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Sample records for native-like protein structures

  1. Analysis of Native-Like Ions Using Structures for Lossless Ion Manipulations.

    PubMed

    Allen, Samuel J; Eaton, Rachel M; Bush, Matthew F

    2016-09-20

    Ion mobility separation of native-like protein and protein complex ions expands the structural information available through native mass spectrometry analysis. Here, we implement Structures for Lossless Ion Manipulations (SLIM) for the analysis of native-like ions. SLIM has been shown previously to operate with near lossless transmission of ions up to 3000 Da in mass. Here for the first time, SLIM was used to separate native-like protein and protein complex ions ranging in mass from 12 to 145 kDa. The resulting arrival-time distributions were monomodal and were used to determine collision cross section values that are within 3% of those determined from radio-frequency-confining drift cell measurements. These results are consistent with the retention of native-like ion structures throughout these experiments. The apparent resolving powers of native-like ions measured using SLIM are as high as 42, which is the highest value reported directly from experimental data for the native-like ion of a protein complex. Interestingly, the apparent resolving power depends strongly on the identity of the analyte, suggesting that the arrival-time distributions of these ions may have contributions from an ensemble of structures in the gas phase that is unique to each analyte. These results suggest that the broad range of emerging SLIM technologies may all be adaptable to the analysis of native-like ions, which will enable future applications in the areas of structural biology, biophysics, and biopharmaceutical characterization.

  2. Can natural proteins designed with 'inverted' peptide sequences adopt native-like protein folds?

    PubMed

    Sridhar, Settu; Guruprasad, Kunchur

    2014-01-01

    We have carried out a systematic computational analysis on a representative dataset of proteins of known three-dimensional structure, in order to evaluate whether it would possible to 'swap' certain short peptide sequences in naturally occurring proteins with their corresponding 'inverted' peptides and generate 'artificial' proteins that are predicted to retain native-like protein fold. The analysis of 3,967 representative proteins from the Protein Data Bank revealed 102,677 unique identical inverted peptide sequence pairs that vary in sequence length between 5-12 and 18 amino acid residues. Our analysis illustrates with examples that such 'artificial' proteins may be generated by identifying peptides with 'similar structural environment' and by using comparative protein modeling and validation studies. Our analysis suggests that natural proteins may be tolerant to accommodating such peptides.

  3. Insights into the molecular mechanism of protein native-like aggregation upon glycation.

    PubMed

    Oliveira, Luis M A; Gomes, Ricardo A; Yang, Dennis; Dennison, Sarah R; Família, Carlos; Lages, Ana; Coelho, Ana V; Murphy, Regina M; Phoenix, David A; Quintas, Alexandre

    2013-06-01

    Several human neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease and Familial Amyloidotic Polyneuropathy, have long been associated with, structural and functional changes in disease related proteins leading to aggregation into amyloid fibrils. Such changes can be triggered by post-translational modifications. Methylglyoxal modifications have been shown to induce the formation of small and stable native-like aggregates in the case of the amyloidogenic proteins insulin and α-synuclein. However, the fundamental biophysical mechanism underlying such methylglyoxal-induced protein aggregation is not yet fully understood. In this work cytochrome c (Cyt c) was used as a model protein for the characterization of specific glycation targets and to study their impact on protein structure, stability, and ability to form native-like aggregates. Our results show that methylglyoxal covalently modifies Cyt c at a single residue and induces early conformational changes that lead to the formation of native-like aggregates. Furthermore, partially unfolded species are formed, but do not seem to be implicated in the aggregation process. This shows a clear difference from the amyloid fibril mechanisms which involve partially or totally unfolded intermediates. Equilibrium-unfolding experiments show that glycation strongly decreases Cyt c conformational stability, which is balanced with an increase of conformational stability upon aggregation. Data collected from analytical and spectroscopic techniques, along with kinetic analysis based on least-squares parameter fitting and statistical model discrimination are used to help to understand the driving force underlying glycation-induced native-like aggregation, and enable the proposal of a comprehensive thermodynamic and kinetic model for native-like aggregation of methylglyoxal glycated Cyt c.

  4. Maintenance of native-like protein dynamics may not be required for engineering functional proteins.

    PubMed

    Gobeil, Sophie M C; Clouthier, Christopher M; Park, Jaeok; Gagné, Donald; Berghuis, Albert M; Doucet, Nicolas; Pelletier, Joelle N

    2014-10-23

    Proteins are dynamic systems, and understanding dynamics is critical for fully understanding protein function. Therefore, the question of whether laboratory engineering has an impact on protein dynamics is of general interest. Here, we demonstrate that two homologous, naturally evolved enzymes with high degrees of structural and functional conservation also exhibit conserved dynamics. Their similar set of slow timescale dynamics is highly restricted, consistent with evolutionary conservation of a functionally important feature. However, we also show that dynamics of a laboratory-engineered chimeric enzyme obtained by recombination of the two homologs exhibits striking difference on the millisecond timescale, despite function and high-resolution crystal structure (1.05 Å) being conserved. The laboratory-engineered chimera is thus functionally tolerant to modified dynamics on the timescale of catalytic turnover. Tolerance to dynamic variation implies that maintenance of native-like protein dynamics may not be required when engineering functional proteins.

  5. Assessment of semiempirical enthalpy of formation in solution as an effective energy function to discriminate native-like structures in protein decoy sets.

    PubMed

    Urquiza-Carvalho, Gabriel Aires; Fragoso, Wallace Duarte; Rocha, Gerd Bruno

    2016-08-01

    In this work, we tested the PM6, PM6-DH+, PM6-D3, and PM7 enthalpies of formation in aqueous solution as scoring functions across 33 decoy sets to discriminate native structures or good models in a decoy set. In each set these semiempirical quantum chemistry methods were compared according to enthalpic and geometric criteria. Enthalpically, we compared the methods according to how much lower was the enthalpy of each native, when compared with the mean enthalpy of its set. Geometrically, we compared the methods according to the fraction of native contacts (Q), which is a measure of geometric closeness between an arbitrary structure and the native. For each set and method, the Q of the best decoy was compared with the Q0 , which is the Q of the decoy closest to the native in the set. It was shown that the PM7 method is able to assign larger energy differences between the native structure and the decoys in a set, arguably because of a better description of dispersion interactions, however PM6-DH+ was slightly better than the rest at selecting geometrically good models in the absence of a native structure in the set. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  6. Assessment of semiempirical enthalpy of formation in solution as an effective energy function to discriminate native-like structures in protein decoy sets.

    PubMed

    Urquiza-Carvalho, Gabriel Aires; Fragoso, Wallace Duarte; Rocha, Gerd Bruno

    2016-08-01

    In this work, we tested the PM6, PM6-DH+, PM6-D3, and PM7 enthalpies of formation in aqueous solution as scoring functions across 33 decoy sets to discriminate native structures or good models in a decoy set. In each set these semiempirical quantum chemistry methods were compared according to enthalpic and geometric criteria. Enthalpically, we compared the methods according to how much lower was the enthalpy of each native, when compared with the mean enthalpy of its set. Geometrically, we compared the methods according to the fraction of native contacts (Q), which is a measure of geometric closeness between an arbitrary structure and the native. For each set and method, the Q of the best decoy was compared with the Q0 , which is the Q of the decoy closest to the native in the set. It was shown that the PM7 method is able to assign larger energy differences between the native structure and the decoys in a set, arguably because of a better description of dispersion interactions, however PM6-DH+ was slightly better than the rest at selecting geometrically good models in the absence of a native structure in the set. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:27249629

  7. Detergent release prolongs the lifetime of native-like membrane protein conformations in the gas-phase.

    PubMed

    Borysik, Antoni J; Hewitt, Dominic J; Robinson, Carol V

    2013-04-24

    Recent studies have suggested that detergents can protect the structure of membrane proteins during their transition from solution to the gas-phase. Here we provide mechanistic insights into this process by interrogating the structures of membrane protein-detergent assemblies in the gas-phase using ion mobility mass spectrometry. We show a clear correlation between the population of native-like protein conformations and the degree of detergent attachment to the protein in the gas-phase. Interrogation of these protein-detergent assemblies, by tandem mass spectrometry, enables us to define the mechanism by which detergents preserve native-like protein conformations in a solvent free environment. We show that the release of detergent is more central to the survival of these conformations than the physical presence of detergent bound to the protein. We propose that detergent release competes with structural collapse for the internal energy of the ion and permits the observation of transient native-like membrane protein conformations that are otherwise lost to structural rearrangement in the gas-phase.

  8. Solid-State NMR Studies Reveal Native-like β-Sheet Structures in Transthyretin Amyloid.

    PubMed

    Lim, Kwang Hun; Dasari, Anvesh K R; Hung, Ivan; Gan, Zhehong; Kelly, Jeffery W; Wright, Peter E; Wemmer, David E

    2016-09-20

    Structural characterization of amyloid rich in cross-β structures is crucial for unraveling the molecular basis of protein misfolding and amyloid formation associated with a wide range of human disorders. Elucidation of the β-sheet structure in noncrystalline amyloid has, however, remained an enormous challenge. Here we report structural analyses of the β-sheet structure in a full-length transthyretin amyloid using solid-state NMR spectroscopy. Magic-angle-spinning (MAS) solid-state NMR was employed to investigate native-like β-sheet structures in the amyloid state using selective labeling schemes for more efficient solid-state NMR studies. Analyses of extensive long-range (13)C-(13)C correlation MAS spectra obtained with selectively (13)CO- and (13)Cα-labeled TTR reveal that the two main β-structures in the native state, the CBEF and DAGH β-sheets, remain intact after amyloid formation. The tertiary structural information would be of great use for examining the quaternary structure of TTR amyloid. PMID:27589034

  9. Analysis of Native-Like Proteins and Protein Complexes Using Cation to Anion Proton Transfer Reactions (CAPTR).

    PubMed

    Laszlo, Kenneth J; Bush, Matthew F

    2015-12-01

    Mass spectra of native-like protein complexes often exhibit narrow charge-state distributions, broad peaks, and contributions from multiple, coexisting species. These factors can make it challenging to interpret those spectra, particularly for mixtures with significant heterogeneity. Here we demonstrate the use of ion/ion proton transfer reactions to reduce the charge states of m/z-selected, native-like ions of proteins and protein complexes, a technique that we refer to as cation to anion proton transfer reactions (CAPTR). We then demonstrate that CAPTR can increase the accuracy of charge state assignments and the resolution of interfering species in native mass spectrometry. The CAPTR product ion spectra for pyruvate kinase exhibit ~30 peaks and enable unambiguous determination of the charge state of each peak, whereas the corresponding precursor spectra exhibit ~6 peaks and the assigned charge states have an uncertainty of ±3%. 15+ bovine serum albumin and 21+ yeast enolase dimer both appear near m/z 4450 and are completely unresolved in a mixture. After a single CAPTR event, the resulting product ions are baseline resolved. The separation of the product ions increases dramatically after each subsequent CAPTR event; 12 events resulted in a 3000-fold improvement in separation relative to the precursor ions. Finally, we introduce a framework for interpreting and predicting the figures of merit for CAPTR experiments. More generally, these results suggest that CAPTR strongly complements other mass spectrometry tools for analyzing proteins and protein complexes, particularly those in mixtures. Graphical Abstract ᅟ.

  10. Analysis of Native-Like Proteins and Protein Complexes Using Cation to Anion Proton Transfer Reactions (CAPTR)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Laszlo, Kenneth J.; Bush, Matthew F.

    2015-12-01

    Mass spectra of native-like protein complexes often exhibit narrow charge-state distributions, broad peaks, and contributions from multiple, coexisting species. These factors can make it challenging to interpret those spectra, particularly for mixtures with significant heterogeneity. Here we demonstrate the use of ion/ion proton transfer reactions to reduce the charge states of m/ z-selected, native-like ions of proteins and protein complexes, a technique that we refer to as cation to anion proton transfer reactions (CAPTR). We then demonstrate that CAPTR can increase the accuracy of charge state assignments and the resolution of interfering species in native mass spectrometry. The CAPTR product ion spectra for pyruvate kinase exhibit ~30 peaks and enable unambiguous determination of the charge state of each peak, whereas the corresponding precursor spectra exhibit ~6 peaks and the assigned charge states have an uncertainty of ±3%. 15+ bovine serum albumin and 21+ yeast enolase dimer both appear near m/ z 4450 and are completely unresolved in a mixture. After a single CAPTR event, the resulting product ions are baseline resolved. The separation of the product ions increases dramatically after each subsequent CAPTR event; 12 events resulted in a 3000-fold improvement in separation relative to the precursor ions. Finally, we introduce a framework for interpreting and predicting the figures of merit for CAPTR experiments. More generally, these results suggest that CAPTR strongly complements other mass spectrometry tools for analyzing proteins and protein complexes, particularly those in mixtures.

  11. Structure of a Native-like Aureochrome 1a LOV Domain Dimer from Phaeodactylum tricornutum.

    PubMed

    Banerjee, Ankan; Herman, Elena; Kottke, Tilman; Essen, Lars-Oliver

    2016-01-01

    Light-oxygen-voltage (LOV) domains absorb blue light for mediating various biological responses in all three domains of life. Aureochromes from stramenopile algae represent a subfamily of photoreceptors that differs by its inversed topology with a C-terminal LOV sensor and an N-terminal effector (basic region leucine zipper, bZIP) domain. We crystallized the LOV domain including its flanking helices, A'α and Jα, of aureochrome 1a from Phaeodactylum tricornutum in the dark state and solved the structure at 2.8 Å resolution. Both flanking helices contribute to the interface of the native-like dimer. Small-angle X-ray scattering shows light-induced conformational changes limited to the dimeric envelope as well as increased flexibility in the lit state for the flanking helices. These rearrangements are considered to be crucial for the formation of the light-activated dimer. Finally, the LOV domain of the class 2 aureochrome PtAUREO2 was shown to lack a chromophore because of steric hindrance caused by M301.

  12. From coiled coils to small globular proteins: design of a native-like three-helix bundle.

    PubMed Central

    Bryson, J. W.; Desjarlais, J. R.; Handel, T. M.; DeGrado, W. F.

    1998-01-01

    A monomolecular native-like three-helix bundle has been designed in an iterative process, beginning with a peptide that noncooperatively assembled into an antiparallel three-helix bundle. Three versions of the protein were designed in which specific interactions were incrementally added. The hydrodynamic and spectroscopic properties of the proteins were examined by size exclusion chromatography, sedimentation equilibrium, fluorescence spectroscopy, and NMR. The thermodynamics of folding were evaluated by monitoring the thermal and guanidine-induced unfolding transitions using far UV circular dichroism spectroscopy. The attainment of a unique, native-like state was achieved through the introduction of: (1) helix capping interactions; (2) electrostatic interactions between partially exposed charged residues; (3) a diverse collection of apolar side chains within the hydrophobic core. PMID:9655345

  13. Recombinant Minimalist Spider Wrapping Silk Proteins Capable of Native-Like Fiber Formation

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Lingling; Rainey, Jan K.; Meng, Qing; Liu, Xiang-Qin

    2012-01-01

    Spider silks are desirable biomaterials characterized by high tensile strength, elasticity, and biocompatibility. Spiders produce different types of silks for different uses, although dragline silks have been the predominant focus of previous studies. Spider wrapping silk, made of the aciniform protein (AcSp1), has high toughness because of its combination of high elasticity and tensile strength. AcSp1 in Argiope trifasciata contains a 200-aa sequence motif that is repeated at least 14 times. Here, we produced in E. coli recombinant proteins consisting of only one to four of the 200-aa AcSp1 repeats, designated W1 to W4. We observed that purified W2, W3 and W4 proteins could be induced to form silk-like fibers by shear forces in a physiological buffer. The fibers formed by W4 were ∼3.4 µm in diameter and up to 10 cm long. They showed an average tensile strength of 115 MPa, elasticity of 37%, and toughness of 34 J cm−3. The smaller W2 protein formed fewer fibers and required a higher protein concentration to form fibers, whereas the smallest W1 protein did not form silk-like fibers, indicating that a minimum of two of the 200-aa repeats was required for fiber formation. Microscopic examinations revealed structural features indicating an assembly of the proteins into spherical structures, fibrils, and silk-like fibers. CD and Raman spectral analysis of protein secondary structures suggested a transition from predominantly α-helical in solution to increasingly β-sheet in fibers. PMID:23209681

  14. Recombinant minimalist spider wrapping silk proteins capable of native-like fiber formation.

    PubMed

    Xu, Lingling; Rainey, Jan K; Meng, Qing; Liu, Xiang-Qin

    2012-01-01

    Spider silks are desirable biomaterials characterized by high tensile strength, elasticity, and biocompatibility. Spiders produce different types of silks for different uses, although dragline silks have been the predominant focus of previous studies. Spider wrapping silk, made of the aciniform protein (AcSp1), has high toughness because of its combination of high elasticity and tensile strength. AcSp1 in Argiope trifasciata contains a 200-aa sequence motif that is repeated at least 14 times. Here, we produced in E. coli recombinant proteins consisting of only one to four of the 200-aa AcSp1 repeats, designated W(1) to W(4). We observed that purified W(2), W(3) and W(4) proteins could be induced to form silk-like fibers by shear forces in a physiological buffer. The fibers formed by W(4) were ∼3.4 µm in diameter and up to 10 cm long. They showed an average tensile strength of 115 MPa, elasticity of 37%, and toughness of 34 J cm(-3). The smaller W(2) protein formed fewer fibers and required a higher protein concentration to form fibers, whereas the smallest W(1) protein did not form silk-like fibers, indicating that a minimum of two of the 200-aa repeats was required for fiber formation. Microscopic examinations revealed structural features indicating an assembly of the proteins into spherical structures, fibrils, and silk-like fibers. CD and Raman spectral analysis of protein secondary structures suggested a transition from predominantly α-helical in solution to increasingly β-sheet in fibers. PMID:23209681

  15. Structure of an early native-like intermediate of β2-microglobulin amyloidogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Vanderhaegen, Saskia; Fislage, Marcus; Domanska, Katarzyna; Versées, Wim; Pardon, Els; Bellotti, Vittorio; Steyaert, Jan

    2013-01-01

    To investigate early intermediates of β2-microglobulin (β2m) amyloidogenesis, we solved the structure of β2m containing the amyloidogenic Pro32Gly mutation by X-ray crystallography. One nanobody (Nb24) that efficiently blocks fibril elongation was used as a chaperone to co-crystallize the Pro32Gly β2m monomer under physiological conditions. The complex of P32G β2m with Nb24 reveals a trans peptide bond at position 32 of this amyloidogenic variant, whereas Pro32 adopts the cis conformation in the wild-type monomer, indicating that the cis to trans isomerization at Pro32 plays a critical role in the early onset of β2m amyloid formation. PMID:23904325

  16. Native-like photosystem II superstructure at 2.44 Å resolution through detergent extraction from the protein crystal.

