lettinga, M P; Ripoll, Marisol; Dogic, Zvonimir; Vliegenthart, Gerard A

    2015-10-14

    Polymer adsorption is a fundamental problem in statistical mechanics that has direct relevance to diverse disciplines ranging from biological lubrication to stability of colloidal suspensions. We combine experiments with computer simulations to investigate depletion induced adsorption of semi-flexible polymers onto a hard-wall. Three dimensional filament configurations of partially adsorbed F-actin polymers are visualized with total internal reflection fluorescence microscopy. This information is used to determine the location of the adsorption/desorption transition and extract the statistics of trains, tails and loops of partially adsorbed filament configurations. In contrast to long flexible filaments which primarily desorb by the formation of loops, the desorption of stiff, finite-sized filaments is largely driven by fluctuating filament tails. Simulations quantitatively reproduce our experimental data and allow us to extract universal laws that explain scaling of the adsorption-desorption transition with relevant microscopic parameters. Our results demonstrate how the adhesion strength, filament stiffness, length, as well as the configurational space accessible to the desorbed filament can be used to design the characteristics of filament adsorption and thus engineer properties of composite biopolymeric materials. PMID:26279011

  2. Minimalist explicit solvation models for surface loops in proteins.

    PubMed

    White, Ronald P; Meirovitch, Hagai

    2006-01-01

    We have performed molecular dynamics simulations of protein surface loops solvated by explicit water, where a prime focus of the study is the small numbers (e.g., ~100) of explicit water molecules employed. The models include only part of the protein (typically 500 - 1000 atoms), and the water molecules are restricted to a region surrounding the loop. In this study, the number of water molecules (N(w)) is systematically varied, and convergence with large N(w) is monitored to reveal N(w)(min), the minimum number required for the loop to exhibit realistic (fully hydrated) behavior. We have also studied protein surface coverage, as well as diffusion and residence times for water molecules as a function of N(w). A number of other modeling parameters are also tested. These include the number of environmental protein atoms explicitly considered in the model, as well as two ways to constrain the water molecules to the vicinity of the loop (where we find one of these methods to perform better when N(w) is small). The results (for RMSD and its fluctuations for four loops) are further compared to much larger, fully solvated systems (using ~10,000 water molecules under periodic boundary conditions and Ewald electrostatics), and to results for the GBSA implicit solvation model. We find that the loop backbone can stabilize with a surprisingly small number of water molecules (as low as 5 molecules per amino acid residue). The side chains of the loop require somewhat larger N(w), where the atomic fluctuations become too small if N(w) is further reduced. Thus, in general, we find adequate hydration to occur at roughly 12 water molecules per residue. This is an important result, because at this hydration level, computational times are comparable to those required for GBSA. Therefore these "minimalist explicit models" can provide a viable and potentially more accurate alternative. The importance of protein loop modeling is discussed in the context of these, and other, loop models

  3. Addition of missing loops and domains to protein models by x-ray solution scattering.

    PubMed Central

    Petoukhov, Maxim V; Eady, Nigel A J; Brown, Katherine A; Svergun, Dmitri I

    2002-01-01

    Inherent flexibility and conformational heterogeneity in proteins can often result in the absence of loops and even entire domains in structures determined by x-ray crystallographic or NMR methods. X-ray solution scattering offers the possibility of obtaining complementary information regarding the structures of these disordered protein regions. Methods are presented for adding missing loops or domains by fixing a known structure and building the unknown regions to fit the experimental scattering data obtained from the entire particle. Simulated annealing was used to minimize a scoring function containing the discrepancy between the experimental and calculated patterns and the relevant penalty terms. In low-resolution models where interface location between known and unknown parts is not available, a gas of dummy residues represents the missing domain. In high-resolution models where the interface is known, loops or domains are represented as interconnected chains (or ensembles of residues with spring forces between the C(alpha) atoms), attached to known position(s) in the available structure. Native-like folds of missing fragments can be obtained by imposing residue-specific constraints. After validation in simulated examples, the methods have been applied to add missing loops or domains to several proteins where partial structures were available. PMID:12496082

  4. The importance of anchorage in determining a strained protein loop conformation.

    PubMed Central

    Hodel, A.; Kautz, R. A.; Adelman, D. M.; Fox, R. O.

    1994-01-01

    We examine the role of the conformational restriction imposed by constrained ends of a protein loop on the determination of a strained loop conformation. The Lys 116-Pro 117 peptide bond of staphylococcal nuclease A exists in equilibrium between the cis and trans isomers. The folded protein favors the strained cis isomer with an occupancy of 90%. This peptide bond is contained in a solvent-exposed, flexible loop of residues 112-117 whose ends are anchored by Val 111 and Asn 118. Asn 118 is constrained by 2 side-chain hydrogen bonds. We investigate the importance of this constraint by replacing Asn 118 with aspartate, alanine, and glycine. We found that removing 1 or more of the hydrogen bonds observed in Asn 118 stabilizes the trans configuration over the cis configuration. By protonating the Asp 118 side chain of N118D through decreased pH, the hydrogen bonding character of Asp 118 approached that of Asn 118 in nuclease A, and the cis configuration was stabilized relative to the trans configuration. These data suggest that the rigid anchoring of the loop end is important in establishing the strained cis conformation. The segment of residues 112-117 in nuclease A provides a promising model system for study of the basic principles that determine polypeptide conformations. Such studies could be useful in the rational design or redesign of protein molecules. PMID:8003973

  5. Flexibility-rigidity index for protein-nucleic acid flexibility and fluctuation analysis.

    PubMed

    Opron, Kristopher; Xia, Kelin; Burton, Zach; Wei, Guo-Wei

    2016-05-30

    Protein-nucleic acid complexes are important for many cellular processes including the most essential functions such as transcription and translation. For many protein-nucleic acid complexes, flexibility of both macromolecules has been shown to be critical for specificity and/or function. The flexibility-rigidity index (FRI) has been proposed as an accurate and efficient approach for protein flexibility analysis. In this article, we introduce FRI for the flexibility analysis of protein-nucleic acid complexes. We demonstrate that a multiscale strategy, which incorporates multiple kernels to capture various length scales in biomolecular collective motions, is able to significantly improve the state of art in the flexibility analysis of protein-nucleic acid complexes. We take the advantage of the high accuracy and O(N) computational complexity of our multiscale FRI method to investigate the flexibility of ribosomal subunits, which are difficult to analyze by alternative approaches. An anisotropic FRI approach, which involves localized Hessian matrices, is utilized to study the translocation dynamics in an RNA polymerase. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:26927815

  6. Systematic identification of protein combinations mediating chromatin looping.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Kai; Li, Nan; Ainsworth, Richard I; Wang, Wei

    2016-01-01

    Chromatin looping plays a pivotal role in gene expression and other biological processes through bringing distal regulatory elements into spatial proximity. The formation of chromatin loops is mainly mediated by DNA-binding proteins (DBPs) that bind to the interacting sites and form complexes in three-dimensional (3D) space. Previously, identification of DBP cooperation has been limited to those binding to neighbouring regions in the proximal linear genome (1D cooperation). Here we present the first study that integrates protein ChIP-seq and Hi-C data to systematically identify both the 1D- and 3D-cooperation between DBPs. We develop a new network model that allows identification of cooperation between multiple DBPs and reveals cell-type-specific and -independent regulations. Using this framework, we retrieve many known and previously unknown 3D-cooperations between DBPs in chromosomal loops that may be a key factor in influencing the 3D organization of chromatin. PMID:27461729

  7. Systematic identification of protein combinations mediating chromatin looping

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Kai; Li, Nan; Ainsworth, Richard I.; Wang, Wei

    2016-01-01

    Chromatin looping plays a pivotal role in gene expression and other biological processes through bringing distal regulatory elements into spatial proximity. The formation of chromatin loops is mainly mediated by DNA-binding proteins (DBPs) that bind to the interacting sites and form complexes in three-dimensional (3D) space. Previously, identification of DBP cooperation has been limited to those binding to neighbouring regions in the proximal linear genome (1D cooperation). Here we present the first study that integrates protein ChIP-seq and Hi-C data to systematically identify both the 1D- and 3D-cooperation between DBPs. We develop a new network model that allows identification of cooperation between multiple DBPs and reveals cell-type-specific and -independent regulations. Using this framework, we retrieve many known and previously unknown 3D-cooperations between DBPs in chromosomal loops that may be a key factor in influencing the 3D organization of chromatin. PMID:27461729

  8. DNA sequence-dependent mechanics and protein-assisted bending in repressor-mediated loop formation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Boedicker, James Q.; Garcia, Hernan G.; Johnson, Stephanie; Phillips, Rob

    2013-12-01

    As the chief informational molecule of life, DNA is subject to extensive physical manipulations. The energy required to deform double-helical DNA depends on sequence, and this mechanical code of DNA influences gene regulation, such as through nucleosome positioning. Here we examine the sequence-dependent flexibility of DNA in bacterial transcription factor-mediated looping, a context for which the role of sequence remains poorly understood. Using a suite of synthetic constructs repressed by the Lac repressor and two well-known sequences that show large flexibility differences in vitro, we make precise statistical mechanical predictions as to how DNA sequence influences loop formation and test these predictions using in vivo transcription and in vitro single-molecule assays. Surprisingly, sequence-dependent flexibility does not affect in vivo gene regulation. By theoretically and experimentally quantifying the relative contributions of sequence and the DNA-bending protein HU to DNA mechanical properties, we reveal that bending by HU dominates DNA mechanics and masks intrinsic sequence-dependent flexibility. Such a quantitative understanding of how mechanical regulatory information is encoded in the genome will be a key step towards a predictive understanding of gene regulation at single-base pair resolution.

  9. DNA sequence-dependent mechanics and protein-assisted bending in repressor-mediated loop formation

    PubMed Central

    Boedicker, James Q.; Garcia, Hernan G.; Johnson, Stephanie; Phillips, Rob

    2014-01-01

    As the chief informational molecule of life, DNA is subject to extensive physical manipulations. The energy required to deform double-helical DNA depends on sequence, and this mechanical code of DNA influences gene regulation, such as through nucleosome positioning. Here we examine the sequence-dependent flexibility of DNA in bacterial transcription factor-mediated looping, a context for which the role of sequence remains poorly understood. Using a suite of synthetic constructs repressed by the Lac repressor and two well-known sequences that show large flexibility differences in vitro, we make precise statistical mechanical predictions as to how DNA sequence influences loop formation and test these predictions using in vivo transcription and in vitro single-molecule assays. Surprisingly, sequence-dependent flexibility does not affect in vivo gene regulation. By theoretically and experimentally quantifying the relative contributions of sequence and the DNA-bending protein HU to DNA mechanical properties, we reveal that bending by HU dominates DNA mechanics and masks intrinsic sequence-dependent flexibility. Such a quantitative understanding of how mechanical regulatory information is encoded in the genome will be a key step towards a predictive understanding of gene regulation at single-base pair resolution. PMID:24231252

  10. OSPREY: Protein Design with Ensembles, Flexibility, and Provable Algorithms

    PubMed Central

    Gainza, Pablo; Roberts, Kyle E.; Georgiev, Ivelin; Lilien, Ryan H.; Keedy, Daniel A.; Chen, Cheng-Yu; Reza, Faisal; Anderson, Amy C.; Richardson, David C.; Richardson, Jane S.; Donald, Bruce R.

    2013-01-01

    Summary We have developed a suite of protein redesign algorithms that improves realistic in silico modeling of proteins. These algorithms are based on three characteristics that make them unique: (1) improved flexibility of the protein backbone, protein side chains, and ligand to accurately capture the conformational changes that are induced by mutations to the protein sequence; (2) modeling of proteins and ligands as ensembles of low-energy structures to better approximate binding affinity; and (3) a globally-optimal protein design search, guaranteeing that the computational predictions are optimal with respect to the input model. Here, we illustrate the importance of these three characteristics. We then describe OSPREY, a protein redesign suite that implements our protein design algorithms. OSPREY has been used prospectively, with experimental validation, in several biomedically-relevant settings. We show in detail how OSPREY has been used to predict resistance mutations and explain why improved flexibility, ensembles, and provability are essential for this application. PMID:23422427

  11. Fast and anisotropic flexibility-rigidity index for protein flexibility and fluctuation analysis

    SciTech Connect

    Opron, Kristopher; Xia, Kelin; Wei, Guo-Wei

    2014-06-21

    Protein structural fluctuation, typically measured by Debye-Waller factors, or B-factors, is a manifestation of protein flexibility, which strongly correlates to protein function. The flexibility-rigidity index (FRI) is a newly proposed method for the construction of atomic rigidity functions required in the theory of continuum elasticity with atomic rigidity, which is a new multiscale formalism for describing excessively large biomolecular systems. The FRI method analyzes protein rigidity and flexibility and is capable of predicting protein B-factors without resorting to matrix diagonalization. A fundamental assumption used in the FRI is that protein structures are uniquely determined by various internal and external interactions, while the protein functions, such as stability and flexibility, are solely determined by the structure. As such, one can predict protein flexibility without resorting to the protein interaction Hamiltonian. Consequently, bypassing the matrix diagonalization, the original FRI has a computational complexity of O(N{sup 2}). This work introduces a fast FRI (fFRI) algorithm for the flexibility analysis of large macromolecules. The proposed fFRI further reduces the computational complexity to O(N). Additionally, we propose anisotropic FRI (aFRI) algorithms for the analysis of protein collective dynamics. The aFRI algorithms permit adaptive Hessian matrices, from a completely global 3N × 3N matrix to completely local 3 × 3 matrices. These 3 × 3 matrices, despite being calculated locally, also contain non-local correlation information. Eigenvectors obtained from the proposed aFRI algorithms are able to demonstrate collective motions. Moreover, we investigate the performance of FRI by employing four families of radial basis correlation functions. Both parameter optimized and parameter-free FRI methods are explored. Furthermore, we compare the accuracy and efficiency of FRI with some established approaches to flexibility analysis, namely

  12. Fast and anisotropic flexibility-rigidity index for protein flexibility and fluctuation analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Opron, Kristopher; Xia, Kelin; Wei, Guo-Wei

    2014-06-01

    Protein structural fluctuation, typically measured by Debye-Waller factors, or B-factors, is a manifestation of protein flexibility, which strongly correlates to protein function. The flexibility-rigidity index (FRI) is a newly proposed method for the construction of atomic rigidity functions required in the theory of continuum elasticity with atomic rigidity, which is a new multiscale formalism for describing excessively large biomolecular systems. The FRI method analyzes protein rigidity and flexibility and is capable of predicting protein B-factors without resorting to matrix diagonalization. A fundamental assumption used in the FRI is that protein structures are uniquely determined by various internal and external interactions, while the protein functions, such as stability and flexibility, are solely determined by the structure. As such, one can predict protein flexibility without resorting to the protein interaction Hamiltonian. Consequently, bypassing the matrix diagonalization, the original FRI has a computational complexity of O(N^2). This work introduces a fast FRI (fFRI) algorithm for the flexibility analysis of large macromolecules. The proposed fFRI further reduces the computational complexity to O(N). Additionally, we propose anisotropic FRI (aFRI) algorithms for the analysis of protein collective dynamics. The aFRI algorithms permit adaptive Hessian matrices, from a completely global 3N × 3N matrix to completely local 3 × 3 matrices. These 3 × 3 matrices, despite being calculated locally, also contain non-local correlation information. Eigenvectors obtained from the proposed aFRI algorithms are able to demonstrate collective motions. Moreover, we investigate the performance of FRI by employing four families of radial basis correlation functions. Both parameter optimized and parameter-free FRI methods are explored. Furthermore, we compare the accuracy and efficiency of FRI with some established approaches to flexibility analysis, namely, normal

  13. Flexibility in Surface-Exposed Loops in a Virus Capsid Mediates Escape from Antibody Neutralization

    PubMed Central

    Kolawole, Abimbola O.; Li, Ming; Xia, Chunsheng; Fischer, Audrey E.; Giacobbi, Nicholas S.; Rippinger, Christine M.; Proescher, Jody B. G.; Wu, Susan K.; Bessling, Seneca L.; Gamez, Monica; Yu, Chenchen; Zhang, Rebecca; Mehoke, Thomas S.; Pipas, James M.; Wolfe, Joshua T.; Lin, Jeffrey S.; Feldman, Andrew B.

    2014-01-01

    ABSTRACT New human norovirus strains emerge every 2 to 3 years, partly due to mutations in the viral capsid that allow escape from antibody neutralization and herd immunity. To understand how noroviruses evolve antibody resistance, we investigated the structural basis for the escape of murine norovirus (MNV) from antibody neutralization. To identify specific residues in the MNV-1 protruding (P) domain of the capsid that play a role in escape from the neutralizing monoclonal antibody (MAb) A6.2, 22 recombinant MNVs were generated with amino acid substitutions in the A′B′ and E′F′ loops. Six mutations in the E′F′ loop (V378F, A382K, A382P, A382R, D385G, and L386F) mediated escape from MAb A6.2 neutralization. To elucidate underlying structural mechanisms for these results, the atomic structure of the A6.2 Fab was determined and fitted into the previously generated pseudoatomic model of the A6.2 Fab/MNV-1 virion complex. Previously, two distinct conformations, A and B, of the atomic structures of the MNV-1 P domain were identified due to flexibility in the two P domain loops. A superior stereochemical fit of the A6.2 Fab to the A conformation of the MNV P domain was observed. Structural analysis of our observed escape mutants indicates changes toward the less-preferred B conformation of the P domain. The shift in the structural equilibrium of the P domain toward the conformation with poor structural complementarity to the antibody strongly supports a unique mechanism for antibody escape that occurs via antigen flexibility instead of direct antibody-antigen binding. IMPORTANCE Human noroviruses cause the majority of all nonbacterial gastroenteritis worldwide. New epidemic strains arise in part by mutations in the viral capsid leading to escape from antibody neutralization. Herein, we identify a series of point mutations in a norovirus capsid that mediate escape from antibody neutralization and determine the structure of a neutralizing antibody. Fitting of

  14. Identifying Functional Requirements for Flexible Airspace Management Concept Using Human-In-The-Loop Simulations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lee, Paul U.; Bender, Kim; Pagan, Danielle

    2011-01-01

    Flexible Airspace Management (FAM) is a mid- term Next Generation Air Transportation System (NextGen) concept that allows dynamic changes to airspace configurations to meet the changes in the traffic demand. A series of human-in-the-loop (HITL) studies have identified procedures and decision support requirements needed to implement FAM. This paper outlines a suggested FAM procedure and associated decision support functionality based on these HITL studies. A description of both the tools used to support the HITLs and the planned NextGen technologies available in the mid-term are presented and compared. The mid-term implementation of several NextGen capabilities, specifically, upgrades to the Traffic Management Unit (TMU), the initial release of an en route automation system, the deployment of a digital data communication system, a more flexible voice communications network, and the introduction of a tool envisioned to manage and coordinate networked ground systems can support the implementation of the FAM concept. Because of the variability in the overall deployment schedule of the mid-term NextGen capabilities, the dependency of the individual NextGen capabilities are examined to determine their impact on a mid-term implementation of FAM. A cursory review of the different technologies suggests that new functionality slated for the new en route automation system is a critical enabling technology for FAM, as well as the functionality to manage and coordinate networked ground systems. Upgrades to the TMU are less critical but important nonetheless for FAM to be fully realized. Flexible voice communications network and digital data communication system could allow more flexible FAM operations but they are not as essential.

  15. Insight into a molecular interaction force supporting peptide backbones and its implication to protein loops and folding.

    PubMed

    Du, Qi-Shi; Chen, Dong; Xie, Neng-Zhong; Huang, Ri-Bo; Chou, Kuo-Chen

    2015-09-01

    Although not being classified as the most fundamental protein structural elements like α-helices and β-strands, the loop segment may play considerable roles for protein stability, flexibility, and dynamic activity. Meanwhile, the protein loop is also quite elusive; i.e. its interactions with the other parts of protein as well as its own shape-maintaining forces have still remained as a puzzle or at least not quite clear yet. Here, we report a molecular force, the so-called polar hydrogen-π interaction (Hp-π), which may play an important role in supporting the backbones of protein loops. By conducting the potential energy surface scanning calculations on the quasi π-plane of peptide bond unit, we have observed the following intriguing phenomena: (1) when the polar hydrogen atom of a peptide unit is perpendicularly pointing to the π-plane of other peptide bond units, a remarkable Hp-π interaction occurs; (2) the interaction is distance and orientation dependent, acting in a broad space, and belonging to the 'point-to-plane' one. The molecular force reported here may provide useful interaction concepts and insights into better understanding the loop's unique stability and flexibility feature, as well as the driving force of the protein global folding. PMID:25375237

  16. Protein localization with flexible DNA or RNA.

    PubMed

    Bernhardsson, Sebastian; Mitarai, Namiko; Sneppen, Kim

    2012-01-01

    Localization of activity is ubiquitous in life, and also within sub-cellular compartments. Localization provides potential advantages as different proteins involved in the same cellular process may supplement each other on a fast timescale. It might also prevent proteins from being active in other regions of the cell. However localization is at odds with the spreading of unbound molecules by diffusion. We model the cost and gain for specific enzyme activity using localization strategies based on binding to sites of intermediate specificity. While such bindings in themselves decrease the activity of the protein on its target site, they may increase protein activity if stochastic motion allows the acting protein to touch both the intermediate binding site and the specific site simultaneously. We discuss this strategy in view of recent suggestions on long non-coding RNA as a facilitator of localized activity of chromatin modifiers. PMID:22347995

  17. Efficient Computation of Closed-loop Frequency Response for Large Order Flexible Systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Maghami, Peiman G.; Giesy, Daniel P.

    1997-01-01

    An efficient and robust computational scheme is given for the calculation of the frequency response function of a large order, flexible system implemented with a linear, time invariant control system. Advantage is taken of the highly structured sparsity of the system matrix of the plant based on a model of the structure using normal mode coordinates. The computational time per frequency point of the new computational scheme is a linear function of system size, a significant improvement over traditional, full-matrix techniques whose computational times per frequency point range from quadratic to cubic functions of system size. This permits the practical frequency domain analysis of systems of much larger order than by traditional, full-matrix techniques. Formulations are given for both open and closed loop loop systems. Numerical examples are presented showing the advantages of the present formulation over traditional approaches, both in speed and in accuracy. Using a model with 703 structural modes, a speed-up of almost two orders of magnitude was observed while accuracy improved by up to 5 decimal places.

  18. Contrasting HIV phylogenetic relationships and V3 loop protein similarities

    SciTech Connect

    Korber, B. |; Myers, G.

    1992-12-31

    At least five distinct sequence subtypes of HIV-I can be identified from the major centers of the AMS pandemic. While it is too early to tell whether these subtypes are serologically or phenotypically similar or distinct in terms of properties such as pathogenicity and transmissibility, we can begin to investigate their potential for phenotypic divergence at the protein sequence level. Phylogenetic analysis of HIV DNA sequences is being widely used to examine lineages of different viral strains as they evolve and spread throughout the globe. We have identified five distinct HIV-1 subtypes (designated A-E), or clades, based on phylogenetic clustering patterns generated from genetic information from both the gag and envelope (env) genes from a spectrum of international isolates. Our initial observations concerning both HIV-1 and HIV-2 sequences indicate that conserved patterns in protein chemistry may indeed exist across distant lineages. Such patterns in V3 loop amino acid chemistry may be indicative of stable lineages or convergence within this highly variable, though functionally and immunologically critical, region. We think that there may be parallels between the apparently stable HIV-2 V3 lineage and the previously mentioned HIV-1 V3 loops which are very similar at the protein level despite being distant by cladistic analysis, and which do not possess the distinctive positively charged residues. Highly conserved V3 loop protein sequences are also encountered in SIVAGMs and CIVs (chimpanzee viral strains), which do not appear to be pathogenic in their wild-caught natural hosts.

  19. Contrasting HIV phylogenetic relationships and V3 loop protein similarities

    SciTech Connect

    Korber, B. Santa Fe Inst., NM ); Myers, G. )

    1992-01-01

    At least five distinct sequence subtypes of HIV-I can be identified from the major centers of the AMS pandemic. While it is too early to tell whether these subtypes are serologically or phenotypically similar or distinct in terms of properties such as pathogenicity and transmissibility, we can begin to investigate their potential for phenotypic divergence at the protein sequence level. Phylogenetic analysis of HIV DNA sequences is being widely used to examine lineages of different viral strains as they evolve and spread throughout the globe. We have identified five distinct HIV-1 subtypes (designated A-E), or clades, based on phylogenetic clustering patterns generated from genetic information from both the gag and envelope (env) genes from a spectrum of international isolates. Our initial observations concerning both HIV-1 and HIV-2 sequences indicate that conserved patterns in protein chemistry may indeed exist across distant lineages. Such patterns in V3 loop amino acid chemistry may be indicative of stable lineages or convergence within this highly variable, though functionally and immunologically critical, region. We think that there may be parallels between the apparently stable HIV-2 V3 lineage and the previously mentioned HIV-1 V3 loops which are very similar at the protein level despite being distant by cladistic analysis, and which do not possess the distinctive positively charged residues. Highly conserved V3 loop protein sequences are also encountered in SIVAGMs and CIVs (chimpanzee viral strains), which do not appear to be pathogenic in their wild-caught natural hosts.

  20. Applying Side-chain Flexibility in Motifs for Protein Docking

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Hui; Lin, Feng; Yang, Jian-Li; Wang, Hong-Rui; Liu, Xiu-Ling

    2015-01-01

    Conventional rigid docking algorithms have been unsatisfactory in their computational results, largely due to the fact that protein structures are flexible in live environments. In response, we propose to introduce the side-chain flexibility in protein motif into the docking. First, the Morse theory is applied to curvature labeling and surface region growing, for segmentation of the protein surface into smaller patches. Then, the protein is described by an ensemble of conformations that incorporate the flexibility of interface side chains and are sampled using rotamers. Next, a 3D rotation invariant shape descriptor is proposed to deal with the flexible motifs and surface patches; thus, pairwise complementarity matching is needed only between the convex patches of ligand and the concave patches of receptor. The iterative closest point (ICP) algorithm is implemented for geometric alignment of the two 3D protein surface patches. Compared with the fast Fourier transform-based global geometric matching algorithm and other methods, our FlexDock system generates much less false-positive docking results, which benefits identification of the complementary candidates. Our computational experiments show the advantages of the proposed flexible docking algorithm over its counterparts. PMID:26508871

  1. Applying Side-chain Flexibility in Motifs for Protein Docking.

    PubMed

    Liu, Hui; Lin, Feng; Yang, Jian-Li; Wang, Hong-Rui; Liu, Xiu-Ling

    2015-01-01

    Conventional rigid docking algorithms have been unsatisfactory in their computational results, largely due to the fact that protein structures are flexible in live environments. In response, we propose to introduce the side-chain flexibility in protein motif into the docking. First, the Morse theory is applied to curvature labeling and surface region growing, for segmentation of the protein surface into smaller patches. Then, the protein is described by an ensemble of conformations that incorporate the flexibility of interface side chains and are sampled using rotamers. Next, a 3D rotation invariant shape descriptor is proposed to deal with the flexible motifs and surface patches; thus, pairwise complementarity matching is needed only between the convex patches of ligand and the concave patches of receptor. The iterative closest point (ICP) algorithm is implemented for geometric alignment of the two 3D protein surface patches. Compared with the fast Fourier transform-based global geometric matching algorithm and other methods, our FlexDock system generates much less false-positive docking results, which benefits identification of the complementary candidates. Our computational experiments show the advantages of the proposed flexible docking algorithm over its counterparts. PMID:26508871

  2. Rigidity versus flexibility: the dilemma of understanding protein thermal stability.

    PubMed

    Karshikoff, Andrey; Nilsson, Lennart; Ladenstein, Rudolf

    2015-10-01

    The role of fluctuations in protein thermostability has recently received considerable attention. In the current literature a dualistic picture can be found: thermostability seems to be associated with enhanced rigidity of the protein scaffold in parallel with the reduction of flexible parts of the structure. In contradiction to such arguments it has been shown by experimental studies and computer simulation that thermal tolerance of a protein is not necessarily correlated with the suppression of internal fluctuations and mobility. Both concepts, rigidity and flexibility, are derived from mechanical engineering and represent temporally insensitive features describing static properties, neglecting that relative motion at certain time scales is possible in structurally stable regions of a protein. This suggests that a strict separation of rigid and flexible parts of a protein molecule does not describe the reality correctly. In this work the concepts of mobility/flexibility versus rigidity will be critically reconsidered by taking into account molecular dynamics calculations of heat capacity and conformational entropy, salt bridge networks, electrostatic interactions in folded and unfolded states, and the emerging picture of protein thermostability in view of recently developed network theories. Last, but not least, the influence of high temperature on the active site and activity of enzymes will be considered. PMID:26074325

  3. Protein loop compaction and the origin of the effect of arginine and glutamic acid mixtures on solubility, stability and transient oligomerization of proteins.

    PubMed

    Blobel, Jascha; Brath, Ulrika; Bernadó, Pau; Diehl, Carl; Ballester, Lidia; Sornosa, Alejandra; Akke, Mikael; Pons, Miquel

    2011-12-01

    Addition of a 50 mM mixture of L: -arginine and L: -glutamic acid (RE) is extensively used to improve protein solubility and stability, although the origin of the effect is not well understood. We present Small Angle X-ray Scattering (SAXS) and Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) results showing that RE induces protein compaction by collapsing flexible loops on the protein core. This is suggested to be a general mechanism preventing aggregation and improving resistance to proteases and to originate from the polyelectrolyte nature of RE. Molecular polyelectrolyte mixtures are expected to display long range correlation effects according to dressed interaction site theory. We hypothesize that perturbation of the RE solution by dissolved proteins is proportional to the volume occupied by the protein. As a consequence, loop collapse, minimizing the effective protein volume, is favored in the presence of RE. PMID:21390527

  4. The Role of Flexible Loops in Folding, Trafficking and Activity of Equilibrative Nucleoside Transporters.

    PubMed

    Aseervatham, Jaya; Tran, Lucky; Machaca, Khaled; Boudker, Olga

    2015-01-01

    Equilibrative nucleoside transporters (ENTs) are integral membrane proteins, which reside in plasma membranes of all eukaryotic cells and mediate thermodynamically downhill transport of nucleosides. This process is essential for nucleoside recycling, and also plays a key role in terminating adenosine-mediated cellular signaling. Furthermore, ENTs mediate the uptake of many drugs, including anticancer and antiviral nucleoside analogues. The structure and mechanism, by which ENTs catalyze trans-membrane transport of their substrates, remain unknown. To identify the core of the transporter needed for stability, activity, and for its correct trafficking to the plasma membrane, we have expressed human ENT deletion mutants in Xenopus laevis oocytes and determined their localization, transport properties and susceptibility to inhibition. We found that the carboxyl terminal trans-membrane segments are essential for correct protein folding and trafficking. In contrast, the soluble extracellular and intracellular loops appear to be dispensable, and must be involved in the fine-tuning of transport regulation. PMID:26406980

  5. The Role of Flexible Loops in Folding, Trafficking and Activity of Equilibrative Nucleoside Transporters

    PubMed Central

    Aseervatham, Jaya; Tran, Lucky; Machaca, Khaled; Boudker, Olga

    2015-01-01

    Equilibrative nucleoside transporters (ENTs) are integral membrane proteins, which reside in plasma membranes of all eukaryotic cells and mediate thermodynamically downhill transport of nucleosides. This process is essential for nucleoside recycling, and also plays a key role in terminating adenosine-mediated cellular signaling. Furthermore, ENTs mediate the uptake of many drugs, including anticancer and antiviral nucleoside analogues. The structure and mechanism, by which ENTs catalyze trans-membrane transport of their substrates, remain unknown. To identify the core of the transporter needed for stability, activity, and for its correct trafficking to the plasma membrane, we have expressed human ENT deletion mutants in Xenopus laevis oocytes and determined their localization, transport properties and susceptibility to inhibition. We found that the carboxyl terminal trans-membrane segments are essential for correct protein folding and trafficking. In contrast, the soluble extracellular and intracellular loops appear to be dispensable, and must be involved in the fine-tuning of transport regulation. PMID:26406980

  6. Degradation of microinjected proteins: the role of substrate flexibility

    SciTech Connect

    Rote, K.V.

    1985-01-01

    RB-mediated microinjection was used to introduce radioiodinated proteins of similar structure, but diverse flexibilities, into HeLa cells. Rates of intracellular degradation were then measured by release of /sup 125/I-tyrosine into the media. Ribonuclease-A was much more stable to degradation by trypsin, pepsin, or papain than its relatively flexible derivatives ribonuclease-S and S-protein. Likewise, ribonuclease-S and S-protein were degraded more quickly in reticulocyte lysates than ribonuclease-A. In contrast, all three proteins displayed similar, if not identical, half-lives in vivo. Similarly, intracellular half-lives of anhydrotrypsin and various proteinaceous trypsin inhibitors were in the same range whether they were measured in the free state or following complex formation, which drastically decreases flexibility. Trypsinogen, which contains a relatively flexible activation domain, was degraded more slowly than anhydrotrypsin. Nondenaturing agarose or polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis of microinjected cell lysates revealed that complexes of trypsin and its inhibitors remained intact following radioiodination and introduction into cells, and are therefore degraded as a unit. All microinjected proteins remained in their unbound, unprocessed forms prior to degradation.