    PubMed

    Hellmich, Julia; Bommer, Martin; Burkhardt, Anja; Ibrahim, Mohamed; Kern, Jan; Meents, Alke; Müh, Frank; Dobbek, Holger; Zouni, Athina

    2014-11-01

    Photosystem II (PSII) catalyzes a key step in photosynthesis, the oxidation of water to oxygen. Excellent structural models exist for the dimeric PSII core complex of cyanobacteria, but higher order physiological assemblies readily dissociate when solubilized from the native thylakoid membrane with detergent. Here, we describe the crystallization of PSII from Thermosynechococcus elongatus with a postcrystallization treatment involving extraction of the detergent C12E8. This resulted in a transition from Type II to Type I-like membrane protein crystals and improved diffraction to 2.44 Å resolution. The obtained PSII packing in precise rows, interconnected by specific pairs of galactolipids and a loop in the PsbO subunit specific to cyanobacteria, is superimposable with previous electron microscopy images of the thylakoid membrane. The study provides a detailed model of such a superstructure and its organization of light-harvesting pigments with possible implications for the understanding of their efficient use of solar energy.

  17. An early intermediate in the folding reaction of the B1 domain of protein G contains a native-like core.

    PubMed

    Park, S H; O'Neil, K T; Roder, H

    1997-11-25

    The folding kinetics of a 57-residue IgG binding domain of streptococcal protein G has been studied under varying solvent conditions, using stopped-flow fluorescence methods. Although GB1 has been cited as an example of a protein that obeys a two-state folding mechanism, the following kinetic observations suggest the presence of an early folding intermediate. Under stabilizing conditions (low denaturant concentrations, especially in the presence of sodium sulfate), the kinetics of folding shows evidence of a major unresolved fluorescence change during the 1.5 ms dead time of the stopped-flow experiment (burst phase). Together with some curvature in the rate profile for the single observable folding phase, this provides clear evidence of the rapid formation of compact states with native-like fluorescence for the single tryptophan at position 43. In refolding experiments at increasing denaturant concentrations, the amplitude of the sub-millisecond phase decreases sharply and the corresponding slope (m value) is only about 30% lower than that of the equilibrium unfolding curve indicative of a pre-equilibrium transition involving cooperative unfolding of an ensemble of compact intermediates. The dependence on guanidine hydrochloride concentration of both rates and amplitudes (including the equilibrium transition) is described quantitatively by a sequential three-state mechanism, U [symbol: see text] I [symbol: see text] N, where an intermediate (I) in rapid equilibrium with the unfolded state (U) precedes the rate-limiting formation of the native state (N). A 66-residue fragment of GB1 with an N-terminal extension containing five apolar side chains exhibits three-state kinetic behavior virtually identical to that of the 57-residue fragment. This is consistent with the presence of a well-shielded native-like core excluding the N-terminal tail in the early folding intermediate and argues against a mechanism involving random hydrophobic collapse, which would predict a

  18. Design and structure of two HIV-1 clade C SOSIP.664 trimers that increase the arsenal of native-like Env immunogens

    PubMed Central

    Julien, Jean-Philippe; Lee, Jeong Hyun; Ozorowski, Gabriel; Hua, Yuanzi; Torrents de la Peña, Alba; de Taeye, Steven W.; Nieusma, Travis; Cupo, Albert; Yasmeen, Anila; Golabek, Michael; Pugach, Pavel; Klasse, P. J.; Moore, John P.; Sanders, Rogier W.; Ward, Andrew B.; Wilson, Ian A.

    2015-01-01

    A key challenge in the quest toward an HIV-1 vaccine is design of immunogens that can generate a broadly neutralizing antibody (bnAb) response against the enormous sequence diversity of the HIV-1 envelope glycoprotein (Env). We previously demonstrated that a recombinant, soluble, fully cleaved SOSIP.664 trimer based on the clade A BG505 sequence is a faithful antigenic and structural mimic of the native trimer in its prefusion conformation. Here, we sought clade C native-like trimers with comparable properties. We identified DU422 and ZM197M SOSIP.664 trimers as being appropriately thermostable (Tm of 63.4 °C and 62.7 °C, respectively) and predominantly native-like, as determined by negative-stain electron microscopy (EM). Size exclusion chromatography, ELISA, and surface plasmon resonance further showed that these trimers properly display epitopes for all of the major bnAb classes, including quaternary-dependent, trimer-apex (e.g., PGT145) and gp120/gp41 interface (e.g., PGT151) epitopes. A cryo-EM reconstruction of the ZM197M SOSIP.664 trimer complexed with VRC01 Fab against the CD4 binding site at subnanometer resolution revealed a striking overall similarity to its BG505 counterpart with expected local conformational differences in the gp120 V1, V2, and V4 loops. These stable clade C trimers contribute additional diversity to the pool of native-like Env immunogens as key components of strategies to induce bnAbs to HIV-1. PMID:26372963

  19. A native-like intermediate serves as a branching point between the folding and aggregation pathways of the mouse prion protein

    PubMed Central

    Honda, Ryo P.; Xu, Ming; Yamaguchi, Kei-ichi; Roder, Heinrich; Kuwata, Kazuo

    2015-01-01

    SUMMARY Transient folding intermediates and/or partially unfolded equilibrium states are thought to play a key role in the formation of protein aggregates. However, there is only indirect evidence linking accumulation of folding intermediates to aggregation, and the underlying mechanism remains to be elucidated. Here we show that a partially unfolded state of the prion protein accumulates both as a stable equilibrium state at acidic pH (A-state) and as a late folding intermediate. With a time resolution of approximately 60 μs, we systematically studied the kinetics of folding and unfolding, starting from various initial conditions including the U-, N-, and A-states. Quantitative modeling showed that the observed kinetic data are completely consistent with a sequential four-state mechanism where the A-state is a late folding intermediate. Combined with previous evidence linking A-state accumulation to aggregation, the results indicate that this native-like state serves as a branching point between the folding and aggregation pathways. PMID:26256540

  20. Fluoroalcohols induced unfolding of Succinylated Con A: native like beta-structure in partially folded intermediate and alpha-helix in molten globule like state.

    PubMed

    Fatima, Sadaf; Ahmad, Basir; Khan, Rizwan Hasan

    2006-10-15

    Concanavalin A (Con A) exists in dimeric state at pH 5. In concentration range 20-60% (v/v) 2,2,2-trifluoroethanol (TFE) and 2-40% (v/v) 1,1,1,3,3,3-hexafluoroisopropanol (HFIP), Con A at pH 5.0 shows visible aggregation. However, when succinyl Con A was used, no aggregation was observed in the entire concentration range of fluoroalcohols (0-90% v/v TFE and HFIP) and resulted in stable alpha-helix formation. Temperature-induced concentration-dependent aggregation in Con A was also found to be prevented/reduced in succinylated form. Possible role of electrostatic repulsion among residues in the prevention of hydrophobically driven aggregation has been discussed. Results indicate that succinylation of a protein resulted in greater stability (in both beta-sheet and alpha-helical forms) against alcohol-induced and temperature-induced concentration-dependent aggregation and this observation may play significant role in amyloid-forming proteins. Effect of TFE and HFIP on the conformation of a dimeric protein, Succinylated Con A, has been investigated by circular dichroism (CD), fluorescence emission spectroscopy, binding of hydrophobic dye ANS (8-anilinonaphthalene-1-sulfonic acid). Far UV-CD, a probe for secondary structure shows loss of native secondary structure in the presence of low concentration of both the alcohols, TFE (10% v/v) and HFIP (4% v/v). Upon addition of higher concentration of these alcohols, Succinylated Con A exhibited transformation from beta-sheet to alpha-helical structure. Intrinsic tryptophan fluorescence studies, ANS binding and near UV-CD experiments indicate the protein is more expanded, have more exposed hydrophobic surfaces and highly disrupted tertiary structure at 60% (v/v) TFE and 30% (v/v) HFIP concentrations. Taken together, these results it might be concluded that TFE and HFIP induce two intermediate states at their low and high concentrations in Succinyl Con A.

  1. A Native-Like SOSIP.664 Trimer Based on an HIV-1 Subtype B env Gene

    PubMed Central

    Pugach, Pavel; Ozorowski, Gabriel; Cupo, Albert; Ringe, Rajesh; Yasmeen, Anila; de Val, Natalia; Derking, Ronald; Kim, Helen J.; Korzun, Jacob; Golabek, Michael; de los Reyes, Kevin; Ketas, Thomas J.; Julien, Jean-Philippe; Burton, Dennis R.; Wilson, Ian A.; Sanders, Rogier W.; Klasse, P. J.

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Recombinant trimeric mimics of the human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) envelope glycoprotein (Env) spike should expose as many epitopes as possible for broadly neutralizing antibodies (bNAbs) but few, if any, for nonneutralizing antibodies (non-NAbs). Soluble, cleaved SOSIP.664 gp140 trimers based on the subtype A strain BG505 approach this ideal and are therefore plausible vaccine candidates. Here, we report on the production and in vitro properties of a new SOSIP.664 trimer derived from a subtype B env gene, B41, including how to make this protein in low-serum media without proteolytic damage (clipping) to the V3 region. We also show that nonclipped trimers can be purified successfully via a positive-selection affinity column using the bNAb PGT145, which recognizes a quaternary structure-dependent epitope at the trimer apex. Negative-stain electron microscopy imaging shows that the purified, nonclipped, native-like B41 SOSIP.664 trimers contain two subpopulations, which we propose represent an equilibrium between the fully closed and a more open conformation. The latter is different from the fully open, CD4 receptor-bound conformation and may represent an intermediate state of the trimer. This new subtype B trimer adds to the repertoire of native-like Env proteins that are suitable for immunogenicity and structural studies. IMPORTANCE The cleaved, trimeric envelope protein complex is the only neutralizing antibody target on the HIV-1 surface. Many vaccine strategies are based on inducing neutralizing antibodies. For HIV-1, one approach involves using recombinant, soluble protein mimics of the native trimer. At present, the only reliable way to make native-like, soluble trimers in practical amounts is via the introduction of specific sequence changes that confer stability on the cleaved form of Env. The resulting proteins are known as SOSIP.664 gp140 trimers, and the current paradigm is based on the BG505 subtype A env gene. Here, we describe the

  2. Coexistence of Native-Like and Non-Native Cytochrome c on Anionic Liposomes with Different Cardiolipin Content.

    PubMed

    Pandiscia, Leah A; Schweitzer-Stenner, Reinhard

    2015-10-01

    We employed a combination of fluorescence, visible circular dichroism, and absorption spectroscopy to study the conformational changes of ferricytochrome c upon its binding to cardiolipin-containing small unilamellar vesicles. The measurements were performed as a function of the cardiolipin concentration, the cardiolipin content of the liposomes, and the NaCl concentration of the solvent. The data were analyzed with a novel model that combines a single binding step with a conformational equilibrium between native-like and non-native-like proteins bound to the membrane surface. The equilibrium between the two conformations, which themselves are comprised of structurally slightly different subconformations, shifts to the more non-native-like conformation with increasing cardiolipin concentration. For the binding isotherms described in this paper, we explicitly considered the enthalpic and entropic contributions of molecular crowding to protein binding at low lipid concentrations and high occupancy of the liposome surface. Increasing the CL content of liposomes increases the overall binding affinity but makes the conformational distribution much more susceptible to the influence of sodium and chloride ions, which shifts the equilibrium toward the more native-like state and directly inhibits binding, particularly to liposomes with 100% cardiolipin content. Spectroscopic evidence further suggests that a fraction of the non-native conformers adopts a pentacoordinated state similar to those obtained in class C peroxidases. On the basis of our results, we propose a hypothesis that describes the balance between facilitating and impeding forces controlling the peroxidase activity of cytochrome c in the inner membrane space of mitochondria. PMID:26369421

  3. Protein Structure

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Asmus, Elaine Garbarino

    2007-01-01

    Individual students model specific amino acids and then, through dehydration synthesis, a class of students models a protein. The students clearly learn amino acid structure, primary, secondary, tertiary, and quaternary structure in proteins and the nature of the bonds maintaining a protein's shape. This activity is fun, concrete, inexpensive and…

  4. Engineering and Characterization of a Fluorescent Native-Like HIV-1 Envelope Glycoprotein Trimer

    PubMed Central

    Sliepen, Kwinten; van Montfort, Thijs; Ozorowski, Gabriel; Pritchard, Laura K.; Crispin, Max; Ward, Andrew B.; Sanders, Rogier W.

    2015-01-01

    Generation of a stable, soluble mimic of the HIV-1 envelope glycoprotein (Env) trimer on the virion surface has been considered an important first step for developing a successful HIV-1 vaccine. Recently, a soluble native-like Env trimer (BG505 SOSIP.664) has been described. This protein has facilitated major advances in the HIV-1 vaccine field, since it was the first Env immunogen that induced consistent neutralizing antibodies against a neutralization-resistant (tier 2) virus. Moreover, BG505 SOSIP.664 enabled elucidation of the atomic resolution structure of the Env trimer and facilitated the isolation and characterization of new broadly neutralizing antibodies against HIV-1. Here, we designed and characterized the BG505 SOSIP.664 trimer fused to fluorescent superfolder GFP (sfGFP), a GFP variant that allows efficient folding (BG505 SOSIP.664-sfGFP). Despite the presence of the sfGFP, the Env protein largely retained its morphology, antigenicity, glycan composition, and thermostability. In addition, we show that BG505 SOSIP.664-sfGFP can be used for fluorescence-based assays, such as flow cytometry. PMID:26512709

  5. Binding of inferred germline precursors of broadly neutralizing HIV-1 antibodies to native-like envelope trimers

    PubMed Central

    Sliepen, Kwinten; Medina-Ramírez, Max; Yasmeen, Anila; Moore, John P.; Klasse, Per Johan; Sanders, Rogier W.

    2016-01-01

    HIV-1 envelope glycoproteins (Env) and Env-based immunogens usually do not interact efficiently with the inferred germline precursors of known broadly neutralizing antibodies (bNAbs). This deficiency may be one reason why Env and Env-based immunogens are not efficient at inducing bNAbs. We evaluated the binding of 15 inferred germline precursors of bNAbs directed to different epitope clusters to three soluble native-like SOSIP.664 Env trimers. We found that native-like SOSIP.664 trimers bind to some inferred germline precursors of bNAbs, particularly ones involving the V1/V2 loops at the apex of the trimer. The data imply that native-like SOSIP.664 trimers will be an appropriate platform for structure-guided design improvements intended to create immunogens able to target the germline precursors of bNAbs. PMID:26433050

  6. HIV Neutralizing Antibodies Induced by Native-like Envelope Trimers

    PubMed Central

    Sanders, Rogier W.; van Gils, Marit J.; Derking, Ronald; Sok, Devin; Ketas, Thomas J.; Burger, Judith A.; Ozorowski, Gabriel; Cupo, Albert; Simonich, Cassandra; Goo, Leslie; Arendt, Heather; Kim, Helen J.; Lee, Jeong Hyun; Pugach, Pavel; Williams, Melissa; Debnath, Gargi; Moldt, Brian; van Breemen, Mariëlle J.; Isik, Gözde; Medina-Ramírez, Max; Back, Jaap Willem; Koff, Wayne; Julien, Jean-Philippe; Rakasz, Eva G.; Seaman, Michael S.; Guttman, Miklos; Lee, Kelly K.; Klasse, Per Johan; LaBranche, Celia; Schief, William R.; Wilson, Ian A.; Overbaugh, Julie; Burton, Dennis R.; Ward, Andrew B.; Montefiori, David C.; Dean, Hansi; Moore, John P.

    2015-01-01

    A challenge for HIV-1 immunogen design is inducing neutralizing antibodies (NAbs) against neutralization-resistant (Tier-2) viruses that dominate human transmissions. We show that a soluble recombinant HIV-1 envelope glycoprotein trimer that adopts a native conformation (BG505 SOSIP.664) induced NAbs potently against the sequence-matched Tier-2 virus in rabbits and similar but weaker responses in macaques. The trimer also consistently induced cross-reactive NAbs against more sensitive (Tier-1) viruses. Tier-2 NAbs recognized conformational epitopes that differed between animals and in some cases overlapped with those recognized by broadly neutralizing antibodies (bNAbs), whereas Tier-1 responses targeted linear V3 epitopes. A second trimer, B41 SOSIP.664, also induced a strong autologous Tier-2 NAb response in rabbits. Thus, native-like trimers represent a promising starting point for developing HIV-1 vaccines aimed at inducing bNAbs. PMID:26089353

  7. How native-like is non-native language processing?

    PubMed

    Clahsen, Harald; Felser, Claudia

    2006-12-01

    Following several decades of research on native language (L1) processing, psycholinguists have more recently begun to investigate how non-native language (L2) speakers comprehend and process language in real time. Regarding the traditional assumption that L2 learners have 'difficulty with grammar', this new research has revealed some unexpected similarities and differences between L1 and L2 processing. Specifically, it appears that L2 processing can become native-like in some linguistic subdomains (including certain aspects of grammar) but that L1 and L2 processing differences persist in the domain of complex syntax, even in highly proficient L2 speakers. Thus, more subtle linguistic distinctions seem to be required to understand the nature of non-native language processing.

  8. Collision cross sections of proteins and their complexes: a calibration framework and database for gas-phase structural biology.

    PubMed

    Bush, Matthew F; Hall, Zoe; Giles, Kevin; Hoyes, John; Robinson, Carol V; Ruotolo, Brandon T

    2010-11-15

    Collision cross sections in both helium and nitrogen gases were measured directly using a drift cell with RF ion confinement inserted within a quadrupole/ion mobility/time-of-flight hybrid mass spectrometer (Waters Synapt HDMS, Manchester, U.K.). Collision cross sections for a large set of denatured peptide, denatured protein, native-like protein, and native-like protein complex ions are reported here, forming a database of collision cross sections that spans over 2 orders of magnitude. The average effective density of the native-like ions is 0.6 g cm(-3), which is significantly lower than that for the solvent-excluded regions of proteins and suggests that these ions can retain significant memory of their solution-phase structures rather than collapse to globular structures. Because the measurements are acquired using an instrument that mimics the geometry of the commercial Synapt HDMS instrument, this database enables the determination of highly accurate collision cross sections from traveling-wave ion mobility data through the use of calibration standards with similar masses and mobilities. Errors in traveling-wave collision cross sections determined for native-like protein complexes calibrated using other native-like protein complexes are significantly less than those calibrated using denatured proteins. This database indicates that collision cross sections in both helium and nitrogen gases can be well-correlated for larger biomolecular ions, but non-correlated differences for smaller ions can be more significant. These results enable the generation of more accurate three-dimensional models of protein and other biomolecular complexes using gas-phase structural biology techniques.

  9. Influences on the Design and Purification of Soluble, Recombinant Native-Like HIV-1 Envelope Glycoprotein Trimers

    PubMed Central

    Ringe, Rajesh P.; Yasmeen, Anila; Ozorowski, Gabriel; Go, Eden P.; Pritchard, Laura K.; Guttman, Miklos; Ketas, Thomas A.; Cottrell, Christopher A.; Wilson, Ian A.; Sanders, Rogier W.; Cupo, Albert; Crispin, Max; Lee, Kelly K.; Desaire, Heather; Ward, Andrew B.; Klasse, P. J.

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT We have investigated factors that influence the production of native-like soluble, recombinant trimers based on the env genes of two isolates of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1), specifically 92UG037.8 (clade A) and CZA97.012 (clade C). When the recombinant trimers based on the env genes of isolates 92UG037.8 and CZA97.012 were made according to the SOSIP.664 design and purified by affinity chromatography using broadly neutralizing antibodies (bNAbs) against quaternary epitopes (PGT145 and PGT151, respectively), the resulting trimers are highly stable and they are fully native-like when visualized by negative-stain electron microscopy. They also have a native-like (i.e., abundant) oligomannose glycan composition and display multiple bNAb epitopes while occluding those for nonneutralizing antibodies. In contrast, uncleaved, histidine-tagged Foldon (Fd) domain-containing gp140 proteins (gp140UNC-Fd-His), based on the same env genes, very rarely form native-like trimers, a finding that is consistent with their antigenic and biophysical properties and glycan composition. The addition of a 20-residue flexible linker (FL20) between the gp120 and gp41 ectodomain (gp41ECTO) subunits to make the uncleaved 92UG037.8 gp140-FL20 construct is not sufficient to create a native-like trimer, but a small percentage of native-like trimers were produced when an I559P substitution in gp41ECTO was also present. The further addition of a disulfide bond (SOS) to link the gp120 and gp41 subunits in the uncleaved gp140-FL20-SOSIP protein increases native-like trimer formation to ∼20 to 30%. Analysis of the disulfide bond content shows that misfolded gp120 subunits are abundant in uncleaved CZA97.012 gp140UNC-Fd-His proteins but very rare in native-like trimer populations. The design and stabilization method and the purification strategy are, therefore, all important influences on the quality of trimeric Env proteins and hence their suitability as vaccine components

  10. Cytochrome c folds through foldon-dependent native-like intermediates in an ordered pathway

    PubMed Central

    Hu, Wenbing; Kan, Zhong-Yuan; Mayne, Leland; Englander, S. Walter

    2016-01-01

    Previous hydrogen exchange (HX) studies of the spontaneous reversible unfolding of Cytochrome c (Cyt c) under native conditions have led to the following conclusions. Native Cyt c (104 residues) is composed of five cooperative folding units, called foldons. The high-energy landscape is dominated by an energy ladder of partially folded forms that differ from each other by one cooperative foldon unit. The reversible equilibrium unfolding of native Cyt c steps up through these intermediate forms to the unfolded state in an energy-ordered sequence, one foldon unit at a time. To more directly study Cyt c intermediates and pathways during normal energetically downhill kinetic folding, the present work used HX pulse labeling analyzed by a fragment separation–mass spectrometry method. The results show that 95% or more of the Cyt c population folds by stepping down through the same set of foldon-dependent pathway intermediates as in energetically uphill equilibrium unfolding. These results add to growing evidence that proteins fold through a classical pathway sequence of native-like intermediates rather than through a vast number of undefinable intermediates and pathways. The present results also emphasize the condition-dependent nature of kinetic barriers, which, with less informative experimental methods (fluorescence, etc.), are often confused with variability in intermediates and pathways. PMID:26966231

  11. Presenting native-like trimeric HIV-1 antigens with self-assembling nanoparticles

    PubMed Central

    He, Linling; de Val, Natalia; Morris, Charles D.; Vora, Nemil; Thinnes, Therese C.; Kong, Leopold; Azadnia, Parisa; Sok, Devin; Zhou, Bin; Burton, Dennis R.; Wilson, Ian A; Nemazee, David; Ward, Andrew B.; Zhu, Jiang

    2016-01-01

    Structures of BG505 SOSIP.664 trimer in complex with broadly neutralizing antibodies (bNAbs) have revealed the critical role of trimeric context for immune recognition of HIV-1. Presentation of trimeric HIV-1 antigens on nanoparticles may thus provide promising vaccine candidates. Here we report the rational design, structural analysis and antigenic evaluation of HIV-1 trimer-presenting nanoparticles. We first demonstrate that both V1V2 and gp120 can be presented in native-like trimeric conformations on nanoparticles. We then design nanoparticles presenting various forms of stabilized gp140 trimer based on ferritin and a large, 60-meric E2p that displays 20 spikes mimicking virus-like particles (VLPs). Particle assembly is confirmed by electron microscopy (EM), while antigenic profiles are generated using representative bNAbs and non-NAbs. Lastly, we demonstrate high-yield gp140 nanoparticle production and robust stimulation of B cells carrying cognate VRC01 receptors by gp120 and gp140 nanoparticles. Together, our study provides an arsenal of multivalent immunogens for HIV-1 vaccine development. PMID:27349934

  12. Structures of membrane proteins

    PubMed Central

    Vinothkumar, Kutti R.; Henderson, Richard

    2010-01-01

    In reviewing the structures of membrane proteins determined up to the end of 2009, we present in words and pictures the most informative examples from each family. We group the structures together according to their function and architecture to provide an overview of the major principles and variations on the most common themes. The first structures, determined 20 years ago, were those of naturally abundant proteins with limited conformational variability, and each membrane protein structure determined was a major landmark. With the advent of complete genome sequences and efficient expression systems, there has been an explosion in the rate of membrane protein structure determination, with many classes represented. New structures are published every month and more than 150 unique membrane protein structures have been determined. This review analyses the reasons for this success, discusses the challenges that still lie ahead, and presents a concise summary of the key achievements with illustrated examples selected from each class. PMID:20667175

  13. Dry-Spun Silk Produces Native-Like Fibroin Solutions

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Silk’s outstanding mechanical properties and energy efficient solidification mechanisms provide inspiration for biomaterial self-assembly as well as offering a diverse platform of materials suitable for many biotechnology applications. Experiments now reveal that the mulberry silkworm Bombyx mori secretes its silk in a practically “unspun” state that retains much of the solvent water and exhibits a surprisingly low degree of molecular order (β-sheet crystallinity) compared to the state found in a fully formed and matured fiber. These new observations challenge the general understanding of silk spinning and in particular the role of the spinning duct for structure development. Building on this discovery we report that silk spun in low humidity appears to arrest a molecular annealing process crucial for β-sheet formation. This, in turn, has significant positive implications, enabling the production of a high fidelity reconstituted silk fibroin with properties akin to the gold standard of unspun native silk. PMID:27526078

  14. Simplified protein models can rival all atom simulations in predicting folding pathways and structure

    PubMed Central

    Adhikari, Aashish N.; Freed, Karl F.; Sosnick, Tobin R.

    2014-01-01

    We demonstrate the ability of simultaneously determining a protein’s folding pathway and structure using a properly formulated model without prior knowledge of the native structure. Our model employs a natural coordinate system for describing proteins and a search strategy inspired by the observation that real proteins fold in a sequential fashion by incrementally stabilizing native-like substructures or "foldons". Comparable folding pathways and structures are obtained for the twelve proteins recently studied using atomistic molecular dynamics simulations [K. Lindorff-Larsen, S. Piana, R.O. Dror, D. E. Shaw, Science 334, 517 (2011)], with our calculations running several orders of magnitude faster. We find that native-like propensities in the unfolded state do not necessarily determine the order of structure formation, a departure from a major conclusion of the MD study. Instead, our results support a more expansive view wherein intrinsic local structural propensities may be enhanced or overridden in the folding process by environmental context. The success of our search strategy validates it as an expedient mechanism for folding both in silico and in vivo. PMID:23889448

  15. Protein Structure Databases.

    PubMed

    Laskowski, Roman A

    2016-01-01

    Web-based protein structure databases come in a wide variety of types and levels of information content. Those having the most general interest are the various atlases that describe each experimentally determined protein structure and provide useful links, analyses, and schematic diagrams relating to its 3D structure and biological function. Also of great interest are the databases that classify 3D structures by their folds as these can reveal evolutionary relationships which may be hard to detect from sequence comparison alone. Related to these are the numerous servers that compare folds-particularly useful for newly solved structures, and especially those of unknown function. Beyond these are a vast number of databases for the more specialized user, dealing with specific families, diseases, structural features, and so on. PMID:27115626

  16. Densonucleosis virus structural proteins.

    PubMed

    Kelly, D C; Moore, N F; Spilling, C R; Barwise, A H; Walker, I O

    1980-10-01

    The protein coats of two densonucleosis viruses (types 1 and 2) were examined by a variety of biophysical, biochemical, and serological techniques. The viruses were 24 nm in diameter, contained at least four polypeptides, were remarkably stable to extremes of pH and denaturing agents, and were serologically closely related. The two viruses could, however, be distinguished serologically and by differences in migration of their structural polypeptides. For each virus the "top component" (i.e., the protein coat minus DNA, found occurring naturally in infections) appeared to have a composition identical to that of the coat of the virus and was a more stable structure. Electrometric titration curves of the virus particles and top components demonstrated that the DNA phosphate in densonucleosis virus particles was neutralized by cations other than basic amino acid side chains of the protein coat. Circular dichroism studies showed that there was a conformational difference between the protein coats of top components and virus particles.

  17. Junin virus structural proteins.

    PubMed Central

    De Martínez Segovia, Z M; De Mitri, M I

    1977-01-01

    Polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis of purified Junin virus revealed six distinct structural polypeptides, two major and four minor ones. Four of these polypeptides appeared to be covalently linked with carbohydrate. The molecular weights of the six proteins, estimated by coelectrophoresis with marker proteins, ranged from 25,000 to 91,000. One of the two major components (number 3) was identified as a nucleoprotein and had a molecular weight of 64,000. It was the most prominent protein and was nonglycosylated. The other major protein (number 5), with a molecular weight of 38,000, was a glucoprotein and a component of the viral envelope. The location on the virion of three additional glycopeptides with molecular weights of 91,000, 72,000, and 52,000, together with a protein with a molecular weight of 25,000, was not well defined. PMID:189088

  18. Second language processing shows increased native-like neural responses after months of no exposure.

    PubMed

    Morgan-Short, Kara; Finger, Ingrid; Grey, Sarah; Ullman, Michael T

    2012-01-01

    Although learning a second language (L2) as an adult is notoriously difficult, research has shown that adults can indeed attain native language-like brain processing and high proficiency levels. However, it is important to then retain what has been attained, even in the absence of continued exposure to the L2--particularly since periods of minimal or no L2 exposure are common. This event-related potential (ERP) study of an artificial language tested performance and neural processing following a substantial period of no exposure. Adults learned to speak and comprehend the artificial language to high proficiency with either explicit, classroom-like, or implicit, immersion-like training, and then underwent several months of no exposure to the language. Surprisingly, proficiency did not decrease during this delay. Instead, it remained unchanged, and there was an increase in native-like neural processing of syntax, as evidenced by several ERP changes--including earlier, more reliable, and more left-lateralized anterior negativities, and more robust P600s, in response to word-order violations. Moreover, both the explicitly and implicitly trained groups showed increased native-like ERP patterns over the delay, indicating that such changes can hold independently of L2 training type. The results demonstrate that substantial periods with no L2 exposure are not necessarily detrimental. Rather, benefits may ensue from such periods of time even when there is no L2 exposure. Interestingly, both before and after the delay the implicitly trained group showed more native-like processing than the explicitly trained group, indicating that type of training also affects the attainment of native-like processing in the brain. Overall, the findings may be largely explained by a combination of forgetting and consolidation in declarative and procedural memory, on which L2 grammar learning appears to depend. The study has a range of implications, and suggests a research program with

  19. Second language processing shows increased native-like neural responses after months of no exposure.

    PubMed

    Morgan-Short, Kara; Finger, Ingrid; Grey, Sarah; Ullman, Michael T

    2012-01-01

    Although learning a second language (L2) as an adult is notoriously difficult, research has shown that adults can indeed attain native language-like brain processing and high proficiency levels. However, it is important to then retain what has been attained, even in the absence of continued exposure to the L2--particularly since periods of minimal or no L2 exposure are common. This event-related potential (ERP) study of an artificial language tested performance and neural processing following a substantial period of no exposure. Adults learned to speak and comprehend the artificial language to high proficiency with either explicit, classroom-like, or implicit, immersion-like training, and then underwent several months of no exposure to the language. Surprisingly, proficiency did not decrease during this delay. Instead, it remained unchanged, and there was an increase in native-like neural processing of syntax, as evidenced by several ERP changes--including earlier, more reliable, and more left-lateralized anterior negativities, and more robust P600s, in response to word-order violations. Moreover, both the explicitly and implicitly trained groups showed increased native-like ERP patterns over the delay, indicating that such changes can hold independently of L2 training type. The results demonstrate that substantial periods with no L2 exposure are not necessarily detrimental. Rather, benefits may ensue from such periods of time even when there is no L2 exposure. Interestingly, both before and after the delay the implicitly trained group showed more native-like processing than the explicitly trained group, indicating that type of training also affects the attainment of native-like processing in the brain. Overall, the findings may be largely explained by a combination of forgetting and consolidation in declarative and procedural memory, on which L2 grammar learning appears to depend. The study has a range of implications, and suggests a research program with