  7. Flexible, symmetry-directed approach to assembling protein cages.

    PubMed

    Sciore, Aaron; Su, Min; Koldewey, Philipp; Eschweiler, Joseph D; Diffley, Kelsey A; Linhares, Brian M; Ruotolo, Brandon T; Bardwell, James C A; Skiniotis, Georgios; Marsh, E Neil G

    2016-08-01

    The assembly of individual protein subunits into large-scale symmetrical structures is widespread in nature and confers new biological properties. Engineered protein assemblies have potential applications in nanotechnology and medicine; however, a major challenge in engineering assemblies de novo has been to design interactions between the protein subunits so that they specifically assemble into the desired structure. Here we demonstrate a simple, generalizable approach to assemble proteins into cage-like structures that uses short de novo designed coiled-coil domains to mediate assembly. We assembled eight copies of a C3-symmetric trimeric esterase into a well-defined octahedral protein cage by appending a C4-symmetric coiled-coil domain to the protein through a short, flexible linker sequence, with the approximate length of the linker sequence determined by computational modeling. The structure of the cage was verified using a combination of analytical ultracentrifugation, native electrospray mass spectrometry, and negative stain and cryoelectron microscopy. For the protein cage to assemble correctly, it was necessary to optimize the length of the linker sequence. This observation suggests that flexibility between the two protein domains is important to allow the protein subunits sufficient freedom to assemble into the geometry specified by the combination of C4 and C3 symmetry elements. Because this approach is inherently modular and places minimal requirements on the structural features of the protein building blocks, it could be extended to assemble a wide variety of proteins into structures with different symmetries. PMID:27432965

  8. Insight into a molecular interaction force supporting peptide backbones and its implication to protein loops and folding

    PubMed Central

    Du, Qi-Shi; Chen, Dong; Xie, Neng-Zhong; Huang, Ri-Bo; Chou, Kuo-Chen

    2015-01-01

    Although not being classified as the most fundamental protein structural elements like α-helices and β-strands, the loop segment may play considerable roles for protein stability, flexibility, and dynamic activity. Meanwhile, the protein loop is also quite elusive; i.e. its interactions with the other parts of protein as well as its own shape-maintaining forces have still remained as a puzzle or at least not quite clear yet. Here, we report a molecular force, the so-called polar hydrogen–π interaction (Hp–π), which may play an important role in supporting the backbones of protein loops. By conducting the potential energy surface scanning calculations on the quasi π-plane of peptide bond unit, we have observed the following intriguing phenomena: (1) when the polar hydrogen atom of a peptide unit is perpendicularly pointing to the π-plane of other peptide bond units, a remarkable Hp–π interaction occurs; (2) the interaction is distance and orientation dependent, acting in a broad space, and belonging to the ‘point-to-plane’ one. The molecular force reported here may provide useful interaction concepts and insights into better understanding the loop’s unique stability and flexibility feature, as well as the driving force of the protein global folding. PMID:25375237

  9. Intrachain diffusion in a protein loop fragment from carp parvalbumin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Krieger, Florian; Fierz, Beat; Axthelm, Fabian; Joder, Karin; Meyer, Dominique; Kiefhaber, Thomas

    2004-12-01

    During protein folding a polypeptide chain has to form specific intrachain interactions starting from an ensemble of unfolded conformation. Thus, intrachain diffusion in unfolded polypeptide chains can be regarded as an elementary step in protein folding, which should determine the dynamics of the early stages in the folding process. We have previously applied exothermic triplet-triplet energy transfer from xanthone to naphthalene to determine rate constants for intrachain end-to-end contact formation in unstructured homo-polypeptide chains. Here we show that the method can be applied to determine absolute rate constants for intrachain diffusion in natural loop sequences, if they are free of methionine, tryptophan and tyrosine. We measured the rate of loop formation in an 18 amino acid polypeptide chain corresponding to a natural loop sequence from carp muscle β-parvalbumin (residues 85-102). Contact formation shows single exponential kinetics with a time constant ( τ=1/ k) of 53 ± 3 ns at 22.5 °C in water. Comparison with the results on homo-polypeptide chains shows that this value agrees well with rates obtained earlier for a polyserine chain of the same length.

  10. Bacterial promoter repression by DNA looping without protein-protein binding competition.

    PubMed

    Becker, Nicole A; Greiner, Alexander M; Peters, Justin P; Maher, L James

    2014-05-01

    The Escherichia coli lactose operon provides a paradigm for understanding gene control by DNA looping where the lac repressor (LacI) protein competes with RNA polymerase for DNA binding. Not all promoter loops involve direct competition between repressor and RNA polymerase. This raises the possibility that positioning a promoter within a tightly constrained DNA loop is repressive per se, an idea that has previously only been considered in vitro. Here, we engineer living E. coli bacteria to measure repression due to promoter positioning within such a tightly constrained DNA loop in the absence of protein-protein binding competition. We show that promoters held within such DNA loops are repressed ∼100-fold, with up to an additional ∼10-fold repression (∼1000-fold total) dependent on topological positioning of the promoter on the inner or outer face of the DNA loop. Chromatin immunoprecipitation data suggest that repression involves inhibition of both RNA polymerase initiation and elongation. These in vivo results show that gene repression can result from tightly looping promoter DNA even in the absence of direct competition between repressor and RNA polymerase binding. PMID:24598256

  11. Effects of ligand binding upon flexibility of proteins.

    PubMed

    Erman, Burak

    2015-05-01

    Binding of a ligand on a protein changes the flexibility of certain parts of the protein, which directly affects its function. These changes are not the same at each point, some parts become more flexible and some others become stiffer. Here, an equation is derived that gives the stiffness map for proteins. The model is based on correlations of fluctuations of pairs of points in proteins, which may be evaluated at different levels of refinement, ranging from all atom molecular dynamics to general elastic network models, including the simplest case of isotropic Gaussian Network Model. The latter is used, as an example, to evaluate the changes of stiffness upon dimerization of ACK1. PMID:25737428

  12. A conserved salt bridge in the G loop of multiple protein kinases is important for catalysis and for in vivo Lyn function.

    PubMed

    Barouch-Bentov, Rina; Che, Jianwei; Lee, Christian C; Yang, Yating; Herman, Ann; Jia, Yong; Velentza, Anastasia; Watson, James; Sternberg, Luise; Kim, Sunjun; Ziaee, Niusha; Miller, Andrew; Jackson, Carie; Fujimoto, Manabu; Young, Mike; Batalov, Serge; Liu, Yi; Warmuth, Markus; Wiltshire, Tim; Cooke, Michael P; Sauer, Karsten

    2009-01-16

    The glycine-rich G loop controls ATP binding and phosphate transfer in protein kinases. Here we show that the functions of Src family and Abl protein tyrosine kinases require an electrostatic interaction between oppositely charged amino acids within their G loops that is conserved in multiple other phylogenetically distinct protein kinases, from plants to humans. By limiting G loop flexibility, it controls ATP binding, catalysis, and inhibition by ATP-competitive compounds such as Imatinib. In WeeB mice, mutational disruption of the interaction results in expression of a Lyn protein with reduced catalytic activity, and in perturbed B cell receptor signaling. Like Lyn(-/-) mice, WeeB mice show profound defects in B cell development and function and succumb to autoimmune glomerulonephritis. This demonstrates the physiological importance of the conserved G loop salt bridge and at the same time distinguishes the in vivo requirement for the Lyn kinase activity from other potential functions of the protein. PMID:19150426

  13. Protein flexibility is key to cisplatin crosslinking in calmodulin

    PubMed Central

    Li, Huilin; Wells, Stephen A; Jimenez-Roldan, J Emilio; Römer, Rudolf A; Zhao, Yao; Sadler, Peter J; O'Connor, Peter B

    2012-01-01

    Chemical crosslinking in combination with Fourier transform ion cyclotron resonance mass spectrometry (FTICR MS) has significant potential for studying protein structures and protein–protein interactions. Previously, cisplatin has been shown to be a crosslinker and crosslinks multiple methionine (Met) residues in apo-calmodulin (apo-CaM). However, the inter-residue distances obtained from nuclear magnetic resonance structures are inconsistent with the measured distance constraints by crosslinking. Met residues lie too far apart to be crosslinked by cisplatin. Here, by combining FTICR MS with a novel computational flexibility analysis, the flexible nature of the CaM structure is found to be key to cisplatin crosslinking in CaM. It is found that the side chains of Met residues can be brought together by flexible motions in both apo-CaM and calcium-bound CaM (Ca4-CaM). The possibility of cisplatin crosslinking Ca4-CaM is then confirmed by MS data. Therefore, flexibility analysis as a fast and low-cost computational method can be a useful tool for predicting crosslinking pairs in protein crosslinking analysis and facilitating MS data analysis. Finally, flexibility analysis also indicates that the crosslinking of platinum to pairs of Met residues will effectively close the nonpolar groove and thus will likely interfere with the binding of CaM to its protein targets, as was proved by comparing assays for cisplatin-modified/unmodified CaM binding to melittin. Collectively, these results suggest that cisplatin crosslinking of apo-CaM or Ca4-CaM can inhibit the ability of CaM to recognize its target proteins, which may have important implications for understanding the mechanism of tumor resistance to platinum anticancer drugs. PMID:22733664

  14. Looping dynamics of a flexible chain with internal friction at different degrees of compactness

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Samanta, Nairhita; Chakrabarti, Rajarshi

    2015-10-01

    In recent times single molecule experiments have shown the importance of internal friction in biopolymer dynamics. Such studies also suggested that the internal friction although independent of solvent viscosity has a strong dependence on denaturant concentration. In addition, recent simulations showed that the weak interactions contribute to the internal friction in proteins. In this work we made an attempt to investigate how a single polymer chain with internal friction undergoes reconfiguration and looping dynamics in a confining potential that accounts for the presence of the denaturant, by using recently proposed "Compacted Rouse with internal friction". We also incorporated the effect of hydrodynamics by extending this further to "Compacted Zimm with internal friction". All the calculations are carried out within the Wilemski Fixman framework without invoking excluded-volume effect. By changing the strength of the confinement we mimicked chains with different degrees of compactness at different denaturant concentrations. While compared with experiments our results are found to be in good agreement.

  15. FlexSnap: Flexible Non-sequential Protein Structure Alignment

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Proteins have evolved subject to energetic selection pressure for stability and flexibility. Structural similarity between proteins that have gone through conformational changes can be captured effectively if flexibility is considered. Topologically unrelated proteins that preserve secondary structure packing interactions can be detected if both flexibility and Sequential permutations are considered. We propose the FlexSnap algorithm for flexible non-topological protein structural alignment. Results The effectiveness of FlexSnap is demonstrated by measuring the agreement of its alignments with manually curated non-sequential structural alignments. FlexSnap showed competitive results against state-of-the-art algorithms, like DALI, SARF2, MultiProt, FlexProt, and FATCAT. Moreover on the DynDom dataset, FlexSnap reported longer alignments with smaller rmsd. Conclusions We have introduced FlexSnap, a greedy chaining algorithm that reports both sequential and non-sequential alignments and allows twists (hinges). We assessed the quality of the FlexSnap alignments by measuring its agreements with manually curated non-sequential alignments. On the FlexProt dataset, FlexSnap was competitive to state-of-the-art flexible alignment methods. Moreover, we demonstrated the benefits of introducing hinges by showing significant improvements in the alignments reported by FlexSnap for the structure pairs for which rigid alignment methods reported alignments with either low coverage or large rmsd. Availability An implementation of the FlexSnap algorithm will be made available online at http://www.cs.rpi.edu/~zaki/software/flexsnap. PMID:20047669

  16. Comparative analysis of essential collective dynamics and NMR-derived flexibility profiles in evolutionarily diverse prion proteins.

    PubMed

    Santo, Kolattukudy P; Berjanskii, Mark; Wishart, David S; Stepanova, Maria

    2011-01-01

    Collective motions on ns-μs time scales are known to have a major impact on protein folding, stability, binding and enzymatic efficiency. It is also believed that these motions may have an important role in the early stages of prion protein misfolding and prion disease. In an effort to accurately characterize these motions and their potential influence on the misfolding and prion disease transmissibility we have conducted a combined analysis of molecular dynamic simulations and NMR-derived flexibility measurements over a diverse range of prion proteins. Using a recently developed numerical formalism, we have analyzed the essential collective dynamics (ECD) for prion proteins from 8 different species including human, cow, elk, cat, hamster, chicken, turtle and frog. We also compared the numerical results with flexibility profiles generated by the random coil index (RCI) from NMR chemical shifts. Prion protein backbone flexibility derived from experimental NMR data and from theoretical computations show strong agreement with each other, demonstrating that it is possible to predict the observed RCI profiles employing the numerical ECD formalism. Interestingly, flexibility differences in the loop between second beta strand (S2) and the second alpha helix (HB) appear to distinguish prion proteins from species that are susceptible to prion disease and those that are resistant. Our results show that the different levels of flexibility in the S2-HB loop in various species are predictable via the ECD method, indicating that ECD may be used to identify disease resistant variants of prion proteins, as well as the influence of prion proteins mutations on disease susceptibility or misfolding propensity. PMID:21869604

  17. The active site histidines of creatine kinase. A critical role of His 61 situated on a flexible loop.

    PubMed Central

    Forstner, M.; Müller, A.; Stolz, M.; Wallimann, T.

    1997-01-01

    A histidine residue with a pKa of 7 has been inferred to act as a general acid-base catalyst for the reaction of creatine kinase (CK), catalyzing the reversible phosphorylation of creatine by ATP. The chicken sarcomeric muscle mitochondrial isoenzyme Mib-CK contains several histidine residues that are conserved throughout the family of creatine kinases. By X-ray crystal structure analysis, three of them (His 61, His 92, and His 186) were recently shown to be located close to the active site of the enzyme. These residues were exchanged against alanine or aspartate by in vitro mutagenesis, and the six mutant proteins were expressed in E. coli and purified. Structural integrity of the mutant proteins was checked by small-angle X-ray scattering. Kinetic analysis showed the mutant His 61 Asp to be completely inactive in the direction of ATP consumption while exhibiting a residual activity of 1.7% of the wild-type (wt) activity in the reverse direction. The respective His to Ala mutant of residue 61 showed approximately 1% wt activity in the forward and 10% wt activity in the reverse reaction. All other mutants showed near wt activities. Changes in the kinetic parameters K(m) or Vmax, as well as a significant loss of synergism in substrate binding, could be observed with all active mutants. These effects were most pronounced for the binding of creatine and phosphocreatine, whereas ATP or ADP binding were less severely affected. Based on our results, we assume that His 92 and His 186 are involved in the binding of creatine and ATP in the active site, whereas His 61 is of importance for the catalytic reaction but does not serve as an acid-base catalyst in the transphosphorylation of creatine and ATP. In addition, our data support the idea that the flexible loop bearing His 61 is able to move towards the active site and to participate in catalysis. PMID:9041634

  18. A local average distance descriptor for flexible protein structure comparison

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Protein structures are flexible and often show conformational changes upon binding to other molecules to exert biological functions. As protein structures correlate with characteristic functions, structure comparison allows classification and prediction of proteins of undefined functions. However, most comparison methods treat proteins as rigid bodies and cannot retrieve similarities of proteins with large conformational changes effectively. Results In this paper, we propose a novel descriptor, local average distance (LAD), based on either the geodesic distances (GDs) or Euclidean distances (EDs) for pairwise flexible protein structure comparison. The proposed method was compared with 7 structural alignment methods and 7 shape descriptors on two datasets comprising hinge bending motions from the MolMovDB, and the results have shown that our method outperformed all other methods regarding retrieving similar structures in terms of precision-recall curve, retrieval success rate, R-precision, mean average precision and F1-measure. Conclusions Both ED- and GD-based LAD descriptors are effective to search deformed structures and overcome the problems of self-connection caused by a large bending motion. We have also demonstrated that the ED-based LAD is more robust than the GD-based descriptor. The proposed algorithm provides an alternative approach for blasting structure database, discovering previously unknown conformational relationships, and reorganizing protein structure classification. PMID:24694083

  19. Persistent homology analysis of protein structure, flexibility and folding

    PubMed Central

    Xia, Kelin; Wei, Guo-Wei

    2014-01-01

    Proteins are the most important biomolecules for living organisms. The understanding of protein structure, function, dynamics and transport is one of most challenging tasks in biological science. In the present work, persistent homology is, for the first time, introduced for extracting molecular topological fingerprints (MTFs) based on the persistence of molecular topological invariants. MTFs are utilized for protein characterization, identification and classification. The method of slicing is proposed to track the geometric origin of protein topological invariants. Both all-atom and coarse-grained representations of MTFs are constructed. A new cutoff-like filtration is proposed to shed light on the optimal cutoff distance in elastic network models. Based on the correlation between protein compactness, rigidity and connectivity, we propose an accumulated bar length generated from persistent topological invariants for the quantitative modeling of protein flexibility. To this end, a correlation matrix based filtration is developed. This approach gives rise to an accurate prediction of the optimal characteristic distance used in protein B-factor analysis. Finally, MTFs are employed to characterize protein topological evolution during protein folding and quantitatively predict the protein folding stability. An excellent consistence between our persistent homology prediction and molecular dynamics simulation is found. This work reveals the topology-function relationship of proteins. PMID:24902720

  20. Switch-Loop Flexibility Affects Transport of Large Drugs by the Promiscuous AcrB Multidrug Efflux Transporter

    PubMed Central

    Cha, Hi-jea; Müller, Reinke T.

    2014-01-01

    Multidrug efflux transporters recognize a variety of structurally unrelated compounds for which the molecular basis is poorly understood. For the resistance nodulation and cell division (RND) inner membrane component AcrB of the AcrAB-TolC multidrug efflux system from Escherichia coli, drug binding occurs at the access and deep binding pockets. These two binding areas are separated by an 11-amino-acid-residue-containing switch loop whose conformational flexibility is speculated to be essential for drug binding and transport. A G616N substitution in the switch loop has a distinct and local effect on the orientation of the loop and on the ability to transport larger drugs. Here, we report a distinct phenotypical pattern of drug recognition and transport for the G616N variant, indicating that drug substrates with minimal projection areas of >70 Å2 are less well transported than other substrates. PMID:24914123

  1. Flexibility.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Humphrey, L. Dennis

    1981-01-01

    Flexibility is an important aspect of all sports and recreational activities. Flexibility can be developed and maintained by stretching exercises. Exercises designed to develop flexibility in ankle joints, knees, hips, and the lower back are presented. (JN)

  2. Flexible Docking of Proteins and "Drug-like" Ligands.

    PubMed

    Tang, Hai-Xu; Ye, Yu-Zhen; Ding, Da-Fu

    1998-01-01

    By using "tabu search" algorithm and Gehlhaar potential function, a new approach is presented for flexible docking of protein and its "drug-like" ligand has been developed. Computational test for this method with a set of 100 complexes has been performed, which indicated that the deviation of 89% of the predicted complex conformation was less than 0.25 nm. Compared with GOLD, a program of genetic algorithm, our method has high accuracy, low limit and short computation time. PMID:12168000

  3. Glycerol effects on protein flexibility: a tryptophan phosphorescence study.

    PubMed Central

    Gonnelli, M.; Strambini, G. B.

    1993-01-01

    In exploring the dynamic properties of protein structure, numerous studies have focussed on the dependence of structural fluctuations on solvent viscosity, but the emerging picture is still not well defined. Exploiting the sensitivity of the phosphorescence lifetime of tryptophan to the viscosity of its environment we have used the delayed emission as an intrinsic probe of protein flexibility and investigated the effects of glycerol as a viscogenic cosolvent. The phosphorescence lifetime of alcohol dehydrogenase, alkaline phosphatase, apoazurin and RNase T1, as a function of glycerol concentration was studied at various temperatures. Flexibility data, which refer to rather rigid sites of the globular structures, point out that, for some concentration ranges glycerol, effects on the rate of structural fluctuations of alcohol dehydrogenase and RNase T1 do not obey Kramers' a power law on solvent viscosity and emphasize that cosolvent-induced structural changes can be important, even for inner cores of the macromolecule. When the data is analyzed in terms of Kramers' model, for the temperature range 0-30 degrees C one derives frictional coefficients that are relatively large (0.6-0.7) for RNase T1, where the probe is in a flexible region near the surface of the macromolecule and much smaller, less than 0.2, for the rigid sites of the other proteins. For the latter sites the frictional coefficient rises sharply between 40 and 60 degrees C, and its value correlates weakly with molecular parameters such as the depth of burial or the rigidity of a particular site. For RNase T1, coupling to solvent viscosity increases at subzero temperatures, with the coefficient becoming as large as 1 at -20 degrees C. Temperature effects were interpreted by proposing that solvent damping of internal protein motions is particularly effective for low frequency, large amplitude, structural fluctuations yielding highly flexible conformers of the macromolecule. PMID:8369422

  4. A chemical chaperone induces inhomogeneous conformational changes in flexible proteins.

    PubMed

    Hamdane, Djemel; Velours, Christophe; Cornu, David; Nicaise, Magali; Lombard, Murielle; Fontecave, Marc

    2016-07-27

    Organic osmolytes also known as chemical chaperones are major cellular compounds that favor, by an unclear mechanism, protein's compaction and stabilization of the native state. Here, we have examined the chaperone effect of the naturally occurring trimethylamine N-oxide (TMAO) osmolyte on a loosely packed protein (LPP), known to be a highly flexible form, using an apoprotein mutant of the flavin-dependent RNA methyltransferase as a model. Thermal and chemical denaturation experiments showed that TMAO stabilizes the structural integrity of the apoprotein dramatically. The denaturation reaction is irreversible indicating that the stability of the apoprotein is under kinetic control. This result implies that the stabilization is due to a TMAO-induced reconfiguration of the flexible LPP state, which leads to conformational limitations of the apoprotein likely driven by favorable entropic contribution. Evidence for the conformational perturbation of the apoprotein had been obtained through several biophysical approaches notably analytical ultracentrifugation, circular dichroism, fluorescence spectroscopy, labelling experiments and proteolysis coupled to mass spectrometry. Unexpectedly, TMAO promotes an overall elongation or asymmetrical changes of the hydrodynamic shape of the apoprotein without alteration of the secondary structure. The modulation of the hydrodynamic properties of the protein is associated with diverse inhomogenous conformational changes: loss of the solvent accessible cavities resulting in a dried protein matrix; some side-chain residues initially buried become solvent exposed while some others become hidden. Consequently, the TMAO-induced protein state exhibits impaired capability in the flavin binding process. Our study suggests that the nature of protein conformational changes induced by the chemical chaperones may be specific to protein packing and plasticity. This could be an efficient mechanism by which the cell controls and finely tunes the

  5. Structure Prediction of the Second Extracellular Loop in G-Protein-Coupled Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Kmiecik, Sebastian; Jamroz, Michal; Kolinski, Michal

    2014-01-01

    G-protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) play key roles in living organisms. Therefore, it is important to determine their functional structures. The second extracellular loop (ECL2) is a functionally important region of GPCRs, which poses significant challenge for computational structure prediction methods. In this work, we evaluated CABS, a well-established protein modeling tool for predicting ECL2 structure in 13 GPCRs. The ECL2s (with between 13 and 34 residues) are predicted in an environment of other extracellular loops being fully flexible and the transmembrane domain fixed in its x-ray conformation. The modeling procedure used theoretical predictions of ECL2 secondary structure and experimental constraints on disulfide bridges. Our approach yielded ensembles of low-energy conformers and the most populated conformers that contained models close to the available x-ray structures. The level of similarity between the predicted models and x-ray structures is comparable to that of other state-of-the-art computational methods. Our results extend other studies by including newly crystallized GPCRs. PMID:24896119

  6. E Proteins and ID Proteins: Helix-Loop-Helix Partners in Development and Disease.

    PubMed

    Wang, Lan-Hsin; Baker, Nicholas E

    2015-11-01

    The basic Helix-Loop-Helix (bHLH) proteins represent a well-known class of transcriptional regulators. Many bHLH proteins act as heterodimers with members of a class of ubiquitous partners, the E proteins. A widely expressed class of inhibitory heterodimer partners-the Inhibitor of DNA-binding (ID) proteins-also exists. Genetic and molecular analyses in humans and in knockout mice implicate E proteins and ID proteins in a wide variety of diseases, belying the notion that they are non-specific partner proteins. Here, we explore relationships of E proteins and ID proteins to a variety of disease processes and highlight gaps in knowledge of disease mechanisms. PMID:26555048

  7. Conformational flexibility and protein folding: rigid structural fragments connected by flexible joints in subtilisin BPN.

    PubMed Central

    Honig, B; Ray, A; Levinthal, C

    1976-01-01

    Conformational energy calculations are used to analyze the interactions of structural substructures in subtilisin BPN. These substructures are kept fixed or "rigid" so that the only variables in the calculations are the backbone segments that separate them. The flexible segments are assumed to be free turns. Using this representation of the protein it is possible to predict both a likely order of events along a folding pathway and preferred modes of conformational changes of the native protein. Moreover, when the native structure has been perturbed by moving the substructures apart, it is possible to assess the range of interactions that return the protein, upon energy minimization, to its original conformation. These results suggest an approach to the folding problem based on the piecemeal formation of tertiary structure from smaller prefolded fragments. PMID:1064867

  8. Protein-based flexible whispering gallery mode resonators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yilmaz, Huzeyfe; Pena-Francesch, Abdon; Xu, Linhua; Shreiner, Robert; Jung, Huihun; Huang, Steven H.; Özdemir, Sahin K.; Demirel, Melik C.; Yang, Lan

    2016-02-01

    The idea of creating photonics tools for sensing, imaging and material characterization has long been pursued and many achievements have been made. Approaching the level of solutions provided by nature however is hindered by routine choice of materials. To this end recent years have witnessed a great effort to engineer mechanically flexible photonic devices using polymer substrates. On the other hand, biodegradability and biocompatibility still remains to be incorporated. Hence biomimetics holds the key to overcome the limitations of traditional materials in photonics design. Natural proteins such as sucker ring teeth (SRT) and silk for instance have remarkable mechanical and optical properties that exceed the endeavors of most synthetic and natural polymers. Here we demonstrate for the first time, toroidal whispering gallery mode resonators (WGMR) fabricated entirely from protein structures such as SRT of Loligo vulgaris (European squid) and silk from Bombyx mori. We provide here complete optical and material characterization of proteinaceous WGMRs, revealing high quality factors in microscale and enhancement of Raman signatures by a microcavity. We also present a most simple application of a WGMR as a natural protein add-drop filter, made of SRT protein. Our work shows that with protein-based materials, optical, mechanical and thermal properties can be devised at the molecular level and it lays the groundwork for future eco-friendly, flexible photonics device design.

  9. Free-energy calculations for semi-flexible macromolecules: Applications to DNA knotting and looping

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Giovan, Stefan M.; Scharein, Robert G.; Hanke, Andreas; Levene, Stephen D.

    2014-11-01

    We present a method to obtain numerically accurate values of configurational free energies of semiflexible macromolecular systems, based on the technique of thermodynamic integration combined with normal-mode analysis of a reference system subject to harmonic constraints. Compared with previous free-energy calculations that depend on a reference state, our approach introduces two innovations, namely, the use of internal coordinates to constrain the reference states and the ability to freely select these reference states. As a consequence, it is possible to explore systems that undergo substantially larger fluctuations than those considered in previous calculations, including semiflexible biopolymers having arbitrary ratios of contour length L to persistence length P. To validate the method, high accuracy is demonstrated for free energies of prime DNA knots with L/P = 20 and L/P = 40, corresponding to DNA lengths of 3000 and 6000 base pairs, respectively. We then apply the method to study the free-energy landscape for a model of a synaptic nucleoprotein complex containing a pair of looped domains, revealing a bifurcation in the location of optimal synapse (crossover) sites. This transition is relevant to target-site selection by DNA-binding proteins that occupy multiple DNA sites separated by large linear distances along the genome, a problem that arises naturally in gene regulation, DNA recombination, and the action of type-II topoisomerases.

  10. Free-energy calculations for semi-flexible macromolecules: applications to DNA knotting and looping.

    PubMed

    Giovan, Stefan M; Scharein, Robert G; Hanke, Andreas; Levene, Stephen D

    2014-11-01

    We present a method to obtain numerically accurate values of configurational free energies of semiflexible macromolecular systems, based on the technique of thermodynamic integration combined with normal-mode analysis of a reference system subject to harmonic constraints. Compared with previous free-energy calculations that depend on a reference state, our approach introduces two innovations, namely, the use of internal coordinates to constrain the reference states and the ability to freely select these reference states. As a consequence, it is possible to explore systems that undergo substantially larger fluctuations than those considered in previous calculations, including semiflexible biopolymers having arbitrary ratios of contour length L to persistence length P. To validate the method, high accuracy is demonstrated for free energies of prime DNA knots with L/P = 20 and L/P = 40, corresponding to DNA lengths of 3000 and 6000 base pairs, respectively. We then apply the method to study the free-energy landscape for a model of a synaptic nucleoprotein complex containing a pair of looped domains, revealing a bifurcation in the location of optimal synapse (crossover) sites. This transition is relevant to target-site selection by DNA-binding proteins that occupy multiple DNA sites separated by large linear distances along the genome, a problem that arises naturally in gene regulation, DNA recombination, and the action of type-II topoisomerases. PMID:25381542

  11. Free-energy calculations for semi-flexible macromolecules: Applications to DNA knotting and looping

    SciTech Connect

    Giovan, Stefan M.; Scharein, Robert G.; Hanke, Andreas; Levene, Stephen D.

    2014-11-07

    We present a method to obtain numerically accurate values of configurational free energies of semiflexible macromolecular systems, based on the technique of thermodynamic integration combined with normal-mode analysis of a reference system subject to harmonic constraints. Compared with previous free-energy calculations that depend on a reference state, our approach introduces two innovations, namely, the use of internal coordinates to constrain the reference states and the ability to freely select these reference states. As a consequence, it is possible to explore systems that undergo substantially larger fluctuations than those considered in previous calculations, including semiflexible biopolymers having arbitrary ratios of contour length L to persistence length P. To validate the method, high accuracy is demonstrated for free energies of prime DNA knots with L/P = 20 and L/P = 40, corresponding to DNA lengths of 3000 and 6000 base pairs, respectively. We then apply the method to study the free-energy landscape for a model of a synaptic nucleoprotein complex containing a pair of looped domains, revealing a bifurcation in the location of optimal synapse (crossover) sites. This transition is relevant to target-site selection by DNA-binding proteins that occupy multiple DNA sites separated by large linear distances along the genome, a problem that arises naturally in gene regulation, DNA recombination, and the action of type-II topoisomerases.

  12. Perturbation Approaches for Exploring Protein Binding Site Flexibility to Predict Transient Binding Pockets.

    PubMed

    Kokh, Daria B; Czodrowski, Paul; Rippmann, Friedrich; Wade, Rebecca C

    2016-08-01

    Simulations of the long-time scale motions of a ligand binding pocket in a protein may open up new perspectives for the design of compounds with steric or chemical properties differing from those of known binders. However, slow motions of proteins are difficult to access using standard molecular dynamics (MD) simulations and are thus usually neglected in computational drug design. Here, we introduce two nonequilibrium MD approaches to identify conformational changes of a binding site and detect transient pockets associated with these motions. The methods proposed are based on the rotamerically induced perturbation (RIP) MD approach, which employs perturbation of side-chain torsional motion for initiating large-scale protein movement. The first approach, Langevin-RIP (L-RIP), entails a series of short Langevin MD simulations, each starting with perturbation of one of the side-chains lining the binding site of interest. L-RIP provides extensive sampling of conformational changes of the binding site. In less than 1 ns of MD simulation with L-RIP, we observed distortions of the α-helix in the ATP binding site of HSP90 and flipping of the DFG loop in Src kinase. In the second approach, RIPlig, a perturbation is applied to a pseudoligand placed in different parts of a binding pocket, which enables flexible regions of the binding site to be identified in a small number of 10 ps MD simulations. The methods were evaluated for four test proteins displaying different types and degrees of binding site flexibility. Both methods reveal all transient pocket regions in less than a total of 10 ns of simulations, even though many of these regions remained closed in 100 ns conventional MD. The proposed methods provide computationally efficient tools to explore binding site flexibility and can aid in the functional characterization of protein pockets, and the identification of transient pockets for ligand design. PMID:27399277

  13. Enhanced prediction of conformational flexibility and phosphorylation in proteins.

    PubMed

    Swaminathan, Karthikeyan; Adamczak, Rafal; Porollo, Aleksey; Meller, Jarosław

    2010-01-01

    Many sequence-based predictors of structural and functional properties of proteins have been developed in the past. In this study, we developed new methods for predicting measures of conformational flexibility in proteins, including X-ray structure-derived temperature (B-) factors and the variance within NMR structural ensemble, as effectively measured by the solvent accessibility standard deviations (SASDs). We further tested whether these predicted measures of conformational flexibility in crystal lattices and solution, respectively, can be used to improve the prediction of phosphorylation in proteins. The latter is an example of a common post-translational modification that modulates protein function, e.g., by affecting interactions and conformational flexibility of phosphorylated sites. Using robust epsilon-insensitive support vector regression (ε-SVR) models, we assessed two specific representations of protein sequences: one based on the position-specific scoring matrices (PSSMs) derived from multiple sequence alignments, and an augmented representation that incorporates real-valued solvent accessibility and secondary structure predictions (RSA/SS) as additional measures of local structural propensities. We showed that a combination of PSSMs and real-valued SS/RSA predictions provides systematic improvements in the accuracy of both B-factors and SASD prediction. These intermediate predictions were subsequently combined into an enhanced predictor of phosphorylation that was shown to significantly outperform methods based on PSSM alone. We would like to stress that to the best of our knowledge, this is the first example of using predicted from sequence NMR structure-based measures of conformational flexibility in solution for the prediction of other properties of proteins. Phosphorylation prediction methods typically employ a two-class classification approach with the limitation that the set of negative examples used for training may include some sites that are

  14. Inhibition of a type III secretion system by the deletion of a short loop in one of its membrane proteins

    SciTech Connect

    Meshcheryakov, Vladimir A.; Kitao, Akio; Matsunami, Hideyuki; Samatey, Fadel A.

    2013-05-01

    Crystal structures of the cytoplasmic domain of FlhB from S. typhimurium and A. aeolicus were solved at 2.45 and 2.55 Å resolution, respectively. The deletion of a short loop in the cytoplasmic domain of Salmonella FlhB completely abolishes secretion by the type III secretion system. A molecular-dynamics simulation shows that the deletion of the loop affects the flexibility of a linker between the transmembrane and cytoplasmic domains of FlhB. The membrane protein FlhB is a highly conserved component of the flagellar secretion system. It is composed of an N-terminal transmembrane domain and a C-terminal cytoplasmic domain (FlhB{sub C}). Here, the crystal structures of FlhB{sub C} from Salmonella typhimurium and Aquifex aeolicus are described at 2.45 and 2.55 Å resolution, respectively. These flagellar FlhB{sub C} structures are similar to those of paralogues from the needle type III secretion system, with the major difference being in a linker that connects the transmembrane and cytoplasmic domains of FlhB. It was found that deletion of a short flexible loop in a globular part of Salmonella FlhB{sub C} leads to complete inhibition of secretion by the flagellar secretion system. Molecular-dynamics calculations demonstrate that the linker region is the most flexible part of FlhB{sub C} and that the deletion of the loop reduces this flexibility. These results are in good agreement with previous studies showing the importance of the linker in the function of FlhB and provide new insight into the relationship between the different parts of the FlhB{sub C} molecule.

  15. A Web Interface for Easy Flexible Protein-Protein Docking with ATTRACT

    PubMed Central

    de Vries, Sjoerd J.; Schindler, Christina E.M.; Chauvot de Beauchêne, Isaure; Zacharias, Martin

    2015-01-01

    Protein-protein docking programs can give valuable insights into the structure of protein complexes in the absence of an experimental complex structure. Web interfaces can facilitate the use of docking programs by structural biologists. Here, we present an easy web interface for protein-protein docking with the ATTRACT program. While aimed at nonexpert users, the web interface still covers a considerable range of docking applications. The web interface supports systematic rigid-body protein docking with the ATTRACT coarse-grained force field, as well as various kinds of protein flexibility. The execution of a docking protocol takes up to a few hours on a standard desktop computer. PMID:25650913

  16. Exploiting protein flexibility to predict the location of allosteric sites

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Allostery is one of the most powerful and common ways of regulation of protein activity. However, for most allosteric proteins identified to date the mechanistic details of allosteric modulation are not yet well understood. Uncovering common mechanistic patterns underlying allostery would allow not only a better academic understanding of the phenomena, but it would also streamline the design of novel therapeutic solutions. This relatively unexplored therapeutic potential and the putative advantages of allosteric drugs over classical active-site inhibitors fuel the attention allosteric-drug research is receiving at present. A first step to harness the regulatory potential and versatility of allosteric sites, in the context of drug-discovery and design, would be to detect or predict their presence and location. In this article, we describe a simple computational approach, based on the effect allosteric ligands exert on protein flexibility upon binding, to predict the existence and position of allosteric sites on a given protein structure. Results By querying the literature and a recently available database of allosteric sites, we gathered 213 allosteric proteins with structural information that we further filtered into a non-redundant set of 91 proteins. We performed normal-mode analysis and observed significant changes in protein flexibility upon allosteric-ligand binding in 70% of the cases. These results agree with the current view that allosteric mechanisms are in many cases governed by changes in protein dynamics caused by ligand binding. Furthermore, we implemented an approach that achieves 65% positive predictive value in identifying allosteric sites within the set of predicted cavities of a protein (stricter parameters set, 0.22 sensitivity), by combining the current analysis on dynamics with previous results on structural conservation of allosteric sites. We also analyzed four biological examples in detail, revealing that this simple coarse

  17. Protein stabilizer, NDSB-195, enhances the dynamics of the β4 -α2 loop of ubiquitin.

    PubMed

    Wang, Haimei; Hosoda, Kazuo; Ishii, Takeshi; Arai, Ryo; Kohno, Toshiyuki; Terawaki, Shin-Ichi; Wakamatsu, Kaori

    2016-03-01

    Non-detergent sulfobetaines (NDSBs) are a new group of small, synthetic protein stabilizers, which have advantages over classical compatible osmolytes, such as polyol, amines, and amino acids: they do not increase solution viscosity, unlike polyols, and they are zwitterionic at all pH ranges, unlike amines and amino acids. NDSBs also facilitate the crystallization and refolding of proteins. The mechanism whereby NDSBs exhibit such activities, however, remains elusive. To gain insight into this mechanism, we studied, using nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR), the effects of dimethylethylammonium propane sulfonate (NDSB-195) on the dynamics of ubiquitin, on which a wealth of information has been accumulated. By analyzing the line width of amide proton resonances and the transverse relaxation rates of nitrogen atoms, we found that NDSB-195 enhances the microsecond-millisecond dynamics of a β4 -α2 loop of ubiquitin. Although those compounds that enhance protein dynamics are generally considered to destabilize protein molecules, NDSB-195 enhanced the stability of ubiquitin against guanidium chloride denaturation. Thus, the simultaneous enhancement of stability and flexibility by a single compound can be attained. PMID:26856691

  18. Flexible Linker Modulates Glycosaminoglycan Affinity of Decorin Binding Protein A.

    PubMed

    Morgan, Ashli; Sepuru, Krishna Mohan; Feng, Wei; Rajarathnam, Krishna; Wang, Xu

    2015-08-18

    Decorin binding protein A (DBPA) is a glycosaminoglycan (GAG)-binding adhesin found on the surface of the bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi (B. burgdorferi), the causative agent of Lyme disease. DBPA facilitates bacterial adherence to extracellular matrices of human tissues and is crucial during the early stage of the infection process. Interestingly, DBPA from different strains (B31, N40, and PBr) show significant differences in GAG affinities, but the structural basis for the differences is not clear. In this study, we show that GAG affinity of N40 DBPA is modulated in part by flexible segments that control access to the GAG binding site, such that shortening of the linker leads to higher GAG affinity when analyzed using ELISA, gel mobility shift assay, solution NMR, and isothermal titration calorimetry. Our observation that GAG affinity differences among different B. burgdorferi strains can be attributed to a flexible linker domain regulating access to the GAG-binding domain is novel. It also provides a rare example of how neutral amino acids and dynamic segments in GAG binding proteins can have a large influence on GAG affinity and provides insights into why the number of basic amino acids in the GAG-binding site may not be the only factor determining GAG affinity of proteins. PMID:26223367

  19. Protein flexibility in virtual screening: the BACE-1 case study.

    PubMed

    Cosconati, Sandro; Marinelli, Luciana; Di Leva, Francesco Saverio; La Pietra, Valeria; De Simone, Angela; Mancini, Francesca; Andrisano, Vincenza; Novellino, Ettore; Goodsell, David S; Olson, Arthur J

    2012-10-22

    Simulating protein flexibility is a major issue in the docking-based drug-design process for which a single methodological solution does not exist. In our search of new anti-Alzheimer ligands, we were faced with the challenge of including receptor plasticity in a virtual screening campaign aimed at finding new β-secretase inhibitors. To this aim, we incorporated protein flexibility in our simulations by using an ensemble of static X-ray enzyme structures to screen the National Cancer Institute database. A unified description of the protein motion was also generated by computing and combining a set of grid maps using an energy weighting scheme. Such a description was used in an energy-weighted virtual screening experiment on the same molecular database. Assessment of the enrichment factors from these two virtual screening approaches demonstrated comparable predictive powers, with the energy-weighted method being faster than the ensemble method. The in vitro evaluation demonstrated that out of the 32 tested ligands, 17 featured the predicted enzyme inhibiting property. Such an impressive success rate (53.1%) demonstrates the enhanced power of the two methodologies and suggests that energy-weighted virtual screening is a more than valid alternative to ensemble virtual screening given its reduced computational demands and comparable performance. PMID:23005250

  20. Matt: local flexibility aids protein multiple structure alignment.

    PubMed

    Menke, Matthew; Berger, Bonnie; Cowen, Lenore

    2008-01-01

    Even when there is agreement on what measure a protein multiple structure alignment should be optimizing, finding the optimal alignment is computationally prohibitive. One approach used by many previous methods is aligned fragment pair chaining, where short structural fragments from all the proteins are aligned against each other optimally, and the final alignment chains these together in geometrically consistent ways. Ye and Godzik have recently suggested that adding geometric flexibility may help better model protein structures in a variety of contexts. We introduce the program Matt (Multiple Alignment with Translations and Twists), an aligned fragment pair chaining algorithm that, in intermediate steps, allows local flexibility between fragments: small translations and rotations are temporarily allowed to bring sets of aligned fragments closer, even if they are physically impossible under rigid body transformations. After a dynamic programming assembly guided by these "bent" alignments, geometric consistency is restored in the final step before the alignment is output. Matt is tested against other recent multiple protein structure alignment programs on the popular Homstrad and SABmark benchmark datasets. Matt's global performance is competitive with the other programs on Homstrad, but outperforms the other programs on SABmark, a benchmark of multiple structure alignments of proteins with more distant homology. On both datasets, Matt demonstrates an ability to better align the ends of alpha-helices and beta-strands, an important characteristic of any structure alignment program intended to help construct a structural template library for threading approaches to the inverse protein-folding problem. The related question of whether Matt alignments can be used to distinguish distantly homologous structure pairs from pairs of proteins that are not homologous is also considered. For this purpose, a p-value score based on the length of the common core and average root

  1. Design and characterization of structured protein linkers with differing flexibilities

    PubMed Central

    Klein, Joshua S.; Jiang, Siduo; Galimidi, Rachel P.; Keeffe, Jennifer R.; Bjorkman, Pamela J.

    2014-01-01

    Engineered fusion proteins containing two or more functional polypeptides joined by a peptide or protein linker are important for many fields of biological research. The separation distance between functional units can impact epitope access and the ability to bind with avidity; thus the availability of a variety of linkers with different lengths and degrees of rigidity would be valuable for protein design efforts. Here, we report a series of designed structured protein linkers incorporating naturally occurring protein domains and compare their properties to commonly used Gly4Ser repeat linkers. When incorporated into the hinge region of an immunoglobulin G (IgG) molecule, flexible Gly4Ser repeats did not result in detectable extensions of the IgG antigen-binding domains, in contrast to linkers including more rigid domains such as β2-microglobulin, Zn-α2-glycoprotein and tetratricopeptide repeats. This study adds an additional set of linkers with varying lengths and rigidities to the available linker repertoire, which may be useful for the construction of antibodies with enhanced binding properties or other fusion proteins. PMID:25301959

  2. Can cofactor-binding sites in proteins be flexible? Desulfovibrio desulfuricans flavodoxin binds FMN dimer.

    PubMed

    Muralidhara, B K; Wittung-Stafshede, Pernilla

    2003-11-11

    Flavodoxins catalyze redox reactions using the isoalloxazine moiety of the flavin mononucleotide (FMN) cofactor stacked between two aromatic residues located in two peptide loops. At high FMN concentrations that favor stacked FMN dimers in solution, isothermal titration calorimetric studies show that these dimers bind strongly to apo-flavodoxin from Desulfovibrio desulfuricans (30 degrees C, 20 mM Hepes, pH 7, K(D) = 5.8 microM). Upon increasing the temperature so the FMN dimers dissociate (as shown by (1)H NMR), only one-to-one (FMN-to-protein) binding is observed. Calorimetric titrations result in one-to-one binding also in the presence of phosphate or sulfate (30 degrees C, 13 mM anion, pH 7, K(D) = 0.4 microM). FMN remains dimeric in the presence of phosphate and sulfate, suggesting that specific binding of a divalent anion to the phosphate-binding site triggers ordering of the peptide loops so only one isoalloxazine can fit. Although the physiological relevance of FMN and other nucleotides as dimers has not been explored, our study shows that high-affinity binding to proteins of such dimers can occur in vitro. This emphasizes that the cofactor-binding site in flavodoxin is more flexible than previously expected. PMID:14596623

  3. Structure-Based Druggability Assessment of the Mammalian Structural Proteome with Inclusion of Light Protein Flexibility

    PubMed Central

    Loving, Kathryn A.; Lin, Andy; Cheng, Alan C.

    2014-01-01

    Advances reported over the last few years and the increasing availability of protein crystal structure data have greatly improved structure-based druggability approaches. However, in practice, nearly all druggability estimation methods are applied to protein crystal structures as rigid proteins, with protein flexibility often not directly addressed. The inclusion of protein flexibility is important in correctly identifying the druggability of pockets that would be missed by methods based solely on the rigid crystal structure. These include cryptic pockets and flexible pockets often found at protein-protein interaction interfaces. Here, we apply an approach that uses protein modeling in concert with druggability estimation to account for light protein backbone movement and protein side-chain flexibility in protein binding sites. We assess the advantages and limitations of this approach on widely-used protein druggability sets. Applying the approach to all mammalian protein crystal structures in the PDB results in identification of 69 proteins with potential druggable cryptic pockets. PMID:25079060

  4. Flexibility and small pockets at protein–protein interfaces: New insights into druggability

    PubMed Central

    Jubb, Harry; Blundell, Tom L.; Ascher, David B.

    2015-01-01

    The transient assembly of multiprotein complexes mediates many aspects of cell regulation and signalling in living organisms. Modulation of the formation of these complexes through targeting protein–protein interfaces can offer greater selectivity than the inhibition of protein kinases, proteases or other post-translational regulatory enzymes using substrate, co-factor or transition state mimetics. However, capitalising on protein–protein interaction interfaces as drug targets has been hindered by the nature of interfaces that tend to offer binding sites lacking the well-defined large cavities of classical drug targets. In this review we posit that interfaces formed by concerted folding and binding (disorder-to-order transitions on binding) of one partner and other examples of interfaces where a protein partner is bound through a continuous epitope from a surface-exposed helix, flexible loop or chain extension may be more tractable for the development of “orthosteric”, competitive chemical modulators; these interfaces tend to offer small-volume but deep pockets and/or larger grooves that may be bound tightly by small chemical entities. We discuss examples of such protein–protein interaction interfaces for which successful chemical modulators are being developed. PMID:25662442

  5. A Structure-free Method for Quantifying Conformational Flexibility in proteins

    PubMed Central

    Burger, Virginia M.; Arenas, Daniel J.; Stultz, Collin M.

    2016-01-01

    All proteins sample a range of conformations at physiologic temperatures and this inherent flexibility enables them to carry out their prescribed functions. A comprehensive understanding of protein function therefore entails a characterization of protein flexibility. Here we describe a novel approach for quantifying a protein’s flexibility in solution using small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) data. The method calculates an effective entropy that quantifies the diversity of radii of gyration that a protein can adopt in solution and does not require the explicit generation of structural ensembles to garner insights into protein flexibility. Application of this structure-free approach to over 200 experimental datasets demonstrates that the methodology can quantify a protein’s disorder as well as the effects of ligand binding on protein flexibility. Such quantitative descriptions of protein flexibility form the basis of a rigorous taxonomy for the description and classification of protein structure. PMID:27358108

  6. Protein flexibility is required for vesicle tethering at the Golgi

    PubMed Central

    Cheung, Pak-yan Patricia; Limouse, Charles; Mabuchi, Hideo; Pfeffer, Suzanne R

    2015-01-01

    The Golgi is decorated with coiled-coil proteins that may extend long distances to help vesicles find their targets. GCC185 is a trans Golgi-associated protein that captures vesicles inbound from late endosomes. Although predicted to be relatively rigid and highly extended, we show that flexibility in a central region is required for GCC185’s ability to function in a vesicle tethering cycle. Proximity ligation experiments show that that GCC185’s N-and C-termini are within <40 nm of each other on the Golgi. In physiological buffers without fixatives, atomic force microscopy reveals that GCC185 is shorter than predicted, and its flexibility is due to a central bubble that represents local unwinding of specific sequences. Moreover, 85% of the N-termini are splayed, and the splayed N-terminus can capture transport vesicles in vitro. These unexpected features support a model in which GCC185 collapses onto the Golgi surface, perhaps by binding to Rab GTPases, to mediate vesicle tethering. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.12790.001 PMID:26653856

  7. Multiple Protein Interactions Involving Proposed Extracellular Loop Domains of the Tight Junction Protein Occludin

    PubMed Central

    Nusrat, Asma; Brown, G. Thomas; Tom, Jeffrey; Drake, Alex; Bui, Tam T.T.; Quan, Cliff; Mrsny, Randall J.

    2005-01-01

    Occludin is a tetraspan integral membrane protein in epithelial and endothelial tight junction (TJ) structures that is projected to have two extracellular loops. We have used peptides emulating central regions of human occludin's first and second loops, termed O-A:101–121 and O-B:210–228, respectively, to examine potential molecular interactions between these two regions of occludin and other TJ proteins. A superficial biophysical assessment of A:101–121 and O-B:210–228 showed them to have dissimilar solution conformation characteristics. Although O-A:101–121 failed to strongly interact with protein components of the human epithelial intestinal cell line T84, O-B:210–228 selectively associated with occludin, claudin-one and the junctional adhesion molecule (JAM)-A. Further, the presence of O-B:210–228, but not O-A:101–121, impeded the recovery of functional TJ structures. A scrambled peptide sequences of O-B:210–228 failed to influence TJ assembly. These studies demonstrate distinct properties for these two extracellular segments of the occludin protein and provide an improved understanding of how specific domains of occludin may interact with proteins present at TJ structures. PMID:15659655

  8. Inhibition of a type III secretion system by the deletion of a short loop in one of its membrane proteins.

    PubMed

    Meshcheryakov, Vladimir A; Kitao, Akio; Matsunami, Hideyuki; Samatey, Fadel A

    2013-05-01

    The membrane protein FlhB is a highly conserved component of the flagellar secretion system. It is composed of an N-terminal transmembrane domain and a C-terminal cytoplasmic domain (FlhBC). Here, the crystal structures of FlhBC from Salmonella typhimurium and Aquifex aeolicus are described at 2.45 and 2.55 Å resolution, respectively. These flagellar FlhBC structures are similar to those of paralogues from the needle type III secretion system, with the major difference being in a linker that connects the transmembrane and cytoplasmic domains of FlhB. It was found that deletion of a short flexible loop in a globular part of Salmonella FlhBC leads to complete inhibition of secretion by the flagellar secretion system. Molecular-dynamics calculations demonstrate that the linker region is the most flexible part of FlhBC and that the deletion of the loop reduces this flexibility. These results are in good agreement with previous studies showing the importance of the linker in the function of FlhB and provide new insight into the relationship between the different parts of the FlhBC molecule. PMID:23633590

  9. Flexible Molybdenum Electrodes towards Designing Affinity Based Protein Biosensors.

    PubMed

    Kamakoti, Vikramshankar; Panneer Selvam, Anjan; Radha Shanmugam, Nandhinee; Muthukumar, Sriram; Prasad, Shalini

    2016-01-01

    Molybdenum electrode based flexible biosensor on porous polyamide substrates has been fabricated and tested for its functionality as a protein affinity based biosensor. The biosensor performance was evaluated using a key cardiac biomarker; cardiac Troponin-I (cTnI). Molybdenum is a transition metal and demonstrates electrochemical behavior upon interaction with an electrolyte. We have leveraged this property of molybdenum for designing an affinity based biosensor using electrochemical impedance spectroscopy. We have evaluated the feasibility of detection of cTnI in phosphate-buffered saline (PBS) and human serum (HS) by measuring impedance changes over a frequency window from 100 mHz to 1 MHz. Increasing changes to the measured impedance was correlated to the increased dose of cTnI molecules binding to the cTnI antibody functionalized molybdenum surface. We achieved cTnI detection limit of 10 pg/mL in PBS and 1 ng/mL in HS medium. The use of flexible substrates for designing the biosensor demonstrates promise for integration with a large-scale batch manufacturing process. PMID:27438863

  10. Protein flexibility oriented virtual screening strategy for JAK2 inhibitors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xiong, Xiao; Yuan, Haoliang; Zhang, Yanmin; Xu, Jinxing; Ran, Ting; Liu, Haichun; Lu, Shuai; Xu, Anyang; Li, Hongmei; Jiang, Yulei; Lu, Tao; Chen, Yadong

    2015-10-01

    JAK2 has been considered as an important target for the development of anti-cancer agents. In this study, considering the flexibility of its binding site, an integrated strategy combining Bayesian categorization modeling and ensemble docking was established. Four representative crystal structures were selected for ensemble docking by the hierarchical clustering of 34 crystal structures according to the volume overlaps of each structure. A retrospective virtual screening was performed to validate this integrated strategy. As the preliminary filtration, the Bayesian model enhanced the ratio of actives by reducing the large amount of decoys. After docking the remaining compounds, the comparison between the ensemble and individual results showed that the enrichment of ensemble docking improved significantly. The results of analysis on conformational changes of two top ranked active inhibitors when docking into different proteins indicated that compounds with flexible conformations well fitted the different binding site shapes were more likely to be potential JAK2 inhibitors. This high efficient strategy will facilitate virtual screening for novel JAK2 inhibitors and could be even applied in drug discovery against other targets.

  11. The Role of Active Site Flexible Loops in Catalysis and of Zinc in Conformational Stability of Bacillus cereus 569/H/9 β-Lactamase.

    PubMed

    Montagner, Caroline; Nigen, Michaël; Jacquin, Olivier; Willet, Nicolas; Dumoulin, Mireille; Karsisiotis, Andreas Ioannis; Roberts, Gordon C K; Damblon, Christian; Redfield, Christina; Matagne, André

    2016-07-29

    Metallo-β-lactamases catalyze the hydrolysis of most β-lactam antibiotics and hence represent a major clinical concern. The development of inhibitors for these enzymes is complicated by the diversity and flexibility of their substrate-binding sites, motivating research into their structure and function. In this study, we examined the conformational properties of the Bacillus cereus β-lactamase II in the presence of chemical denaturants using a variety of biochemical and biophysical techniques. The apoenzyme was found to unfold cooperatively, with a Gibbs free energy of stabilization (ΔG(0)) of 32 ± 2 kJ·mol(-1) For holoBcII, a first non-cooperative transition leads to multiple interconverting native-like states, in which both zinc atoms remain bound in an apparently unaltered active site, and the protein displays a well organized compact hydrophobic core with structural changes confined to the enzyme surface, but with no catalytic activity. Two-dimensional NMR data revealed that the loss of activity occurs concomitantly with perturbations in two loops that border the enzyme active site. A second cooperative transition, corresponding to global unfolding, is observed at higher denaturant concentrations, with ΔG(0) value of 65 ± 1.4 kJ·mol(-1) These combined data highlight the importance of the two zinc ions in maintaining structure as well as a relatively well defined conformation for both active site loops to maintain enzymatic activity. PMID:27235401

  12. Flexibility damps macromolecular crowding effects on protein folding dynamics: Application to the murine prion protein (121-231)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bergasa-Caceres, Fernando; Rabitz, Herschel A.

    2014-01-01

    A model of protein folding kinetics is applied to study the combined effects of protein flexibility and macromolecular crowding on protein folding rate and stability. It is found that the increase in stability and folding rate promoted by macromolecular crowding is damped for proteins with highly flexible native structures. The model is applied to the folding dynamics of the murine prion protein (121-231). It is found that the high flexibility of the native isoform of the murine prion protein (121-231) reduces the effects of macromolecular crowding on its folding dynamics. The relevance of these findings for the pathogenic mechanism are discussed.

  13. Kinks, loops, and protein folding, with protein A as an example

    SciTech Connect

    Krokhotin, Andrey; Liwo, Adam; Maisuradze, Gia G. Scheraga, Harold A.; Niemi, Antti J.

    2014-01-14

    The dynamics and energetics of formation of loops in the 46-residue N-terminal fragment of the B-domain of staphylococcal protein A has been studied. Numerical simulations have been performed using coarse-grained molecular dynamics with the united-residue (UNRES) force field. The results have been analyzed in terms of a kink (heteroclinic standing wave solution) of a generalized discrete nonlinear Schrödinger (DNLS) equation. In the case of proteins, the DNLS equation arises from a C{sup α}-trace-based energy function. Three individual kink profiles were identified in the experimental three-α-helix structure of protein A, in the range of the Glu16-Asn29, Leu20-Asn29, and Gln33-Asn44 residues, respectively; these correspond to two loops in the native structure. UNRES simulations were started from the full right-handed α-helix to obtain a clear picture of kink formation, which would otherwise be blurred by helix formation. All three kinks emerged during coarse-grained simulations. It was found that the formation of each is accompanied by a local free energy increase; this is expressed as the change of UNRES energy which has the physical sense of the potential of mean force of a polypeptide chain. The increase is about 7 kcal/mol. This value can thus be considered as the free energy barrier to kink formation in full α-helical segments of polypeptide chains. During the simulations, the kinks emerge, disappear, propagate, and annihilate each other many times. It was found that the formation of a kink is initiated by an abrupt change in the orientation of a pair of consecutive side chains in the loop region. This resembles the formation of a Bloch wall along a spin chain, where the C{sup α} backbone corresponds to the chain, and the amino acid side chains are interpreted as the spin variables. This observation suggests that nearest-neighbor side chain–side chain interactions are responsible for initiation of loop formation. It was also found that the individual

  14. Kinks, loops, and protein folding, with protein A as an example

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Krokhotin, Andrey; Liwo, Adam; Maisuradze, Gia G.; Niemi, Antti J.; Scheraga, Harold A.

    2014-01-01

    The dynamics and energetics of formation of loops in the 46-residue N-terminal fragment of the B-domain of staphylococcal protein A has been studied. Numerical simulations have been performed using coarse-grained molecular dynamics with the united-residue (UNRES) force field. The results have been analyzed in terms of a kink (heteroclinic standing wave solution) of a generalized discrete nonlinear Schrödinger (DNLS) equation. In the case of proteins, the DNLS equation arises from a Cα-trace-based energy function. Three individual kink profiles were identified in the experimental three-α-helix structure of protein A, in the range of the Glu16-Asn29, Leu20-Asn29, and Gln33-Asn44 residues, respectively; these correspond to two loops in the native structure. UNRES simulations were started from the full right-handed α-helix to obtain a clear picture of kink formation, which would otherwise be blurred by helix formation. All three kinks emerged during coarse-grained simulations. It was found that the formation of each is accompanied by a local free energy increase; this is expressed as the change of UNRES energy which has the physical sense of the potential of mean force of a polypeptide chain. The increase is about 7 kcal/mol. This value can thus be considered as the free energy barrier to kink formation in full α-helical segments of polypeptide chains. During the simulations, the kinks emerge, disappear, propagate, and annihilate each other many times. It was found that the formation of a kink is initiated by an abrupt change in the orientation of a pair of consecutive side chains in the loop region. This resembles the formation of a Bloch wall along a spin chain, where the Cα backbone corresponds to the chain, and the amino acid side chains are interpreted as the spin variables. This observation suggests that nearest-neighbor side chain-side chain interactions are responsible for initiation of loop formation. It was also found that the individual kinks are

  15. Coupled rotor-flexible fuselage vibration reduction using open loop higher harmonic control

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Papavassiliou, I.; Friedmann, P. P.; Venkatesan, C.

    1991-01-01

    A fundamental study of vibration prediction and vibration reduction in helicopters using active controls was performed. The nonlinear equations of motion for a coupled rotor/flexible fuselage system have been derived using computer algebra on a special purpose symbolic computer facility. The trim state and vibratory response of the helicopter are obtained in a single pass by applying the harmonic balance technique and simultaneously satisfying the trim and the vibratory response of the helicopter for all rotor and fuselage degrees of freedom. The influence of the fuselage flexibility on the vibratory response is studied. It is shown that the conventional single frequency higher harmonic control is capable of reducing either the hub loads or only the fuselage vibrations but not both simultaneously. It is demonstrated that for simultaneous reduction of hub shears and fuselae vibrations a new scheme called multiple higher harmonic control is required.

  16. Improving protein-ligand docking with flexible interfacial water molecules using SWRosettaLigand.

    PubMed

    Li, Linqing; Xu, Weiwei; Lü, Qiang

    2015-11-01

    Computational protein-ligand docking is of great importance in drug discovery and design. Conformational changes greatly affect the results of protein-ligand docking, especially when water molecules take part in mediating protein ligand interactions or when large conformational changes are observed in the receptor backbone interface. We have developed an improved protocol, SWRosettaLigand, based on the RosettaLigand protocol. This approach incorporates the flexibility of interfacial water molecules and modeling of the interface of the receptor into the original RosettaLigand. In a coarse sampling step, SWRosettaLigand pre-optimizes the initial position of the water molecules, docks the ligand to the receptor with explicit water molecules, and minimizes the predicted structure with water molecules. The receptor backbone interface is treated as a loop and perturbed and refined by kinematic closure, or cyclic coordinate descent algorithm, with the presence of the ligand. In two cross-docking test sets, it was identified that for 8 out of 14, and 16 out of 22, test instances, the top-ranked structures by SWRosettaLigand achieved better accuracy than other protocols. PMID:26515196

  17. Modal domain fiber optic sensor for closed loop vibration control of a flexible beam

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cox, D.; Thomas, D.; Reichard, K.; Lindner, D.; Claus, R. O.

    1990-01-01

    The use of a modal domain sensor in a vibration control experiment is described. An optical fiber is bonded along the length of a flexible beam. A control signal derived from the output of the modal domain sensor is used to suppress vibrations induced in the beam. A distributed effect model for the modal domain sensor is developed and combined with models of the beam and actuator dynamics to produce a system suitable for control design.

  18. Increasing Sequence Diversity with Flexible Backbone Protein Design: The Complete Redesign of a Protein Hydrophobic Core

    SciTech Connect

    Murphy, Grant S.; Mills, Jeffrey L.; Miley, Michael J.; Machius, Mischa; Szyperski, Thomas; Kuhlman, Brian

    2015-10-15

    Protein design tests our understanding of protein stability and structure. Successful design methods should allow the exploration of sequence space not found in nature. However, when redesigning naturally occurring protein structures, most fixed backbone design algorithms return amino acid sequences that share strong sequence identity with wild-type sequences, especially in the protein core. This behavior places a restriction on functional space that can be explored and is not consistent with observations from nature, where sequences of low identity have similar structures. Here, we allow backbone flexibility during design to mutate every position in the core (38 residues) of a four-helix bundle protein. Only small perturbations to the backbone, 12 {angstrom}, were needed to entirely mutate the core. The redesigned protein, DRNN, is exceptionally stable (melting point >140C). An NMR and X-ray crystal structure show that the side chains and backbone were accurately modeled (all-atom RMSD = 1.3 {angstrom}).

  19. A flexible loop-type flow modulator for comprehensive two-dimensional gas chromatography.

    PubMed

    Tranchida, Peter Quinto; Purcaro, Giorgia; Visco, Alessandro; Conte, Lanfranco; Dugo, Paola; Dawes, Peter; Mondello, Luigi

    2011-05-27

    The present investigation is focused on a simple flow modulator (FM), for comprehensive two-dimensional gas chromatography (GC×GC). The interface is stable at high temperatures, and consists of a metallic disc (located inside the GC oven) with seven ports, which are connected to an auxiliary pressure source via two branches, to the first and second dimension, to a waste branch (linked to a needle valve) and to an exchangeable modulation loop (2 ports). The ports are connected via micro-channels, etched on one of the inner surfaces of the disc. Modulation is achieved using a two-way electrovalve, connected on one side to the additional pressure source, and to the two metal branches, on the other. An FM enantio-GC×polar-GC method (using a flame ionization detector) was optimized (a 40-μL loop was employed), for the analysis of essential oils. As an example, an application on spearmint oil is shown; the method herein proposed was subjected to validation. Finally, an FM GC×GC diesel experiment was carried out, using an apolar-polar column combination, to demonstrate the effectiveness of the modulator in the analysis of a totally different sample-type. PMID:21256493

  20. Flexible Airspace Management (FAM) Research 2010 Human-in-the-Loop Simulation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lee, Paul U.; Brasil, Connie; Homola, Jeffrey; Kessell, Angela; Prevot, Thomas; Smith, Nancy

    2011-01-01

    A human-in-the-Ioop (HITL) simulation was conducted to assess potential user and system benefits of Flexible Airspace Management (FAM) concept, as well as designing role definitions, procedures, and tools to support the FAM operations in the mid-term High Altitude Airspace (HAA) environment. The study evaluated the benefits and feasibility of flexible airspace reconfiguration in response to traffic overload caused by weather deviations, and compared them to those in a baseline condition without the airspace reconfiguration. The test airspace consisted of either four sectors in one Area of Specialization or seven sectors across two Areas. The test airspace was assumed to be at or above FL340 and fully equipped Vvith data communications (Data Comm). Other assumptions were consistent with those of the HAA concept. Overall, results showed that FAM operations with multiple Traffic Management Coordinators, Area Supervisors, and controllers worked remarkably well. The results showed both user and system benefits, some of which include the increased throughput, decreased flight distance, more manageable sector loads, and better utilized airspace. Also, the roles, procedures, airspace designs, and tools were all very well received. Airspace configuration options that resulted from a combination of algorithm-generated airspace configurations with manual modifications were well acceptec and posed little difficuIty and/or workload during airspace reconfiguration process. The results suggest a positive impact of FAM operations in HAA. Further investigation would be needed to evaluate if the benefits and feasibility would extend in either non-HAA or mixed equipage environment.

  1. Pilot modeling and closed-loop analysis of flexible aircraft in the pitch tracking task

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schmidt, D. K.

    1983-01-01

    The issue addressed in the appropriate modeling technique for pilot vehicle analysis of large flexible aircraft, when the frequency separation between the rigid-body mode and the dynamic aeroelastic modes is reduced. This situation was shown to have significant effects on pitch-tracking performance and subjective rating of the task, obtained via fixed base simulation. Further, the dynamics in these cases are not well modeled with a rigid-body-like model obtained by including only 'static elastic' effects, for example. It is shown that pilot/vehicle analysis of this data supports the hypothesis that an appropriate pilot-model structure is an optimal-control pilot model of full order. This is in contrast to the contention that a representative model is of reduced order when the subject is controlling high-order dynamics as in a flexible vehicle. The key appears to be in the correct assessment of the pilot's objective of attempting to control 'rigid-body' vehicle response, a response that must be estimated by the pilot from observations contaminated by aeroelastic dynamics. Finally, a model-based metric is shown to correlate well with the pilot's subjective ratings.

  2. Disulfide crosslinks to probe the structure and flexibility of a designed four-helix bundle protein.

    PubMed Central

    Regan, L.; Rockwell, A.; Wasserman, Z.; DeGrado, W.

    1994-01-01

    The introduction of disulfide crosslinks is a generally useful method by which to identify regions of a protein that are close together in space. Here we describe the use of disulfide crosslinks to investigate the structure and flexibility of a family of designed 4-helix bundle proteins. The results of these analyses lend support to our working model of the proteins' structure and suggest that the proteins have limited main-chain flexibility. PMID:7756995

  3. Structural flexibility of intrinsically disordered proteins induces stepwise target recognition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shirai, Nobu C.; Kikuchi, Macoto

    2013-12-01

    An intrinsically disordered protein (IDP) lacks a stable three-dimensional structure, while it folds into a specific structure when it binds to a target molecule. In some IDP-target complexes, not all target binding surfaces are exposed on the outside, and intermediate states are observed in their binding processes. We consider that stepwise target recognition via intermediate states is a characteristic of IDP binding to targets with "hidden" binding sites. To investigate IDP binding to hidden target binding sites, we constructed an IDP lattice model based on the HP model. In our model, the IDP is modeled as a chain and the target is modeled as a highly coarse-grained object. We introduced motion and internal interactions to the target to hide its binding sites. In the case of unhidden binding sites, a two-state transition between the free states and a bound state is observed, and we consider that this represents coupled folding and binding. Introducing hidden binding sites, we found an intermediate bound state in which the IDP forms various structures to temporarily stabilize the complex. The intermediate state provides a scaffold for the IDP to access the hidden binding site. We call this process multiform binding. We conclude that structural flexibility of IDPs enables them to access hidden binding sites and this is a functional advantage of IDPs.

  4. Protein stability induced by ligand binding correlates with changes in protein flexibility

    PubMed Central

    Celej, María Soledad; Montich, Guillermo G.; Fidelio, Gerardo D.