  20. BeEP Server: using evolutionary information for quality assessment of protein structure models

    PubMed Central

    Palopoli, Nicolas; Lanzarotti, Esteban; Parisi, Gustavo

    2013-01-01

    The BeEP Server (http://www.embnet.qb.fcen.uba.ar/embnet/beep.php) is an online resource aimed to help in the endgame of protein structure prediction. It is able to rank submitted structural models of a protein through an explicit use of evolutionary information, a criterion differing from structural or energetic considerations commonly used in other assessment programs. The idea behind BeEP (Best Evolutionary Pattern) is to benefit from the substitution pattern derived from structural constraints present in a set of homologous proteins adopting a given protein conformation. The BeEP method uses a model of protein evolution that takes into account the structure of a protein to build site-specific substitution matrices. The suitability of these substitution matrices is assessed through maximum likelihood calculations from which position-specific and global scores can be derived. These scores estimate how well the structural constraints derived from each structural model are represented in a sequence alignment of homologous proteins. Our assessment on a subset of proteins from the Critical Assessment of techniques for protein Structure Prediction (CASP) experiment has shown that BeEP is capable of discriminating the models and selecting one or more native-like structures. Moreover, BeEP is not explicitly parameterized to find structural similarities between models and given targets, potentially helping to explore the conformational ensemble of the native state. PMID:23729471

  1. BeEP Server: Using evolutionary information for quality assessment of protein structure models.

    PubMed

    Palopoli, Nicolas; Lanzarotti, Esteban; Parisi, Gustavo

    2013-07-01

    The BeEP Server (http://www.embnet.qb.fcen.uba.ar/embnet/beep.php) is an online resource aimed to help in the endgame of protein structure prediction. It is able to rank submitted structural models of a protein through an explicit use of evolutionary information, a criterion differing from structural or energetic considerations commonly used in other assessment programs. The idea behind BeEP (Best Evolutionary Pattern) is to benefit from the substitution pattern derived from structural constraints present in a set of homologous proteins adopting a given protein conformation. The BeEP method uses a model of protein evolution that takes into account the structure of a protein to build site-specific substitution matrices. The suitability of these substitution matrices is assessed through maximum likelihood calculations from which position-specific and global scores can be derived. These scores estimate how well the structural constraints derived from each structural model are represented in a sequence alignment of homologous proteins. Our assessment on a subset of proteins from the Critical Assessment of techniques for protein Structure Prediction (CASP) experiment has shown that BeEP is capable of discriminating the models and selecting one or more native-like structures. Moreover, BeEP is not explicitly parameterized to find structural similarities between models and given targets, potentially helping to explore the conformational ensemble of the native state.

  2. Native-likeness in second language lexical categorization reflects individual language history and linguistic community norms

    PubMed Central

    Zinszer, Benjamin D.; Malt, Barbara C.; Ameel, Eef; Li, Ping

    2014-01-01

    Second language learners face a dual challenge in vocabulary learning: First, they must learn new names for the 100s of common objects that they encounter every day. Second, after some time, they discover that these names do not generalize according to the same rules used in their first language. Lexical categories frequently differ between languages (Malt et al., 1999), and successful language learning requires that bilinguals learn not just new words but new patterns for labeling objects. In the present study, Chinese learners of English with varying language histories and resident in two different language settings (Beijing, China and State College, PA, USA) named 67 photographs of common serving dishes (e.g., cups, plates, and bowls) in both Chinese and English. Participants’ response patterns were quantified in terms of similarity to the responses of functionally monolingual native speakers of Chinese and English and showed the cross-language convergence previously observed in simultaneous bilinguals (Ameel et al., 2005). For English, bilinguals’ names for each individual stimulus were also compared to the dominant name generated by the native speakers for the object. Using two statistical models, we disentangle the effects of several highly interactive variables from bilinguals’ language histories and the naming norms of the native speaker community to predict inter-personal and inter-item variation in L2 (English) native-likeness. We find only a modest age of earliest exposure effect on L2 category native-likeness, but importantly, we find that classroom instruction in L2 negatively impacts L2 category native-likeness, even after significant immersion experience. We also identify a significant role of both L1 and L2 norms in bilinguals’ L2 picture naming responses. PMID:25386149

  3. Second Language Processing Shows Increased Native-Like Neural Responses after Months of No Exposure

    PubMed Central

    Morgan-Short, Kara; Finger, Ingrid; Grey, Sarah; Ullman, Michael T.

    2012-01-01

    Although learning a second language (L2) as an adult is notoriously difficult, research has shown that adults can indeed attain native language-like brain processing and high proficiency levels. However, it is important to then retain what has been attained, even in the absence of continued exposure to the L2—particularly since periods of minimal or no L2 exposure are common. This event-related potential (ERP) study of an artificial language tested performance and neural processing following a substantial period of no exposure. Adults learned to speak and comprehend the artificial language to high proficiency with either explicit, classroom-like, or implicit, immersion-like training, and then underwent several months of no exposure to the language. Surprisingly, proficiency did not decrease during this delay. Instead, it remained unchanged, and there was an increase in native-like neural processing of syntax, as evidenced by several ERP changes—including earlier, more reliable, and more left-lateralized anterior negativities, and more robust P600s, in response to word-order violations. Moreover, both the explicitly and implicitly trained groups showed increased native-like ERP patterns over the delay, indicating that such changes can hold independently of L2 training type. The results demonstrate that substantial periods with no L2 exposure are not necessarily detrimental. Rather, benefits may ensue from such periods of time even when there is no L2 exposure. Interestingly, both before and after the delay the implicitly trained group showed more native-like processing than the explicitly trained group, indicating that type of training also affects the attainment of native-like processing in the brain. Overall, the findings may be largely explained by a combination of forgetting and consolidation in declarative and procedural memory, on which L2 grammar learning appears to depend. The study has a range of implications, and suggests a research program with

  4. How native-like can you possibly get: fMRI evidence for processing accent

    PubMed Central

    Ghazi-Saidi, Ladan; Dash, Tanya; Ansaldo, Ana I.

    2015-01-01

    Introduction: If ever attained, adopting native-like accent is achieved late in the learning process. Resemblance between L2 and mother tongue can facilitate L2 learning. In particular, cognates (phonologically and semantically similar words across languages), offer the opportunity to examine the issue of foreign accent in quite a unique manner. Methods: Twelve Spanish speaking (L1) adults learnt French (L2) cognates and practiced their native-like pronunciation by means of a computerized method. After consolidation, they were tested on L1 and L2 oral picture- naming during fMRI scanning. Results and Discussion: The results of the present study show that there is a specific impact of accent on brain activation, even if L2 words are cognates, and belong to a pair of closely related languages. Results point that the insula is a key component of accent processing, which is in line with reports from patients with foreign accent syndrome following damage to the insula (e.g., Katz et al., 2012; Moreno-Torres et al., 2013; Tomasino et al., 2013), and healthy L2 learners (Chee et al., 2004). Thus, the left insula has been consistently related to the integration of attentional and working memory abilities, together with fine-tuning of motor programming to achieve optimal articulation. PMID:26578931

  5. Native-like brain processing of syntax can be attained by university foreign language learners.

    PubMed

    Bowden, Harriet Wood; Steinhauer, Karsten; Sanz, Cristina; Ullman, Michael T

    2013-11-01

    Using event-related potentials (ERPs), we examined the neurocognition of late-learned second language (L2) Spanish in two groups of typical university foreign-language learners (as compared to native (L1) speakers): one group with only one year of college classroom experience, and low-intermediate proficiency (L2 Low), and another group with over three years of college classroom experience as well as 1-2 semesters of immersion experience abroad, and advanced proficiency (L2 Advanced). Semantic violations elicited N400s in all three groups, whereas syntactic word-order violations elicited LAN/P600 responses in the L1 and L2 Advanced groups, but not the L2 Low group. Indeed, the LAN and P600 responses were statistically indistinguishable between the L1 and L2 Advanced groups. The results support and extend previous findings. Consistent with previous research, the results suggest that L2 semantic processing always depends on L1-like neurocognitive mechanisms, whereas L2 syntactic processing initially differs from L1, but can shift to native-like processes with sufficient proficiency or exposure, and perhaps with immersion experience in particular. The findings further demonstrate that substantial native-like brain processing of syntax can be achieved even by typical university foreign-language learners.

  6. Folding of a large protein at high structural resolution

    PubMed Central

    Walters, Benjamin T.; Mayne, Leland; Hinshaw, James R.; Sosnick, Tobin R.; Englander, S. Walter

    2013-01-01

    Kinetic folding of the large two-domain maltose binding protein (MBP; 370 residues) was studied at high structural resolution by an advanced hydrogen-exchange pulse-labeling mass-spectrometry method (HX MS). Dilution into folding conditions initiates a fast molecular collapse into a polyglobular conformation (<20 ms), determined by various methods including small angle X-ray scattering. The compaction produces a structurally heterogeneous state with widespread low-level HX protection and spectroscopic signals that match the equilibrium melting posttransition-state baseline. In a much slower step (7-s time constant), all of the MBP molecules, although initially heterogeneously structured, form the same distinct helix plus sheet folding intermediate with the same time constant. The intermediate is composed of segments that are distant in the MBP sequence but adjacent in the native protein where they close the longest residue-to-residue contact. Segments that are most HX protected in the early molecular collapse do not contribute to the initial intermediate, whereas the segments that do participate are among the less protected. The 7-s intermediate persists through the rest of the folding process. It contains the sites of three previously reported destabilizing mutations that greatly slow folding. These results indicate that the intermediate is an obligatory step on the MBP folding pathway. MBP then folds to the native state on a longer time scale (∼100 s), suggestively in more than one step, the first of which forms structure adjacent to the 7-s intermediate. These results add a large protein to the list of proteins known to fold through distinct native-like intermediates in distinct pathways. PMID:24191053

  7. HIV-1 VACCINES. HIV-1 neutralizing antibodies induced by native-like envelope trimers.

    PubMed

    Sanders, Rogier W; van Gils, Marit J; Derking, Ronald; Sok, Devin; Ketas, Thomas J; Burger, Judith A; Ozorowski, Gabriel; Cupo, Albert; Simonich, Cassandra; Goo, Leslie; Arendt, Heather; Kim, Helen J; Lee, Jeong Hyun; Pugach, Pavel; Williams, Melissa; Debnath, Gargi; Moldt, Brian; van Breemen, Mariëlle J; Isik, Gözde; Medina-Ramírez, Max; Back, Jaap Willem; Koff, Wayne C; Julien, Jean-Philippe; Rakasz, Eva G; Seaman, Michael S; Guttman, Miklos; Lee, Kelly K; Klasse, Per Johan; LaBranche, Celia; Schief, William R; Wilson, Ian A; Overbaugh, Julie; Burton, Dennis R; Ward, Andrew B; Montefiori, David C; Dean, Hansi; Moore, John P

    2015-07-10

    A challenge for HIV-1 immunogen design is the difficulty of inducing neutralizing antibodies (NAbs) against neutralization-resistant (tier 2) viruses that dominate human transmissions. We show that a soluble recombinant HIV-1 envelope glycoprotein trimer that adopts a native conformation, BG505 SOSIP.664, induced NAbs potently against the sequence-matched tier 2 virus in rabbits and similar but weaker responses in macaques. The trimer also consistently induced cross-reactive NAbs against more sensitive (tier 1) viruses. Tier 2 NAbs recognized conformational epitopes that differed between animals and in some cases overlapped with those recognized by broadly neutralizing antibodies (bNAbs), whereas tier 1 responses targeted linear V3 epitopes. A second trimer, B41 SOSIP.664, also induced a strong autologous tier 2 NAb response in rabbits. Thus, native-like trimers represent a promising starting point for the development of HIV-1 vaccines aimed at inducing bNAbs.

  8. Structural Genomics of Protein Phosphatases

    SciTech Connect

    Almo,S.; Bonanno, J.; Sauder, J.; Emtage, S.; Dilorenzo, T.; Malashkevich, V.; Wasserman, S.; Swaminathan, S.; Eswaramoorthy, S.; et al

    2007-01-01

    The New York SGX Research Center for Structural Genomics (NYSGXRC) of the NIGMS Protein Structure Initiative (PSI) has applied its high-throughput X-ray crystallographic structure determination platform to systematic studies of all human protein phosphatases and protein phosphatases from biomedically-relevant pathogens. To date, the NYSGXRC has determined structures of 21 distinct protein phosphatases: 14 from human, 2 from mouse, 2 from the pathogen Toxoplasma gondii, 1 from Trypanosoma brucei, the parasite responsible for African sleeping sickness, and 2 from the principal mosquito vector of malaria in Africa, Anopheles gambiae. These structures provide insights into both normal and pathophysiologic processes, including transcriptional regulation, regulation of major signaling pathways, neural development, and type 1 diabetes. In conjunction with the contributions of other international structural genomics consortia, these efforts promise to provide an unprecedented database and materials repository for structure-guided experimental and computational discovery of inhibitors for all classes of protein phosphatases.

  9. Protein structure modeling with MODELLER.

    PubMed

    Webb, Benjamin; Sali, Andrej

    2014-01-01

    Genome sequencing projects have resulted in a rapid increase in the number of known protein sequences. In contrast, only about one-hundredth of these sequences have been characterized at atomic resolution using experimental structure determination methods. Computational protein structure modeling techniques have the potential to bridge this sequence-structure gap. In this chapter, we present an example that illustrates the use of MODELLER to construct a comparative model for a protein with unknown structure. Automation of a similar protocol has resulted in models of useful accuracy for domains in more than half of all known protein sequences.

  10. Folding dynamics of the Trp-cage miniprotein: evidence for a native-like intermediate from combined time-resolved vibrational spectroscopy and molecular dynamics simulations.

    PubMed

    Meuzelaar, Heleen; Marino, Kristen A; Huerta-Viga, Adriana; Panman, Matthijs R; Smeenk, Linde E J; Kettelarij, Albert J; van Maarseveen, Jan H; Timmerman, Peter; Bolhuis, Peter G; Woutersen, Sander

    2013-10-01

    Trp-cage is a synthetic 20-residue miniprotein which folds rapidly and spontaneously to a well-defined globular structure more typical of larger proteins. Due to its small size and fast folding, it is an ideal model system for experimental and theoretical investigations of protein folding mechanisms. However, Trp-cage's exact folding mechanism is still a matter of debate. Here we investigate Trp-cage's relaxation dynamics in the amide I' spectral region (1530-1700 cm(-1)) using time-resolved infrared spectroscopy. Residue-specific information was obtained by incorporating an isotopic label ((13)C═(18)O) into the amide carbonyl group of residue Gly11, thereby spectrally isolating an individual 310-helical residue. The folding-unfolding equilibrium is perturbed using a nanosecond temperature-jump (T-jump), and the subsequent re-equilibration is probed by observing the time-dependent vibrational response in the amide I' region. We observe bimodal relaxation kinetics with time constants of 100 ± 10 and 770 ± 40 ns at 322 K, suggesting that the folding involves an intermediate state, the character of which can be determined from the time- and frequency-resolved data. We find that the relaxation dynamics close to the melting temperature involve fast fluctuations in the polyproline II region, whereas the slower process can be attributed to conformational rearrangements due to the global (un)folding transition of the protein. Combined analysis of our T-jump data and molecular dynamics simulations indicates that the formation of a well-defined α-helix precedes the rapid formation of the hydrophobic cage structure, implying a native-like folding intermediate, that mainly differs from the folded conformation in the orientation of the C-terminal polyproline II helix relative to the N-terminal part of the backbone. We find that the main free-energy barrier is positioned between the folding intermediate and the unfolded state ensemble, and that it involves the formation of

  11. Protein structure prediction using residue- and fragment-environment potentials in CASP11.

    PubMed

    Kim, Hyungrae; Kihara, Daisuke

    2016-09-01

    An accurate scoring function that can select near-native structure models from a pool of alternative models is key for successful protein structure prediction. For the critical assessment of techniques for protein structure prediction (CASP) 11, we have built a protocol of protein structure prediction that has novel coarse-grained scoring functions for selecting decoys as the heart of its pipeline. The score named PRESCO (Protein Residue Environment SCOre) developed recently by our group evaluates the native-likeness of local structural environment of residues in a structure decoy considering positions and the depth of side-chains of spatially neighboring residues. We also introduced a helix interaction potential as an additional scoring function for selecting decoys. The best models selected by PRESCO and the helix interaction potential underwent structure refinement, which includes side-chain modeling and relaxation with a short molecular dynamics simulation. Our protocol was successful, achieving the top rank in the free modeling category with a significant margin of the accumulated Z-score to the subsequent groups when the top 1 models were considered. Proteins 2016; 84(Suppl 1):105-117. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  12. Hexafluoroacetone hydrate as a structure modifier in proteins: characterization of a molten globule state of hen egg-white lysozyme.