    2003-01-01

    The interaction between ligands and proteins usually induces changes in protein thermal stability with modifications in the midpoint denaturation temperature, enthalpy of unfolding, and heat capacity. These modifications are due to the coupling of unfolding with binding equilibrium. Furthermore, they can be attained by changes in protein structure and conformational flexibility induced by ligand interaction. To study these effects we have used bovine serum albumin (BSA) interacting with three different anilinonaphthalene sulfonate derivatives (ANS). These ligands have different effects on protein stability, conformation, and dynamics. Protein stability was studied by differential scanning calorimetry and fluorescence spectroscopy, whereas conformational changes were detected by circular dichroism and infrared spectroscopy including kinetics of hydrogen/deuterium exchange. The order of calorimetric midpoint of denaturation was: 1,8-ANS-BSA > 2,6-ANS-BSA > free BSA >> (nondetected) bis-ANS-BSA. Both 1,8-ANS and 2,6-ANS did not substantially modify the secondary structure of BSA, whereas bis-ANS induced a distorted α-helix conformation with an increase of disordered structure. Protein flexibility followed the order: 1,8-ANS-BSA < 2,6-ANS-BSA < free BSA << bis-ANS-BSA, indicating a clear correlation between stability and conformational flexibility. The structure induced by an excess of bis-ANS to BSA is compatible with a molten globule-like state. Within the context of the binding landscape model, we have distinguished five conformers (identified by subscript): BSA1,8-ANS, BSA2,6-ANS, BSAfree, BSAbis-ANS, and BSAunfolded among the large number of possible states of the conformational dynamic ensemble. The relative population of each distinguishable conformer depends on the type and concentration of ligand and the temperature of the system. PMID:12824495

  5. Protein-flexibility mediated coupling between photoswitching kinetics and surrounding viscosity of a photochromic fluorescent protein

    PubMed Central

    Kao, Ya-Ting; Zhu, Xinxin; Min, Wei

    2012-01-01

    Recent advances in fluorescent proteins (FPs) have generated a remarkable family of optical highlighters with special light responses. Among them, Dronpa exhibits a unique capability of reversible light-regulated on-off switching. However, the environmental dependence of this photochromism is largely unexplored. Herein we report that the photoswitching kinetics of the chromophore inside Dronpa is actually slowed down by increasing medium viscosity outside Dronpa. This finding is a special example of an FP where the environment can exert a hydrodynamic effect on the internal chromophore. We attribute this effect to protein-flexibility mediated coupling where the chromophore’s cis-trans isomerization during photoswitching is accompanied by conformational motion of a part of the protein β-barrel whose dynamics should be hindered by medium friction. Consistent with this mechanism, the photoswitching kinetics of Dronpa-3, a structurally more flexible mutant, is found to exhibit a more pronounced viscosity dependence. Furthermore, we mapped out spatial distributions of microviscosity in live cells experienced by a histone protein using the photoswitching kinetics of Dronpa-3 fusion as a contrast mechanism. This unique reporter should provide protein-specific information about the crowded intracellular environments by offering a genetically encoded microviscosity probe, which did not exist with normal FPs before. PMID:22328153

  6. Bacterial promoter repression by DNA looping without protein–protein binding competition

    PubMed Central

    Becker, Nicole A.; Greiner, Alexander M.; Peters, Justin P.; Maher, L. James

    2014-01-01

    The Escherichia coli lactose operon provides a paradigm for understanding gene control by DNA looping where the lac repressor (LacI) protein competes with RNA polymerase for DNA binding. Not all promoter loops involve direct competition between repressor and RNA polymerase. This raises the possibility that positioning a promoter within a tightly constrained DNA loop is repressive per se, an idea that has previously only been considered in vitro. Here, we engineer living E. coli bacteria to measure repression due to promoter positioning within such a tightly constrained DNA loop in the absence of protein–protein binding competition. We show that promoters held within such DNA loops are repressed ∼100-fold, with up to an additional ∼10-fold repression (∼1000-fold total) dependent on topological positioning of the promoter on the inner or outer face of the DNA loop. Chromatin immunoprecipitation data suggest that repression involves inhibition of both RNA polymerase initiation and elongation. These in vivo results show that gene repression can result from tightly looping promoter DNA even in the absence of direct competition between repressor and RNA polymerase binding. PMID:24598256

  7. Crystal Structures of Trypanosoma cruzi UDP-Galactopyranose Mutase Implicate Flexibility of the Histidine Loop in Enzyme Activation

    SciTech Connect

    Dhatwalia, Richa; Singh, Harkewal; Oppenheimer, Michelle; Sobrado, Pablo; Tanner, John J.

    2012-11-01

    Chagas disease is a neglected tropical disease caused by the protozoan parasite Trypanosoma cruzi. Here we report crystal structures of the galactofuranose biosynthetic enzyme UDP-galactopyranose mutase (UGM) from T. cruzi, which are the first structures of this enzyme from a protozoan parasite. UGM is an attractive target for drug design because galactofuranose is absent in humans but is an essential component of key glycoproteins and glycolipids in trypanosomatids. Analysis of the enzyme-UDP noncovalent interactions and sequence alignments suggests that substrate recognition is exquisitely conserved among eukaryotic UGMs and distinct from that of bacterial UGMs. This observation has implications for inhibitor design. Activation of the enzyme via reduction of the FAD induces profound conformational changes, including a 2.3 {angstrom} movement of the histidine loop (Gly60-Gly61-His62), rotation and protonation of the imidazole of His62, and cooperative movement of residues located on the si face of the FAD. Interestingly, these changes are substantially different from those described for Aspergillus fumigatus UGM, which is 45% identical to T. cruzi UGM. The importance of Gly61 and His62 for enzymatic activity was studied with the site-directed mutant enzymes G61A, G61P, and H62A. These mutations lower the catalytic efficiency by factors of 10-50, primarily by decreasing k{sub cat}. Considered together, the structural, kinetic, and sequence data suggest that the middle Gly of the histidine loop imparts flexibility that is essential for activation of eukaryotic UGMs. Our results provide new information about UGM biochemistry and suggest a unified strategy for designing inhibitors of UGMs from the eukaryotic pathogens.

  8. Prediction of lipid-binding regions in cytoplasmic and extracellular loops of membrane proteins as exemplified by protein translocation membrane proteins.

    PubMed

    Keller, Rob C A

    2013-01-01

    The presence of possible lipid-binding regions in the cytoplasmic or extracellular loops of membrane proteins with an emphasis on protein translocation membrane proteins was investigated in this study using bioinformatics. Recent developments in approaches recognizing lipid-binding regions in proteins were found to be promising. In this study a total bioinformatics approach specialized in identifying lipid-binding helical regions in proteins was explored. Two features of the protein translocation membrane proteins, the position of the transmembrane regions and the identification of additional lipid-binding regions, were analyzed. A number of well-studied protein translocation membrane protein structures were checked in order to demonstrate the predictive value of the bioinformatics approach. Furthermore, the results demonstrated that lipid-binding regions in the cytoplasmic and extracellular loops in protein translocation membrane proteins can be predicted, and it is proposed that the interaction of these regions with phospholipids is important for proper functioning during protein translocation. PMID:22961045

  9. Nano-Scale Alignment of Proteins on a Flexible DNA Backbone

    PubMed Central

    Nojima, Tatsuya; Konno, Hiroki; Kodera, Noriyuki; Seio, Kohji; Taguchi, Hideki; Yoshida, Masasuke

    2012-01-01

    Nano-scale alignment of several proteins with freedom of motion is equivalent to an enormous increase in effective local concentration of proteins and will enable otherwise impossible weak and/or cooperative associations between them or with their ligands. For this purpose, a DNA backbone made of six oligodeoxynucleotide (ODN) chains is designed in which five double-stranded segments are connected by four single-stranded flexible linkers. A desired protein with an introduced cysteine is connected covalently to the 5′-end of azido-ODN by catalyst-free click chemistry. Then, six protein-ODN conjugates are assembled with their complementary nucleotide sequences into a single multi-protein-DNA complex, and six proteins are aligned along the DNA backbone. Flexible alignment of proteins is directly observed by high-speed AFM imaging, and association of proteins with weak interaction is demonstrated by fluorescence resonance energy transfer between aligned proteins. PMID:23300700

  10. Direct measurement of formation of loops in DNA by a human tumor suppressor protein

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Migliori, Amy; Kung, Samuel; Wang, Danielle; Smith, Douglas E.

    2013-09-01

    In previous work we developed methods using optical tweezers to measure protein-mediated formation of loops in DNA structures that can play an important role in regulating gene expression. We previously applied this method to study two-site restriction endonucleases, which were convenient model systems for studying this phenomenon. Here we report preliminary work in which we have applied this method to study p53, a human tumor suppressor protein, and show that we can measure formation of loops. Previous biophysical evidence for loops comes from relatively limited qualitative studies of fixed complexes by electron microscopy4. Our results provide independent corroboration and future opportunities for more quantitative studies investigating structure and mechanics.

  11. A computational system for modelling flexible protein-protein and protein-DNA docking.

    PubMed

    Sternberg, M J; Aloy, P; Gabb, H A; Jackson, R M; Moont, G; Querol, E; Aviles, F X

    1998-01-01

    A computational system is described that predicts the structure of protein/protein and protein/DNA complexes starting from unbound coordinate sets. The approach is (i) a global search with rigid-body docking for complexes with shape complementarity and favourable electrostatics; (ii) use of distance constraints from experimental (or predicted) knowledge of critical residues; (iii) use of pair potential to screen docked complexes and (iv) refinement and further screening by protein-side chain optimisation and interfacial energy minimisation. The system has been applied to model ten protein/protein and eight protein-repressor/DNA (steps i to iii only) complexes. In general a few complexes, one of which is close to the true structure, can be generated. PMID:9783224

  12. Computational investigation of the pH dependence of loop flexibility and catalytic function in glycoside hydrolases.

    PubMed

    Bu, Lintao; Crowley, Michael F; Himmel, Michael E; Beckham, Gregg T

    2013-04-26

    Cellulase enzymes cleave glycosidic bonds in cellulose to produce cellobiose via either retaining or inverting hydrolysis mechanisms, which are significantly pH-dependent. Many fungal cellulases function optimally at pH ~5, and their activities decrease dramatically at higher or lower pH. To understand the molecular-level implications of pH in cellulase structure, we use a hybrid, solvent-based, constant pH molecular dynamics method combined with pH-based replica exchange to determine the pK(a) values of titratable residues of a glycoside hydrolase (GH) family 6 cellobiohydrolase (Cel6A) and a GH family 7 cellobiohydrolase (Cel7A) from the fungus Hypocrea jecorina. For both enzymes, we demonstrate that a bound substrate significantly affects the pKa values of the acid residues at the catalytic center. The calculated pK(a) values of catalytic residues confirm their proposed roles from structural studies and are consistent with the experimentally measured apparent pKa values. Additionally, GHs are known to impart a strained pucker conformation in carbohydrate substrates in active sites for catalysis, and results from free energy calculations combined with constant pH molecular dynamics suggest that the correct ring pucker is stable near the optimal pH for both Cel6A and Cel7A. Much longer molecular dynamics simulations of Cel6A and Cel7A with fixed protonation states based on the calculated pK(a) values suggest that pH affects the flexibility of tunnel loops, which likely affects processivity and substrate complexation. Taken together, this work demonstrates several molecular-level effects of pH on GH enzymes important for cellulose turnover in the biosphere and relevant to biomass conversion processes. PMID:23504310

  13. Validating a Coarse-Grained Potential Energy Function through Protein Loop Modelling

    PubMed Central

    MacDonald, James T.; Kelley, Lawrence A.; Freemont, Paul S.

    2013-01-01

    Coarse-grained (CG) methods for sampling protein conformational space have the potential to increase computational efficiency by reducing the degrees of freedom. The gain in computational efficiency of CG methods often comes at the expense of non-protein like local conformational features. This could cause problems when transitioning to full atom models in a hierarchical framework. Here, a CG potential energy function was validated by applying it to the problem of loop prediction. A novel method to sample the conformational space of backbone atoms was benchmarked using a standard test set consisting of 351 distinct loops. This method used a sequence-independent CG potential energy function representing the protein using -carbon positions only and sampling conformations with a Monte Carlo simulated annealing based protocol. Backbone atoms were added using a method previously described and then gradient minimised in the Rosetta force field. Despite the CG potential energy function being sequence-independent, the method performed similarly to methods that explicitly use either fragments of known protein backbones with similar sequences or residue-specific /-maps to restrict the search space. The method was also able to predict with sub-Angstrom accuracy two out of seven loops from recently solved crystal structures of proteins with low sequence and structure similarity to previously deposited structures in the PDB. The ability to sample realistic loop conformations directly from a potential energy function enables the incorporation of additional geometric restraints and the use of more advanced sampling methods in a way that is not possible to do easily with fragment replacement methods and also enable multi-scale simulations for protein design and protein structure prediction. These restraints could be derived from experimental data or could be design restraints in the case of computational protein design. C++ source code is available for download from http

  14. Near-Native Protein Loop Sampling Using Nonparametric Density Estimation Accommodating Sparcity

    PubMed Central

    Day, Ryan; Lennox, Kristin P.; Sukhanov, Paul; Dahl, David B.; Vannucci, Marina; Tsai, Jerry

    2011-01-01

    Unlike the core structural elements of a protein like regular secondary structure, template based modeling (TBM) has difficulty with loop regions due to their variability in sequence and structure as well as the sparse sampling from a limited number of homologous templates. We present a novel, knowledge-based method for loop sampling that leverages homologous torsion angle information to estimate a continuous joint backbone dihedral angle density at each loop position. The φ,ψ distributions are estimated via a Dirichlet process mixture of hidden Markov models (DPM-HMM). Models are quickly generated based on samples from these distributions and were enriched using an end-to-end distance filter. The performance of the DPM-HMM method was evaluated against a diverse test set in a leave-one-out approach. Candidates as low as 0.45 Å RMSD and with a worst case of 3.66 Å were produced. For the canonical loops like the immunoglobulin complementarity-determining regions (mean RMSD <2.0 Å), the DPM-HMM method performs as well or better than the best templates, demonstrating that our automated method recaptures these canonical loops without inclusion of any IgG specific terms or manual intervention. In cases with poor or few good templates (mean RMSD >7.0 Å), this sampling method produces a population of loop structures to around 3.66 Å for loops up to 17 residues. In a direct test of sampling to the Loopy algorithm, our method demonstrates the ability to sample nearer native structures for both the canonical CDRH1 and non-canonical CDRH3 loops. Lastly, in the realistic test conditions of the CASP9 experiment, successful application of DPM-HMM for 90 loops from 45 TBM targets shows the general applicability of our sampling method in loop modeling problem. These results demonstrate that our DPM-HMM produces an advantage by consistently sampling near native loop structure. The software used in this analysis is available for download at http

  15. A modular perspective of protein structures; application to fragment based loop modeling

    PubMed Central

    Fernandez-Fuentes, Narcis; Fiser, Andras

    2013-01-01

    Summary Proteins can be decomposed into supersecondary structure modules. We used a generic definition of supersecondary structure elements, so-called Smotifs, which are composed of two flanking regular secondary structures connected by a loop, to explore the evolution and current variety of structure building blocks. Here, we discuss recent observations about the saturation of Smotif geometries in protein structures and how it opens new avenues in protein structure modeling and design. As a first application of these observations we describe our loop conformation modeling algorithm, ArchPred that takes advantage of Smotifs classification. In this application, instead of focusing on specific loop properties the method narrows down possible template conformations in other, often not homologous structures, by identifying the most likely supersecondary structure environment that cradles the loop. Beyond identifying the correct starting supersecondary structure geometry, it takes into account information of fit of anchor residues, sterical clashes, match of predicted and observed dihedral angle preferences, and local sequence signal. PMID:22987351

  16. Impaired Acid Catalysis by Mutation of a Protein Loop Hinge Residue in a YopH Mutant Revealed by Crystal Structures

    SciTech Connect

    Brandao, T.; Robinson, H; Johnson, S; Hengge, A

    2009-01-01

    Catalysis by the Yersinia protein-tyrosine phosphatase YopH is significantly impaired by the mutation of the conserved Trp354 residue to Phe. Though not a catalytic residue, this Trp is a hinge residue in a conserved flexible loop (the WPD-loop) that must close during catalysis. To learn why this seemingly conservative mutation reduces catalysis by 2 orders of magnitude, we have solved high-resolution crystal structures for the W354F YopH in the absence and in the presence of tungstate and vanadate. Oxyanion binding to the P-loop in W354F is analogous to that observed in the native enzyme. However, the WPD-loop in the presence of oxyanions assumes a half-closed conformation, in contrast to the fully closed state observed in structures of the native enzyme. This observation provides an explanation for the impaired general acid catalysis observed in kinetic experiments with Trp mutants. A 1.4 Angstroms structure of the W354F mutant obtained in the presence of vanadate reveals an unusual divanadate species with a cyclic [VO]2 core, which has precedent in small molecules but has not been previously reported in a protein crystal structure.

  17. Protein folding in hydrophobic-polar lattice model: a flexible ant-colony optimization approach.

    PubMed

    Hu, Xiao-Min; Zhang, Jun; Xiao, Jing; Li, Yun

    2008-01-01

    This paper proposes a flexible ant colony (FAC) algorithm for solving protein folding problems based on the hydrophobic-polar square lattice model. Collaborations of novel pheromone and heuristic strategies in the proposed algorithm make it more effective in predicting structures of proteins compared with other state-of-the-art algorithms. PMID:18537736

  18. Tertiary structure-dependence of misfolding substitutions in loops of the maltose-binding protein.

    PubMed

    Raffy, S; Sassoon, N; Hofnung, M; Betton, J M

    1998-10-01

    We previously identified and characterized amino acid substitutions in a loop connecting helix I to strand B, the alphaI/betaB loop, of the N-domain that are critical for in vivo folding of the maltose-binding protein (MalE31). The tertiary context-dependence of this mutation in MalE folding was assessed by probing the tolerance of an equivalent alphabeta loop of the C-domain to the same amino acid substitutions (MalE219). Moving the loop mutation from the N- to the C-domain eliminated the in vivo misfolding step that led to the formation of inclusion bodies. In vitro, both loop variants exhibited an important decrease of stability, but their intrinsic tendency to aggregate was well correlated with their periplasmic fates in Escherichia coli. Furthermore, the noncoincidence of the unfolding and refolding transition curves and increase of light scattering during the refolding of MalE31 indicate that a competing off-pathway reaction could occurs on the folding pathway of this variant. These results strongly support the notion that the formation of super-secondary structures of the N-domain is a rate-limiting step in the folding pathway of MalE. PMID:9792100

  19. Protein flexibility: coordinate uncertainties and interpretation of structural differences

    SciTech Connect

    Rashin, Alexander A.; Rashin, Abraham H. L.; Jernigan, Robert L.

    2009-11-01

    Criteria for the interpretability of coordinate differences and a new method for identifying rigid-body motions and nonrigid deformations in protein conformational changes are developed and applied to functionally induced and crystallization-induced conformational changes. Valid interpretations of conformational movements in protein structures determined by X-ray crystallography require that the movement magnitudes exceed their uncertainty threshold. Here, it is shown that such thresholds can be obtained from the distance difference matrices (DDMs) of 1014 pairs of independently determined structures of bovine ribonuclease A and sperm whale myoglobin, with no explanations provided for reportedly minor coordinate differences. The smallest magnitudes of reportedly functional motions are just above these thresholds. Uncertainty thresholds can provide objective criteria that distinguish between true conformational changes and apparent ‘noise’, showing that some previous interpretations of protein coordinate changes attributed to external conditions or mutations may be doubtful or erroneous. The use of uncertainty thresholds, DDMs, the newly introduced CDDMs (contact distance difference matrices) and a novel simple rotation algorithm allows a more meaningful classification and description of protein motions, distinguishing between various rigid-fragment motions and nonrigid conformational deformations. It is also shown that half of 75 pairs of identical molecules, each from the same asymmetric crystallographic cell, exhibit coordinate differences that range from just outside the coordinate uncertainty threshold to the full magnitude of large functional movements. Thus, crystallization might often induce protein conformational changes that are comparable to those related to or induced by the protein function.

  20. Protein-ligand docking with multiple flexible side chains.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Yong; Sanner, Michel F

    2008-09-01

    In this work, we validate and analyze the results of previously published cross docking experiments and classify failed dockings based on the conformational changes observed in the receptors. We show that a majority of failed experiments (i.e. 25 out of 33, involving four different receptors: cAPK, CDK2, Ricin and HIVp) are due to conformational changes in side chains near the active site. For these cases, we identify the side chains to be made flexible during docking calculation by superimposing receptors and analyzing steric overlap between various ligands and receptor side chains. We demonstrate that allowing these side chains to assume rotameric conformations enables the successful cross docking of 19 complexes (ligand all atom RMSD < 2.0 A) using our docking software FLIPDock. The number of side receptor side chains interacting with a ligand can vary according to the ligand's size and shape. Hence, when starting from a complex with a particular ligand one might have to extend the region of potential interacting side chains beyond the ones interacting with the known ligand. We discuss distance-based methods for selecting additional side chains in the neighborhood of the known active site. We show that while using the molecular surface to grow the neighborhood is more efficient than Euclidian-distance selection, the number of side chains selected by these methods often remains too large and additional methods for reducing their count are needed. Despite these difficulties, using geometric constraints obtained from the network of bonded and non-bonded interactions to rank residues and allowing the top ranked side chains to be flexible during docking makes 22 out of 25 complexes successful. PMID:18034309

  1. Protein flexibility and ligand recognition: challenges for molecular modeling.

    PubMed

    Spyrakis, Francesca; BidonChanal, Axel; Barril, Xavier; Luque, F Javier

    2011-01-01

    The intrinsic dynamics of macromolecules is an essential property to relate the structure of biomolecular systems with their function in the cell. In the field of ligand-receptor recognition, numerous evidences have revealed the limitations of the lock-and-key theory, and the need to elaborate models that take into account the inherent plasticity of biomolecules, such as the induced-fit model or the existence of an ensemble of pre-equilibrated conformations. Depending on the nature of the target system, ligand binding can be associated with small local adjustments in side chains or even the backbone to large-scale motions of structural fragments, domains or even subunits. Reproducing the inherent flexibility of biomolecules has thus become one of the most challenging issues in molecular modeling and simulation studies, as it has direct implications in our understanding of the structure-function relationships, but even in areas such as virtual screening and structure-based drug discovery. Given the intrinsic limitation of conventional simulation tools, only events occurring in short time scales can be reproduced at a high accuracy level through all-atom techniques such as Molecular Dynamics simulations. However, larger structural rearrangements demand the use of enhanced sampling methods relying on modified descriptions of the biomolecular system or the potential surface. This review illustrates the crucial role that structural plasticity plays in mediating ligand recognition through representative examples. In addition, it discusses some of the most powerful computational tools developed to characterize the conformational flexibility in ligand-receptor complexes. PMID:20939788

  2. Protein loop modeling using a new hybrid energy function and its application to modeling in inaccurate structural environments.

    PubMed

    Park, Hahnbeom; Lee, Gyu Rie; Heo, Lim; Seok, Chaok

    2014-01-01

    Protein loop modeling is a tool for predicting protein local structures of particular interest, providing opportunities for applications involving protein structure prediction and de novo protein design. Until recently, the majority of loop modeling methods have been developed and tested by reconstructing loops in frameworks of experimentally resolved structures. In many practical applications, however, the protein loops to be modeled are located in inaccurate structural environments. These include loops in model structures, low-resolution experimental structures, or experimental structures of different functional forms. Accordingly, discrepancies in the accuracy of the structural environment assumed in development of the method and that in practical applications present additional challenges to modern loop modeling methods. This study demonstrates a new strategy for employing a hybrid energy function combining physics-based and knowledge-based components to help tackle this challenge. The hybrid energy function is designed to combine the strengths of each energy component, simultaneously maintaining accurate loop structure prediction in a high-resolution framework structure and tolerating minor environmental errors in low-resolution structures. A loop modeling method based on global optimization of this new energy function is tested on loop targets situated in different levels of environmental errors, ranging from experimental structures to structures perturbed in backbone as well as side chains and template-based model structures. The new method performs comparably to force field-based approaches in loop reconstruction in crystal structures and better in loop prediction in inaccurate framework structures. This result suggests that higher-accuracy predictions would be possible for a broader range of applications. The web server for this method is available at http://galaxy.seoklab.org/loop with the PS2 option for the scoring function. PMID:25419655

  3. Protein flexibility: coordinate uncertainties and interpretation of structural differences.

    PubMed

    Rashin, Alexander A; Rashin, Abraham H L; Jernigan, Robert L

    2009-11-01

    Valid interpretations of conformational movements in protein structures determined by X-ray crystallography require that the movement magnitudes exceed their uncertainty threshold. Here, it is shown that such thresholds can be obtained from the distance difference matrices (DDMs) of 1014 pairs of independently determined structures of bovine ribonuclease A and sperm whale myoglobin, with no explanations provided for reportedly minor coordinate differences. The smallest magnitudes of reportedly functional motions are just above these thresholds. Uncertainty thresholds can provide objective criteria that distinguish between true conformational changes and apparent 'noise', showing that some previous interpretations of protein coordinate changes attributed to external conditions or mutations may be doubtful or erroneous. The use of uncertainty thresholds, DDMs, the newly introduced CDDMs (contact distance difference matrices) and a novel simple rotation algorithm allows a more meaningful classification and description of protein motions, distinguishing between various rigid-fragment motions and nonrigid conformational deformations. It is also shown that half of 75 pairs of identical molecules, each from the same asymmetric crystallographic cell, exhibit coordinate differences that range from just outside the coordinate uncertainty threshold to the full magnitude of large functional movements. Thus, crystallization might often induce protein conformational changes that are comparable to those related to or induced by the protein function. PMID:19923711

  4. Room temperature phosphorescence study on the structural flexibility of single tryptophan containing proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kowalska-Baron, Agnieszka; Gałęcki, Krystian; Wysocki, Stanisław

    2015-01-01

    In this study, we have undertaken efforts to find correlation between phosphorescence lifetimes of single tryptophan containing proteins and some structural indicators of protein flexibility/rigidity, such as the degree of tryptophan burial or its exposure to solvent, protein secondary and tertiary structure of the region of localization of tryptophan as well as B factors for tryptophan residue and its immediate surroundings. Bearing in mind that, apart from effective local viscosity of the protein/solvent matrix, the other factor that concur in determining room temperature tryptophan phosphorescence (RTTP) lifetime in proteins is the extent of intramolecular quenching by His, Cys, Tyr and Trp side chains, the crystallographic structures derived from the Brookhaven Protein Data Bank were also analyzed concentrating on the presence of potentially quenching amino acid side chains in the close proximity of the indole chromophore. The obtained results indicated that, in most cases, the phosphorescence lifetimes of tryptophan containing proteins studied tend to correlate with the above mentioned structural indicators of protein rigidity/flexibility. This correlation is expected to provide guidelines for the future development of phosphorescence lifetime-based method for the prediction of structural flexibility of proteins, which is directly linked to their biological function.

  5. The Role of the β5-α11 Loop in the Active-Site Dynamics of Acylated Penicillin-Binding Protein A from Mycobacterium tuberculosis

    SciTech Connect

    Fedarovich, Alena; Nicholas, Robert A.; Davies, Christopher

    2013-04-22

    Penicillin-binding protein A (PBPA) is a class B penicillin-binding protein that is important for cell division in Mycobacterium tuberculosis. We have determined a second crystal structure of PBPA in apo form and compared it with an earlier structure of apoenzyme. Significant structural differences in the active site region are apparent, including increased ordering of a β-hairpin loop and a shift of the SxN active site motif such that it now occupies a position that appears catalytically competent. Using two assays, including one that uses the intrinsic fluorescence of a tryptophan residue, we have also measured the second-order acylation rate constants for the antibiotics imipenem, penicillin G, and ceftriaxone. Of these, imipenem, which has demonstrable anti-tubercular activity, shows the highest acylation efficiency. Crystal structures of PBPA in complex with the same antibiotics were also determined, and all show conformational differences in the β5–α11 loop near the active site, but these differ for each β-lactam and also for each of the two molecules in the crystallographic asymmetric unit. Overall, these data reveal the β5–α11 loop of PBPA as a flexible region that appears important for acylation and provide further evidence that penicillin-binding proteins in apo form can occupy different conformational states.

  6. Construction of a linker library with widely controllable flexibility for fusion protein design.

    PubMed

    Li, Gang; Huang, Ziliang; Zhang, Chong; Dong, Bo-Jun; Guo, Ruo-Hai; Yue, Hong-Wei; Yan, Li-Tang; Xing, Xin-Hui

    2016-01-01

    Flexibility or rigidity of the linker between two fused proteins is an important parameter that affects the function of fusion proteins. In this study, we constructed a linker library with five elementary units based on the combination of the flexible (GGGGS) and the rigid (EAAAK) units. Molecular dynamics (MD) simulation showed that more rigid units in the linkers lead to more helical conformation and hydrogen bonds, and less distance fluctuation between the N- and C-termini of the linker. The diversity of linker flexibility of the linker library was then studied by fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) of cyan fluorescent protein (CFP)-yellow fluorescent protein (YFP) fusion proteins, which showed that there is a wide range of distribution of the FRET efficiency. Dissipative particle dynamics (DPD) simulation of CFP-YFP with different linkers also gave identical results with that of FRET efficiency analysis, and we further found that the combination manner of the linker peptide had a remarkable effect on the orientation of CFP and YFP domains. Our studies demonstrated that the construction of the linker library with the widely controllable flexibility could provide appropriate linkers with the desirable characteristics to engineer the fusion proteins with the expected functions. PMID:26394862

  7. DNA binding proteins that alter nucleic acid flexibility

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McCauley, Micah; Hardwidge, Philip R.; Maher, L. J., III; Williams, Mark C.

    2007-09-01

    Dual - beam optical tweezers experiments subject single molecules of DNA to high forces (~ 300 pN) with 0.1 pN accuracy, probing the energy and specificity of nucleic acid - ligand structures. Stretching phage λ-DNA reveals an increase in the applied force up to a critical force known as the overstretching transition. In this region, base pairing and stacking are disrupted as double stranded DNA (dsDNA) is melted. Proteins that bind to the double strand will tend to stabilize dsDNA, and melting will occur at higher forces. Proteins that bind to single stranded DNA (ssDNA) destabilize melting, provided that the rate of association is comparable to the pulling rate of the experiment. Many proteins, however, exhibit some affinity for both dsDNA and ssDNA. We describe experiments upon DNA + HMGB2 (box A), a nuclear protein that is believed to facilitate transcription. By characterizing changes in the structure of dsDNA with a polymer model of elasticity, we have determined the equilibrium association constant for HMGB2 to be K ds = 0.15 +/- 0.7 10 9 M -1 for dsDNA binding. Analysis of the melting transition reveals an equilibrium association constant for HMGB2 to ssDNA to be K ss = 0.039 +/- 0.019 10 9 M -1 for ssDNA binding.

  8. Conformational flexibility and structural dynamics in GPCR-mediated G protein activation: a perspective

    PubMed Central

    Preininger, Anita M.; Meiler, Jens; Hamm, Heidi

    2013-01-01

    Structure and dynamics of G proteins and their cognate receptors, both alone and in complex, are becoming increasingly accessible to experimental techniques. Understanding the conformational changes and timelines which govern these changes can lead to new insights into the processes of ligand binding and associated G protein activation. Experimental systems may involve the use of, or otherwise stabilize, non-native environments. This can complicate our understanding of structural and dynamical features of processes such as the ionic lock, Tryptophan toggle, and G protein flexibility. While elements in the receptor’s transmembrane helices and the C-terminal α5 helix of Gα undergo well defined structural changes, regions subject to conformational flexibility may be important in fine-tuning the interactions between activated receptors and G proteins. The pairing of computational and experimental approaches will continue to provide powerful tools to probe the conformation and dynamics of receptor-mediated G protein activation. PMID:23602809

  9. Necessity of high-resolution for coarse-grained modeling of flexible proteins.

    PubMed

    Jia, Zhiguang; Chen, Jianhan

    2016-07-01

    The popular MARTINI coarse-grained (CG) force field requires the protein structure to be fixed, and is unsuitable for simulating dynamic processes such as protein folding. Here, we examine the feasibility of developing a flexible protein model within the MARTINI framework. The results demonstrate that the MARTINI CG scheme does not properly describe the volume and packing of protein backbone and side chains and leads to excessive collapse without structural restraints in explicit CG water. Combining atomistic protein representation with the MARTINI CG solvent, such as in the PACE model, dramatically improves description of flexible protein conformations. Yet, the CG solvent is insufficient to capture the conformational dependence of protein-solvent interactions, and PACE is unable to properly model context dependent conformational transitions. Taken together, high physical resolution at or near the atomistic level is likely necessary for flexible protein models with explicit, microscopic solvents, and the coarse-graining needs to focus on possible simplification in interaction potentials. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:27130454

  10. Ultrafast differential flexibility of Cro-protein binding domains of two operator DNAs with different sequences.

    PubMed

    Choudhury, Susobhan; Ghosh, Basusree; Singh, Priya; Ghosh, Raka; Roy, Siddhartha; Pal, Samir Kumar

    2016-07-21

    The nature of the interface of specific protein-DNA complexes has attracted immense interest in contemporary molecular biology. Although extensive studies on the role of flexibility of DNA in the specific interaction in the genetic regulatory activity of lambda Cro (Cro-protein) have been performed, the exploration of quantitative features remains deficient. In this study, we have mutated (site directed mutagenesis: SDM) Cro-protein at the 37th position with a cysteine residue (G37C) retaining the functional integrity of the protein and labelled the cysteine residue, which is close to the interface, with a fluorescent probe (AEDANS), for the investigation of its interface with operator DNAs (OR3 and OR2). We have employed picosecond resolved polarization gated fluorescence spectroscopy and the well known strategy of solvation dynamics for the exploration of physical motions of the fluorescent probes and associated environments, respectively. Even though this particular probe on the protein (AEDANS) shows marginal changes in its structural flexibility upon interaction with the DNAs, a non-covalent DNA bound probe (DAPI), which binds to the minor groove, shows a major differential alteration in the dynamical flexibility in the OR3-Cro complex when compared to that of the OR2 complex with the Cro-protein. We attempt to correlate the observed significant structural fluctuation of the Cro-protein binding domain of OR3 for the specificity of the protein to the operator DNA. PMID:27326896

  11. Intracellular segment between transmembrane helices S0 and S1 of BK channel α subunit contains two amphipathic helices connected by a flexible loop

    SciTech Connect

    Shi, Pan; Li, Dong; Lai, Chaohua; Zhang, Longhua; Tian, Changlin

    2013-08-02

    Highlights: •The loop between S0 and S1 of BK channel was overexpressed and purified in DPC. •NMR studies indicated BK-IS1 contained two helices connected by a flexible loop. •Mg{sup 2+} titration of BK-IS1 indicated two possible binding sites of divalent ions. -- Abstract: The BK channel, a tetrameric potassium channel with very high conductance, has a central role in numerous physiological functions. The BK channel can be activated by intracellular Ca{sup 2+} and Mg{sup 2+}, as well as by membrane depolarization. Unlike other tetrameric potassium channels, the BK channel has seven transmembrane helices (S0–S6) including an extra helix S0. The intracellular segment between S0 and S1 (BK-IS1) is essential to BK channel functions and Asp99 in BK-IS1 is reported to be responsible for Mg{sup 2+} coordination. In this study, BK-IS1 (44–113) was over-expressed using a bacterial system and purified in the presence of detergent micelles for multidimensional heteronuclear nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) structural studies. Backbone resonance assignment and secondary structure analysis showed that BK-IS1 contains two amphipathic helices connected by a 36-residue loop. Amide {sup 1}H–{sup 15}N heteronuclear NOE analysis indicated that the loop is very flexible, while the two amphipathic helices are possibly stabilized through interaction with the membrane. A solution NMR-based titration assay of BK-IS1 was performed with various concentrations of Mg{sup 2+}. Two residues (Thr45 and Leu46) with chemical shift changes were observed but no, or very minor, chemical shift difference was observed for Asp99, indicating a possible site for binding divalent ions or other modulation partners.

  12. ERAD and protein import defects in a sec61 mutant lacking ER-lumenal loop 7

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background The Sec61 channel mediates protein translocation across the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) membrane during secretory protein biogenesis, and likely also during export of misfolded proteins for ER-associated degradation (ERAD). The mechanisms of channel opening for the different modes of translocation are not understood so far, but the position of the large ER-lumenal loop 7 of Sec61p suggests a decisive role. Results We show here that the Y345H mutation in L7 which causes diabetes in the mouse displays no ER import defects in yeast, but a delay in misfolded protein export. A complete deletion of L7 in Sec61p resulted in viable, cold- and tunicamycin-hypersensitive yeast cells with strong defects in posttranslational protein import of soluble proteins into the ER, and in ERAD of soluble substrates. Membrane protein ERAD was only moderately slower in sec61∆L7 than in wildtype cells. Although Sec61∆L7 channels were unstable in detergent, co-translational protein integration into the ER membrane, proteasome binding to Sec61∆L7 channels, and formation of hetero-heptameric Sec complexes were not affected. Conclusions We conclude that L7 of Sec61p is required for initiation of posttranslational soluble protein import into and misfolded soluble protein export from the ER, suggesting a key role for L7 in transverse gating of the Sec61 channel. PMID:24314051

  13. The Role of Protein Loops and Linkers in Conformational Dynamics and Allostery.

    PubMed

    Papaleo, Elena; Saladino, Giorgio; Lambrughi, Matteo; Lindorff-Larsen, Kresten; Gervasio, Francesco Luigi; Nussinov, Ruth

    2016-06-01

    Proteins are dynamic entities that undergo a plethora of conformational changes that may take place on a wide range of time scales. These changes can be as small as the rotation of one or a few side-chain dihedral angles or involve concerted motions in larger portions of the three-dimensional structure; both kinds of motions can be important for biological function and allostery. It is becoming increasingly evident that "connector regions" are important components of the dynamic personality of protein structures. These regions may be either disordered loops, i.e., poorly structured regions connecting secondary structural elements, or linkers that connect entire protein domains. Experimental and computational studies have, however, revealed that these regions are not mere connectors, and their role in allostery and conformational changes has been emerging in the last few decades. Here we provide a detailed overview of the structural properties and classification of loops and linkers, as well as a discussion of the main computational methods employed to investigate their function and dynamical properties. We also describe their importance for protein dynamics and allostery using as examples key proteins in cellular biology and human diseases such as kinases, ubiquitinating enzymes, and transcription factors. PMID:26889708

  14. Herpes simplex virus origin-binding protein (UL9) loops and distorts the viral replication origin.

    PubMed Central

    Koff, A; Schwedes, J F; Tegtmeyer, P

    1991-01-01

    To investigate the role of the herpes simplex virus origin-binding protein (UL9) in the initiation of DNA replication, we have examined the effect of UL9 binding on the structure of the viral origin of replication. UL9 loops and alters the DNA helix of the origin regardless of the phasing of the binding sites. DNase I and micrococcal nuclease footprinting show that UL9 binds two sites in the origin and loops the AT-rich DNA between them independent of the topology of the DNA. KMnO4 and dimethyl sulfate footprinting further show that UL9 alters the DNA helix in the AT region. In contrast to the looping reaction, however, helical distortion requires the free energy of supercoiled DNA. UL9 also loops and distorts the origin DNA of a replication-defective mutant with a 6-bp insertion in the AT region. Because the helical distortion of this mutant DNA is different from that of functional origins, we conclude that an imperfect tertiary structure of the mutant DNA may contribute to its loss of replication function. Images PMID:1851878

  15. Protein detection through different platforms of immuno-loop-mediated isothermal amplification

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Different immunoassay-based methods have been devised to detect protein targets. These methods have some challenges that make them inefficient for assaying ultra-low-amounted proteins. ELISA, iPCR, iRCA, and iNASBA are the common immunoassay-based methods of protein detection, each of which has specific and common technical challenges making it necessary to introduce a novel method in order to avoid their problems for detection of target proteins. Here we propose a new method nominated as ‘immuno-loop-mediated isothermal amplification’ or ‘iLAMP’. This new method is free from the problems of the previous methods and has significant advantages over them. In this paper we also offer various configurations in order to improve the applicability of this method in real-world sample analyses. Important potential applications of this method are stated as well. PMID:24237767

  16. Salvador-Warts-Hippo pathway in a developmental checkpoint monitoring Helix-Loop-Helix proteins

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Lan-Hsin; Baker, Nicholas E.

    2014-01-01

    The E-proteins and Id-proteins are, respectively, the positive and negative heterodimer partners for the basic-helix-loop-helix protein family, and as such contribute to a remarkably large number of cell fate decisions. E-proteins and Id-proteins also function to inhibit or promote cell proliferation and cancer. Using a genetic modifier screen in Drosophila, we show that the Id-protein Extramacrochaetae enables growth by suppressing activation of the Salvador-Warts-Hippo pathway of tumor suppressors, activation that requires transcriptional activation of the expanded gene by the E-protein Daughterless. Daughterless protein binds to an intronic enhancer in the expanded gene, both activating the SWH pathway independently of the transmembrane protein Crumbs, and bypassing the negative feedback regulation that targets the same expanded enhancer. Thus the Salvador-Warts-Hippo pathway has a cell-autonomous function to prevent inappropriate differentiation due to transcription factor imbalance, and monitors the intrinsic developmental status of progenitor cells, distinct from any responses to cell-cell interactions. PMID:25579975

  17. Origin and Diversification of Basic-Helix-Loop-Helix Proteins in Plants

    PubMed Central

    Pires, Nuno; Dolan, Liam

    2010-01-01

    Basic helix-loop-helix (bHLH) proteins are a class of transcription factors found throughout eukaryotic organisms. Classification of the complete sets of bHLH proteins in the sequenced genomes of Arabidopsis thaliana and Oryza sativa (rice) has defined the diversity of these proteins among flowering plants. However, the evolutionary relationships of different plant bHLH groups and the diversity of bHLH proteins in more ancestral groups of plants are currently unknown. In this study, we use whole-genome sequences from nine species of land plants and algae to define the relationships between these proteins in plants. We show that few (less than 5) bHLH proteins are encoded in the genomes of chlorophytes and red algae. In contrast, many bHLH proteins (100–170) are encoded in the genomes of land plants (embryophytes). Phylogenetic analyses suggest that plant bHLH proteins are monophyletic and constitute 26 subfamilies. Twenty of these subfamilies existed in the common ancestors of extant mosses and vascular plants, whereas six further subfamilies evolved among the vascular plants. In addition to the conserved bHLH domains, most subfamilies are characterized by the presence of highly conserved short amino acid motifs. We conclude that much of the diversity of plant bHLH proteins was established in early land plants, over 440 million years ago. PMID:19942615

  18. Flexibility in targeting and insertion during bacterial membrane protein biogenesis

    SciTech Connect

    Bloois, Edwin van; Hagen-Jongman, Corinne M. ten; Luirink, Joen

    2007-10-26

    The biogenesis of Escherichia coli inner membrane proteins (IMPs) is assisted by targeting and insertion factors such as the signal recognition particle (SRP), the Sec-translocon and YidC with translocation of (large) periplasmic domains energized by SecA and the proton motive force (pmf). The use of these factors and forces is probably primarily determined by specific structural features of an IMP. To analyze these features we have engineered a set of model IMPs based on endogenous E. coli IMPs known to follow distinct targeting and insertion pathways. The modified model IMPs were analyzed for altered routing using an in vivo protease mapping approach. The data suggest a facultative use of different combinations of factors.

  19. DFLpred: High-throughput prediction of disordered flexible linker regions in protein sequences

    PubMed Central

    Meng, Fanchi; Kurgan, Lukasz

    2016-01-01

    Motivation: Disordered flexible linkers (DFLs) are disordered regions that serve as flexible linkers/spacers in multi-domain proteins or between structured constituents in domains. They are different from flexible linkers/residues because they are disordered and longer. Availability of experimentally annotated DFLs provides an opportunity to build high-throughput computational predictors of these regions from protein sequences. To date, there are no computational methods that directly predict DFLs and they can be found only indirectly by filtering predicted flexible residues with predictions of disorder. Results: We conceptualized, developed and empirically assessed a first-of-its-kind sequence-based predictor of DFLs, DFLpred. This method outputs propensity to form DFLs for each residue in the input sequence. DFLpred uses a small set of empirically selected features that quantify propensities to form certain secondary structures, disordered regions and structured regions, which are processed by a fast linear model. Our high-throughput predictor can be used on the whole-proteome scale; it needs <1 h to predict entire proteome on a single CPU. When assessed on an independent test dataset with low sequence-identity proteins, it secures area under the receiver operating characteristic curve equal 0.715 and outperforms existing alternatives that include methods for the prediction of flexible linkers, flexible residues, intrinsically disordered residues and various combinations of these methods. Prediction on the complete human proteome reveals that about 10% of proteins have a large content of over 30% DFL residues. We also estimate that about 6000 DFL regions are long with ≥30 consecutive residues. Availability and implementation: http://biomine.ece.ualberta.ca/DFLpred/. Contact: lkurgan@vcu.edu Supplementary information: Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online. PMID:27307636

  20. Knowledge-Guided Docking of WW Domain Proteins and Flexible Ligands

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lu, Haiyun; Li, Hao; Banu Bte Sm Rashid, Shamima; Leow, Wee Kheng; Liou, Yih-Cherng

    Studies of interactions between protein domains and ligands are important in many aspects such as cellular signaling. We present a knowledge-guided approach for docking protein domains and flexible ligands. The approach is applied to the WW domain, a small protein module mediating signaling complexes which have been implicated in diseases such as muscular dystrophy and Liddle’s syndrome. The first stage of the approach employs a substring search for two binding grooves of WW domains and possible binding motifs of peptide ligands based on known features. The second stage aligns the ligand’s peptide backbone to the two binding grooves using a quasi-Newton constrained optimization algorithm. The backbone-aligned ligands produced serve as good starting points to the third stage which uses any flexible docking algorithm to perform the docking. The experimental results demonstrate that the backbone alignment method in the second stage performs better than conventional rigid superposition given two binding constraints. It is also shown that using the backbone-aligned ligands as initial configurations improves the flexible docking in the third stage. The presented approach can also be applied to other protein domains that involve binding of flexible ligand to two or more binding sites.

  1. The role of the β5-α11 loop in the active-site dynamics of acylated penicillin-binding protein A from Mycobacterium tuberculosis

    PubMed Central

    Fedarovich, Alena; Nicholas, Robert A.; Davies, Christopher

    2012-01-01

    Penicillin-binding protein A (PBPA) is a class B penicillin-binding protein that is important for cell division in M. tuberculosis. We have determined a second crystal structure of PBPA in apo form and compared it with an earlier structure of the apo enzyme. Significant structural differences in the active site region are apparent, including increased ordering of a β-hairpin loop and a shift of the SxN active site motif such that it now occupies a position that appears catalytically competent. Using two assays, including one that uses the intrinsic fluorescence of a tryptophan residue, we have also measured second-order acylation rate constants for the antibiotics, imipenem, penicillin G and ceftriaxone. Of these, imipenem, which has demonstrable antitubercular activity, shows the highest acylation efficiency. Crystal structures of PBPA in complex with the same antibiotics were also determined and all show conformational differences in the β5-α11 loop near the active site, but these differ for each β-lactam and also for each of the two molecules in the crystallographic asymmetric unit. Overall, these data reveal the β5-α11 loop of PBPA as a flexible region that appears important for acylation and provide further evidence that PBPs in apo form can occupy different conformational states. PMID:22365933

  2. Mechanism of chromosome compaction and looping by the E. coli nucleoid protein Fis

    PubMed Central

    Skoko, Dunja; Yoo, Daniel; Bai, Hua; Schnurr, Bernhard; Yan, Jie; McLeod, Sarah M.; Marko, John F.; Johnson, Reid C.

    2006-01-01

    Fis, the most abundant DNA-binding protein in E. coli during rapid growth, has been suspected to play an important role in defining nucleoid structure. Using bulk-phase and single-DNA molecule experiments we analyze the structural consequences of nonspecific binding by Fis to DNA. Fis binds DNA in a largely sequence-neutral fashion at nanomolar concentrations, resulting in mild compaction against applied force due to DNA bending. With increasing concentration, Fis first coats DNA to form an ordered array with one Fis dimer bound per 21 bp and then abruptly shifts to forming a higher-order Fis-DNA filament, referred to as a ‘low mobility complex’ (LMC). The LMC initially contains two Fis dimers per 21 bp, but additional Fis dimers assemble into the LMC as the concentration is further increased. These complexes, formed at or above 1 μM Fis, are able to collapse large DNA molecules via stabilization of DNA loops. The opening and closing of loops on single DNA molecules can be followed in real time as abrupt jumps in DNA extension. Formation of loop-stabilizing complexes is sensitive to high ionic strength, even under conditions where DNA bending-compaction is unaltered. Analyses of mutants indicate that Fis-mediated DNA looping does not involve tertiary or quaternary changes in the Fis dimer structure but that a number of surface-exposed residues located both within and outside the helix-turn-helix DNA binding region are critical. These results suggest that Fis may play a role in vivo as a ‘domain barrier element’ by organizing DNA loops within the E. coli chromosome. PMID:17045294

  3. Structural delineation of stem-loop RNA binding by human TAF15 protein.

    PubMed

    Kashyap, Maruthi; Ganguly, Akshay Kumar; Bhavesh, Neel Sarovar

    2015-01-01

    Human TATA binding protein associated factor 2 N (TAF15) and Fused in sarcoma (FUS) are nucleic acid binding proteins belonging to the conserved FET family of proteins. They are involved in diverse processes such as pre-mRNA splicing, mRNA transport, and DNA binding. The absence of information regarding the structural mechanism employed by the FET family in recognizing and discriminating their cognate and non-cognate RNA targets has hampered the attainment of consensus on modes of protein-RNA binding for this family. Our study provides a molecular basis of this RNA recognition using a combination of solution-state NMR spectroscopy, calorimetry, docking and molecular dynamics simulation. Analysis of TAF15-RRM solution structure and its binding with stem-loop RNA has yielded conclusive evidence of a non-canonical mode of RNA recognition. Rather than classical stacking interactions that occur across nitrogen bases and aromatic amino acids on ribonucleoprotein sites, moderate-affinity hydrogen bonding network between the nitrogen bases in the stem-loop RNA and a concave face on the RRM surface primarily mediate TAF15-RRM RNA interaction. We have compared the binding affinities across a set of single-stranded RNA oligonucleotides to conclusively establish that RNA binding is dependent upon structural elements in the RNA rather than sequence. PMID:26612539

  4. Structural delineation of stem-loop RNA binding by human TAF15 protein

    PubMed Central

    Kashyap, Maruthi; Ganguly, Akshay Kumar; Bhavesh, Neel Sarovar

    2015-01-01

    Human TATA binding protein associated factor 2 N (TAF15) and Fused in sarcoma (FUS) are nucleic acid binding proteins belonging to the conserved FET family of proteins. They are involved in diverse processes such as pre-mRNA splicing, mRNA transport, and DNA binding. The absence of information regarding the structural mechanism employed by the FET family in recognizing and discriminating their cognate and non-cognate RNA targets has hampered the attainment of consensus on modes of protein-RNA binding for this family. Our study provides a molecular basis of this RNA recognition using a combination of solution-state NMR spectroscopy, calorimetry, docking and molecular dynamics simulation. Analysis of TAF15-RRM solution structure and its binding with stem-loop RNA has yielded conclusive evidence of a non-canonical mode of RNA recognition. Rather than classical stacking interactions that occur across nitrogen bases and aromatic amino acids on ribonucleoprotein sites, moderate-affinity hydrogen bonding network between the nitrogen bases in the stem-loop RNA and a concave face on the RRM surface primarily mediate TAF15-RRM RNA interaction. We have compared the binding affinities across a set of single-stranded RNA oligonucleotides to conclusively establish that RNA binding is dependent upon structural elements in the RNA rather than sequence. PMID:26612539

  5. The BASL Polarity Protein Controls a MAPK Signaling Feedback Loop in Asymmetric Cell Division

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Ying; Wang, Pengcheng; Shao, Wanchen; Zhu, Jian-Kang; Dong, Juan

    2015-01-01

    SUMMARY Cell polarization is linked to fate determination during asymmetric division of plant stem cells, but the underlying molecular mechanisms remain unknown. In Arabidopsis, BREAKING OF ASYMMETRY IN THE STOMATAL LINEAGE (BASL) is polarized to control stomatal asymmetric division. A MITOGEN-ACTIVATED PROTEIN KINASE (MAPK) cascade determines terminal stomatal fate by promoting the degradation of the lineage determinant SPEECHLESS (SPCH). Here we demonstrate that a positive feedback loop between BASL and the MAPK pathway constitutes a polarity module at the cortex. Cortical localization of BASL requires phosphorylation mediated by MPK3/6. Phosphorylated BASL functions as a scaffold and recruits the MAPKKK YODA and MPK3/6 to spatially concentrate signaling at the cortex. Activated MPK3/6 reinforces the feedback loop by phosphorylating BASL, and inhibits stomatal fate by phosphorylating SPCH. Polarization of the BASL-MAPK signaling feedback module represents a mechanism connecting cell polarity to fate differentiation during asymmetric stem cell division in plants. PMID:25843888

  6. Mesoscale modeling of multi-protein-DNA assemblies: the role of the catabolic activator protein in Lac-repressor-mediated looping

    PubMed Central

    Swigon, David; Olson, Wilma K.

    2009-01-01

    DNA looping plays a key role in the regulation of the lac operon in Escherichia coli. The presence of a tightly bent loop (between sequentially distant sites of Lac repressor protein binding) purportedly hinders the binding of RNA polymerase and subsequent transcription of the genetic message. The unexpectedly favorable binding interaction of this protein-DNA assembly with the catabolic activator protein (CAP), a protein that also bends DNA and paradoxically facilitates the binding of RNA polymerase, stimulated extension of our base-pair level theory of DNA elasticity to the treatment of DNA loops formed in the presence of several proteins. Here we describe in detail a procedure to determine the structures and free energies of multi-protein-DNA assemblies and illustrate the predicted effects of CAP binding on the configurations of the wild-type 92-bp Lac repressor-mediated O3-O1 DNA loop. We show that the DNA loop adopts an antiparallel orientation in the most likely structure and that this loop accounts for the published experimental observation that, when CAP is bound to the loop, one of the arms of LacR binds to an alternative site that is displaced from the original site by 5 bp. PMID:23874000

  7. PcG Proteins, DNA Methylation, and Gene Repression by Chromatin Looping

    PubMed Central

    Tiwari, Vijay K; McGarvey, Kelly M; Licchesi, Julien D.F; Ohm, Joyce E; Herman, James G; Schübeler, Dirk; Baylin, Stephen B

    2008-01-01

    Many DNA hypermethylated and epigenetically silenced genes in adult cancers are Polycomb group (PcG) marked in embryonic stem (ES) cells. We show that a large region upstream (∼30 kb) of and extending ∼60 kb around one such gene, GATA-4, is organized—in Tera-2 undifferentiated embryonic carcinoma (EC) cells—in a topologically complex multi-loop conformation that is formed by multiple internal long-range contact regions near areas enriched for EZH2, other PcG proteins, and the signature PcG histone mark, H3K27me3. Small interfering RNA (siRNA)–mediated depletion of EZH2 in undifferentiated Tera-2 cells leads to a significant reduction in the frequency of long-range associations at the GATA-4 locus, seemingly dependent on affecting the H3K27me3 enrichments around those chromatin regions, accompanied by a modest increase in GATA-4 transcription. The chromatin loops completely dissolve, accompanied by loss of PcG proteins and H3K27me3 marks, when Tera-2 cells receive differentiation signals which induce a ∼60-fold increase in GATA-4 expression. In colon cancer cells, however, the frequency of the long-range interactions are increased in a setting where GATA-4 has no basal transcription and the loops encompass multiple, abnormally DNA hypermethylated CpG islands, and the methyl-cytosine binding protein MBD2 is localized to these CpG islands, including ones near the gene promoter. Removing DNA methylation through genetic disruption of DNA methyltransferases (DKO cells) leads to loss of MBD2 occupancy and to a decrease in the frequency of long-range contacts, such that these now more resemble those in undifferentiated Tera-2 cells. Our findings reveal unexpected similarities in higher order chromatin conformation between stem/precursor cells and adult cancers. We also provide novel insight that PcG-occupied and H3K27me3-enriched regions can form chromatin loops and physically interact in cis around a single gene in mammalian cells. The loops associate with a

  8. PERK Regulates Working Memory and Protein Synthesis-Dependent Memory Flexibility.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Siying; Henninger, Keely; McGrath, Barbara C; Cavener, Douglas R

    2016-01-01

    PERK (EIF2AK3) is an ER-resident eIF2α kinase required for memory flexibility and metabotropic glutamate receptor-dependent long-term depression, processes known to be dependent on new protein synthesis. Here we investigated PERK's role in working memory, a cognitive ability that is independent of new protein synthesis, but instead is dependent on cellular Ca2+ dynamics. We found that working memory is impaired in forebrain-specific Perk knockout and pharmacologically PERK-inhibited mice. Moreover, inhibition of PERK in wild-type mice mimics the fear extinction impairment observed in forebrain-specific Perk knockout mice. Our findings reveal a novel role of PERK in cognitive functions and suggest that PERK regulates both Ca2+ -dependent working memory and protein synthesis-dependent memory flexibility. PMID:27627766

  9. Light-dependent regulation of structural flexibility in a photochromic fluorescent protein

    PubMed Central

    Mizuno, Hideaki; Mal, Tapas Kumar; Wälchli, Markus; Kikuchi, Akihiro; Fukano, Takashi; Ando, Ryoko; Jeyakanthan, Jeyaraman; Taka, Junichiro; Shiro, Yoshitsugu; Ikura, Mitsuhiko; Miyawaki, Atsushi

    2008-01-01

    The structural basis for the photochromism in the fluorescent protein Dronpa is poorly understood, because the crystal structures of the bright state of the protein did not provide an answer to the mechanism of the photochromism, and structural determination of the dark state has been elusive. We performed NMR analyses of Dronpa in solution at ambient temperatures to find structural flexibility of the protein in the dark state. Light-induced changes in interactions between the chromophore and β-barrel are responsible for switching between the two states. In the bright state, the apex of the chromophore tethers to the barrel by a hydrogen bond, and an imidazole ring protruding from the barrel stabilizes the plane of the chromophore. These interactions are disrupted by strong illumination with blue light, and the chromophore, together with a part of the β-barrel, becomes flexible, leading to a nonradiative decay process. PMID:18574155

  10. Defining the loop structures in proteins based on composite β-turn mimics.

    PubMed

    Dhar, Jesmita; Chakrabarti, Pinak

    2015-06-01

    Asx- and ω-turns are β-turn mimics, which replace the conventional main-chain hydrogen bonds seen in the latter by those involving the side chains, and both involve three residues. In this paper we analyzed the cases where these turns occur together--side by side, with or without any gap, overlapping and in any order. These composite turns (of length 3-15 residues), occurring at ∼1 per 100 residues, may constitute the full length of many loops, and when the residues in the two component turns overlap or are adjacent to each other, the composite may take well-defined shape. It is thus possible for non-regular regions in protein structure to form local structural motifs, akin to the regular geometrical features exhibited by secondary structures. Composites having the order ω-turns followed by Asx-turns can constitute N-terminal helix capping motif. Ternary composite turns (made up of ω-, Asx- and ST-turns), some with characteristic shape, have also been identified. Delineation of composite turns would help in characterizing loops in protein structures, which often have functional roles. Some sequence patterns seen in composites can be used for their incorporation in protein design. PMID:25870305

  11. Continuous production of flexible fibers from transgenically produced honeybee silk proteins.

    PubMed

    Poole, Jacinta; Church, Jeffrey S; Woodhead, Andrea L; Huson, Mickey G; Sriskantha, Alagacone; Kyratzis, Ilias L; Sutherland, Tara D

    2013-10-01

    Flexible and solvent stable fibers are produced after concentrated recombinant honeybee protein solutions are extruded into a methanol bath, dried, drawn in aqueous methanol, then covalently cross-linked using dry heat. Proteins in solution are predominantly coiled coil. Significant levels of non-orientated ß-sheets form during drying or after coagulation in aqueous methanol. Drawing generally aligns the coiled coil component parallel with the fibre axis and ß-sheet component perpendicular to the fiber axis. The fibres are readily handled, stable in the strong protein denaturants, urea and guanidinium, and suitable for a range of applications such as weaving and knitting. PMID:23881528

  12. Slipknotting upon native-like loop formation in a trefoil knot protein.

    PubMed

    Noel, Jeffrey K; Sułkowska, Joanna I; Onuchic, José N

    2010-08-31

    Protein knots and slipknots, mostly regarded as intriguing oddities, are gradually being recognized as significant structural motifs. Recent experimental results show that knotting, starting from a fully extended polypeptide, has not yet been observed. Understanding the nucleation process of folding knots is thus a natural challenge for both experimental and theoretical investigation. In this study, we employ energy landscape theory and molecular dynamics to elucidate the entire folding mechanism. The full free energy landscape of a knotted protein is mapped using an all-atom structure-based protein model. Results show that, due to the topological constraint, the protein folds through a three-state mechanism that contains (i) a precise nucleation site that creates a correctly twisted native loop (first barrier) and (ii) a rate-limiting free energy barrier that is traversed by two parallel knot-forming routes. The main route corresponds to a slipknot conformation, a collapsed configuration where the C-terminal helix adopts a hairpin-like configuration while threading, and the minor route to an entropically limited plug motion, where the extended terminus is threaded as through a needle. Knot formation is a late transition state process and results show that random (nonspecific) knots are a very rare and unstable set of configurations both at and below folding temperature. Our study shows that a native-biased landscape is sufficient to fold complex topologies and presents a folding mechanism generalizable to all known knotted protein topologies: knotting via threading a native-like loop in a preordered intermediate. PMID:20702769

  13. Shot-gun proteomic analysis of mitochondrial D-loop DNA binding proteins: identification of mitochondrial histones.

    PubMed

    Choi, Yon-Sik; Hoon Jeong, Jae; Min, Hye-Ki; Jung, Hee-Jung; Hwang, Daehee; Lee, Sang-Won; Kim Pak, Youngmi

    2011-05-01

    Transcription and replication of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) are regulated by nuclear DNA-encoded proteins that are targeted into mitochondria. A decrease in mtDNA copy number results in mitochondrial dysfunction, which may lead to insulin resistance and metabolic syndromes. We analyzed mitochondrial proteins that physically bind to human mitochondrial D-loop DNA using a shot-gun proteomics approach following protein enrichment by D-loop DNA-linked affinity chromatography. A total of 152 D-loop DNA binding proteins were identified by peptide sequencing using ultra high pressure capillary reverse-phase liquid chromatography/tandem mass spectrometry. Bioinformatic analysis showed that 68 were mitochondrial proteins, 96 were DNA/RNA/protein binding proteins and 114 proteins might form a complex via protein-protein interactions. Histone family members of H1, H2A, H2B, H3, and H4, were detected in abundance among them. In particular, histones H2A and H2B were present in the mitochondrial membrane as integral membrane proteins and not bound directly to mtDNA inside the organelle. Histones H1.2, H3 and H4 were associated with the outer mitochondrial membrane. Silencing of H2AX expression inhibited mitochondrial protein transport. Our data suggests that many mitochondrial proteins may reside in multiple subcellular compartments like H2AX and exert multiple functions. PMID:21359316

  14. Suppression of Chondrogenesis by Id Helix-Loop-Helix Proteins in Murine Embryonic Orofacial Tissue

    PubMed Central

    Mukhopadhyay, Partha; Rezzoug, Francine; Webb, Cynthia L.; Pisano, M. Michele; Greene, Robert M.

    2009-01-01

    Inhibitors of differentiation (Id) proteins are helix-loop-helix (HLH) transcription factors lacking a DNA binding domain. Id proteins modulate cell proliferation, apoptosis, and differentiation in embryonic/fetal tissue. Perturbation of any of these processes in cells of the developing orofacial region results in orofacial anomalies. Chondrogenesis, a process integral to normal orofacial ontogenesis, is known to be modulated, in part, by Id proteins. In the present study, the mRNA and protein expression patterns of Id1, Id2, Id3 and Id4 were examined in developing murine orofacial tissue in vivo, as well as in murine embryonic maxillary mesenchymal cells in vitro. The functional role of Ids during chondrogenesis was also explored in vitro. Results reveal that cells derived from developing murine orofacial tissue: (1) express Id1, Id2, Id3 and Id4 mRNAs and proteins on each of gestational days 12-14, (2) express all four Id proteins in a developmentally regulated manner, (3) undergo chondrogenesis and express genes encoding various chondrogenic marker proteins (e.g. Runx2, Type X collagen, Sox9) when cultured under micromass conditions, and (4) can have their chondrogenic potential regulated via alteration of Id protein function through overexpression of a basic HLH factor. In summary, results from the current report reveal for the first time, the expression of all four Id proteins in cells derived from developing murine orofacial tissue, and demonstrate a functional role for the Ids in regulating the ability of these cells to undergo chondrogenesis. PMID:19349107

  15. The extended loops of ribosomal proteins uL4 and uL22 of Escherichia coli contribute to ribosome assembly and protein translation.

    PubMed

    Lawrence, Marlon G; Shamsuzzaman, Md; Kondopaka, Maithri; Pascual, Clarence; Zengel, Janice M; Lindahl, Lasse

    2016-07-01

    Nearly half of ribosomal proteins are composed of a domain on the ribosome surface and a loop or extension that penetrates into the organelle's RNA core. Our previous work showed that ribosomes lacking the loops of ribosomal proteins uL4 or uL22 are still capable of entering polysomes. However, in those experiments we could not address the formation of mutant ribosomes, because we used strains that also expressed wild-type uL4 and uL22. Here, we have focused on ribosome assembly and function in strains in which loop deletion mutant genes are the ONLY: sources of uL4 or uL22 protein. The uL4 and uL22 loop deletions have different effects, but both mutations result in accumulation of immature particles that do not accumulate in detectable amounts in wild-type strains. Thus, our results suggest that deleting the loops creates kinetic barriers in the normal assembly pathway, possibly resulting in assembly via alternate pathway(s). Furthermore, deletion of the uL4 loop results in cold-sensitive ribosome assembly and function. Finally, ribosomes carrying either of the loop-deleted proteins responded normally to the secM translation pausing peptide, but the uL4 mutant responded very inefficiently to the cmlA(crb) pause peptide. PMID:27257065

  16. The extended loops of ribosomal proteins uL4 and uL22 of Escherichia coli contribute to ribosome assembly and protein translation

    PubMed Central

    Lawrence, Marlon G.; Shamsuzzaman, Md; Kondopaka, Maithri; Pascual, Clarence; Zengel, Janice M.; Lindahl, Lasse

    2016-01-01

    Nearly half of ribosomal proteins are composed of a domain on the ribosome surface and a loop or extension that penetrates into the organelle's RNA core. Our previous work showed that ribosomes lacking the loops of ribosomal proteins uL4 or uL22 are still capable of entering polysomes. However, in those experiments we could not address the formation of mutant ribosomes, because we used strains that also expressed wild-type uL4 and uL22. Here, we have focused on ribosome assembly and function in strains in which loop deletion mutant genes are the only sources of uL4 or uL22 protein. The uL4 and uL22 loop deletions have different effects, but both mutations result in accumulation of immature particles that do not accumulate in detectable amounts in wild-type strains. Thus, our results suggest that deleting the loops creates kinetic barriers in the normal assembly pathway, possibly resulting in assembly via alternate pathway(s). Furthermore, deletion of the uL4 loop results in cold-sensitive ribosome assembly and function. Finally, ribosomes carrying either of the loop-deleted proteins responded normally to the secM translation pausing peptide, but the uL4 mutant responded very inefficiently to the cmlAcrb pause peptide. PMID:27257065

  17. A new crystal form of human tear lipocalin reveals high flexibility in the loop region and induced fit in the ligand cavity

    SciTech Connect

    Breustedt, Daniel A.; Chatwell, Lorenz; Skerra, Arne

    2009-10-01

    The crystal structure of tear lipocalin determined in space group P2{sub 1} revealed large structural deviations from the previously solved X-ray structure in space group C2, especially in the loop region and adjoining parts of the β-barrel which give rise to the ligand-binding site. These findings illustrate a novel mechanism for promiscuity in ligand recognition by the lipocalin protein family. Tear lipocalin (TLC) with the bound artificial ligand 1,4-butanediol has been crystallized in space group P2{sub 1} with four protein molecules in the asymmetric unit and its X-ray structure has been solved at 2.6 Å resolution. TLC is a member of the lipocalin family that binds ligands with diverse chemical structures, such as fatty acids, phospholipids and cholesterol as well as microbial siderophores and the antibiotic rifampin. Previous X-ray structural analysis of apo TLC crystallized in space group C2 revealed a rather large bifurcated ligand pocket and a partially disordered loop region at the entrace to the cavity. Analysis of the P2{sub 1} crystal form uncovered major conformational changes (i) in β-strands B, C and D, (ii) in loops 1, 2 and 4 at the open end of the β-barrel and (iii) in the extended C-terminal segment, which is attached to the β-barrel via a disulfide bridge. The structural comparison indicates high conformational plasticity of the loop region as well as of deeper parts of the ligand pocket, thus allowing adaptation to ligands that differ vastly in size and shape. This illustrates a mechanism for promiscuity in ligand recognition which may also be relevant for some other physiologically important members of the lipocalin protein family.