    PubMed Central

    Bhattacharjya, S.; Balaram, P.

    1997-01-01

    A molten globule-like state of hen egg-white lysozyme has been characterized in 25% aqueous hexafluoroacetone hydrate (HFA) by CD, fluorescence, NMR, and H/D exchange experiments. The far UV CD spectra of lysozyme in 25% HFA supports retention of native-like secondary structure while the loss of near UV CD bands are indicative of the overall collapse of the tertiary structure. The intermediate state in 25% HFA exhibits an enhanced affinity towards the hydrophobic dye, ANS, and a native-like tryptophan fluorescence quenching. 1-D NMR spectra indicates loss of native-like tertiary fold as evident from the absence of ring current-shifted 1H resonances. CD, fluorescence, and NMR suggest that the transition from the native state to a molten globule state in 25% HFA is a cooperative process. A second structural transition from this compact molten globule-like state to an "open" helical state is observed at higher concentrations of HFA (> or = 50%). This transition is characterized by a dramatic loss of ANS binding with a concomitant increase in far UV CD bands. The thermal unfolding of the molten globule state in 25% HFA is sharply cooperative, indicating a predominant role of side-chain-side-chain interactions in the stability of the partially folded state. H/D exchange experiments yield higher protection factors for many of the backbone amide protons from the four alpha-helices along with the C-terminal 3(10) helix, whereas little or no protection is observed for most of the amide protons from the triple-stranded antiparallel beta-sheet domain. This equilibrium molten globule-like state of lysozyme in 25% HFA is remarkably similar to the molten globule state observed for alpha-lactalbumin and also with the molten globule state transiently observed in the kinetic refolding experiments of hen lysozyme. These results suggest that HFA may prove generally useful as a structure modifier in proteins. PMID:9144778

  13. A designed glycoprotein analogue of Gc-MAF exhibits native-like phagocytic activity.

    PubMed

    Bogani, Federica; McConnell, Elizabeth; Joshi, Lokesh; Chang, Yung; Ghirlanda, Giovanna

    2006-06-01

    Rational protein design has been successfully used to create mimics of natural proteins that retain native activity. In the present work, de novo protein engineering is explored to develop a mini-protein analogue of Gc-MAF, a glycoprotein involved in the immune system activation that has shown anticancer activity in mice. Gc-MAF is derived in vivo from vitamin D binding protein (VDBP) via enzymatic processing of its glycosaccharide to leave a single GalNAc residue located on an exposed loop. We used molecular modeling tools in conjunction with structural analysis to splice the glycosylated loop onto a stable three-helix bundle (alpha3W, PDB entry 1LQ7). The resulting 69-residue model peptide, MM1, has been successfully synthesized by solid-phase synthesis both in the aglycosylated and the glycosylated (GalNAc-MM1) form. Circular dichroism spectroscopy confirmed the expected alpha-helical secondary structure. The thermodynamic stability as evaluated from chemical and thermal denaturation is comparable with that of the scaffold protein, alpha3W, indicating that the insertion of the exogenous loop of Gc-MAF did not significantly perturb the overall structure. GalNAc-MM1 retains the macrophage stimulation activity of natural Gc-MAF; in vitro tests show an identical enhancement of Fc-receptor-mediated phagocytosis in primary macrophages. GalNAc-MM1 provides a framework for the development of mutants with increased activity that could be used in place of Gc-MAF as an immunomodulatory agent in therapy. PMID:16734450

  14. Protein structure mining using a structural alphabet.

    PubMed

    Tyagi, M; de Brevern, A G; Srinivasan, N; Offmann, B

    2008-05-01

    We present a comprehensive evaluation of a new structure mining method called PB-ALIGN. It is based on the encoding of protein structure as 1D sequence of a combination of 16 short structural motifs or protein blocks (PBs). PBs are short motifs capable of representing most of the local structural features of a protein backbone. Using derived PB substitution matrix and simple dynamic programming algorithm, PB sequences are aligned the same way amino acid sequences to yield structure alignment. PBs are short motifs capable of representing most of the local structural features of a protein backbone. Alignment of these local features as sequence of symbols enables fast detection of structural similarities between two proteins. Ability of the method to characterize and align regions beyond regular secondary structures, for example, N and C caps of helix and loops connecting regular structures, puts it a step ahead of existing methods, which strongly rely on secondary structure elements. PB-ALIGN achieved efficiency of 85% in extracting true fold from a large database of 7259 SCOP domains and was successful in 82% cases to identify true super-family members. On comparison to 13 existing structure comparison/mining methods, PB-ALIGN emerged as the best on general ability test dataset and was at par with methods like YAKUSA and CE on nontrivial test dataset. Furthermore, the proposed method performed well when compared to flexible structure alignment method like FATCAT and outperforms in processing speed (less than 45 s per database scan). This work also establishes a reliable cut-off value for the demarcation of similar folds. It finally shows that global alignment scores of unrelated structures using PBs follow an extreme value distribution. PB-ALIGN is freely available on web server called Protein Block Expert (PBE) at http://bioinformatics.univ-reunion.fr/PBE/. PMID:18004784

  15. Structure of giant muscle proteins

    PubMed Central

    Meyer, Logan C.; Wright, Nathan T.

    2013-01-01

    Giant muscle proteins (e.g., titin, nebulin, and obscurin) play a seminal role in muscle elasticity, stretch response, and sarcomeric organization. Each giant protein consists of multiple tandem structural domains, usually arranged in a modular fashion spanning 500 kDa to 4 MDa. Although many of the domains are similar in structure, subtle differences create a unique function of each domain. Recent high and low resolution structural and dynamic studies now suggest more nuanced overall protein structures than previously realized. These findings show that atomic structure, interactions between tandem domains, and intrasarcomeric environment all influence the shape, motion, and therefore function of giant proteins. In this article we will review the current understanding of titin, obscurin, and nebulin structure, from the atomic level through the molecular level. PMID:24376425

  16. Politeness Strategies in the Workplace: Which Experiences Help Japanese Businessmen Acquire American English Native-like Strategies?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nakajima, Yuko

    1997-01-01

    A study investigated which experiences helped Japanese learners of English as a second language acquire native-like politeness strategies and how Japanese businessmen perceive the relationship between degrees of indirectness and politeness in Japanese and in English. Subjects were 22 adult males, including 17 native speakers of Japanese working…

  17. The Sensitive Period Hypothesis: A Review of Literature Regarding Acquisition of a Native-Like Pronunciation in a Second Language.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Burrill, Carol

    A review of research was conducted on the possibility of a sensitive period for the acquisition of native-like pronunciation in a second language, as well as on related questions concerning the universality of this phenomenon, age factors, biological versus cultural origins, and developmental psychology. The review showed variation in studies and…

  18. The Quaternary Structure of the Recombinant Bovine Odorant-Binding Protein Is Modulated by Chemical Denaturants

    PubMed Central

    Stepanenko, Olga V.; Stepanenko, Olesya V.; Staiano, Maria; Kuznetsova, Irina M.; Turoverov, Konstantin K.; D’Auria, Sabato

    2014-01-01

    A large group of odorant-binding proteins (OBPs) has attracted great scientific interest as promising building blocks in constructing optical biosensors for dangerous substances, such as toxic and explosive molecules. Native tissue-extracted bovine OBP (bOBP) has a unique dimer folding pattern that involves crossing the α-helical domain in each monomer over the other monomer’s β-barrel. In contrast, recombinant bOBP maintaining the high level of stability inherent to native tissue bOBP is produced in a stable native-like state with a decreased tendency for dimerization and is a mixture of monomers and dimers in a buffered solution. This work is focused on the study of the quaternary structure and the folding-unfolding processes of the recombinant bOBP in the absence and in the presence of guanidine hydrochloride (GdnHCl). Our results show that the recombinant bOBP native dimer is only formed at elevated GdnHCl concentrations (1.5 M). This process requires re-organizing the protein structure by progressing through the formation of an intermediate state. The bOBP dimerization process appears to be irreversible and it occurs before the protein unfolds. Though the observed structural changes for recombinant bOBP at pre-denaturing GdnHCl concentrations show a local character and the overall protein structure is maintained, such changes should be considered where the protein is used as a sensitive element in a biosensor system. PMID:24409322

  19. De Novo Protein Structure Prediction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hung, Ling-Hong; Ngan, Shing-Chung; Samudrala, Ram

    An unparalleled amount of sequence data is being made available from large-scale genome sequencing efforts. The data provide a shortcut to the determination of the function of a gene of interest, as long as there is an existing sequenced gene with similar sequence and of known function. This has spurred structural genomic initiatives with the goal of determining as many protein folds as possible (Brenner and Levitt, 2000; Burley, 2000; Brenner, 2001; Heinemann et al., 2001). The purpose of this is twofold: First, the structure of a gene product can often lead to direct inference of its function. Second, since the function of a protein is dependent on its structure, direct comparison of the structures of gene products can be more sensitive than the comparison of sequences of genes for detecting homology. Presently, structural determination by crystallography and NMR techniques is still slow and expensive in terms of manpower and resources, despite attempts to automate the processes. Computer structure prediction algorithms, while not providing the accuracy of the traditional techniques, are extremely quick and inexpensive and can provide useful low-resolution data for structure comparisons (Bonneau and Baker, 2001). Given the immense number of structures which the structural genomic projects are attempting to solve, there would be a considerable gain even if the computer structure prediction approach were applicable to a subset of proteins.

  20. Protein interfacial structure and nanotoxicology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    White, John W.; Perriman, Adam W.; McGillivray, Duncan J.; Lin, Jhih-Min

    2009-02-01

    Here we briefly recapitulate the use of X-ray and neutron reflectometry at the air-water interface to find protein structures and thermodynamics at interfaces and test a possibility for understanding those interactions between nanoparticles and proteins which lead to nanoparticle toxicology through entry into living cells. Stable monomolecular protein films have been made at the air-water interface and, with a specially designed vessel, the substrate changed from that which the air-water interfacial film was deposited. This procedure allows interactions, both chemical and physical, between introduced species and the monomolecular film to be studied by reflectometry. The method is briefly illustrated here with some new results on protein-protein interaction between β-casein and κ-casein at the air-water interface using X-rays. These two proteins are an essential component of the structure of milk. In the experiments reported, specific and directional interactions appear to cause different interfacial structures if first, a β-casein monolayer is attacked by a κ-casein solution compared to the reverse. The additional contrast associated with neutrons will be an advantage here. We then show the first results of experiments on the interaction of a β-casein monolayer with a nanoparticle titanium oxide sol, foreshadowing the study of the nanoparticle "corona" thought to be important for nanoparticle-cell wall penetration.

  1. Pseudocontact Shift-Driven Iterative Resampling for 3D Structure Determinations of Large Proteins.

    PubMed

    Pilla, Kala Bharath; Otting, Gottfried; Huber, Thomas

    2016-01-29

    Pseudocontact shifts (PCSs) induced by paramagnetic lanthanides produce pronounced effects in nuclear magnetic resonance spectra, which are easily measured and which deliver valuable long-range structure restraints. Even sparse PCS data greatly enhance the success rate of 3D (3-dimensional) structure predictions of proteins by the modeling program Rosetta. The present work extends this approach to 3D structures of larger proteins, comprising more than 200 residues, which are difficult to model by Rosetta without additional experimental restraints. The new algorithm improves the fragment assembly method of Rosetta by utilizing PCSs generated from paramagnetic lanthanide ions attached at four different sites as the only experimental restraints. The sparse PCS data are utilized at multiple stages, to identify native-like local structures, to rank the best structural models and to rebuild the fragment libraries. The fragment libraries are refined iteratively until convergence. The PCS-driven iterative resampling algorithm is strictly data dependent and shown to generate accurate models for a benchmark set of eight different proteins, ranging from 100 to 220 residues, using solely PCSs of backbone amide protons.

  2. Method for protein structure alignment

    DOEpatents

    Blankenbecler, Richard; Ohlsson, Mattias; Peterson, Carsten; Ringner, Markus

    2005-02-22

    This invention provides a method for protein structure alignment. More particularly, the present invention provides a method for identification, classification and prediction of protein structures. The present invention involves two key ingredients. First, an energy or cost function formulation of the problem simultaneously in terms of binary (Potts) assignment variables and real-valued atomic coordinates. Second, a minimization of the energy or cost function by an iterative method, where in each iteration (1) a mean field method is employed for the assignment variables and (2) exact rotation and/or translation of atomic coordinates is performed, weighted with the corresponding assignment variables.

  3. Protein Structure Comparison and Classification

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Çamoǧlu, Orhan; Singh, Ambuj K.

    The success of genome projects has generated an enormous amount of sequence data. In order to realize the full value of the data, we need to understand its functional role and its evolutionary origin. Sequence comparison methods are incredibly valuable for this task. However, for sequences falling in the twilight zone (usually between 20 and 35% sequence similarity), we need to resort to structural alignment and comparison for a meaningful analysis. Such a structural approach can be used for classification of proteins, isolation of structural motifs, and discovery of drug targets.

  4. A real-time all-atom structural search engine for proteins.

    PubMed

    Gonzalez, Gabriel; Hannigan, Brett; DeGrado, William F

    2014-07-01

    Protein designers use a wide variety of software tools for de novo design, yet their repertoire still lacks a fast and interactive all-atom search engine. To solve this, we have built the Suns program: a real-time, atomic search engine integrated into the PyMOL molecular visualization system. Users build atomic-level structural search queries within PyMOL and receive a stream of search results aligned to their query within a few seconds. This instant feedback cycle enables a new "designability"-inspired approach to protein design where the designer searches for and interactively incorporates native-like fragments from proven protein structures. We demonstrate the use of Suns to interactively build protein motifs, tertiary interactions, and to identify scaffolds compatible with hot-spot residues. The official web site and installer are located at http://www.degradolab.org/suns/ and the source code is hosted at https://github.com/godotgildor/Suns (PyMOL plugin, BSD license), https://github.com/Gabriel439/suns-cmd (command line client, BSD license), and https://github.com/Gabriel439/suns-search (search engine server, GPLv2 license).

  5. Sucralose Destabilization of Protein Structure.

    PubMed

    Chen, Lee; Shukla, Nimesh; Cho, Inha; Cohn, Erin; Taylor, Erika A; Othon, Christina M

    2015-04-16

    Sucralose is a commonly employed artificial sweetener that behaves very differently than its natural disaccharide counterpart, sucrose, in terms of its interaction with biomolecules. The presence of sucralose in solution is found to destabilize the native structure of two model protein systems: the globular protein bovine serum albumin and an enzyme staphylococcal nuclease. The melting temperature of these proteins decreases as a linear function of sucralose concentration. We correlate this destabilization to the increased polarity of the molecule. The strongly polar nature is manifested as a large dielectric friction exerted on the excited-state rotational diffusion of tryptophan using time-resolved fluorescence anisotropy. Tryptophan exhibits rotational diffusion proportional to the measured bulk viscosity for sucrose solutions over a wide range of concentrations, consistent with a Stokes-Einstein model. For sucralose solutions, however, the diffusion is dependent on the concentration, strongly diverging from the viscosity predictions, and results in heterogeneous rotational diffusion. PMID:26263149

  6. Chemical Cross-Linking Stabilizes Native-Like HIV-1 Envelope Glycoprotein Trimer Antigens

    PubMed Central

    Schiffner, Torben; de Val, Natalia; Russell, Rebecca A.; de Taeye, Steven W.; de la Peña, Alba Torrents; Ozorowski, Gabriel; Kim, Helen J.; Nieusma, Travis; Brod, Florian; Cupo, Albert; Sanders, Rogier W.; Moore, John P.; Ward, Andrew B.

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Major neutralizing antibody immune evasion strategies of the HIV-1 envelope glycoprotein (Env) trimer include conformational and structural instability. Stabilized soluble trimers such as BG505 SOSIP.664 mimic the structure of virion-associated Env but nevertheless sample different conformational states. Here we demonstrate that treating BG505 SOSIP.664 trimers with glutaraldehyde or a heterobifunctional cross-linker introduces additional stability with relatively modest effects on antigenicity. Thus, most broadly neutralizing antibody (bNAb) epitopes were preserved after cross-linking, whereas the binding of most weakly or nonneutralizing antibodies (non-NAb) was reduced. Cross-linking stabilized all Env conformers present within a mixed population, and individual conformers could be isolated by bNAb affinity chromatography. Both positive selection of cross-linked conformers using the quaternary epitope-specific bNAbs PGT145, PGT151, and 3BC315 and negative selection with non-NAbs against the V3 region enriched for trimer populations with improved antigenicity for bNAbs. Similar results were obtained using the clade B B41 SOSIP.664 trimer. The cross-linking method may, therefore, be useful for countering the natural conformational heterogeneity of some HIV-1 Env proteins and, by extrapolation, also vaccine immunogens from other pathogens. IMPORTANCE The development of a vaccine to induce protective antibodies against HIV-1 is of primary public health importance. Recent advances in immunogen design have provided soluble recombinant envelope glycoprotein trimers with near-native morphology and antigenicity. However, these trimers are conformationally flexible, potentially reducing B-cell recognition of neutralizing antibody epitopes. Here we show that chemical cross-linking increases trimer stability, reducing binding of nonneutralizing antibodies while largely maintaining neutralizing antibody binding. Cross-linking followed by positive or negative

  7. Explicit and implicit second language training differentially affect the achievement of native-like brain activation patterns.