  18. Monte Carlo simulations of flexible polyanions complexing with whey proteins at their isoelectric point

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    de Vries, R.

    2004-02-01

    Electrostatic complexation of flexible polyanions with the whey proteins α-lactalbumin and β-lactoglobulin is studied using Monte Carlo simulations. The proteins are considered at their respective isoelectric points. Discrete charges on the model polyelectrolytes and proteins interact through Debye-Hückel potentials. Protein excluded volume is taken into account through a coarse-grained model of the protein shape. Consistent with experimental results, it is found that α-lactalbumin complexes much more strongly than β-lactoglobulin. For α-lactalbumin, strong complexation is due to localized binding to a single large positive "charge patch," whereas for β-lactoglobulin, weak complexation is due to diffuse binding to multiple smaller charge patches.

  19. Blue Copper Proteins: A rigid machine for efficient electron transfer, a flexible device for metal uptake.

    PubMed

    Pérez-Henarejos, Sergio Alejo; Alcaraz, Luis A; Donaire, Antonio

    2015-10-15

    Blue Copper Proteins (BCPs) are small and generally soluble copper-containing proteins which participate in monoelectron transfer processes in biological systems. An overview of their electronic and tertiary structure is detailed here. The well-established entatic/rack-induced mechanism is explained by comparing thermodynamic parameters between the folded (tense) and the unfolded (relaxed) forms of the BCP rusticyanin. Recently, NMR solution data have shown that the active sites of BCPs in absence of the metal ion, i.e. in the apoforms, are flexible in the micro-to-second timescale. The rigidity proposed by the entatic/rack-induced mechanism is an imperative for the holoprotein to perform electron transfer; while the flexibility of the apocupredoxin is necessary to uptake the metal ion from the metallochaperones. These apparently contradictory requirements are discussed in the present work. Finally, the role of azurin and some peptides derived from it in anticancer therapy are also described. PMID:26334718

  20. A new crystal form of human tear lipocalin reveals high flexibility in the loop region and induced fit in the ligand cavity

    PubMed Central

    Breustedt, Daniel A.; Chatwell, Lorenz; Skerra, Arne

    2009-01-01

    Tear lipocalin (TLC) with the bound artificial ligand 1,4-butanediol has been crystallized in space group P21 with four protein molecules in the asymmetric unit and its X-ray structure has been solved at 2.6 Å resolution. TLC is a member of the lipocalin family that binds ligands with diverse chemical structures, such as fatty acids, phospholipids and cholesterol as well as microbial siderophores and the antibiotic rifampin. Previous X-ray structural analysis of apo TLC crystallized in space group C2 revealed a rather large bifurcated ligand pocket and a partially disordered loop region at the entrace to the cavity. Analysis of the P21 crystal form uncovered major conformational changes (i) in β-strands B, C and D, (ii) in loops 1, 2 and 4 at the open end of the β-­barrel and (iii) in the extended C-terminal segment, which is attached to the β-­barrel via a disulfide bridge. The structural comparison indicates high conformational plasticity of the loop region as well as of deeper parts of the ligand pocket, thus allowing adaptation to ligands that differ vastly in size and shape. This illustrates a mechanism for promiscuity in ligand recognition which may also be relevant for some other physiologically important members of the lipocalin protein family. PMID:19770509

  1. Conformational Flexibility and Dynamics of the Internal Loop and Helical Regions of the Kink-Turn Motif in the Glycine Riboswitch by Site-Directed Spin-Labeling.

    PubMed

    Esquiaqui, Jackie M; Sherman, Eileen M; Ye, Jing-Dong; Fanucci, Gail E

    2016-08-01

    Site-directed spin-labeling (SDSL) electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) spectroscopy provides a means for a solution state description of site-specific dynamics and flexibility of large RNAs, facilitating our understanding of the effects of environmental conditions such as ligands and ions on RNA structure and dynamics. Here, the utility and capability of EPR line shape analysis and distance measurements to monitor and describe site-specific changes in the conformational dynamics of internal loop nucleobases as well as helix-helix interactions of the kink-turn motif in the Vibrio cholerae (VC) glycine riboswitch that occur upon sequential K(+)-, Mg(2+)-, and glycine-induced folding were explored. Spin-labels were incorporated into the 232-nucleotide sequence via splinted ligation strategies. Thiouridine nucleobase labeling within the internal loop reveals unambiguous differential dynamics for two successive sites labeled, with varied rates of motion reflective of base flipping and base stacking. EPR-based distance measurements for nitroxide spin-labels incorporated within the RNA backbone in the helical regions of the kink-turn motif are reflective of helical formation and tertiary interaction induced by ion stabilization. In both instances, results indicate that the structural formation of the kink-turn motif in the VC glycine riboswitch can be stabilized by 100 mM K(+) where the conformational flexibility of the kink-turn motif is not further tightened by subsequent addition of divalent ions. Although glycine binding is likely to induce structural and dynamic changes in other regions, SDSL indicates no impact of glycine binding on the local dynamics or structure of the kink-turn motif as investigated here. Overall, these results demonstrate the ability of SDSL to interrogate site-specific base dynamics and packing of helices in large RNAs and demonstrate ion-induced stability of the kink-turn fold of the VC riboswitch. PMID:27427937

  2. Structure and dynamics of [gamma]-SNAP: Insight into flexibility of proteins from the SNAP family

    SciTech Connect

    Bitto, Eduard; Bingman, Craig A.; Kondrashov, Dmitry A.; McCoy, Jason G.; Bannen, Ryan M.; Wesenberg, Gary E.; Phillips, Jr., George N.

    2010-02-19

    Soluble N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor attachment protein gamma ({gamma}-SNAP) is a member of an eukaryotic protein family involved in intracellular membrane trafficking. The X-ray structure of Brachydanio rerio {gamma}-SNAP was determined to 2.6 {angstrom} and revealed an all-helical protein comprised of an extended twisted-sheet of helical hairpins with a helical-bundle domain on its carboxy-terminal end. Structural and conformational differences between multiple observed {gamma}-SNAP molecules and Sec17, a SNAP family protein from yeast, are analyzed. Conformational variation in {gamma}-SNAP molecules is matched with great precision by the two lowest frequency normal modes of the structure. Comparison of the lowest-frequency modes from {gamma}-SNAP and Sec17 indicated that the structures share preferred directions of flexibility, corresponding to bending and twisting of the twisted sheet motif. We discuss possible consequences related to the flexibility of the SNAP proteins for the mechanism of the 20S complex disassembly during the SNAP receptors recycling.

  3. Tryptophan phosphorescence as a monitor of flexibility of membrane proteins in cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mazhul, Vladimir M.; Scherbin, Dmitry G.

    1997-05-01

    Method of room temperature tryptophan phosphorescence (RTTP) has been used to study slow intramolecular equilibrium motions in membrane proteins. The conventional home-made instruments were employed for measurement of RTTP kinetic and spectral parameters. Objects of the investigation were suspensions of human erythrocyte membranes, different animal and plant cells. On rat gepathocytes it has been shown that membrane proteins in composition of subcellular structures and native cells are able to the RTTP with tens and hundreds milliseconds lifetimes. An overwhelming part of soluble proteins of cytoplasm, karyoplasm and mitochondrial matrix has not capability to RTTP with lifetimes above 1 ms. It is concluded that unlike membrane proteins soluble proteins as a rule are characterized by motions of protein structure with intensive low frequency and large amplitude, that leads to pronounced quenching of their RTTP. In the case of membrane proteins, which are capable of phosphorescence in a millisecond range, the flexibility of the chromophores environment decreases. These results indicate that RTTP method gives the unique possibility to investigate dynamical structure of membrane proteins without their preliminary isolation from cells. The data on membrane proteins intramolecular dynamics in composition of cells at the action of biological active substances in physiological concentrations--Concavalin A, nerve growth factor, epidermal growth factor, 24-epibrassinosteroid received by the phosphorescent method are presented.

  4. Anticalins: exploiting a non-Ig scaffold with hypervariable loops for the engineering of binding proteins.

    PubMed

    Richter, A; Eggenstein, E; Skerra, A

    2014-01-21

    Antibodies, which can recognize a plethora of possible antigens, have been considered as a paradigm of protein engineering performed by nature itself. Lipocalins constitute a distinct family of proteins with functions in ligand binding and transport that occur in many organisms, including man. Like antibodies, lipocalins exhibit a structurally conserved framework - a β-barrel with an attached α-helix - which supports four structurally hypervariable loops forming a cup-shaped binding site. Thus, lipocalins offer an ideal platform for protein engineering to generate novel binding reagents. Using recombinant/synthetic DNA technology and methods of combinatorial library selection, 'Anticalins' with prescribed target specificities can be easily generated. Anticalins with picomolar affinities have been developed for three classes of ligands having relevance in basic research and/or medical application: small molecules, peptides, and proteinaceous signalling molecules as well as cell surface receptors. Anticalins derived from human lipocalins have already reached the clinical trial stage. Due to their very small size and simple composition of a single polypeptide chain, which also facilitates the construction of bifunctional fusion proteins, Anticalins promise benefits as a next class of biopharmaceuticals. PMID:24239535

  5. A relational database of protein structures designed for flexible enquiries about conformation.

    PubMed

    Islam, S A; Sternberg, M J

    1989-03-01

    A relational database of protein structure has been developed to enable rapid and flexible enquiries about the occurrence of many aspects of protein architecture. The coordinates of 294 proteins from the Brookhaven Data Bank have been processed by standard computer programs to generate many additional terms that quantify aspects of protein structure. These terms include solvent accessibility, main-chain and side-chain dihedral angles, and secondary structure. In a relational database, the information is stored in tables with columns holding the different terms and rows holding the different entries for the terms. The different relational base tables store the information about the protein coordinate set, the different chains in the protein, the amino acid residues and ligands, the atomic coordinates, the salt bridges, the hydrogen bonds, the disulphide bridges and the close tertiary contacts. The database was established under ORACLE management system. Enquiries are constructed in ORACLE using SQL (structured query language) which is simple to use and alleviates the need for extensive computer programs. A single table can be searched for entries that meet various criteria, e.g. all protein solved to better than a given resolution. The power of the database occurs when several tables, or the entries in a single table, are cross-correlated. For example the dihedral angles of proline in the fourth position in an alpha-helix in high resolution structures can be rapidly obtained. The structural database provides a powerful tool to obtain empirical rules about protein conformation. This database of protein structures is part of a joint project between Birkbeck College and Leeds University to establish an integrated data resource of protein sequences and structures (ISIS) that encodes the complex patterns of residues and coordinates that define protein conformation. The entire data resource (ISIS) will provide a system to guide all areas of protein modelling including

  6. Regulation of Arabidopsis Brassinosteroid Signaling by Atypical Basic Helix-Loop-Helix Proteins[C][W

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Hao; Zhu, Yongyou; Fujioka, Shozo; Asami, Tadao; Li, Jiayang; Li, Jianming

    2009-01-01

    Basic helix-loop-helix (bHLH) proteins are highly conserved transcription factors critical for cell proliferation and differentiation. Recent studies have implicated bHLH proteins in many plant signaling processes, including brassinosteroid (BR) signaling. Here, we report identification of two families of atypical bHLH proteins capable of modulating BR signaling. We found that activation-tagged bri1 suppressor 1-Dominant (atbs1-D), previously identified as a dominant suppressor of a weak BR receptor mutant bri1-301, was caused by overexpression of a 93–amino acid atypical bHLH protein lacking amino acids critical for DNA binding. Interestingly, atbs1-D only suppresses weak BR mutants, while overexpression of a truncated ATBS1 lacking the basic motif also rescues bri1-301, suggesting that ATBS1 likely stimulates BR signaling by sequestering negative BR signaling components. A yeast two-hybrid screen using ATBS1 as bait discovered four ATBS1-Interacting Factors (AIFs) that are members of another atypical bHLH protein subfamily. AIF1 exhibits an overlapping expression pattern with ATBS1 and its homologs and interacts with ATBS1 in vitro and in vivo. AIF1 overexpression nullifies the suppressive effect of atbs1-D on bri1-301 and results in dwarf transgenic plants resembling BR mutants. By contrast, silencing of AIF1 partially suppressed the bri1-301 phenotype. Our results suggested that plants use these atypical bHLH proteins to regulate BR signaling. PMID:20023194

  7. Introducing a Rigid Loop Structure from Deer into Mouse Prion Protein Increases Its Propensity for Misfolding In Vitro

    PubMed Central

    Kyle, Leah M.; John, Theodore R.; Schätzl, Hermann M.; Lewis, Randolph V.

    2013-01-01

    Prion diseases are fatal neurodegenerative disorders characterized by misfolding of the cellular prion protein (PrPc) into the disease-associated isoform (PrPSc) that has increased β-sheet content and partial resistance to proteolytic digestion. Prion diseases from different mammalian species have varying propensities for transmission upon exposure of an uninfected host to the infectious agent. Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) is a highly transmissible prion disease that affects free ranging and farmed populations of cervids including deer, elk and moose, as well as other mammals in experimental settings. The molecular mechanisms allowing CWD to maintain comparatively high transmission rates have not been determined. Previous work has identified a unique structural feature in cervid PrP, a rigid loop between β-sheet 2 and α-helix 2 on the surface of the protein. This study was designed to test the hypothesis that the rigid loop has a direct influence on the misfolding process. The rigid loop was introduced into murine PrP as the result of two amino acid substitutions: S170N and N174T. Wild-type and rigid loop murine PrP were expressed in E. coli and purified. Misfolding propensity was compared for the two proteins using biochemical techniques and cell free misfolding and conversion systems. Murine PrP with a rigid loop misfolded in cell free systems with greater propensity than wild type murine PrP. In a lipid-based conversion assay, rigid loop PrP converted to a PK resistant, aggregated isoform at lower concentrations than wild-type PrP. Using both proteins as substrates in real time quaking-induced conversion, rigid loop PrP adopted a misfolded isoform more readily than wild type PrP. Taken together, these findings may help explain the high transmission rates observed for CWD within cervids. PMID:23825561

  8. Nonlinear effects of a modal domain optical fiber sensor in a vibration suppression control loop for a flexible structure

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lindner, D. K.; Zvonar, G. A.; Baumann, W. T.; Delos, P. L.

    1993-01-01

    Recently, a modal domain optical fiber sensor has been demonstrated as a sensor in a control system for vibration suppression of a flexible cantilevered beam. This sensor responds to strain through a mechanical attachment to the structure. Because this sensor is of the interferometric type, the output of the sensor has a sinusoidal nonlinearity. For small levels of strain, the sensor can be operated in its linear region. For large levels of strain, the detection electronics can be configured to count fringes. In both of these configurations, the sensor nonlinearity imposes some restrictions on the performance of the control system. In this paper we investigate the effects of these sensor nonlinearities on the control system, and identify the region of linear operation in terms of the optical fiber sensor parameters.

  9. Presence of mitochondrial D-loop DNA in scrapie-infected brain preparations enriched for the prion protein.

    PubMed Central

    Aiken, J M; Williamson, J L; Borchardt, L M; Marsh, R F

    1990-01-01

    The prion preparation has, in recent years, been the focal point of scrapie research. The inability to identify agent-specific nucleic acids in this sample has led to the formulation of the infectious protein or prion hypothesis. In this study, we analyzed three different prion protein-enriched preparations and found all to contain significant amounts of mitochondrial nucleic acid. Southern blot analyses indicated that they are enriched for a specific component of the mitochondrial genome, the single-stranded displacement loop fragment. Our results suggest that if mitochondrial nucleic acids are involved in scrapie infection, it is the displacement loop fragment that is specifically responsible. Images PMID:1972202

  10. Maternal protein restriction impairs the transcriptional metabolic flexibility of skeletal muscle in adult rat offspring.

    PubMed

    da Silva Aragão, Raquel; Guzmán-Quevedo, Omar; Pérez-García, Georgina; Manhães-de-Castro, Raul; Bolaños-Jiménez, Francisco

    2014-08-14

    Skeletal muscle exhibits a remarkable flexibility in the usage of fuel in response to the nutrient intake and energy demands of the organism. In fact, increased physical activity and fasting trigger a transcriptional programme in skeletal muscle cells leading to a switch from carbohydrate to lipid oxidation. Impaired metabolic flexibility has been reported to be associated with obesity and type 2 diabetes, but it is not known whether the disability to adapt to metabolic demands is a cause or a consequence of these pathological conditions. Inasmuch as a poor nutritional environment during early life is a predisposing factor for the development of metabolic diseases in adulthood, in the present study, we aimed to determine the long-term effects of maternal malnutrition on the metabolic flexibility of offspring skeletal muscle. To this end, the transcriptional responses of the soleus and extensor digitorum longus muscles to fasting were evaluated in adult rats born to dams fed a control (17 % protein) or a low-protein (8 % protein, protein restricted (PR)) diet throughout pregnancy and lactation. With the exception of reduced body weight and reduced plasma concentrations of TAG, PR rats exhibited a metabolic profile that was the same as that of the control rats. In the fed state, PR rats exhibited an enhanced expression of key regulatory genes of fatty acid oxidation including CPT1a, PGC-1α, UCP3 and PPARα and an impaired expression of genes that increase the capacity for fat oxidation in response to fasting. These results suggest that impaired metabolic inflexibility precedes and may contribute to the development of metabolic disorders associated with early malnutrition. PMID:24823946

  11. Origins of Structural Flexibility in Protein-Based Supramolecular Polymers Revealed by DEER Spectroscopy

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Modular assembly of bio-inspired supramolecular polymers is a powerful technique to develop new soft nanomaterials, and protein folding is a versatile basis for preparing such materials. Previous work demonstrated a significant difference in the physical properties of closely related supramolecular polymers composed of building blocks in which identical coiled-coil-forming peptides are cross-linked by one of two subtly different organic linkers (one flexible and the other rigid). Herein, we investigate the molecular basis for this observation by isolating a single subunit of the supramolecular polymer chain and probing its structure and conformational flexibility by double electron–electron resonance (DEER) spectroscopy. Experimental spin–spin distance distributions for two different labeling sites coupled with molecular dynamics simulations provide insights into how the linker structure impacts chain dynamics in the coiled-coil supramolecular polymer. PMID:25060334

  12. Origins of structural flexibility in protein-based supramolecular polymers revealed by DEER spectroscopy.

    PubMed

    Tavenor, Nathan A; Silva, K Ishara; Saxena, Sunil; Horne, W Seth

    2014-08-21

    Modular assembly of bio-inspired supramolecular polymers is a powerful technique to develop new soft nanomaterials, and protein folding is a versatile basis for preparing such materials. Previous work demonstrated a significant difference in the physical properties of closely related supramolecular polymers composed of building blocks in which identical coiled-coil-forming peptides are cross-linked by one of two subtly different organic linkers (one flexible and the other rigid). Herein, we investigate the molecular basis for this observation by isolating a single subunit of the supramolecular polymer chain and probing its structure and conformational flexibility by double electron-electron resonance (DEER) spectroscopy. Experimental spin-spin distance distributions for two different labeling sites coupled with molecular dynamics simulations provide insights into how the linker structure impacts chain dynamics in the coiled-coil supramolecular polymer. PMID:25060334

  13. Changes in flexibility upon binding: Application of the self-consistent pair contact probability method to protein-protein interactions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Canino, Lawrence S.; Shen, Tongye; McCammon, J. Andrew

    2002-12-01

    We extend the self-consistent pair contact probability method to the evaluation of the partition function for a protein complex at thermodynamic equilibrium. Specifically, we adapt the method for multichain models and introduce a parametrization for amino acid-specific pairwise interactions. This method is similar to the Gaussian network model but allows for the adjusting of the strengths of native state contacts. The method is first validated on a high resolution x-ray crystal structure of bovine Pancreatic Phospholipase A2 by comparing calculated B-factors with reported values. We then examine binding-induced changes in flexibility in protein-protein complexes, comparing computed results with those obtained from x-ray crystal structures and molecular dynamics simulations. In particular, we focus on the mouse acetylcholinesterase:fasciculin II and the human α-thrombin:thrombomodulin complexes.

  14. Stem-loop binding protein is a multifaceted cellular regulator of HIV-1 replication.

    PubMed

    Li, Ming; Tucker, Lynne D; Asara, John M; Cheruiyot, Collins K; Lu, Huafei; Wu, Zhijin J; Newstein, Michael C; Dooner, Mark S; Friedman, Jennifer; Lally, Michelle A; Ramratnam, Bharat

    2016-08-01

    A rare subset of HIV-1-infected individuals is able to maintain plasma viral load (VL) at low levels without antiretroviral treatment. Identifying the mechanisms underlying this atypical response to infection may lead to therapeutic advances for treating HIV-1. Here, we developed a proteomic analysis to compare peripheral blood cell proteomes in 20 HIV-1-infected individuals who maintained either high or low VL with the aim of identifying host factors that impact HIV-1 replication. We determined that the levels of multiple histone proteins were markedly decreased in cohorts of individuals with high VL. This reduction was correlated with lower levels of stem-loop binding protein (SLBP), which is known to control histone metabolism. Depletion of cellular SLBP increased promoter engagement with the chromatin structures of the host gene high mobility group protein A1 (HMGA1) and viral long terminal repeat (LTR), which led to higher levels of HIV-1 genomic integration and proviral transcription. Further, we determined that TNF-α regulates expression of SLBP and observed that plasma TNF-α levels in HIV-1-infected individuals correlated directly with VL levels and inversely with cellular SLBP levels. Our findings identify SLBP as a potentially important cellular regulator of HIV-1, thereby establishing a link between histone metabolism, inflammation, and HIV-1 infection. PMID:27454292

  15. Combining conformational flexibility and continuum electrostatics for calculating pK(a)s in proteins.

    PubMed

    Georgescu, Roxana E; Alexov, Emil G; Gunner, Marilyn R

    2002-10-01

    Protein stability and function relies on residues being in their appropriate ionization states at physiological pH. In situ residue pK(a)s also provides a sensitive measure of the local protein environment. Multiconformation continuum electrostatics (MCCE) combines continuum electrostatics and molecular mechanics force fields in Monte Carlo sampling to simultaneously calculate side chain ionization and conformation. The response of protein to charges is incorporated both in the protein dielectric constant (epsilon(prot)) of four and by explicit conformational changes. The pK(a) of 166 residues in 12 proteins was determined. The root mean square error is 0.83 pH units, and >90% have errors of <1 pH units whereas only 3% have errors >2 pH units. Similar results are found with crystal and solution structures, showing that the method's explicit conformational sampling reduces sensitivity to the initial structure. The outcome also changes little with protein dielectric constant (epsilon(prot) 4-20). Multiconformation continuum electrostatics titrations show coupling of conformational flexibility and changes in ionization state. Examples are provided where ionizable side chain position (protein G), Asn orientation (lysozyme), His tautomer distribution (RNase A), and phosphate ion binding (RNase A and H) change with pH. Disallowing these motions changes the calculated pK(a). PMID:12324397

  16. Combining conformational flexibility and continuum electrostatics for calculating pK(a)s in proteins.

    PubMed Central

    Georgescu, Roxana E; Alexov, Emil G; Gunner, Marilyn R

    2002-01-01

    Protein stability and function relies on residues being in their appropriate ionization states at physiological pH. In situ residue pK(a)s also provides a sensitive measure of the local protein environment. Multiconformation continuum electrostatics (MCCE) combines continuum electrostatics and molecular mechanics force fields in Monte Carlo sampling to simultaneously calculate side chain ionization and conformation. The response of protein to charges is incorporated both in the protein dielectric constant (epsilon(prot)) of four and by explicit conformational changes. The pK(a) of 166 residues in 12 proteins was determined. The root mean square error is 0.83 pH units, and >90% have errors of <1 pH units whereas only 3% have errors >2 pH units. Similar results are found with crystal and solution structures, showing that the method's explicit conformational sampling reduces sensitivity to the initial structure. The outcome also changes little with protein dielectric constant (epsilon(prot) 4-20). Multiconformation continuum electrostatics titrations show coupling of conformational flexibility and changes in ionization state. Examples are provided where ionizable side chain position (protein G), Asn orientation (lysozyme), His tautomer distribution (RNase A), and phosphate ion binding (RNase A and H) change with pH. Disallowing these motions changes the calculated pK(a). PMID:12324397

  17. High protein flexibility and reduced hydration water dynamics are key pressure adaptive strategies in prokaryotes.

    PubMed

    Martinez, N; Michoud, G; Cario, A; Ollivier, J; Franzetti, B; Jebbar, M; Oger, P; Peters, J

    2016-01-01

    Water and protein dynamics on a nanometer scale were measured by quasi-elastic neutron scattering in the piezophile archaeon Thermococcus barophilus and the closely related pressure-sensitive Thermococcus kodakarensis, at 0.1 and 40 MPa. We show that cells of the pressure sensitive organism exhibit higher intrinsic stability. Both the hydration water dynamics and the fast protein and lipid dynamics are reduced under pressure. In contrast, the proteome of T. barophilus is more pressure sensitive than that of T. kodakarensis. The diffusion coefficient of hydration water is reduced, while the fast protein and lipid dynamics are slightly enhanced with increasing pressure. These findings show that the coupling between hydration water and cellular constituents might not be simply a master-slave relationship. We propose that the high flexibility of the T. barophilus proteome associated with reduced hydration water may be the keys to the molecular adaptation of the cells to high hydrostatic pressure. PMID:27595789

  18. High protein flexibility and reduced hydration water dynamics are key pressure adaptive strategies in prokaryotes

    PubMed Central

    Martinez, N.; Michoud, G.; Cario, A.; Ollivier, J.; Franzetti, B.; Jebbar, M.; Oger, P.; Peters, J.

    2016-01-01

    Water and protein dynamics on a nanometer scale were measured by quasi-elastic neutron scattering in the piezophile archaeon Thermococcus barophilus and the closely related pressure-sensitive Thermococcus kodakarensis, at 0.1 and 40 MPa. We show that cells of the pressure sensitive organism exhibit higher intrinsic stability. Both the hydration water dynamics and the fast protein and lipid dynamics are reduced under pressure. In contrast, the proteome of T. barophilus is more pressure sensitive than that of T. kodakarensis. The diffusion coefficient of hydration water is reduced, while the fast protein and lipid dynamics are slightly enhanced with increasing pressure. These findings show that the coupling between hydration water and cellular constituents might not be simply a master-slave relationship. We propose that the high flexibility of the T. barophilus proteome associated with reduced hydration water may be the keys to the molecular adaptation of the cells to high hydrostatic pressure. PMID:27595789

  19. Crystal structure and conformational flexibility of the unligated FK506-binding protein FKBP12.6

    SciTech Connect

    Chen, Hui; Mustafi, Sourajit M.; LeMaster, David M.; Li, Zhong; Héroux, Annie; Li, Hongmin; Hernández, Griselda

    2014-03-01

    Two crystal forms of unligated FKBP12.6 exhibit multiple conformations in the active site and in the 80s loop, the primary site for known protein-recognition interactions. The previously unreported NMR backbone assignment of FKBP12.6 revealed extensive doubling of amide resonances, which reflects a slow conformational transition centered in the 80s loop. The primary known physiological function of FKBP12.6 involves its role in regulating the RyR2 isoform of ryanodine receptor Ca{sup 2+} channels in cardiac muscle, pancreatic β islets and the central nervous system. With only a single previously reported X-ray structure of FKBP12.6, bound to the immunosuppressant rapamycin, structural inferences for this protein have been drawn from the more extensive studies of the homologous FKBP12. X-ray structures at 1.70 and 1.90 Å resolution from P2{sub 1} and P3{sub 1}21 crystal forms are reported for an unligated cysteine-free variant of FKBP12.6 which exhibit a notable diversity of conformations. In one monomer from the P3{sub 1}21 crystal form, the aromatic ring of Phe59 at the base of the active site is rotated perpendicular to its typical orientation, generating a steric conflict for the immunosuppressant-binding mode. The peptide unit linking Gly89 and Val90 at the tip of the protein-recognition ‘80s loop’ is flipped in the P2{sub 1} crystal form. Unlike the >30 reported FKBP12 structures, the backbone conformation of this loop closely follows that of the first FKBP domain of FKBP51. The NMR resonances for 21 backbone amides of FKBP12.6 are doubled, corresponding to a slow conformational transition centered near the tip of the 80s loop, as recently reported for 31 amides of FKBP12. The comparative absence of doubling for residues along the opposite face of the active-site pocket in FKBP12.6 may in part reflect attenuated structural coupling owing to increased conformational plasticity around the Phe59 ring.

  20. The Catalytic Activity of Protein-Disulfide Isomerase Requires a Conformationally Flexible Molecule

    SciTech Connect

    Tian, G.; Kober, F; Lewandrowski, U; Sickmann, A; Lennarz, W; Schindelin, H

    2008-01-01

    Protein-disulfide isomerase (PDI) catalyzes the formation of the correct pattern of disulfide bonds in secretory proteins. A low resolution crystal structure of yeast PDI described here reveals large scale conformational changes compared with the initially reported structure, indicating that PDI is a highly flexible molecule with its catalytic domains, a and a?, representing two mobile arms connected to a more rigid core composed of the b and b? domains. Limited proteolysis revealed that the linker between the a domain and the core is more susceptible to degradation than that connecting the a? domain to the core. By restricting the two arms with inter-domain disulfide bonds, the molecular flexibility of PDI, especially that of its a domain, was demonstrated to be essential for the enzymatic activity in vitro and in vivo. The crystal structure also featured a PDI dimer, and a propensity to dimerize in solution and in the ER was confirmed by cross-linking experiments and the split green fluorescent protein system. Although sedimentation studies suggested that the self-association of PDI is weak, we hypothesize that PDI exists as an interconvertible mixture of monomers and dimers in the endoplasmic reticulum due to its high abundance in this compartment.

  1. Microscopic insight into role of protein flexibility during ion exchange chromatography by nuclear magnetic resonance and quartz crystal microbalance approaches.

    PubMed

    Hao, Dongxia; Ge, Jia; Huang, Yongdong; Zhao, Lan; Ma, Guanghui; Su, Zhiguo

    2016-03-18

    Driven by the prevalent use of ion exchange chromatography (IEC) for polishing therapeutic proteins, many rules have been formulated to summarize the different dependencies between chromatographic data and various operational parameters of interest based on statically determined interactions. However, the effects of the unfolding of protein structures and conformational stability are not as well understood. This study focuses on how the flexibility of proteins perturbs retention behavior at the molecular scale using microscopic characterization approaches, including hydrogen-deuterium (H/D) exchange detected by NMR and a quartz crystal microbalance (QCM). The results showed that a series of chromatographic retention parameters depended significantly on the adiabatic compressibility and structural flexibility of the protein. That is, softer proteins with higher flexibility tended to have longer retention times and stronger affinities on SP Sepharose adsorbents. Tracing the underlying molecular mechanism using NMR and QCM indicated that an easily unfolded flexible protein with a more compact adsorption layer might contribute to the longer retention time on adsorbents. The use of NMR and QCM provided a previously unreported approach for elucidating the effect of protein structural flexibility on binding in IEC systems. PMID:26896917

  2. Role of the EHD2 Unstructured Loop in Dimerization, Protein Binding and Subcellular Localization

    PubMed Central

    Bahl, Kriti; Naslavsky, Naava; Caplan, Steve

    2015-01-01

    The C-terminal Eps 15 Homology Domain proteins (EHD1-4) play important roles in regulating endocytic trafficking. EHD2 is the only family member whose crystal structure has been solved, and it contains an unstructured loop consisting of two proline-phenylalanine (PF) motifs: KPFRKLNPF. In contrast, despite EHD2 having nearly 70% amino acid identity with its paralogs, EHD1, EHD3 and EHD4, the latter proteins contain a single KPF or RPF motif, but no NPF motif. In this study, we sought to define the precise role of each PF motif in EHD2’s homo-dimerization, binding with the protein partners, and subcellular localization. To test the role of the NPF motif, we generated an EHD2 NPF-to-NAF mutant to mimic the homologous sequences of EHD1 and EHD3. We demonstrated that this mutant lost both its ability to dimerize and bind to Syndapin2. However, it continued to localize primarily to the cytosolic face of the plasma membrane. On the other hand, EHD2 NPF-to-APA mutants displayed normal dimerization and Syndapin2 binding, but exhibited markedly increased nuclear localization and reduced association with the plasma membrane. We then hypothesized that the single PF motif of EHD1 (that aligns with the KPF of EHD2) might be responsible for both binding and localization functions of EHD1. Indeed, the EHD1 RPF motif was required for dimerization, interaction with MICAL-L1 and Syndapin2, as well as localization to tubular recycling endosomes. Moreover, recycling assays demonstrated that EHD1 RPF-to-APA was incapable of supporting normal receptor recycling. Overall, our data suggest that the EHD2 NPF phenylalanine residue is crucial for EHD2 localization to the plasma membrane, whereas the proline residue is essential for EHD2 dimerization and binding. These studies support the recently proposed model in which the EHD2 N-terminal region may regulate the availability of the unstructured loop for interactions with neighboring EHD2 dimers, thus promoting oligomerization. PMID

  3. Ribosomal protein L4 is a novel regulator of the MDM2-p53 loop

    PubMed Central

    He, Xia; Li, Yuhuang; Dai, Mu-Shui; Sun, Xiao-Xin

    2016-01-01

    A number of ribosomal proteins (RPs) have been shown to play a critical role in coordinating ribosome biogenesis with cell growth and proliferation by suppressing MDM2 to induce p53 activation. While how the MDM2-p53 pathway is regulated by multiple RPs is unclear, it remains to be interesting to identify additional RPs that can regulate this pathway. Here we report that ribosomal protein L4 (RPL4) directly interacts with MDM2 at the central acidic domain and suppresses MDM2-mediated p53 ubiquitination and degradation, leading to p53 stabilization and activation. Interestingly, overexpression of RPL4 promotes the binding of MDM2 to RPL5 and RPL11 and forms a complex with RPL5, RPL11 and MDM2 in cells. Conversely, knockdown of RPL4 also induces p53 levels and p53-dependent cell cycle arrest. This p53-dependent effect requires both RPL5 and RPL11, suggesting that depletion of RPL4 triggers ribosomal stress. Together, our results reveal that balanced levels of RPL4 are critical for normal cell growth and proliferation via regulating the MDM2-p53 loop. PMID:26908445

  4. Suppression of mammary epithelial cell differentiation by the helix-loop-helix protein Id-1

    SciTech Connect

    Desprez, P.; Hara, E.; Bissell, M.J.

    1995-06-01

    Cell proliferation and differentiation are precisely coordinated during the development and maturation of the mammary gland, and this balance invariably is disrupted during carcinogenesis. Little is known about the cell-specific transcription factors that regulate these processes in the mammary gland. The mouse mammary epithelial cell line SCp2 grows well under standard culture conditions but arrests growth, forms alveolus-like structures, and expresses {beta}-casein, a differentiation marker, 4 to 5 days after exposure to basement membrane and lactogenic hormones (differentiation signals). The authors show that this differentiation entails a marked decline in the expression of Id-1, a helix-loop-helix (HLH) protein that inactivates basic HLH transcription factors in other cell types. SCp2 cells stably transfected with an Id-1 expression vector grew more rapidly than control cells under standard conditions, but in response to differentiation signals, they lost three-dimensional organization, invaded the basement membrane, and then resumed growth. SCp2 cells expressing an Id-1 antisense vector grew more slowly than controls; in response to differentiation signals, they remained stably growth arrested and fully differentiated, as did control cells. The authors suggest that Id-1 renders cells refractory to differentiation signals and receptive to growth signals by inactivating one or more basic HLH proteins that coordinate growth and differentiation in the mammary epithelium. 53 refs., 6 figs.

  5. Improving protein crystal quality by selective removal of a Ca{sup 2+}-dependent membrane-insertion loop

    SciTech Connect

    Neau, David B.; Gilbert, Nathaniel C.; Bartlett, Sue G.; Dassey, Adam; Newcomer, Marcia E.

    2007-11-01

    Protein engineering dramatically enhances the quality of crystals of a Ca{sup 2+}-dependent membrane-binding protein. Lipoxygenases (LOXs) catalyze the regiospecific and stereospecific dioxygenation of polyunsaturated membrane-embedded fatty acids. A Ca{sup 2+}-dependent membrane-binding function was localized to the amino-terminal C2-like domain of 8R-lipoxygenase (8R-LOX) from the soft coral Plexaura homomalla. The 3.2 Å crystal structure of 8R-LOX and spectroscopic data suggested that Ca{sup 2+} stabilizes two membrane-insertion loops. Analysis of the protein packing contacts in the crystal lattice indicated that the conformation of one of the two loops complicated efforts to improve the resolution of the X-ray data. A deletion mutant of 8R-LOX in which the corresponding membrane-insertion loop is absent (Δ41–45:GSLOX) was engineered. Removal of the membrane-insertion loop dramatically increases the protein yield from bacterial cultures and the quality of the crystals obtained, resulting in a better than 1 Å improvement in the resolution of the diffraction data.

  6. Biophysical exploration of protein-flavonol recognition: effects of molecular properties and conformational flexibility.

    PubMed

    Ding, Fei; Peng, Wei; Peng, Yu-Kui

    2016-04-28

    The current work explores the biomolecular recognition of a series of flavonols by a protein and then uncovers the influences of the structural features of flavonols and the protein's own characteristics, e.g. the dynamics and flexibility, on the bioavailability of flavonols by using the pivotal biomacromolecule hemoglobin as a model. The experimental results revealed that flavonol may lead to a notable decrease in the steady-state fluorescence intensity of the β-37 Trp residue, and in the meantime the R-T transition of the protein transpired. Such noncovalent recognition forms the ground-state adduct, with an association intensity of 3.991 × 10(4) M(-1) in the reaction process, which has already been authenticated by the detailed analysis of time-resolved fluorescence and UV/vis absorption spectra. Furthermore, flavonol can form hydrogen bonds and π-conjugation effects with several amino acid residues on the polypeptide chain, for example, Trp-37, Arg-40, Asp-99 and Asn-102, and this event would induce self-regulation of the compact, regular conformation of the protein to a certain extent, which explicitly corroborates the results of circular dichroism. According to the study of molecular docking and structure-activity relationships, we could see that the recognition capacities of the protein-flavonols are inversely interrelated with the C log P values of the flavonol molecules. Moreover, the properties of the substituents in the structural B-ring unit of flavonols, i.e. polarity, position and number, will also prominently affect the degree of affinity and bioavailability of the protein-flavonol complexes. The analytical results of molecular dynamics (MD) simulation testified that the discussions of the structure-activity relationships are entirely logical, and the conformations of the amino acid residues forming noncovalent interactions tend to be stable in the MD simulation, as further elucidated from the dynamics data. Plainly, molecular recognition of

  7. Analyses of inter- and intra-patient variation in the V3 loop of the HIV-1 envelope protein

    SciTech Connect

    Korber, B.; Myers, G. ); Wolinsky, S. . Medical School)

    1991-09-17

    The third hypervariable domain of the HIV-1 gp120 envelope protein (V3) has been the focus of intensive sequencing efforts. To date, nearly one thousand V3 loop sequences have been stored in the HIV sequence database. Studies have revealed that the V3 loop elicits potent type-specific immune responses, and that it plays a significant role in cell tropism and fusion . The immunogenic tip of the loop can serve as a type-specific neutralizing antibody epitope, as well as a cytotoxic T-cell epitope. A helper T-cell epitope that lies within the amino terminal half of the V3 loop has also been characterized. Despite the richness of the immunologic response to this region, its potential for variation makes it an elusive target for vaccine design. Analyses of sibling sequence sets (sets of viral sequences derived from one person) show that multiple forms of the immunogenic tip of the loop are found within most HIV-1 infected individuals. Viral V3 sequences obtained from epidemiologically unlinked individuals from North America and Europe show extensive variation. However, some amino acid positions distributed throughout the V3 loop are highly conserved, and there is also conservation of the charge class of amino acid able to occupy certain positions relative to the tip of the loop. By contrast, the sequences obtained from many countries throughout the African continent reveal that V3 is a remarkably fluid region with few absolute constraints on the nature of the amino acids that can occupy most positions in the loop. The high degree of heterogeneity in this region is particularly striking in view of its contribution to biologically important viral functions.

  8. Flexible segments modulate co-folding of dUTPase and nucleocapsid proteins.

    PubMed

    Németh-Pongrácz, Veronika; Barabás, Orsolya; Fuxreiter, Mónika; Simon, István; Pichová, Iva; Rumlová, Michalea; Zábranská, Helena; Svergun, Dmitri; Petoukhov, Maxim; Harmat, Veronika; Klement, Eva; Hunyadi-Gulyás, Eva; Medzihradszky, Katalin F; Kónya, Emese; Vértessy, Beáta G

    2007-01-01

    The homotrimeric fusion protein nucleocapsid (NC)-dUTPase combines domains that participate in RNA/DNA folding, reverse transcription, and DNA repair in Mason-Pfizer monkey betaretrovirus infected cells. The structural organization of the fusion protein remained obscured by the N- and C-terminal flexible segments of dUTPase and the linker region connecting the two domains that are invisible in electron density maps. Small-angle X-ray scattering reveals that upon oligonucleotide binding the NC domains adopt the trimeric symmetry of dUTPase. High-resolution X-ray structures together with molecular modeling indicate that fusion with NC domains dramatically alters the conformation of the flexible C-terminus by perturbing the orientation of a critical beta-strand. Consequently, the C-terminal segment is capable of double backing upon the active site of its own monomer and stabilized by non-covalent interactions formed with the N-terminal segment. This co-folding of the dUTPase terminal segments, not observable in other homologous enzymes, is due to the presence of the fused NC domain. Structural and genomic advantages of fusing the NC domain to a shortened dUTPase in betaretroviruses and the possible physiological consequences are envisaged. PMID:17169987

  9. Flexible segments modulate co-folding of dUTPase and nucleocapsid proteins

    PubMed Central

    Németh-Pongrácz, Veronika; Barabás, Orsolya; Fuxreiter, Mónika; Simon, István; Pichová, Iva; Rumlová, Michalea; Zábranská, Helena; Svergun, Dmitri; Petoukhov, Maxim; Harmat, Veronika; Klement, Éva; Hunyadi-Gulyás, Éva; Medzihradszky, Katalin F.; Kónya, Emese; Vértessy, Beáta G.

    2007-01-01

    The homotrimeric fusion protein nucleocapsid (NC)-dUTPase combines domains that participate in RNA/DNA folding, reverse transcription, and DNA repair in Mason-Pfizer monkey betaretrovirus infected cells. The structural organization of the fusion protein remained obscured by the N- and C-terminal flexible segments of dUTPase and the linker region connecting the two domains that are invisible in electron density maps. Small-angle X-ray scattering reveals that upon oligonucleotide binding the NC domains adopt the trimeric symmetry of dUTPase. High-resolution X-ray structures together with molecular modeling indicate that fusion with NC domains dramatically alters the conformation of the flexible C-terminus by perturbing the orientation of a critical β-strand. Consequently, the C-terminal segment is capable of double backing upon the active site of its own monomer and stabilized by non-covalent interactions formed with the N-terminal segment. This co-folding of the dUTPase terminal segments, not observable in other homologous enzymes, is due to the presence of the fused NC domain. Structural and genomic advantages of fusing the NC domain to a shortened dUTPase in betaretroviruses and the possible physiological consequences are envisaged. PMID:17169987

  10. Characterization of Protein Flexibility Using Small-Angle X-Ray Scattering and Amplified Collective Motion Simulations

    PubMed Central

    Wen, Bin; Peng, Junhui; Zuo, Xiaobing; Gong, Qingguo; Zhang, Zhiyong

    2014-01-01

    Large-scale flexibility within a multidomain protein often plays an important role in its biological function. Despite its inherent low resolution, small-angle x-ray scattering (SAXS) is well suited to investigate protein flexibility and determine, with the help of computational modeling, what kinds of protein conformations would coexist in solution. In this article, we develop a tool that combines SAXS data with a previously developed sampling technique called amplified collective motions (ACM) to elucidate structures of highly dynamic multidomain proteins in solution. We demonstrate the use of this tool in two proteins, bacteriophage T4 lysozyme and tandem WW domains of the formin-binding protein 21. The ACM simulations can sample the conformational space of proteins much more extensively than standard molecular dynamics (MD) simulations. Therefore, conformations generated by ACM are significantly better at reproducing the SAXS data than are those from MD simulations. PMID:25140431

  11. Characterization of protein flexibility using small-angle x-ray scattering and amplified collective motion simulations.

    PubMed

    Wen, Bin; Peng, Junhui; Zuo, Xiaobing; Gong, Qingguo; Zhang, Zhiyong

    2014-08-19

    Large-scale flexibility within a multidomain protein often plays an important role in its biological function. Despite its inherent low resolution, small-angle x-ray scattering (SAXS) is well suited to investigate protein flexibility and determine, with the help of computational modeling, what kinds of protein conformations would coexist in solution. In this article, we develop a tool that combines SAXS data with a previously developed sampling technique called amplified collective motions (ACM) to elucidate structures of highly dynamic multidomain proteins in solution. We demonstrate the use of this tool in two proteins, bacteriophage T4 lysozyme and tandem WW domains of the formin-binding protein 21. The ACM simulations can sample the conformational space of proteins much more extensively than standard molecular dynamics (MD) simulations. Therefore, conformations generated by ACM are significantly better at reproducing the SAXS data than are those from MD simulations. PMID:25140431

  12. Incorporating protein conformational flexibility into the calculation of pH-dependent protein properties.

    PubMed Central

    Alexov, E G; Gunner, M R

    1997-01-01

    A method for combining calculations of residue pKa's with changes in the position of polar hydrogens has been developed. The Boltzmann distributions of proton positions in hydroxyls and neutral titratable residues are found in the same Monte Carlo sampling procedure that determines the amino acid ionization states at each pH. Electrostatic, Lennard-Jones potentials, and torsion angle energies are considered at each proton position. Many acidic and basic residues are found to have significant electrostatic interactions with either a water- or hydroxyl-containing side chain. Protonation state changes are coupled to reorientation of the neighboring hydroxyl dipoles, resulting in smaller free energy differences between neutral and ionized residues than when the protein is held rigid. Multiconformation pH titration gives better agreement with the experimental pKa's for triclinic hen egg lysozyme than conventional rigid protein calculations. The hydroxyl motion significantly increases the protein dielectric response, making it sensitive to the composition of the local protein structure. More than one conformer per residue is often found at a given pH, providing information about the distribution of low-energy lysozyme structures. Images FIGURE 2 FIGURE 6 PMID:9129810

  13. The Kl-3 Loop of the Y Chromosome of Drosophila Melanogaster Binds a Tektin-like Protein

    PubMed Central

    Pisano, C.; Bonaccorsi, S.; Gatti, M.

    1993-01-01

    Primary spermatocyte nuclei of Drosophila melanogaster exhibit three giant lampbrush-like loops formed by the kl-5, kl-3 and ks-1 Y-chromosome fertility factors. These structures contain and abundantly transcribe highly repetitive, simple sequence DNAs and accumulate large amounts of non-Y-encoded proteins. By immunizing mice with the 53-kD fraction (enriched in β(2)-tubulin) excised from a sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel loaded with Drosophila testis proteins we raised a polyclonal antibody, designated as T53-1, which decorates the kl-3 loop and the sperm flagellum. Two dimensional immunoblot analysis showed that the T53-1 antibody reacts with a single protein of about 53 kD, different from the tubulins and present both in X/Y and X/O males. Moreover, the antigen recognized by the T53-1 antibody proved to be testis-specific because it was detected in testes and seminal vesicles but not in other male tissues or in females. The characteristics of the protein recognized by the T53-1 antibody suggested that it might be a member of a class of axonemal proteins, the tektins, known to form Sarkosyl-urea insoluble filaments in the wall of flagellar microtubules. Purification of the Sarkosyl-urea insoluble fraction of D. melanogaster sperm revealed that it contains four polypeptides having molecular masses ranging from 51 to 57 kD. One of these polypeptides reacts strongly with the T53-1 antibody but none of them reacts with antitubulin antibodies. These results indicate that the kl-3 loop binds a non-Y encoded, testis-specific, tektin-like protein which is a constituent of the sperm flagellum. This finding supports the hypothesis that the Y loops fulfill a protein-binding function required for the proper assembly of the axoneme components. PMID:8454204

  14. Managing Demand and Capacity Using Multi-Sector Planning and Flexible Airspace: Human-in-the-Loop Evaluation of NextGen

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lee, Paul U.; Smith, Nancy M.; Prevot, Thomas; Homola, Jeffrey R.

    2010-01-01

    When demand for an airspace sector exceeds capacity, the balance can be re-established by reducing the demand, increasing the capacity, or both. The Multi-Sector Planner (MSP) concept has been proposed to better manage traffic demand by modifying trajectories across multiple sectors. A complementary approach to MSP, called Flexible Airspace Management (FAM), reconfigures the airspace such that capacity can be reallocated dynamically to balance the traffic demand across multiple sectors, resulting in fewer traffic management initiatives. The two concepts have been evaluated with a series of human-in-the-loop simulations at the Airspace Operations Laboratory to examine and refine the roles of the human operators in these concepts, as well as their tools and procedural requirements. So far MSP and FAM functions have been evaluated individually but the integration of the two functions is desirable since there are significant overlaps in their goals, geographic/temporal scope of the problem space, and the implementation timeframe. Ongoing research is planned to refine the humans roles in the integrated concept.

  15. Flexible DNA binding of the BTB/POZ-domain protein FBI-1.

    PubMed

    Pessler, Frank; Hernandez, Nouria

    2003-08-01

    POZ-domain transcription factors are characterized by the presence of a protein-protein interaction domain called the POZ or BTB domain at their N terminus and zinc fingers at their C terminus. Despite the large number of POZ-domain transcription factors that have been identified to date and the significant insights that have been gained into their cellular functions, relatively little is known about their DNA binding properties. FBI-1 is a BTB/POZ-domain protein that has been shown to modulate HIV-1 Tat trans-activation and to repress transcription of some cellular genes. We have used various viral and cellular FBI-1 binding sites to characterize the interaction of a POZ-domain protein with DNA in detail. We find that FBI-1 binds to inverted sequence repeats downstream of the HIV-1 transcription start site. Remarkably, it binds efficiently to probes carrying these repeats in various orientations and spacings with no particular rotational alignment, indicating that its interaction with DNA is highly flexible. Indeed, FBI-1 binding sites in the adenovirus 2 major late promoter, the c-fos gene, and the c-myc P1 and P2 promoters reveal variously spaced direct, inverted, and everted sequence repeats with the consensus sequence G(A/G)GGG(T/C)(C/T)(T/C)(C/T) for each repeat. PMID:12750370

  16. Expression and characterization of EF-hand I loop mutants of aequorin replaced with other loop sequences of Ca2+-binding proteins: an approach to studying the EF-hand motif of proteins.

    PubMed

    Inouye, Satoshi; Sahara-Miura, Yuiko

    2016-07-01

    The binding properties of Ca(2+) to EF-hand I of aequorin (AQ) were characterized by replacing the loop sequence of EF-hand I (AQ[I]) with other known loop sequences of Ca(2+)-binding proteins, including photoproteins (aequorin, clytin-I, clytin-II and mitrocomin), Renilla luciferin-binding protein (RLBP) and calmodulin (CaM). For evaluation of the binding affinity of Ca(2+) to AQ[I] mutants, the half-decay time of the maximum intensity in the luminescence reaction triggered by Ca(2+) was used as an indicator and 22 kinds of AQ[I] mutants were expressed in Escherichia coli cells. AQ[I] mutants replaced with the EF-hand I and EF-hand III from photoproteins showed sufficient luminescence activity, but it was not shown by other EF-hands from RLBP and CaM. An AQ[I] mutant with a lysine or arginine residue at the second position of the non-conserved amino acid residue showed a slow-decay pattern of luminescence, indicating that the Ca(2+)-binding affinity to aequorin was reduced by a positive charge at the second position of the loop sequence. The specific loop sequence of the EF-hand I motif in aequorin caused the specific Ca(2+)-triggered luminescence pattern. PMID:26896488

  17. A mutation in the envelope protein fusion loop attenuates mouse neuroinvasiveness of the NY99 strain of West Nile virus

    SciTech Connect

    Zhang Shuliu; Li Li; Woodson, Sara E.; Huang, Claire Y.-H.; Kinney, Richard M.; Barrett, Alan D.T. ||||; Beasley, David W.C. |||. E-mail: d.beasley@utmb.edu

    2006-09-15

    Substitutions were engineered individually and in combinations at the fusion loop, receptor-binding domain and a stem-helix structure of the envelope protein of a West Nile virus strain, NY99, and their effects on mouse virulence and presentation of epitopes recognized by monoclonal antibodies (MAbs) were assessed. A single substitution within the fusion loop (L107F) attenuated mouse neuroinvasiveness of NY99. No substitutions attenuated NY99 neurovirulence. The L107F mutation also abolished binding of a non-neutralizing MAb, 3D9, whose epitope had not been previously identified. MAb 3D9 was subsequently shown to be broadly cross-reactive with other flaviviruses, consistent with binding near the highly conserved fusion loop.

  18. Kalata B8, a novel antiviral circular protein, exhibits conformational flexibility in the cystine knot motif.

    PubMed

    Daly, Norelle L; Clark, Richard J; Plan, Manuel R; Craik, David J

    2006-02-01

    The cyclotides are a family of circular proteins with a range of biological activities and potential pharmaceutical and agricultural applications. The biosynthetic mechanism of cyclization is unknown and the discovery of novel sequences may assist in achieving this goal. In the present study, we have isolated a new cyclotide from Oldenlandia affinis, kalata B8, which appears to be a hybrid of the two major subfamilies (Möbius and bracelet) of currently known cyclotides. We have determined the three-dimensional structure of kalata B8 and observed broadening of resonances directly involved in the cystine knot motif, suggesting flexibility in this region despite it being the core structural element of the cyclotides. The cystine knot motif is widespread throughout Nature and inherently stable, making this apparent flexibility a surprising result. Furthermore, there appears to be isomerization of the peptide backbone at an Asp-Gly sequence in the region involved in the cyclization process. Interestingly, such isomerization has been previously characterized in related cyclic knottins from Momordica cochinchinensis that have no sequence similarity to kalata B8 apart from the six conserved cysteine residues and may result from a common mechanism of cyclization. Kalata B8 also provides insight into the structure-activity relationships of cyclotides as it displays anti-HIV activity but lacks haemolytic activity. The 'uncoupling' of these two activities has not previously been observed for the cyclotides and may be related to the unusual hydrophilic nature of the peptide. PMID:16207177

  19. Structure of stem-loop IV of Tetrahymena telomerase RNA

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Yu; Fender, Jessica; Legassie, Jason D; Jarstfer, Michael B; Bryan, Tracy M; Varani, Gabriele

    2006-01-01

    Conserved domains within the RNA component of telomerase provide the template for reverse transcription, recruit protein components to the holoenzyme and are required for enzymatic activity. Among the functionally essential domains in ciliate telomerase RNA is stem-loop IV, which strongly stimulates telomerase activity and processivity even when provided in trans. The NMR structure of Tetrahymena thermophila stem-loop IV shows a highly structured distal stem-loop linked to a conformationally flexible template-proximal region by a bulge that severely kinks the entire RNA. Through extensive structure–function studies, we identify residues that contribute to both these structural features and to enzymatic activity, with no apparent effect on the binding of TERT protein. We propose that the bending induced by the GA bulge and the flexibility of the template-proximal region allow positioning of the prestructured apical loop during the catalytic cycle. PMID:16778765

  20. Protein Trans-Splicing of an Atypical Split Intein Showing Structural Flexibility and Cross-Reactivity

    PubMed Central

    Song, Huiling; Meng, Qing; Liu, Xiang-Qin

    2012-01-01

    Inteins catalyze a protein splicing reaction to excise the intein from a precursor protein and join the flanking sequences (exteins) with a peptide bond. In a split intein, the intein fragments (IN and IC) can reassemble non-covalently to catalyze a trans-splicing reaction that joins the exteins from separate polypeptides. An atypical split intein having a very small IN and a large IC is particularly useful for joining synthetic peptides with recombinant proteins, which can be a generally useful method of introducing site-specific chemical labeling or modifications into proteins. However, a large IC derived from an Ssp DnaX intein was found recently to undergo spontaneous C-cleavage, which raised questions regarding its structure-function and ability to trans-splice. Here, we show that this IC could undergo trans-splicing in the presence of IN, and the trans-splicing activity completely suppressed the C-cleavage activity. We also found that this IC could trans-splice with small IN sequences derived from two other inteins, showing a cross-reactivity of this atypical split intein. Furthermore, we found that this IC could trans-splice even when the IN sequence was embedded in a nearly complete intein sequence, suggesting that the small IN could project out of the central pocket of the intein to become accessible to the IC. Overall, these findings uncovered a new atypical split intein that can be valuable for peptide-protein trans-splicing, and they also revealed an interesting structural flexibility and cross-reactivity at the active site of this intein. PMID:23024818

  1. Arc is a flexible modular protein capable of reversible self-oligomerization

    PubMed Central

    Myrum, Craig; Baumann, Anne; Bustad, Helene J.; Flydal, Marte Innselset; Mariaule, Vincent; Alvira, Sara; Cuéllar, Jorge; Haavik, Jan; Soulé, Jonathan; Valpuesta, José Maria; Márquez, José Antonio; Martinez, Aurora; Bramham, Clive R.

    2015-01-01

    The immediate early gene product Arc (activity-regulated cytoskeleton-associated protein) is posited as a master regulator of long-term synaptic plasticity and memory. However, the physicochemical and structural properties of Arc have not been elucidated. In the present study, we expressed and purified recombinant human Arc (hArc) and performed the first biochemical and biophysical analysis of hArc's structure and stability. Limited proteolysis assays and MS analysis indicate that hArc has two major domains on either side of a central more disordered linker region, consistent with in silico structure predictions. hArc's secondary structure was estimated using CD, and stability was analysed by CD-monitored thermal denaturation and differential scanning fluorimetry (DSF). Oligomerization states under different conditions were studied by dynamic light scattering (DLS) and visualized by AFM and EM. Biophysical analyses show that hArc is a modular protein with defined secondary structure and loose tertiary structure. hArc appears to be pyramid-shaped as a monomer and is capable of reversible self-association, forming large soluble oligomers. The N-terminal domain of hArc is highly basic, which may promote interaction with cytoskeletal structures or other polyanionic surfaces, whereas the C-terminal domain is acidic and stabilized by ionic conditions that promote oligomerization. Upon binding of presenilin-1 (PS1) peptide, hArc undergoes a large structural change. A non-synonymous genetic variant of hArc (V231G) showed properties similar to the wild-type (WT) protein. We conclude that hArc is a flexible multi-domain protein that exists in monomeric and oligomeric forms, compatible with a diverse, hub-like role in plasticity-related processes. PMID:25748042

  2. Conformational flexibility of a model protein upon immobilization on self-assembled monolayers.

    PubMed

    Bigdeli, Saharnaz; Talasaz, AmirAli H; Ståhl, Patrik; Persson, Henrik H J; Ronaghi, Mostafa; Davis, Ronald W; Nemat-Gorgani, Mohsen

    2008-05-01

    The present study reports on the retention of conformational flexibility of a model allosteric protein upon immobilization on self-assembled monolayers (SAMs) on gold. Organothiolated SAMs of different compositions were utilized for adsorptive and covalent attachment of bovine liver glutamate dehydrogenase (GDH), a well-characterized allosteric enzyme. Sensitive fluorimetric assays were developed to determine immobilization capacity, specific activity, and allosteric properties of the immobilized preparations as well as the potential for repeated use and continuous catalytic transformations. The allosteric response of the free and immobilized forms towards ADP, L-leucine and high concentrations of NAD(+), some of the well-known activators for this enzyme, were determined and compared. The enzyme immobilized by adsorption or chemical binding responded similarly to the activators with a greater degree of activation, as compared to the free form. Also loss of activity involving the two immobilization procedures were similar, suggesting that residues essential for catalytic activity or allosteric properties of GDH remained unchanged in the course of chemical modification. A recently established method was used to predict GDH orientation upon immobilization, which was found to explain some of the experimental results presented. The general significance of these observations in connection with retention of native properties of protein structures upon immobilization on SAMs is discussed. PMID:18078298

  3. A practical guide to small angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) of flexible and intrinsically disordered proteins.

    PubMed

    Kikhney, Alexey G; Svergun, Dmitri I

    2015-09-14

    Small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) is a biophysical method to study the overall shape and structural transitions of biological macromolecules in solution. SAXS provides low resolution information on the shape, conformation and assembly state of proteins, nucleic acids and various macromolecular complexes. The technique also offers powerful means for the quantitative analysis of flexible systems, including intrinsically disordered proteins (IDPs). Here, the basic principles of SAXS are presented, and profits and pitfalls of the characterization of multidomain flexible proteins and IDPs using SAXS are discussed from the practical point of view. Examples of the synergistic use of SAXS with high resolution methods like X-ray crystallography and nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR), as well as other experimental and in silico techniques to characterize completely, or partially unstructured proteins, are presented. PMID:26320411

  4. Conserved autophosphorylation pattern in activation loops and juxtamembrane regions of Mycobacterium tuberculosis Ser/Thr protein kinases.

    PubMed

    Durán, Rosario; Villarino, Andrea; Bellinzoni, Marco; Wehenkel, Annemarie; Fernandez, Pablo; Boitel, Brigitte; Cole, Stewart T; Alzari, Pedro M; Cerveñansky, Carlos

    2005-08-01

    The identification of phosphorylation sites in proteins provides a powerful tool to study signal transduction pathways and to establish interaction networks involving signaling elements. Using different strategies to identify phosphorylated residues, we report here mass spectrometry studies of the entire intracellular regions of four 'receptor-like' protein kinases from Mycobacterium tuberculosis (PknB, PknD, PknE, and PknF), each consisting of an N-terminal kinase domain and a juxtamembrane region of varying length (26-100 residues). The enzymes were observed to incorporate different numbers of phosphates, from five in PknB up to 11 in PknD or PknE, and all detected sites were dephosphorylated by the cognate mycobacterial phosphatase PstP. Comparison of the phosphorylation patterns reveals two recurrent clusters of pThr/pSer residues, respectively, in their activation loops and juxtamembrane regions, which have a distinct effect on kinase activity. All studied kinases have at least two conserved phosphorylated residues in their activation loop and mutations of these residues in PknB significantly decreased the kinase activity, whereas deletion of the entire juxtamembrane regions in PknB and PknF had little effect on their activities. These results reinforce the hypothesis that mycobacterial kinase regulation includes a conserved activation loop mechanism, and suggest that phosphorylation sites in the juxtamembrane region might be involved in putative kinase-mediated signaling cascades. PMID:15967413

  5. Influence of rotational energy barriers to the conformational search of protein loops in molecular dynamics and ranking the conformations.

    PubMed

    Tappura, K

    2001-08-15

    An adjustable-barrier dihedral angle potential was added as an extension to a novel, previously presented soft-core potential to study its contribution to the efficacy of the search of the conformational space in molecular dynamics. As opposed to the conventional soft-core potential functions, the leading principle in the design of the new soft-core potential, as well as of its extension, the soft-core and adjustable-barrier dihedral angle (SCADA) potential (referred as the SCADA potential), was to maintain the main equilibrium properties of the original force field. This qualifies the methods for a variety of a priori modeling problems without need for additional restraints typically required with the conventional soft-core potentials. In the present study, the different potential energy functions are applied to the problem of predicting loop conformations in proteins. Comparison of the performance of the soft-core and SCADA potential showed that the main hurdles for the efficient sampling of the conformational space of (loops in) proteins are related to the high-energy barriers caused by the Lennard-Jones and Coulombic energy terms, and not to the rotational barriers, although the conformational search can be further enhanced by lowering the rotational barriers of the dihedral angles. Finally, different evaluation methods were studied and a few promising criteria found to distinguish the near-native loop conformations from the wrong ones. PMID:11455590

  6. Mining flexible-receptor docking experiments to select promising protein receptor snapshots

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Molecular docking simulation is the Rational Drug Design (RDD) step that investigates the affinity between protein receptors and ligands. Typically, molecular docking algorithms consider receptors as rigid bodies. Receptors are, however, intrinsically flexible in the cellular environment. The use of a time series of receptor conformations is an approach to explore its flexibility in molecular docking computer simulations, but it is extensively time-consuming. Hence, selection of the most promising conformations can accelerate docking experiments and, consequently, the RDD efforts. Results We previously docked four ligands (NADH, TCL, PIF and ETH) to 3,100 conformations of the InhA receptor from M. tuberculosis. Based on the receptor residues-ligand distances we preprocessed all docking results to generate appropriate input to mine data. Data preprocessing was done by calculating the shortest interatomic distances between the ligand and the receptor’s residues for each docking result. They were the predictive attributes. The target attribute was the estimated free-energy of binding (FEB) value calculated by the AutodDock3.0.5 software. The mining inputs were submitted to the M5P model tree algorithm. It resulted in short and understandable trees. On the basis of the correlation values, for NADH, TCL and PIF we obtained more than 95% correlation while for ETH, only about 60%. Post processing the generated model trees for each of its linear models (LMs), we calculated the average FEB for their associated instances. From these values we considered a LM as representative if its average FEB was smaller than or equal the average FEB of the test set. The instances in the selected LMs were considered the most promising snapshots. It totalized 1,521, 1,780, 2,085 and 902 snapshots, for NADH, TCL, PIF and ETH respectively. Conclusions By post processing the generated model trees we were able to propose a criterion of selection of linear models which, in turn, is

  7. Mutations within a putative cysteine loop of the transmembrane protein of an attenuated immunodeficiency-inducing feline leukemia virus variant inhibit envelope protein processing.

    PubMed Central

    Burns, C C; Poss, M L; Thomas, E; Overbaugh, J

    1995-01-01

    A replication-defective feline leukemia virus molecular clone, 61B, has been shown to cause immunodeficiency in cats and cytopathicity in T cells after a long latency period when coinfected with a minimally pathogenic helper virus (J. Overbaugh, E. A. Hoover, J. I. Mullins, D. P. W. Burns, L. Rudensey, S. L. Quackenbush, V. Stallard, and P. R. Donahue, Virology 188:558-569, 1992). The long-latency phenotype of 61B has been mapped to four mutations in the extracellular domain of the envelope transmembrane protein, and we report here that these mutations cause a defect in envelope protein processing. Immunoprecipitation analyses demonstrated that the 61B gp85 envelope precursor was produced but that further processing to generate the surface protein (SU/gp70) and the transmembrane protein (TM/p15E) did not occur. The 61B precursor was not expressed on the cell surface and appeared to be retained in the endoplasmic reticulum or Golgi apparatus. Two of the four 61B-specific amino acid changes are located within a putative cysteine loop in a region of TM that is conserved among retroviruses. Introduction of these two amino acid changes into a replication-competent highly cytopathic virus resulted in the production of noninfectious virus that exhibited an envelope-protein-processing defect. This analysis suggests that mutations in a conserved region within a putative cysteine loop affect retroviral envelope protein maturation and viral infectivity. PMID:7884859

  8. Ribosomal protein L5 has a highly twisted concave surface and flexible arms responsible for rRNA binding.

    PubMed Central

    Nakashima, T; Yao, M; Kawamura, S; Iwasaki, K; Kimura, M; Tanaka, I

    2001-01-01

    Ribosomal protein L5 is a 5S rRNA binding protein in the large subunit and plays an essential role in the promotion of a particular conformation of 5S rRNA. The crystal structure of the ribosomal protein L5 from Bacillus stearothermophilus has been determined at 1.8 A resolution. The molecule consists of a five-stranded antiparallel beta-sheet and four alpha-helices, which fold in a way that is topologically similar to the ribonucleoprotein (RNP) domain. The molecular shape and electrostatic representation suggest that the concave surface and loop regions are involved in 5S rRNA binding. To identify amino acid residues responsible for 5S rRNA binding, we made use of Ala-scanning mutagenesis of evolutionarily conserved amino acids occurring in the beta-strands and loop regions. The mutations of Asn37 at the beta1-strand and Gln63 at the loop between helix 2 and beta3-strand as well as that of Phe77 at the tip of the loop structure between the beta2- and beta3-strands caused a significant reduction in 5S rRNA binding. In addition, the mutations of Thr90 on the beta3-strand and Ile141 and Asp144 at the loop between beta4- and beta5-strands moderately reduced the 5S rRNA-binding affinity. Comparison of these results with the more recently analyzed structure of the 50S subunit from Haloarcula marismortui suggests that there are significant differences in the structure at N- and C-terminal regions and probably in the 5S rRNA binding. PMID:11350033

  9. Co-occurrence of analogous enzymes determines evolution of a novel (βα)8-isomerase sub-family after non-conserved mutations in flexible loop.