    PubMed

    Morgan-Short, Kara; Steinhauer, Karsten; Sanz, Cristina; Ullman, Michael T

    2012-04-01

    It is widely believed that adults cannot learn a foreign language in the same way that children learn a first language. However, recent evidence suggests that adult learners of a foreign language can come to rely on native-like language brain mechanisms. Here, we show that the type of language training crucially impacts this outcome. We used an artificial language paradigm to examine longitudinally whether explicit training (that approximates traditional grammar-focused classroom settings) and implicit training (that approximates immersion settings) differentially affect neural (electrophysiological) and behavioral (performance) measures of syntactic processing. Results showed that performance of explicitly and implicitly trained groups did not differ at either low or high proficiency. In contrast, electrophysiological (ERP) measures revealed striking differences between the groups' neural activity at both proficiency levels in response to syntactic violations. Implicit training yielded an N400 at low proficiency, whereas at high proficiency, it elicited a pattern typical of native speakers: an anterior negativity followed by a P600 accompanied by a late anterior negativity. Explicit training, by contrast, yielded no significant effects at low proficiency and only an anterior positivity followed by a P600 at high proficiency. Although the P600 is reminiscent of native-like processing, this response pattern as a whole is not. Thus, only implicit training led to an electrophysiological signature typical of native speakers. Overall, the results suggest that adult foreign language learners can come to rely on native-like language brain mechanisms, but that the conditions under which the language is learned may be crucial in attaining this goal. PMID:21861686

  8. Explicit and implicit second language training differentially affect the achievement of native-like brain activation patterns.

    PubMed

    Morgan-Short, Kara; Steinhauer, Karsten; Sanz, Cristina; Ullman, Michael T

    2012-04-01

    It is widely believed that adults cannot learn a foreign language in the same way that children learn a first language. However, recent evidence suggests that adult learners of a foreign language can come to rely on native-like language brain mechanisms. Here, we show that the type of language training crucially impacts this outcome. We used an artificial language paradigm to examine longitudinally whether explicit training (that approximates traditional grammar-focused classroom settings) and implicit training (that approximates immersion settings) differentially affect neural (electrophysiological) and behavioral (performance) measures of syntactic processing. Results showed that performance of explicitly and implicitly trained groups did not differ at either low or high proficiency. In contrast, electrophysiological (ERP) measures revealed striking differences between the groups' neural activity at both proficiency levels in response to syntactic violations. Implicit training yielded an N400 at low proficiency, whereas at high proficiency, it elicited a pattern typical of native speakers: an anterior negativity followed by a P600 accompanied by a late anterior negativity. Explicit training, by contrast, yielded no significant effects at low proficiency and only an anterior positivity followed by a P600 at high proficiency. Although the P600 is reminiscent of native-like processing, this response pattern as a whole is not. Thus, only implicit training led to an electrophysiological signature typical of native speakers. Overall, the results suggest that adult foreign language learners can come to rely on native-like language brain mechanisms, but that the conditions under which the language is learned may be crucial in attaining this goal.

  9. Methods of protein structure comparison

    PubMed Central

    Kufareva, Irina; Abagyan, Ruben

    2015-01-01

    Despite its apparent simplicity, the problem of quantifying the differences between two structures of the same protein or complex is non-trivial and continues evolving. In this chapter, we described several methods routinely used to compare computational models to experimental answers in several modeling assessments. The two major classes of measures, positional distance-based and contact-based, were presented, compared and analyzed. The most popular measure of the first class, the global RMSD, is shown to be the least representative of the degree of structural similarity because it is dominated by the largest error. Several distance-dependent algorithms designed to attenuate the drawbacks of RMSD are described. Measures of the second class, contact-based, are shown to be more robust and relevant. We also illustrate the importance of using combined measures, utility-based measures, and the role of the distributions derived from the pairs of experimental structures in interpreting the results. PMID:22323224

  10. Structure analysis of free and bound states of an RNA aptamer against ribosomal protein S8 from Bacillus anthracis.

    PubMed

    Davlieva, Milya; Donarski, James; Wang, Jiachen; Shamoo, Yousif; Nikonowicz, Edward P

    2014-01-01

    Several protein-targeted RNA aptamers have been identified for a variety of applications and although the affinities of numerous protein-aptamer complexes have been determined, the structural details of these complexes have not been widely explored. We examined the structural accommodation of an RNA aptamer that binds bacterial r-protein S8. The core of the primary binding site for S8 on helix 21 of 16S rRNA contains a pair of conserved base triples that mold the sugar-phosphate backbone to S8. The aptamer, which does not contain the conserved sequence motif, is specific for the rRNA binding site of S8. The protein-free RNA aptamer adopts a helical structure with multiple non-canonical base pairs. Surprisingly, binding of S8 leads to a dramatic change in the RNA conformation that restores the signature S8 recognition fold through a novel combination of nucleobase interactions. Nucleotides within the non-canonical core rearrange to create a G-(G-C) triple and a U-(A-U)-U quartet. Although native-like S8-RNA interactions are present in the aptamer-S8 complex, the topology of the aptamer RNA differs from that of the helix 21-S8 complex. This is the first example of an RNA aptamer that adopts substantially different secondary structures in the free and protein-bound states and highlights the remarkable plasticity of RNA secondary structure.

  11. Structure analysis of free and bound states of an RNA aptamer against ribosomal protein S8 from Bacillus anthracis

    PubMed Central

    Davlieva, Milya; Donarski, James; Wang, Jiachen; Shamoo, Yousif; Nikonowicz, Edward P.

    2014-01-01

    Several protein-targeted RNA aptamers have been identified for a variety of applications and although the affinities of numerous protein-aptamer complexes have been determined, the structural details of these complexes have not been widely explored. We examined the structural accommodation of an RNA aptamer that binds bacterial r-protein S8. The core of the primary binding site for S8 on helix 21 of 16S rRNA contains a pair of conserved base triples that mold the sugar-phosphate backbone to S8. The aptamer, which does not contain the conserved sequence motif, is specific for the rRNA binding site of S8. The protein-free RNA aptamer adopts a helical structure with multiple non-canonical base pairs. Surprisingly, binding of S8 leads to a dramatic change in the RNA conformation that restores the signature S8 recognition fold through a novel combination of nucleobase interactions. Nucleotides within the non-canonical core rearrange to create a G-(G-C) triple and a U-(A-U)-U quartet. Although native-like S8-RNA interactions are present in the aptamer-S8 complex, the topology of the aptamer RNA differs from that of the helix 21-S8 complex. This is the first example of an RNA aptamer that adopts substantially different secondary structures in the free and protein-bound states and highlights the remarkable plasticity of RNA secondary structure. PMID:25140011

  12. Introduction to Protein Structure through Genetic Diseases

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schneider, Tanya L.; Linton, Brian R.

    2008-01-01

    An illuminating way to learn about protein function is to explore high-resolution protein structures. Analysis of the proteins involved in genetic diseases has been used to introduce students to protein structure and the role that individual mutations can play in the onset of disease. Known mutations can be correlated to changes in protein…

  13. Protein structure alignment beyond spatial proximity.

    PubMed

    Wang, Sheng; Ma, Jianzhu; Peng, Jian; Xu, Jinbo

    2013-01-01

    Protein structure alignment is a fundamental problem in computational structure biology. Many programs have been developed for automatic protein structure alignment, but most of them align two protein structures purely based upon geometric similarity without considering evolutionary and functional relationship. As such, these programs may generate structure alignments which are not very biologically meaningful from the evolutionary perspective. This paper presents a novel method DeepAlign for automatic pairwise protein structure alignment. DeepAlign aligns two protein structures using not only spatial proximity of equivalent residues (after rigid-body superposition), but also evolutionary relationship and hydrogen-bonding similarity. Experimental results show that DeepAlign can generate structure alignments much more consistent with manually-curated alignments than other automatic tools especially when proteins under consideration are remote homologs. These results imply that in addition to geometric similarity, evolutionary information and hydrogen-bonding similarity are essential to aligning two protein structures.

  14. An Interactive Introduction to Protein Structure

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lee, W. Theodore

    2004-01-01

    To improve student understanding of protein structure and the significance of noncovalent interactions in protein structure and function, students are assigned a project to write a paper complemented with computer-generated images. The assignment provides an opportunity for students to select a protein structure that is of interest and detail…

  15. Amphipols Outperform Dodecylmaltoside Micelles in Stabilizing Membrane Protein Structure in the Gas Phase

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Noncovalent mass spectrometry (MS) is emerging as an invaluable technique to probe the structure, interactions, and dynamics of membrane proteins (MPs). However, maintaining native-like MP conformations in the gas phase using detergent solubilized proteins is often challenging and may limit structural analysis. Amphipols, such as the well characterized A8-35, are alternative reagents able to maintain the solubility of MPs in detergent-free solution. In this work, the ability of A8-35 to retain the structural integrity of MPs for interrogation by electrospray ionization-ion mobility spectrometry-mass spectrometry (ESI-IMS-MS) is compared systematically with the commonly used detergent dodecylmaltoside. MPs from the two major structural classes were selected for analysis, including two β-barrel outer MPs, PagP and OmpT (20.2 and 33.5 kDa, respectively), and two α-helical proteins, Mhp1 and GalP (54.6 and 51.7 kDa, respectively). Evaluation of the rotationally averaged collision cross sections of the observed ions revealed that the native structures of detergent solubilized MPs were not always retained in the gas phase, with both collapsed and unfolded species being detected. In contrast, ESI-IMS-MS analysis of the amphipol solubilized MPs studied resulted in charge state distributions consistent with less gas phase induced unfolding, and the presence of lowly charged ions which exhibit collision cross sections comparable with those calculated from high resolution structural data. The data demonstrate that A8-35 can be more effective than dodecylmaltoside at maintaining native MP structure and interactions in the gas phase, permitting noncovalent ESI-IMS-MS analysis of MPs from the two major structural classes, while gas phase dissociation from dodecylmaltoside micelles leads to significant gas phase unfolding, especially for the α-helical MPs studied. PMID:25495802

  16. SDSL-ESR-based protein structure characterization.

    PubMed

    Strancar, Janez; Kavalenka, Aleh; Urbancic, Iztok; Ljubetic, Ajasja; Hemminga, Marcus A

    2010-03-01

    As proteins are key molecules in living cells, knowledge about their structure can provide important insights and applications in science, biotechnology, and medicine. However, many protein structures are still a big challenge for existing high-resolution structure-determination methods, as can be seen in the number of protein structures published in the Protein Data Bank. This is especially the case for less-ordered, more hydrophobic and more flexible protein systems. The lack of efficient methods for structure determination calls for urgent development of a new class of biophysical techniques. This work attempts to address this problem with a novel combination of site-directed spin labelling electron spin resonance spectroscopy (SDSL-ESR) and protein structure modelling, which is coupled by restriction of the conformational spaces of the amino acid side chains. Comparison of the application to four different protein systems enables us to generalize the new method and to establish a general procedure for determination of protein structure.

  17. Structure Prediction of Protein Complexes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pierce, Brian; Weng, Zhiping

    Protein-protein interactions are critical for biological function. They directly and indirectly influence the biological systems of which they are a part. Antibodies bind with antigens to detect and stop viruses and other infectious agents. Cell signaling is performed in many cases through the interactions between proteins. Many diseases involve protein-protein interactions on some level, including cancer and prion diseases.

  18. Modularity in protein structures: study on all-alpha proteins.

    PubMed

    Khan, Taushif; Ghosh, Indira

    2015-01-01

    Modularity is known as one of the most important features of protein's robust and efficient design. The architecture and topology of proteins play a vital role by providing necessary robust scaffolds to support organism's growth and survival in constant evolutionary pressure. These complex biomolecules can be represented by several layers of modular architecture, but it is pivotal to understand and explore the smallest biologically relevant structural component. In the present study, we have developed a component-based method, using protein's secondary structures and their arrangements (i.e. patterns) in order to investigate its structural space. Our result on all-alpha protein shows that the known structural space is highly populated with limited set of structural patterns. We have also noticed that these frequently observed structural patterns are present as modules or "building blocks" in large proteins (i.e. higher secondary structure content). From structural descriptor analysis, observed patterns are found to be within similar deviation; however, frequent patterns are found to be distinctly occurring in diverse functions e.g. in enzymatic classes and reactions. In this study, we are introducing a simple approach to explore protein structural space using combinatorial- and graph-based geometry methods, which can be used to describe modularity in protein structures. Moreover, analysis indicates that protein function seems to be the driving force that shapes the known structure space.

  19. Protein enriched pasta: structure and digestibility of its protein network.

    PubMed

    Laleg, Karima; Barron, Cécile; Santé-Lhoutellier, Véronique; Walrand, Stéphane; Micard, Valérie

    2016-02-01

    Wheat (W) pasta was enriched in 6% gluten (G), 35% faba (F) or 5% egg (E) to increase its protein content (13% to 17%). The impact of the enrichment on the multiscale structure of the pasta and on in vitro protein digestibility was studied. Increasing the protein content (W- vs. G-pasta) strengthened pasta structure at molecular and macroscopic scales but reduced its protein digestibility by 3% by forming a higher covalently linked protein network. Greater changes in the macroscopic and molecular structure of the pasta were obtained by varying the nature of protein used for enrichment. Proteins in G- and E-pasta were highly covalently linked (28-32%) resulting in a strong pasta structure. Conversely, F-protein (98% SDS-soluble) altered the pasta structure by diluting gluten and formed a weak protein network (18% covalent link). As a result, protein digestibility in F-pasta was significantly higher (46%) than in E- (44%) and G-pasta (39%). The effect of low (55 °C, LT) vs. very high temperature (90 °C, VHT) drying on the protein network structure and digestibility was shown to cause greater molecular changes than pasta formulation. Whatever the pasta, a general strengthening of its structure, a 33% to 47% increase in covalently linked proteins and a higher β-sheet structure were observed. However, these structural differences were evened out after the pasta was cooked, resulting in identical protein digestibility in LT and VHT pasta. Even after VHT drying, F-pasta had the best amino acid profile with the highest protein digestibility, proof of its nutritional interest.

  20. Protein enriched pasta: structure and digestibility of its protein network.

    PubMed

    Laleg, Karima; Barron, Cécile; Santé-Lhoutellier, Véronique; Walrand, Stéphane; Micard, Valérie

    2016-02-01

    Wheat (W) pasta was enriched in 6% gluten (G), 35% faba (F) or 5% egg (E) to increase its protein content (13% to 17%). The impact of the enrichment on the multiscale structure of the pasta and on in vitro protein digestibility was studied. Increasing the protein content (W- vs. G-pasta) strengthened pasta structure at molecular and macroscopic scales but reduced its protein digestibility by 3% by forming a higher covalently linked protein network. Greater changes in the macroscopic and molecular structure of the pasta were obtained by varying the nature of protein used for enrichment. Proteins in G- and E-pasta were highly covalently linked (28-32%) resulting in a strong pasta structure. Conversely, F-protein (98% SDS-soluble) altered the pasta structure by diluting gluten and formed a weak protein network (18% covalent link). As a result, protein digestibility in F-pasta was significantly higher (46%) than in E- (44%) and G-pasta (39%). The effect of low (55 °C, LT) vs. very high temperature (90 °C, VHT) drying on the protein network structure and digestibility was shown to cause greater molecular changes than pasta formulation. Whatever the pasta, a general strengthening of its structure, a 33% to 47% increase in covalently linked proteins and a higher β-sheet structure were observed. However, these structural differences were evened out after the pasta was cooked, resulting in identical protein digestibility in LT and VHT pasta. Even after VHT drying, F-pasta had the best amino acid profile with the highest protein digestibility, proof of its nutritional interest. PMID:26829164

  1. Sucralose Destabilization of Protein Structure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cho, Inha; Chen, Lee; Shukla, Nimesh; Othon, Christina

    2015-03-01

    Sucralose is a commonly employed artificial sweetener. Sucralose behaves very differently than its natural disaccharide counterpart, sucrose, in terms of its interaction with biomolecules. The presence of sucralose in solution is found to destabilize the native structure of the globular protein Bovine Serum Albumin (BSA). The melting temperature decreases as a linear function of sucralose concentration. We correlate this destabilization with the increased polarity of the sucralose molecule as compared to sucrose. The strongly polar nature is observed as a large dielectric friction exerted on the excited state rotational diffusion of tryptophan using time-resolved fluorescence anisotropy. Tryptophan exhibits rotational diffusion proportional to the measured bulk viscosity for sucrose solutions over a wide range of concentrations, consistent with a Stokes-Einstein diffusional model. For sucralose solutions however, the diffusion is linearly dependent with the concentration, strongly diverging from the viscosity predictions. The polar nature of sucralose causes a dramatically different interaction with biomolecules than natural disaccharide molecules. Connecticut Space Grant Consortium.