    PubMed

    Verduzco-Castro, Ernesto A; Michalska, Karolina; Endres, Michael; Juárez-Vazquez, Ana L; Noda-García, Lianet; Chang, Changsoo; Henry, Christopher S; Babnigg, Gyorgy; Joachimiak, Andrzej; Barona-Gómez, Francisco

    2016-05-01

    We investigate the evolution of co-occurring analogous enzymes involved in L-tryptophan and L-histidine biosynthesis in Actinobacteria Phylogenetic analysis of trpF homologues, a missing gene in certain clades of this lineage whose absence is complemented by a dual-substrate HisA homologue, termed PriA, found that they fall into three categories: (i) trpF-1, an L-tryptophan biosynthetic gene horizontally acquired by certain Corynebacterium species; (ii) trpF-2, a paralogue known to be involved in synthesizing a pyrrolopyrrole moiety and (iii) trpF-3, a variable non-conserved orthologue of trpF-1 We previously investigated the effect of trpF-1 upon the evolution of PriA substrate specificity, but nothing is known about the relationship between trpF-3 and priA After in vitro steady-state enzyme kinetics we found that trpF-3 encodes a phosphoribosyl anthranilate isomerase. However, mutation of this gene in Streptomyces sviceus did not lead to auxothrophy, as expected from the biosynthetic role of trpF-1 Biochemical characterization of a dozen co-occurring TrpF-2 or TrpF-3, with PriA homologues, explained the prototrophic phenotype, and unveiled an enzyme activity trade-off between TrpF and PriA. X-ray structural analysis suggests that the function of these PriA homologues is mediated by non-conserved mutations in the flexible L5 loop, which may be responsible for different substrate affinities. Thus, the PriA homologues that co-occur with TrpF-3 represent a novel enzyme family, termed PriB, which evolved in response to PRA isomerase activity. The characterization of co-occurring enzymes provides insights into the influence of functional redundancy on the evolution of enzyme function, which could be useful for enzyme functional annotation. PMID:26929404

  10. Phylogeny, Functional Annotation, and Protein Interaction Network Analyses of the Xenopus tropicalis Basic Helix-Loop-Helix Transcription Factors

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Deyu

    2013-01-01

    The previous survey identified 70 basic helix-loop-helix (bHLH) proteins, but it was proved to be incomplete, and the functional information and regulatory networks of frog bHLH transcription factors were not fully known. Therefore, we conducted an updated genome-wide survey in the Xenopus tropicalis genome project databases and identified 105 bHLH sequences. Among the retrieved 105 sequences, phylogenetic analyses revealed that 103 bHLH proteins belonged to 43 families or subfamilies with 46, 26, 11, 3, 15, and 4 members in the corresponding supergroups. Next, gene ontology (GO) enrichment analyses showed 65 significant GO annotations of biological processes and molecular functions and KEGG pathways counted in frequency. To explore the functional pathways, regulatory gene networks, and/or related gene groups coding for Xenopus tropicalis bHLH proteins, the identified bHLH genes were put into the databases KOBAS and STRING to get the signaling information of pathways and protein interaction networks according to available public databases and known protein interactions. From the genome annotation and pathway analysis using KOBAS, we identified 16 pathways in the Xenopus tropicalis genome. From the STRING interaction analysis, 68 hub proteins were identified, and many hub proteins created a tight network or a functional module within the protein families. PMID:24312906

  11. BP-Dock: a flexible docking scheme for exploring protein-ligand interactions based on unbound structures.

    PubMed

    Bolia, Ashini; Gerek, Z Nevin; Ozkan, S Banu

    2014-03-24

    Molecular docking serves as an important tool in modeling protein-ligand interactions. However, it is still challenging to incorporate overall receptor flexibility, especially backbone flexibility, in docking due to the large conformational space that needs to be sampled. To overcome this problem, we developed a novel flexible docking approach, BP-Dock (Backbone Perturbation-Dock) that can integrate both backbone and side chain conformational changes induced by ligand binding through a multi-scale approach. In the BP-Dock method, we mimic the nature of binding-induced events as a first-order approximation by perturbing the residues along the protein chain with a small Brownian kick one at a time. The response fluctuation profile of the chain upon these perturbations is computed using the perturbation response scanning method. These response fluctuation profiles are then used to generate binding-induced multiple receptor conformations for ensemble docking. To evaluate the performance of BP-Dock, we applied our approach on a large and diverse data set using unbound structures as receptors. We also compared the BP-Dock results with bound and unbound docking, where overall receptor flexibility was not taken into account. Our results highlight the importance of modeling backbone flexibility in docking for recapitulating the experimental binding affinities, especially when an unbound structure is used. With BP-Dock, we can generate a wide range of binding site conformations realized in nature even in the absence of a ligand that can help us to improve the accuracy of unbound docking. We expect that our fast and efficient flexible docking approach may further aid in our understanding of protein-ligand interactions as well as virtual screening of novel targets for rational drug design. PMID:24380381

  12. Optimization of the GB/SA Solvation Model for Predicting the Structure of Surface Loops in Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Szarecka, Agnieszka; Meirovitch, Hagai

    2006-01-01

    Implicit solvation models are commonly optimized with respect to experimental data or Poisson Boltzmann (PB) results obtained for small molecules, where the force field sometimes is not considered. In previous studies we have developed an optimization procedure for cyclic peptides and surface loops in proteins based on the entire system studied and the specific force field used. Thus, the loop has been modeled by the simplified solvation function Etot = EFF(ɛ=2r) + ∑i σiAi, where EFF(ɛ=nr) is the AMBER force field energy with a distance dependent dielectric function, ɛ=nr, Ai is the solvent accessible surface area of atom i, and σi is its atomic solvation parameter. During the optimization process the loop is free to move while the protein template is held fixed in its X-ray structure. To improve on the results of this model, in the present work we apply our optimization procedure to the physically more rigorous solvation model, the generalized Born with surface area (GB/SA) (together with the all-atom AMBER force field) as suggested by Still and coworkers (J. Phys. Chem.A 1997, 101, 3005). The six parameters of the GB/SA model namely, P1-P5 and the surface area parameter, σ (programmed in the program TINKER) are re-optimized for a “training” group of nine loops, and from the individual sets of optimized parameters a best-fit set is defined. The best-fit set and Still’s original set of parameters (where Lys, Arg, His, Glu, and Asp are charged or neutralized) were applied to the training group as well as to a “test” group of seven loops and the energy gaps and the corresponding RMSD values were calculated. These GB/SA results based on the three sets of parameters have been found to be comparable; surprisingly, however, they are somewhat inferior (e.g.., of larger energy gaps) to those obtained previously from the simplified model described above. We discuss recent results for loops obtained by other solvation models and potential directions for

  13. Intrinsic protein flexibility in regulation of cell proliferation: advantages for signaling and opportunities for novel therapeutics.

    PubMed

    Follis, Ariele Viacava; Galea, Charles A; Kriwacki, Richard W

    2012-01-01

    It is now widely recognized that intrinsically disordered (or unstructured) proteins (IDPs, or IUPs) are found in organisms from all kingdoms of life. In eukaryotes, IDPs are highly abundant and perform a wide range of biological functions, including regulation and signaling. Despite increased interest in understanding the structural biology of IDPs, questions remain regarding the mechanisms through which disordered proteins perform their biological function(s). In other words, what are the relationships between disorder and function for IDPs? Several excellent reviews have recently been published that discuss the structural properties of IDPs.1-3 Here, we discuss two IDP systems which illustrate features of dynamic complexes. In the first section, we discuss two IDPs, p21 and p27, which regulate the mammalian cell division cycle by inhibiting cyclin-dependent kinases (Cdks). In the second section, we discuss recent results from Follis, Hammoudeh, Metallo and coworkers demonstrating that the IDP Myc can be bound and inhibited by small molecules through formation of dynamic complexes. Previous studies have shown that polypeptide segments of p21 and p27 are partially folded in isolation and fold further upon binding their biological targets. Interestingly, some portions of p27 which bind to and inhibit Cdk2/cyclin A remain flexible in the bound complex. This residual flexibility allows otherwise buried tyrosine residues within p27 to be phosphorylated by nonreceptor tyrosine kinases (NRTKs). Tyrosine phosphorylation relieves kinase inhibition, triggering Cdk2-mediated phosphorylation of a threonine residue within the flexible C-terminus of p27. This, in turn, marks p27 for ubiquitination and proteasomal degradation, unleashing full Cdk2 activity which drives cell cycle progression. p27, thus, constitutes a conduit for transmission of proliferative signals via posttranslational modifications. Importantly, activation of the p27 signaling conduit by oncogenic NRTKs

  14. Excited protein states of human tear lipocalin for low- and high-affinity ligand binding revealed by functional AB loop motion.

    PubMed

    Gasymov, Oktay K; Abduragimov, Adil R; Glasgow, Ben J

    2010-06-01

    Human tear lipocalin (TL), a prominent member of lipocalin family, exhibits functional and structural promiscuity. The plasticity of loop regions modulates entry to the ligand pocket at the "open" end of the eight-stranded beta-barrel. Site-directed multi-distance measurements using fluorescence resonance energy transfer between functional loops register two excited protein states for low- and high-affinity ligand binding. At low pH, the longest loop AB adopts the conformation of the low-affinity excited protein state that matches the crystal structure of holo-TL at pH 8. A "crankshaft" like movement is detected for the loop AB in a low pH transition. At pH 7.3 the holo-protein assumes a high-affinity excited protein state, in which the loop AB is more compact (RMS=3.1A). In the apo-holo transition, the reporter Trp 28 moves about 4.5A that reflects a decrease in distance between Glu27 and Lys108. This interaction fixes the loop AB conformation for the high-affinity mode. No such movement is detected at low pH, where Glu27 is protonated. Data strongly indicate that the protonation state of Glu27 modulates the conformation of the loop AB for high- and low-affinity binding. PMID:20439130

  15. Characterization of the pre-mRNA binding site for yeast ribosomal protein L32: the importance of a purine-rich internal loop.

    PubMed

    Li, H; Dalal, S; Kohler, J; Vilardell, J; White, S A

    1995-07-21

    The structure of the RNA binding target for Saccharomyces cerevisiae ribosomal protein L32 was examined using chemical and enzymatic probes as well as thermodynamic methods. In vivo, the production of yeast RPL32 is regulated by a feedback mechanism whereby RPL32 binds to the 5' end of its transcript and inhibits splicing. The binding site of ribosomal protein L32 on the L32 RNA transcript can be reduced to fewer than 30 nucleotides which compromise a stem-internal loop-stem structural motif. The internal loop is closed by a potential G-U pair, is asymmetric and contains mostly purines. The existence of the two helical regions was confirmed by chemical and enzymatic probing. The reactivity of the loop region suggests a structure intermediate between that of single and double-stranded RNA. Base stacking continues into the loop, but two loop bases are extremely reactive to chemical agents. The interaction between the model RNA and the protein is specific and has a dissociation constant of approximately 10 nM. Several of the loop bases are critical for protein binding, as demonstrated by mutational data and chemical protection and modification interference studies. The internal loop destabilizes the RNA, and allows the RNA to melt in an all-or-none fashion. PMID:7616567

  16. Excited Protein States of Human Tear Lipocalin for Low- and High-Affinity Ligand Binding Revealed by Functional AB Loop Motion

    PubMed Central

    Gasymov, Oktay K.; Abduragimov, Adil R.; Glasgow, Ben J.

    2010-01-01

    Human tear lipocalin (TL), a prominent member of lipocalin family, exhibits functional and structural promiscuity. The plasticity of loop regions modulates entry to the ligand pocket at the “open” end of the eight-stranded β-barrel. Site directed multi-distance measurements using fluorescence resonance energy transfer between functional loops register two excited protein states for low- and high-affinity ligand binding. At low pH, the longest loop AB adopts the conformation of the low-affinity excited protein state that matches the crystal structure of holo-TL at pH 8. A “crankshaft” like movement is detected for the loop AB in a low pH transition. At pH 7.3 the holo-protein assumes a high-affinity excited protein state, in which the loop AB is more compact (RMS= 3.1Å). In the apo-holo transition, the reporter Trp 28 moves about 4.5 Å that reflects a decrease in distance between Glu27 and Lys108. This interaction fixes the loop AB conformation for the high-affinity mode. No such of movement is detected at low pH, where Glu27 is protonated. Data strongly indicate that the protonation state of Glu27 modulates the conformation of the loop AB for high- and low-affinity binding. PMID:20439130

  17. Adolescent binge ethanol treatment alters adult brain regional volumes, cortical extracellular matrix protein and behavioral flexibility

    PubMed Central

    Coleman, Leon Garland; Liu, Wen; Oguz, Ipek; Styner, Martin; Crews, Fulton T.

    2014-01-01

    Adolescents binge drink more than any other age group, increasing risk of disrupting the development of the frontal cortex. We hypothesized that adolescent binge drinking would lead to persistent alterations in adulthood. In this study, we modeled adolescent weekend underage binge-drinking, using adolescent mice (post-natal days [P] 28–37). The adolescent intermittent binge ethanol (AIE) treatment includes 6 binge intragastric doses of ethanol in an intermittent pattern across adolescence. Assessments were conducted in adulthood following extended abstinence to determine if there were persistent changes in adults. Reversal learning, open field and other behavioral assessments as well as brain structure using magnetic imaging and immunohistochemistry were determined. We found AIE did not impact adult Barnes Maze learning. However, AIE did cause reversal learning deficits in adults. AIE also caused structural changes in the adult brain. AIE was associated with adulthood volume enlargements in specific brain regions without changes in total brain volume. Enlarged regions included the orbitofrontal cortex (OFC, 4%), cerebellum (4.5%), thalamus (2%), internal capsule (10%) and genu of the corpus callosum (7%). The enlarged OFC volume in adults after AIE is consistent with previous imaging studies in human adolescents. AIE treatment was associated with significant increases in the expression of several extracellular matrix (ECM) proteins in the adult OFC including WFA (55%), Brevican (32%), Neurocan (105%), Tenacin-C (25%), and HABP (5%). These findings are consistent with AIE causing persistent changes in brain structure that could contribute to a lack of behavioral flexibility. PMID:24275185

  18. Proteomic identification of M. tuberculosis protein kinase substrates: PknB recruits GarA, a FHA domain-containing protein, through activation loop-mediated interactions.

    PubMed

    Villarino, A; Duran, R; Wehenkel, A; Fernandez, P; England, P; Brodin, P; Cole, S T; Zimny-Arndt, U; Jungblut, P R; Cerveñansky, C; Alzari, P M

    2005-07-29

    Genes for functional Ser/Thr protein kinases (STPKs) are ubiquitous in prokaryotic genomes, but little is known about their physiological substrates and their actual involvement in bacterial signal transduction pathways. We report here the identification of GarA (Rv1827), a Forkhead-associated (FHA) domain-containing protein, as a putative physiological substrate of PknB, an essential Ser/Thr protein kinase from Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Using a global proteomic approach, GarA was found to be the best detectable substrate of the PknB catalytic domain in non-denatured whole-cell protein extracts from M. tuberculosis and the saprophyte Mycobacterium smegmatis. Enzymological and binding studies of the recombinant proteins demonstrate that docking interactions between the activation loop of PknB and the C-terminal FHA domain of GarA are required to enable efficient phosphorylation at a single N-terminal threonine residue, Thr22, of the substrate. The predicted amino acid sequence of the garA gene, including both the N-terminal phosphorylation motif and the FHA domain, is strongly conserved in mycobacteria and other related actinomycetes, suggesting a functional role of GarA in putative STPK-mediated signal transduction pathways. The ensuing model of PknB-GarA interactions suggests a substrate recruitment mechanism that might apply to other mycobacterial kinases bearing multiple phosphorylation sites in their activation loops. PMID:15978616

  19. Dissecting the Influence of Protein Flexibility on the Location and Thermodynamic Profile of Explicit Water Molecules in Protein-Ligand Binding.

    PubMed

    Yang, Ying; Lill, Markus A

    2016-09-13

    Explicit water molecules in the binding site of proteins play a crucial role for protein-ligand association. Recent advances in computer-aided drug discovery methodology allow for an accurate prediction of the localized position and thermodynamic profile of water molecules (i.e., hydration sites) in the binding site. The underlying calculations are based on MD simulations of explicit water molecules in a restrained protein structure. However, the ligand-binding process is typically associated with protein conformational change that influences the position and thermodynamic properties of the hydration site. In this manuscript, we present the developments of two methods to incorporate the influence of protein conformational change on hydration sites either by following the conformational transition step-by-step (method I) or to match the hydration sites of the two transition end states using local coordinate systems (method II). Using these methods, we highlight the difference in the estimated protein desolvation free energy with and without inclusion of protein flexibility. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first study that explicitly studies the influence of protein conformational change on the position and thermodynamic profiles of water molecules and provides methodology to incorporate protein flexibility into the estimation of the desolvation free energy. PMID:27494046

  20. Regulation of T cell receptor beta gene rearrangements and allelic exclusion by the helix-loop-helix protein, E47.

    PubMed

    Agata, Yasutoshi; Tamaki, Nobuyuki; Sakamoto, Shuji; Ikawa, Tomokatsu; Masuda, Kyoko; Kawamoto, Hiroshi; Murre, Cornelis

    2007-12-01

    Allelic exclusion of antigen-receptor genes is ensured primarily by monoallelic locus activation upon rearrangement and subsequently by feedback inhibition of continued rearrangement. Here, we demonstrated that the basic helix-loop-helix protein, E47, promoted T cell receptor beta (TCRbeta) gene rearrangement by directly binding to target gene segments to increase chromatin accessibility in a dosage-sensitive manner. Feedback signaling abrogated E47 binding, leading to a decline in accessibility. Conversely, enforced expression of E47 induced TCRbeta gene rearrangement by antagonizing feedback inhibition. Thus, the abundance of E47 is rate limiting in locus activation, and feedback signaling downregulates E47 activity to ensure allelic exclusion. PMID:18093539

  1. The ZEB1/miR-200c feedback loop regulates invasion via actin interacting proteins MYLK and TKS5

    PubMed Central

    Stemmler, Marc P.; Kleemann, Julia A.; Brabletz, Thomas; Brabletz, Simone

    2015-01-01

    Epithelial to mesenchymal transition (EMT) is a developmental process which is aberrantly activated during cancer invasion and metastasis. Elevated expression of EMT-inducers like ZEB1 enables tumor cells to detach from the primary tumor and invade into the surrounding tissue. The main antagonist of ZEB1 in controlling EMT is the microRNA-200 family that is reciprocally linked to ZEB1 in a double negative feedback loop. Here, we further elucidate how the ZEB1/miR-200 feedback loop controls invasion of tumor cells. The process of EMT is attended by major changes in the actin cytoskeleton. Via in silico screening of genes encoding for actin interacting proteins, we identified two novel targets of miR-200c - TKS5 and MYLK (MLCK). Co-expression of both genes with ZEB1 was observed in several cancer cell lines as well as in breast cancer patients and correlated with low miR-200c levels. Depletion of TKS5 or MYLK in breast cancer cells reduced their invasive potential and their ability to form invadopodia. Whereas TKS5 is known to be a major component, we could identify MYLK as a novel player in invadopodia formation. In summary, TKS5 and MYLK represent two mediators of invasive behavior of cancer cells that are regulated by the ZEB1/miR-200 feedback loop. PMID:26334100

  2. BHK cell proteins that bind to the 3' stem-loop structure of the West Nile virus genome RNA.

    PubMed Central

    Blackwell, J L; Brinton, M A

    1995-01-01

    The first 83 3' nucleotides of the genome RNA of the flavivirus West Nile encephalitis virus (WNV) form a stable stem-loop (SL) structure which is followed in the genome by a smaller SL. These 3' structures are highly conserved among divergent flaviviruses, suggesting that they may function as cis-acting signals for RNA replication and as such might specifically bind to cellular or viral proteins. Cellular proteins from uninfected and WNV-infected BHK-21 S100 cytoplasmic extracts formed three distinct complexes with the WNV plus-strand 3' SL [(+)3'SL] RNA in a gel mobility shift assay. Subsequent competitor gel shift analyses showed that two of these RNA-protein complexes, complexes 1 and 2, contained cell proteins that specifically bound to the WNV (+)3'SL RNA. UV-induced cross-linking and Northwestern blotting analyses detected WNV (+)3'SL RNA-binding proteins of 56, 84, and 105 kDa. When the S100 cytoplasmic extracts were partially purified by ion-exchange chromatography, a complex that comigrated with complex 1 was detected in fraction 19, while a complex that comigrated with complex 2 was detected in fraction 17. UV-induced cross-linking experiments indicated that an 84-kDa cell protein in fraction 17 and a 105-kDa protein in fraction 19 bound specifically to the WNV (+)3'SL RNA. In addition to binding to the (+)3'SL RNA, the 105-kDa protein bound to the SL structure located at the 3' end of the WNV minus-strand RNA. Initial mapping studies indicated that the 84- and 105-kDa proteins bind to different regions of the (+)3'SL RNA. The 3'-terminal SL RNA of another flavivirus, dengue virus type 3, specifically competed with the WNV (+)3'SL RNA in gel shift assays, suggesting that the host proteins identified in this study are flavivirus specific. PMID:7637011

  3. Identification of an endocytosis motif in an intracellular loop of Wntless protein, essential for its recycling and the control of Wnt protein signaling.

    PubMed

    Gasnereau, Isabelle; Herr, Patrick; Chia, Pei Zhi Cheryl; Basler, Konrad; Gleeson, Paul A

    2011-12-16

    The secretion of Wnt signaling proteins is dependent upon the transmembrane sorting receptor, Wntless (Wls), which recycles between the trans-Golgi network and the cell surface. Loss of Wls results in impairment of Wnt secretion and defects in development and homeostasis in Drosophila, Caenorhabditis elegans, and the mouse. The sorting signals for the internalization and trafficking of Wls have not been defined. Here, we demonstrate that Wls internalization requires clathrin and dynamin I, components of the clathrin-mediated endocytosis pathway. Moreover, we have identified a conserved YXXϕ endocytosis motif in the third intracellular loop of the multipass membrane protein Wls. Mutation of the tyrosine-based motif YEGL to AEGL (Y425A) resulted in the accumulation of human mutant Wls on the cell surface of transfected HeLa cells. The cell surface accumulation of Wls(AEGL) was rescued by the insertion of a classical YXXϕ motif in the cytoplasmic tail. Significantly, a Drosophila Wls(AEGL) mutant displayed a wing notch phenotype, with reduced Wnt secretion and signaling. These findings demonstrate that YXXϕ endocytosis motifs can occur in the intracellular loops of multipass membrane proteins and, moreover, provide direct evidence that the trafficking of Wls is required for efficient secretion of Wnt signaling proteins. PMID:22027831

  4. Laminated BEAM loops

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Danisch, Lee A.

    1996-10-01

    BEAM sensors include treated loops of optical fiber that modulate optical throughput with great sensitivity and linearity, in response to curvature of the loop out of its plane. This paper describes BEAM sensors that have two loops treated in opposed fashion, hermetically sealed in flexible laminations. The sensors include an integrated optoelectronics package that extracts curvature information from the treated portion of the loops while rejecting common mode errors. The laminated structure is used to sense various parameters including displacement, force, pressure, flow, and acceleration.

  5. Conformation and hydrogen ion titration of proteins: a continuum electrostatic model with conformational flexibility.

    PubMed

    You, T J; Bashford, D

    1995-11-01

    A new method for including local conformational flexibility in calculations of the hydrogen ion titration of proteins using macroscopic electrostatic models is presented. Intrinsic pKa values and electrostatic interactions between titrating sites are calculated from an ensemble of conformers in which the positions of titrating side chains are systematically varied. The method is applied to the Asp, Glu, and Tyr residues of hen lysozyme. The effects of different minimization and/or sampling protocols for both single-conformer and multi-conformer calculations are studied. For single-conformer calculations it is found that the results are sensitive to the choice of all-hydrogen versus polar-hydrogen-only atomic models and to the minimization protocol chosen. The best overall agreement of single-conformer calculations with experiment is obtained with an all-hydrogen model and either a two-step minimization process or minimization using a high dielectric constant. Multi-conformational calculations give significantly improved agreement with experiment, slightly smaller shifts between model compound pKa values and calculated intrinsic pKa values, and reduced sensitivity of the intrinsic pKa calculations to the initial details of the structure compared to single-conformer calculations. The extent of these improvements depends on the type of minimization used during the generation of conformers, with more extensive minimization giving greater improvements. The ordering of the titrations of the active-site residues, Glu-35 and Asp-52, is particularly sensitive to the minimization and sampling protocols used. The balance of strong site-site interactions in the active site suggests a need for including site-site conformational correlations. PMID:8580316

  6. A flexible toolbox to study protein-assisted metalloenzyme assembly in vitro.

    PubMed

    Schiffels, Johannes; Selmer, Thorsten

    2015-11-01

    A number of metalloenzymes harbor unique cofactors, which are incorporated into the apo-enzymes via protein-assisted maturation. In the case of [NiFe]-hydrogenases, minimally seven maturation factors (HypABCDEF and a specific endopeptidase) are involved, making these enzymes an excellent example for studying metallocenter assembly in general. Here, we describe an innovative toolbox to study maturation involving multiple putative gene products. The two core elements of the system are a modular, combinatorial cloning system and a cell-free maturation system, which is based on recombinant Escherichia coli extracts and/or purified maturases. Taking maturation of the soluble, oxygen-tolerant [NiFe]-hydrogenase (SH) from Cupriavidus necator as an example, the capacities of the toolbox are illustrated. In total 18 genes from C. necator were analyzed, including four SH-structural genes, the SH-dedicated hyp-genes and a second set of hyp-genes putatively involved in maturation of the Actinobacterium-like hydrogenase (AH). The two hyp-sets were either expressed in their entirety from single vectors or split into functional modules, which enabled flexible approaches to investigate limitations, specificities and the capabilities of individual constituents to functionally substitute each other. Affinity-tagged Hyp-Proteins were used in pull-down experiments to demonstrate direct interactions between dedicated or non-related constituents. The dedicated Hyp-set from C. necator exhibited the highest maturation efficiency in vitro. Constituents of non-related maturation machineries were found to interact with and to accomplish partial activation of SH. In contrast to homologues of the Hyp-family, omission of the SH-specific endopeptidase HoxW completely abolished in vitro maturation. We detected stoichiometric imbalances inside the recombinant production system, which point to limitations by the cyanylation complex HypEF and the premature subunit HoxH. Purification of HoxW revealed

  7. The Stem-Loop Binding Protein (SLBP1) Is Present in Coiled Bodies of the Xenopus Germinal Vesicle

    PubMed Central

    Abbott, Jennifer; Marzluff, William F.; Gall, Joseph G.

    1999-01-01

    The stem-loop binding protein (SLBP1) binds the 3′ stem-loop of histone pre-mRNA and is required for efficient processing of histone transcripts in the nucleus. We examined the localization of SLBP1 in the germinal vesicle of Xenopus laevis oocytes. In spread preparations of germinal vesicle contents, an anti-SLBP1 antibody stained coiled bodies and specific chromosomal loci, including terminal granules, axial granules, and some loops. After injection of myc-tagged SLBP1 transcripts into the oocyte cytoplasm, newly translated myc-SLBP1 protein was detectable in coiled bodies within 4 h and in terminal and axial granules by 8 h. To identify the region(s) of SLBP1 necessary for subnuclear localization, we subcloned various parts of the SLBP1 cDNA and injected transcripts of these into the cytoplasm of oocytes. We determined that 113 amino acids at the carboxy terminus of SLBP1 are sufficient for coiled body localization and that disruption of a previously defined RNA-binding domain did not alter this localization. Coiled bodies also contain the U7 small nuclear ribonucleoprotein particle (snRNP), which participates in cleavage of the 3′ end of histone pre-mRNA. The colocalization of SLBP1 and the U7 snRNP in the coiled body suggests coordinated control of their functions, perhaps through a larger histone-processing particle. Some coiled bodies are attached to the lampbrush chromosomes at the histone gene loci, consistent with the view that coiled bodies in the oocyte recruit histone-processing factors to the sites of histone pre-mRNA transcription. The non-histone chromosomal sites at which SLBP1 is found include the genes coding for 5 S rRNA, U1 snRNA, and U2 snRNA, suggesting a wider role for SLBP1 in the biosynthesis of small non-spliced RNAs. PMID:9950690

  8. A P-loop mutation in Gα subunits prevents transition to the active state: implications for G-protein signaling in fungal pathogenesis.

    PubMed

    Bosch, Dustin E; Willard, Francis S; Ramanujam, Ravikrishna; Kimple, Adam J; Willard, Melinda D; Naqvi, Naweed I; Siderovski, David P

    2012-02-01

    Heterotrimeric G-proteins are molecular switches integral to a panoply of different physiological responses that many organisms make to environmental cues. The switch from inactive to active Gαβγ heterotrimer relies on nucleotide cycling by the Gα subunit: exchange of GTP for GDP activates Gα, whereas its intrinsic enzymatic activity catalyzes GTP hydrolysis to GDP and inorganic phosphate, thereby reverting Gα to its inactive state. In several genetic studies of filamentous fungi, such as the rice blast fungus Magnaporthe oryzae, a G42R mutation in the phosphate-binding loop of Gα subunits is assumed to be GTPase-deficient and thus constitutively active. Here, we demonstrate that Gα(G42R) mutants are not GTPase deficient, but rather incapable of achieving the activated conformation. Two crystal structure models suggest that Arg-42 prevents a typical switch region conformational change upon Gα(i1)(G42R) binding to GDP·AlF(4)(-) or GTP, but rotameric flexibility at this locus allows for unperturbed GTP hydrolysis. Gα(G42R) mutants do not engage the active state-selective peptide KB-1753 nor RGS domains with high affinity, but instead favor interaction with Gβγ and GoLoco motifs in any nucleotide state. The corresponding Gα(q)(G48R) mutant is not constitutively active in cells and responds poorly to aluminum tetrafluoride activation. Comparative analyses of M. oryzae strains harboring either G42R or GTPase-deficient Q/L mutations in the Gα subunits MagA or MagB illustrate functional differences in environmental cue processing and intracellular signaling outcomes between these two Gα mutants, thus demonstrating the in vivo functional divergence of G42R and activating G-protein mutants. PMID:22383884

  9. A P-loop Mutation in Gα Subunits Prevents Transition to the Active State: Implications for G-protein Signaling in Fungal Pathogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Ramanujam, Ravikrishna; Kimple, Adam J.; Willard, Melinda D.; Naqvi, Naweed I.; Siderovski, David P.

    2012-01-01

    Heterotrimeric G-proteins are molecular switches integral to a panoply of different physiological responses that many organisms make to environmental cues. The switch from inactive to active Gαβγ heterotrimer relies on nucleotide cycling by the Gα subunit: exchange of GTP for GDP activates Gα, whereas its intrinsic enzymatic activity catalyzes GTP hydrolysis to GDP and inorganic phosphate, thereby reverting Gα to its inactive state. In several genetic studies of filamentous fungi, such as the rice blast fungus Magnaporthe oryzae, a G42R mutation in the phosphate-binding loop of Gα subunits is assumed to be GTPase-deficient and thus constitutively active. Here, we demonstrate that Gα(G42R) mutants are not GTPase deficient, but rather incapable of achieving the activated conformation. Two crystal structure models suggest that Arg-42 prevents a typical switch region conformational change upon Gαi1(G42R) binding to GDP·AlF4− or GTP, but rotameric flexibility at this locus allows for unperturbed GTP hydrolysis. Gα(G42R) mutants do not engage the active state-selective peptide KB-1753 nor RGS domains with high affinity, but instead favor interaction with Gβγ and GoLoco motifs in any nucleotide state. The corresponding Gαq(G48R) mutant is not constitutively active in cells and responds poorly to aluminum tetrafluoride activation. Comparative analyses of M. oryzae strains harboring either G42R or GTPase-deficient Q/L mutations in the Gα subunits MagA or MagB illustrate functional differences in environmental cue processing and intracellular signaling outcomes between these two Gα mutants, thus demonstrating the in vivo functional divergence of G42R and activating G-protein mutants. PMID:22383884

  10. A P-loop Mutation in G[alpha] Subunits Prevents Transition to the Active State: Implications for G-protein Signaling in Fungal Pathogenesis

    SciTech Connect

    Bosch, Dustin E.; Willard, Francis S.; Ramanujam, Ravikrishna; Kimple, Adam J.; Willard, Melinda D.; Naqvi, Naweed I.; Siderovski, David P.

    2012-10-23

    Heterotrimeric G-proteins are molecular switches integral to a panoply of different physiological responses that many organisms make to environmental cues. The switch from inactive to active G{alpha}{beta}{gamma} heterotrimer relies on nucleotide cycling by the G{alpha} subunit: exchange of GTP for GDP activates G{alpha}, whereas its intrinsic enzymatic activity catalyzes GTP hydrolysis to GDP and inorganic phosphate, thereby reverting G{alpha} to its inactive state. In several genetic studies of filamentous fungi, such as the rice blast fungus Magnaporthe oryzae, a G42R mutation in the phosphate-binding loop of G{alpha} subunits is assumed to be GTPase-deficient and thus constitutively active. Here, we demonstrate that G{alpha}(G42R) mutants are not GTPase deficient, but rather incapable of achieving the activated conformation. Two crystal structure models suggest that Arg-42 prevents a typical switch region conformational change upon G{alpha}{sub i1}(G42R) binding to GDP {center_dot} AlF{sub 4}{sup -} or GTP, but rotameric flexibility at this locus allows for unperturbed GTP hydrolysis. G{alpha}(G42R) mutants do not engage the active state-selective peptide KB-1753 nor RGS domains with high affinity, but instead favor interaction with G{beta}{gamma} and GoLoco motifs in any nucleotide state. The corresponding G{alpha}{sub q}(G48R) mutant is not constitutively active in cells and responds poorly to aluminum tetrafluoride activation. Comparative analyses of M. oryzae strains harboring either G42R or GTPase-deficient Q/L mutations in the G{alpha} subunits MagA or MagB illustrate functional differences in environmental cue processing and intracellular signaling outcomes between these two G{alpha} mutants, thus demonstrating the in vivo functional divergence of G42R and activating G-protein mutants.