  2. [Protein structure: Folding and prions].

    PubMed

    Rey-Gayo, Antonio; Calbo Torrecilla, Francisco

    2002-04-01

    Transmissible spongiform encephalopathies have become a subject of prime social concern in recent years because of its relation to "mad cow disease" and their potential for transmission to humans. Among the most important scientific aspects of these diseases are the peculiar characteristics of the agent involved in their transmission. In this article we briefly describe the outstanding features of prions, the most widely accepted hypothesis for these diseases. We focus on the molecular characteristics of this protein, coded in the genome of the affected host, and describe the conformational alterations in the protein's tertiary structure that have been blamed for its pathologic activity. Our aim is to summarize the state-of-the-art knowledge on prions, the hypotheses proposed to explain mechanisms of disease transmission without agents containing genetic material, and some specific peculiarities of this new infectious agent. The links between this knowledge and possible therapeutic strategies to overcome the disease justify, once again, close interaction among chemistry, molecular biology, and medicine. PMID:11996702

  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. PSS-SQL: protein secondary structure - structured query language.

    PubMed

    Mrozek, Dariusz; Wieczorek, Dominika; Malysiak-Mrozek, Bozena; Kozielski, Stanislaw

    2010-01-01

    Secondary structure representation of proteins provides important information regarding protein general construction and shape. This representation is often used in protein similarity searching. Since existing commercial database management systems do not offer integrated exploration methods for biological data e.g. at the level of the SQL language, the structural similarity searching is usually performed by external tools. In the paper, we present our newly developed PSS-SQL language, which allows searching a database in order to identify proteins having secondary structure similar to the structure specified by the user in a PSS-SQL query. Therefore, we provide a simple and declarative language for protein structure similarity searching.

  5. Constrained Peptides as Miniature Protein Structures

    PubMed Central

    Yin, Hang

    2012-01-01

    This paper discusses the recent developments of protein engineering using both covalent and noncovalent bonds to constrain peptides, forcing them into designed protein secondary structures. These constrained peptides subsequently can be used as peptidomimetics for biological functions such as regulations of protein-protein interactions. PMID:25969758

  6. Infrared Structural Biology: Detect Functionally Important Structural Motions of Proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xie, Aihua

    Proteins are dynamic. Lack of dynamic structures of proteins hampers our understanding of protein functions. Infrared structural biology (IRSB) is an emerging technology. There are several advantages of IRSB for mechanistic studies of proteins: (1) its excellent dynamic range (detecting structural motions from picoseconds to >= seconds); (2) its high structural sensitivity (detect tiny but functionally important structural motions such as proton transfer and changes in hydrogen bonding interaction); (3) its ability to detect different structural motions simultaneously. Successful development of infrared structural biology demands not only new experimental techniques (from infrared technologies to chemical synthesis and cell biology), but also new data processing (how to translate infrared signals into quantitative structural information of proteins). These topics will be discussed as well as examples of how to use IRSB to study structure-function relationship of proteins. This work was supported by NSF DBI1338097 and OCAST HR10-078.

  7. Structural templates for comparative protein docking

    PubMed Central

    Anishchenko, Ivan; Kundrotas, Petras J.; Tuzikov, Alexander V.; Vakser, Ilya A.

    2014-01-01

    Structural characterization of protein-protein interactions is important for understanding life processes. Because of the inherent limitations of experimental techniques, such characterization requires computational approaches. Along with the traditional protein-protein docking (free search for a match between two proteins), comparative (template-based) modeling of protein-protein complexes has been gaining popularity. Its development puts an emphasis on full and partial structural similarity between the target protein monomers and the protein-protein complexes previously determined by experimental techniques (templates). The template-based docking relies on the quality and diversity of the template set. We present a carefully curated, non-redundant library of templates containing 4,950 full structures of binary complexes and 5,936 protein-protein interfaces extracted from the full structures at 12Å distance cut-off. Redundancy in the libraries was removed by clustering the PDB structures based on structural similarity. The value of the clustering threshold was determined from the analysis of the clusters and the docking performance on a benchmark set. High structural quality of the interfaces in the template and validation sets was achieved by automated procedures and manual curation. The library is included in the Dockground resource for molecular recognition studies at http://dockground.bioinformatics.ku.edu. PMID:25488330

  8. Structural templates for comparative protein docking.

    PubMed

    Anishchenko, Ivan; Kundrotas, Petras J; Tuzikov, Alexander V; Vakser, Ilya A

    2015-09-01

    Structural characterization of protein-protein interactions is important for understanding life processes. Because of the inherent limitations of experimental techniques, such characterization requires computational approaches. Along with the traditional protein-protein docking (free search for a match between two proteins), comparative (template-based) modeling of protein-protein complexes has been gaining popularity. Its development puts an emphasis on full and partial structural similarity between the target protein monomers and the protein-protein complexes previously determined by experimental techniques (templates). The template-based docking relies on the quality and diversity of the template set. We present a carefully curated, nonredundant library of templates containing 4950 full structures of binary complexes and 5936 protein-protein interfaces extracted from the full structures at 12 Å distance cut-off. Redundancy in the libraries was removed by clustering the PDB structures based on structural similarity. The value of the clustering threshold was determined from the analysis of the clusters and the docking performance on a benchmark set. High structural quality of the interfaces in the template and validation sets was achieved by automated procedures and manual curation. The library is included in the Dockground resource for molecular recognition studies at http://dockground.bioinformatics.ku.edu.

  9. The MULTICOM protein tertiary structure prediction system.

    PubMed

    Li, Jilong; Bhattacharya, Debswapna; Cao, Renzhi; Adhikari, Badri; Deng, Xin; Eickholt, Jesse; Cheng, Jianlin

    2014-01-01

    With the expansion of genomics and proteomics data aided by the rapid progress of next-generation sequencing technologies, computational prediction of protein three-dimensional structure is an essential part of modern structural genomics initiatives. Prediction of protein structure through understanding of the theories behind protein sequence-structure relationship, however, remains one of the most challenging problems in contemporary life sciences. Here, we describe MULTICOM, a multi-level combination technique, intended to predict moderate- to high-resolution structure of a protein through a novel approach of combining multiple sources of complementary information derived from the experimentally solved protein structures in the Protein Data Bank. The MULTICOM web server is freely available at http://sysbio.rnet.missouri.edu/multicom_toolbox/.

  10. Exploring Salt Bridge Structures of Gas-Phase Protein Ions using Multiple Stages of Electron Transfer and Collision Induced Dissociation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Zhe; Browne, Shaynah J.; Vachet, Richard W.

    2014-04-01

    The gas-phase structures of protein ions have been studied by electron transfer dissociation (ETD) and collision-induced dissociation (CID) after electrospraying these proteins from native-like solutions into a quadrupole ion trap mass spectrometer. Because ETD can break covalent bonds while minimally disrupting noncovalent interactions, we have investigated the ability of this dissociation technique together with CID to probe the sites of electrostatic interactions in gas-phase protein ions. By comparing spectra from ETD with spectra from ETD followed by CID, we find that several proteins, including ubiquitin, CRABP I, azurin, and β-2-microglobulin, appear to maintain many of the salt bridge contacts known to exist in solution. To support this conclusion, we also performed calculations to consider all possible salt bridge patterns for each protein, and we find that the native salt bridge pattern explains the experimental ETD data better than nearly all other possible salt bridge patterns. Overall, our data suggest that ETD and ETD/CID of native protein ions can provide some insight into approximate location of salt bridges in the gas phase.

  11. NAPS: Network Analysis of Protein Structures.

    PubMed

    Chakrabarty, Broto; Parekh, Nita

    2016-07-01

    Traditionally, protein structures have been analysed by the secondary structure architecture and fold arrangement. An alternative approach that has shown promise is modelling proteins as a network of non-covalent interactions between amino acid residues. The network representation of proteins provide a systems approach to topological analysis of complex three-dimensional structures irrespective of secondary structure and fold type and provide insights into structure-function relationship. We have developed a web server for network based analysis of protein structures, NAPS, that facilitates quantitative and qualitative (visual) analysis of residue-residue interactions in: single chains, protein complex, modelled protein structures and trajectories (e.g. from molecular dynamics simulations). The user can specify atom type for network construction, distance range (in Å) and minimal amino acid separation along the sequence. NAPS provides users selection of node(s) and its neighbourhood based on centrality measures, physicochemical properties of amino acids or cluster of well-connected residues (k-cliques) for further analysis. Visual analysis of interacting domains and protein chains, and shortest path lengths between pair of residues are additional features that aid in functional analysis. NAPS support various analyses and visualization views for identifying functional residues, provide insight into mechanisms of protein folding, domain-domain and protein-protein interactions for understanding communication within and between proteins. URL:http://bioinf.iiit.ac.in/NAPS/. PMID:27151201

  12. Protein structure prediction using hybrid AI methods

    SciTech Connect

    Guan, X.; Mural, R.J.; Uberbacher, E.C.

    1993-11-01

    This paper describes a new approach for predicting protein structures based on Artificial Intelligence methods and genetic algorithms. We combine nearest neighbor searching algorithms, neural networks, heuristic rules and genetic algorithms to form an integrated system to predict protein structures from their primary amino acid sequences. First we describe our methods and how they are integrated, and then apply our methods to several protein sequences. The results are very close to the real structures obtained by crystallography. Parallel genetic algorithms are also implemented.

  13. Structural Studies of Protein-Surfactant Complexes

    SciTech Connect

    Chodankar, S. N.; Aswal, V. K.; Wagh, A. G.

    2008-03-17

    The structure of protein-surfactant complexes of two proteins bovine serum albumin (BSA) and lysozyme in presence of anionic surfactant sodium dodecyl sulfate (SDS) has been studied using small-angle neutron scattering (SANS). It is observed that these two proteins form different complex structures with the surfactant. While BSA protein undergoes unfolding on addition of surfactant, lysozyme does not show any unfolding even up to very high surfactant concentrations. The unfolding of BSA protein is caused by micelle-like aggregation of surfactant molecules in the complex. On the other hand, for lysozyme protein there is only binding of individual surfactant molecules to protein. Lysozyme in presence of higher surfactant concentrations has protein-surfactant complex structure coexisting with pure surfactant micelles.

  14. Structure of mutant human oncogene protein determined

    SciTech Connect

    Baum, R.

    1989-01-16

    The protein encoded by a mutant human oncogene differs only slightly in structure from the native protein that initiates normal cell division, a finding that may complicate efforts to develop inhibitors of the mutant protein. Previously, the x-ray structure of the protein encoded by the normal c-Ha-ras gene, a protein believed to signal cells to start or stop dividing through its interaction with guanosine triphosphate (GTP), was reported. The structure of the protein encoded by a transforming c-Ha-ras oncogene, in which a valine codon replaces the normal glycine codon at position 12 in the gene, has now been determined. The differences in the structures of the mutant and normal proteins are located primarily in a loop that interacts with the /beta/-phosphate of a bound guanosine diphosphate (GDP) molecule.

  15. Comparative Protein Structure Modeling Using MODELLER.

    PubMed

    Webb, Benjamin; Sali, Andrej

    2014-09-08

    Functional characterization of a protein sequence is one of the most frequent problems in biology. This task is usually facilitated by accurate three-dimensional (3-D) structure of the studied protein. In the absence of an experimentally determined structure, comparative or homology modeling can sometimes provide a useful 3-D model for a protein that is related to at least one known protein structure. Comparative modeling predicts the 3-D structure of a given protein sequence (target) based primarily on its alignment to one or more proteins of known structure (templates). The prediction process consists of fold assignment, target-template alignment, model building, and model evaluation. This unit describes how to calculate comparative models using the program MODELLER and discusses all four steps of comparative modeling, frequently observed errors, and some applications. Modeling lactate dehydrogenase from Trichomonas vaginalis (TvLDH) is described as an example. The download and installation of the MODELLER software is also described.

  16. NAPS: Network Analysis of Protein Structures

    PubMed Central

    Chakrabarty, Broto; Parekh, Nita

    2016-01-01

    Traditionally, protein structures have been analysed by the secondary structure architecture and fold arrangement. An alternative approach that has shown promise is modelling proteins as a network of non-covalent interactions between amino acid residues. The network representation of proteins provide a systems approach to topological analysis of complex three-dimensional structures irrespective of secondary structure and fold type and provide insights into structure-function relationship. We have developed a web server for network based analysis of protein structures, NAPS, that facilitates quantitative and qualitative (visual) analysis of residue–residue interactions in: single chains, protein complex, modelled protein structures and trajectories (e.g. from molecular dynamics simulations). The user can specify atom type for network construction, distance range (in Å) and minimal amino acid separation along the sequence. NAPS provides users selection of node(s) and its neighbourhood based on centrality measures, physicochemical properties of amino acids or cluster of well-connected residues (k-cliques) for further analysis. Visual analysis of interacting domains and protein chains, and shortest path lengths between pair of residues are additional features that aid in functional analysis. NAPS support various analyses and visualization views for identifying functional residues, provide insight into mechanisms of protein folding, domain-domain and protein–protein interactions for understanding communication within and between proteins. URL:http://bioinf.iiit.ac.in/NAPS/. PMID:27151201

  17. Protein knot server: detection of knots in protein structures.

    PubMed

    Kolesov, Grigory; Virnau, Peter; Kardar, Mehran; Mirny, Leonid A

    2007-07-01

    KNOTS (http://knots.mit.edu) is a web server that detects knots in protein structures. Several protein structures have been reported to contain intricate knots. The physiological role of knots and their effect on folding and evolution is an area of active research. The user submits a PDB id or uploads a 3D protein structure in PDB or mmCIF format. The current implementation of the server uses the Alexander polynomial to detect knots. The results of the analysis that are presented to the user are the location of the knot in the structure, the type of the knot and an interactive visualization of the knot. The results can also be downloaded and viewed offline. The server also maintains a regularly updated list of known knots in protein structures.

  18. Structural classification of proteins and structural genomics: new insights into protein folding and evolution

    PubMed Central

    Andreeva, Antonina; Murzin, Alexey G.

    2010-01-01

    During the past decade, the Protein Structure Initiative (PSI) centres have become major contributors of new families, superfamilies and folds to the Structural Classification of Proteins (SCOP) database. The PSI results have increased the diversity of protein structural space and accelerated our understanding of it. This review article surveys a selection of protein structures determined by the Joint Center for Structural Genomics (JCSG). It presents previously undescribed β-sheet architectures such as the double barrel and spiral β-roll and discusses new examples of unusual topologies and peculiar structural features observed in proteins characterized by the JCSG and other Structural Genomics centres. PMID:20944210

  19. A new protein structure representation for efficient protein function prediction.

    PubMed

    Maghawry, Huda A; Mostafa, Mostafa G M; Gharib, Tarek F

    2014-12-01

    One of the challenging problems in bioinformatics is the prediction of protein function. Protein function is the main key that can be used to classify different proteins. Protein function can be inferred experimentally with very small throughput or computationally with very high throughput. Computational methods are sequence based or structure based. Structure-based methods produce more accurate protein function prediction. In this article, we propose a new protein structure representation for efficient protein function prediction. The representation is based on three-dimensional patterns of protein residues. In the analysis, we used protein function based on enzyme activity through six mechanistically diverse enzyme superfamilies: amidohydrolase, crotonase, haloacid dehalogenase, isoprenoid synthase type I, and vicinal oxygen chelate. We applied three different classification methods, naïve Bayes, k-nearest neighbors, and random forest, to predict the enzyme superfamily of a given protein. The prediction accuracy using the proposed representation outperforms a recently introduced representation method that is based only on the distance patterns. The results show that the proposed representation achieved prediction accuracy up to 98%, with improvement of about 10% on average.

  20. Predicting protein dynamics from structural ensembles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Copperman, J.; Guenza, M. G.

    2015-12-01

    The biological properties of proteins are uniquely determined by their structure and dynamics. A protein in solution populates a structural ensemble of metastable configurations around the global fold. From overall rotation to local fluctuations, the dynamics of proteins can cover several orders of magnitude in time scales. We propose a simulation-free coarse-grained approach which utilizes knowledge of the important metastable folded states of the protein to predict the protein dynamics. This approach is based upon the Langevin Equation for Protein Dynamics (LE4PD), a Langevin formalism in the coordinates of the protein backbone. The linear modes of this Langevin formalism organize the fluctuations of the protein, so that more extended dynamical cooperativity relates to increasing energy barriers to mode diffusion. The accuracy of the LE4PD is verified by analyzing the predicted dynamics across a set of seven different proteins for which both relaxation data and NMR solution structures are available. Using experimental NMR conformers as the input structural ensembles, LE4PD predicts quantitatively accurate results, with correlation coefficient ρ = 0.93 to NMR backbone relaxation measurements for the seven proteins. The NMR solution structure derived ensemble and predicted dynamical relaxation is compared with molecular dynamics simulation-derived structural ensembles and LE4PD predictions and is consistent in the time scale of the simulations. The use of the experimental NMR conformers frees the approach from computationally demanding simulations.

  1. Protein Structures Revealed at Record Pace

    SciTech Connect

    Hura, Greg

    2009-01-01

    The structure of a protein in days -- not months or years -- ushers in a new era in genomics research. Berkeley Lab scientists have developed a high-throughput protein pipeline that could expedite the development of biofuels and elucidate how proteins carry out lifes vital functions.

  2. Protein Structures Revealed at Record Pace

    SciTech Connect

    Greg Hura

    2009-07-09

    The structure of a protein in days -- not months or years -- ushers in a new era in genomics research. Berkeley Lab scientists have developed a high-throughput protein pipeline that could expedite the development of biofuels and elucidate how proteins carry out lifes vital functions.

  3. Protein Structures Revealed at Record Pace

    ScienceCinema

    Hura, Greg

    2013-05-29

    The structure of a protein in days -- not months or years -- ushers in a new era in genomics research. Berkeley Lab scientists have developed a high-throughput protein pipeline that could expedite the development of biofuels and elucidate how proteins carry out lifes vital functions.

  4. Protein Structures Revealed at Record Pace

    ScienceCinema

    Greg Hura

    2016-07-12

    The structure of a protein in days -- not months or years -- ushers in a new era in genomics research. Berkeley Lab scientists have developed a high-throughput protein pipeline that could expedite the development of biofuels and elucidate how proteins carry out lifes vital functions.

  5. Genome-wide Membrane Protein Structure Prediction

    PubMed Central

    Piccoli, Stefano; Suku, Eda; Garonzi, Marianna; Giorgetti, Alejandro

    2013-01-01

    Transmembrane proteins allow cells to extensively communicate with the external world in a very accurate and specific way. They form principal nodes in several signaling pathways and attract large interest in therapeutic intervention, as the majority pharmaceutical compounds target membrane proteins. Thus, according to the current genome annotation methods, a detailed structural/functional characterization at the protein level of each of the elements codified in the genome is also required. The extreme difficulty in obtaining high-resolution three-dimensional structures, calls for computational approaches. Here we review to which extent the efforts made in the last few years, combining the structural characterization of membrane proteins with protein bioinformatics techniques, could help describing membrane proteins at a genome-wide scale. In particular we analyze the use of comparative modeling techniques as a way of overcoming the lack of high-resolution three-dimensional structures in the human membrane proteome. PMID:24403851

  6. Website on Protein Interaction and Protein Structure Related Work

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Samanta, Manoj; Liang, Shoudan; Biegel, Bryan (Technical Monitor)

    2003-01-01

    In today's world, three seemingly diverse fields - computer information technology, nanotechnology and biotechnology are joining forces to enlarge our scientific knowledge and solve complex technological problems. Our group is dedicated to conduct theoretical research exploring the challenges in this area. The major areas of research include: 1) Yeast Protein Interactions; 2) Protein Structures; and 3) Current Transport through Small Molecules.

  7. Advances in Homology Protein Structure Modeling

    PubMed Central

    Xiang, Zhexin

    2007-01-01

    Homology modeling plays a central role in determining protein structure in the structural genomics project. The importance of homology modeling has been steadily increasing because of the large gap that exists between the overwhelming number of available protein sequences and experimentally solved protein structures, and also, more importantly, because of the increasing reliability and accuracy of the method. In fact, a protein sequence with over 30% identity to a known structure can often be predicted with an accuracy equivalent to a low-resolution X-ray structure. The recent advances in homology modeling, especially in detecting distant homologues, aligning sequences with template structures, modeling of loops and side chains, as well as detecting errors in a model, have contributed to reliable prediction of protein structure, which was not possible even several years ago. The ongoing efforts in solving protein structures, which can be time-consuming and often difficult, will continue to spur the development of a host of new computational methods that can fill in the gap and further contribute to understanding the relationship between protein structure and function. PMID:16787261

  8. The effect of denaturants on protein structure.

    PubMed Central

    Dunbar, J.; Yennawar, H. P.; Banerjee, S.; Luo, J.; Farber, G. K.

    1997-01-01

    Virtually all studies of the protein-folding reaction add either heat, acid, or a chemical denaturant to an aqueous protein solution in order to perturb the protein structure. When chemical denaturants are used, very high concentrations are usually necessary to observe any change in protein structure. In a solution with such high denaturant concentrations, both the structure of the protein and the structure of the solvent around the protein can be altered. X-ray crystallography is the obvious experimental technique to probe both types of changes. In this paper, we report the crystal structures of dihydrofolate reductase with urea and of ribonuclease A with guanidinium chloride. These two classic denaturants have similar effects on the native structure of the protein. The most important change that occurs is a reduction in the overall thermal factor. These structures offer a molecular explanation for the reduction in mobility. Although the reduction is observed only with the native enzyme in the crystal, a similar decrease in mobility has also been observed in the unfolded state in solution (Makhatadze G, Privalov PL. 1992. Protein interactions with urea and guanidinium chloride: A calorimetric study. PMID:9260285

  9. PSSweb: protein structural statistics web server.

    PubMed

    Gaillard, Thomas; Stote, Roland H; Dejaegere, Annick

    2016-07-01

    With the increasing number of protein structures available, there is a need for tools capable of automating the comparison of ensembles of structures, a common requirement in structural biology and bioinformatics. PSSweb is a web server for protein structural statistics. It takes as input an ensemble of PDB files of protein structures, performs a multiple sequence alignment and computes structural statistics for each position of the alignment. Different optional functionalities are proposed: structure superposition, Cartesian coordinate statistics, dihedral angle calculation and statistics, and a cluster analysis based on dihedral angles. An interactive report is generated, containing a summary of the results, tables, figures and 3D visualization of superposed structures. The server is available at http://pssweb.org.

  10. PSSweb: protein structural statistics web server

    PubMed Central

    Gaillard, Thomas; Stote, Roland H.; Dejaegere, Annick

    2016-01-01

    With the increasing number of protein structures available, there is a need for tools capable of automating the comparison of ensembles of structures, a common requirement in structural biology and bioinformatics. PSSweb is a web server for protein structural statistics. It takes as input an ensemble of PDB files of protein structures, performs a multiple sequence alignment and computes structural statistics for each position of the alignment. Different optional functionalities are proposed: structure superposition, Cartesian coordinate statistics, dihedral angle calculation and statistics, and a cluster analysis based on dihedral angles. An interactive report is generated, containing a summary of the results, tables, figures and 3D visualization of superposed structures. The server is available at http://pssweb.org. PMID:27174930

  11. Template based protein structure modeling by global optimization in CASP11.

    PubMed

    Joo, Keehyoung; Joung, InSuk; Lee, Sun Young; Kim, Jong Yun; Cheng, Qianyi; Manavalan, Balachandran; Joung, Jong Young; Heo, Seungryong; Lee, Juyong; Nam, Mikyung; Lee, In-Ho; Lee, Sung Jong; Lee, Jooyoung

    2016-09-01

    For the template-based modeling (TBM) of CASP11 targets, we have developed three new protein modeling protocols (nns for server prediction and LEE and LEER for human prediction) by improving upon our previous CASP protocols (CASP7 through CASP10). We applied the powerful global optimization method of conformational space annealing to three stages of optimization, including multiple sequence-structure alignment, three-dimensional (3D) chain building, and side-chain remodeling. For more successful fold recognition, a new alignment method called CRFalign was developed. It can incorporate sensitive positional and environmental dependence in alignment scores as well as strong nonlinear correlations among various features. Modifications and adjustments were made to the form of the energy function and weight parameters pertaining to the chain building procedure. For the side-chain remodeling step, residue-type dependence was introduced to the cutoff value that determines the entry of a rotamer to the side-chain modeling library. The improved performance of the nns server method is attributed to successful fold recognition achieved by combining several methods including CRFalign and to the current modeling formulation that can incorporate native-like structural aspects present in multiple templates. The LEE protocol is identical to the nns one except that CASP11-released server models are used as templates. The success of LEE in utilizing CASP11 server models indicates that proper template screening and template clustering assisted by appropriate cluster ranking promises a new direction to enhance protein 3D modeling. Proteins 2016; 84(Suppl 1):221-232. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  12. The Critical Period for Second Language Pronunciation: Is There Such a Thing? Ten Case Studies of Late Starters who Attained a Native-like Hebrew Accent

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Abu-Rabia, Salim; Kehat, Simona

    2004-01-01

    This paper investigates the critical period hypothesis (CPH) for the acquisition of a second language sound system (phonology) in a naturalistic setting. Ten cases of successful late-starters with a native-like Hebrew pronunciation are presented in an effort to determine possible variables that may account for their exceptional accomplishment. The…

  13. How membrane surface affects protein structure.

    PubMed

    Bychkova, V E; Basova, L V; Balobanov, V A

    2014-12-01

    The immediate environment of the negatively charged membrane surface is characterized by decreased dielectric constant and pH value. These conditions can be modeled by water-alcohol mixtures at moderately low pH. Several globular proteins were investigated under these conditions, and their conformational behavior in the presence of phospholipid membranes was determined, as well as under conditions modeling the immediate environment of the membrane surface. These proteins underwent conformational transitions from the native to a molten globule-like state. Increased flexibility of the protein structure facilitated protein functioning. Our experimental data allow understanding forces that affect the structure of a protein functioning near the membrane surface (in other words, in the membrane field). Similar conformational states are widely reported in the literature. This indicates that the negatively charged membrane surface can serve as a moderately denaturing agent in the cell. We conclude that the effect of the membrane field on the protein structure must be taken into account.

  14. Protein Structure Determination Using Protein Threading and Sparse NMR Data

    SciTech Connect

    Crawford, O.H.; Einstein, J.R.; Xu, D.; Xu, Y.

    1999-11-14

    It is well known that the NMR method for protein structure determination applies to small proteins and that its effectiveness decreases very rapidly as the molecular weight increases beyond about 30 kD. We have recently developed a method for protein structure determination that can fully utilize partial NMR data as calculation constraints. The core of the method is a threading algorithm that guarantees to find a globally optimal alignment between a query sequence and a template structure, under distance constraints specified by NMR/NOE data. Our preliminary tests have demonstrated that a small number of NMR/NOE distance restraints can significantly improve threading performance in both fold recognition and threading-alignment accuracy, and can possibly extend threading's scope of applicability from structural homologs to structural analogs. An accurate backbone structure generated by NMR-constrained threading can then provide a significant amount of structural information, equivalent to that provided by the NMR method with many NMR/NOE restraints; and hence can greatly reduce the amount of NMR data typically required for accurate structure determination. Our preliminary study suggests that a small number of NMR/NOE restraints may suffice to determine adequately the all-atom structure when those restraints are incorporated in a procedure combining threading, modeling of loops and sidechains, and molecular dynamics simulation. Potentially, this new technique can expand NMR's capability to larger proteins.

  15. Modeling mitochondrial protein evolution using structural information.

    PubMed

    Liò, Pietro; Goldman, Nick

    2002-04-01

    We present two new models of protein sequence evolution based on structural properties of mitochondrial proteins. We compare these models with others currently used in phylogenetic analyses, investigating their performance over both short and long evolutionary distances. We find that our models that incorporate secondary structure information from mitochondrial proteins are statistically comparable with existing models when studying 13 mitochondrial protein data sets from eutherian mammals. However, our models give a significantly improved description of the evolutionary process when used with 12 mitochondrial proteins from a broader range of organisms including fungi, plants, protists, and bacteria. Our models may thus be of use in estimating mitochondrial protein phylogenies and for the study of processes of mitochondrial protein evolution, in particular for distantly related organisms.

  16. Mapping membrane protein structure with fluorescence

    PubMed Central

    Taraska, Justin W.

    2012-01-01

    Membrane proteins regulate many cellular processes including signaling cascades, ion transport, membrane fusion, and cell-to-cell communications. Understanding the architecture and conformational fluctuations of these proteins is critical to understanding their regulation and functions. Fluorescence methods including intensity mapping, fluorescence resonance energy transfer, and photo-induced electron transfer, allow for targeted measurements of domains within membrane proteins. These methods can reveal how a protein is structured and how it transitions between different conformational states. Here, I will review recent work done using fluorescence to map the structures of membrane proteins, focusing on how each of these methods can be applied to understanding the dynamic nature of individual membrane proteins and protein complexes. PMID:22445227

  17. Homology-Based Modeling of Protein Structure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xiang, Zhexin

    The human genome project has already discovered millions of proteins (http://www.swissprot.com). The potential of the genome project can only be fully realized once we can assign, understand, manipulate, and predict the function of these new proteins (Sanchez and Sali, 1997; Frishman et al., 2000; Domingues et al., 2000). Predicting protein function generally requires knowledge of protein three-dimensional structure (Blundell et al., 1978;Weber, 1990), which is ultimately determined by protein sequence (Anfinsen, 1973). Protein structure determination using experimental methods such as X-ray crystallography or NMR spectroscopy is very time consuming (Johnson et al. 1994). To date, fewer than 2% of the known proteins have had their structures solved experimentally. In 2004, more than half a million new proteins were sequenced that almost doubled the efforts in the previous year, but only 5300 structures were solved. Although the rate of experimental structure determination will continue to increase, the number of newly discovered sequences grows much faster than the number of structures solved (see Fig. 10.1).

  18. Lessons from making the Structural Classification of Proteins (SCOP) and their implications for protein structure modelling

    PubMed Central

    Andreeva, Antonina

    2016-01-01

    The Structural Classification of Proteins (SCOP) database has facilitated the development of many tools and algorithms and it has been successfully used in protein structure prediction and large-scale genome annotations. During the development of SCOP, numerous exceptions were found to topological rules, along with complex evolutionary scenarios and peculiarities in proteins including the ability to fold into alternative structures. This article reviews cases of structural variations observed for individual proteins and among groups of homologues, knowledge of which is essential for protein structure modelling. PMID:27284063

  19. Modeling Protein Aggregate Assembly and Structure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guo, Jun-tao; Hall, Carol K.; Xu, Ying; Wetzel, Ronald

    One might say that "protein science" got its start in the domestic arts, built around the abilities of proteins to aggregate in response to environmental stresses such as heating (boiled eggs), heating and cooling (gelatin), and pH (cheese). Characterization of proteins in the late nineteenth century likewise focused on the ability of proteins to precipitate in response to certain salts and to aggregate in response to heating. Investigations by Chick and Martin (Chick and Martin, 1910) showed that the inactivating response of proteins to heat or solvent treatment is a two-step process involving separate denaturation and precipitation steps. Monitoring the coagulation and flocculation responses of proteins to heat and other stresses remained a major approach to understanding protein structure for decades, with solubility, or susceptibility to aggregation, serving as a kind of benchmark against which results of other methods, such as viscosity, chemical susceptibility, immune activity, crystallizability, and susceptibility to proteolysis, were compared (Mirsky and Pauling, 1936;Wu, 1931). Toward the middle of the last century, protein aggregation studies were largely left behind, as improved methods allowed elucidation of the primary sequence of proteins, reversible unfolding studies, and ultimately high-resolution structures. Curiously, the field of protein science, and in particular protein folding, is now gravitating back to a closer look at protein aggregation and protein aggregates. Unfortunately, the means developed during the second half of the twentieth century for studying native, globular proteins have not proved immediately amenable to the study of aggregate structures. Great progress is being made, however, to modify classical methods, including NMR and X-ray diffraction, as well as to develop newer techniques, that together should continue to expand our picture of aggregate structure (Kheterpal and Wetzel, 2006; Wetzel, 1999).

  20. Transmembrane beta-barrel protein structure prediction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Randall, Arlo; Baldi, Pierre

    Transmembrane β-barrel (TMB) proteins are embedded in the outer membranes of mitochondria, Gram-negative bacteria, and chloroplasts. These proteins perform critical functions, including active ion-transport and passive nutrient intake. Therefore, there is a need for accurate prediction of secondary and tertiary structures of TMB proteins. A variety of methods have been developed for predicting the secondary structure and these predictions are very useful for constructing a coarse topology of TMB structure; however, they do not provide enough information to construct a low-resolution tertiary structure for a TMB protein. In addition, while the overall structural architecture is well conserved among TMB proteins, the amino acid sequences are highly divergent. Thus, traditional homology modeling methods cannot be applied to many putative TMB proteins. Here, we describe the TMBpro: a pipeline of methods for predicting TMB secondary structure, β-residue contacts, and finally tertiary structure. The tertiary prediction method relies on the specific construction rules that TMB proteins adhere to and on the predicted β-residue contacts to dramatically reduce the search space for the model building procedure.

  1. Protein NMR structures refined without NOE data.

    PubMed

    Ryu, Hyojung; Kim, Tae-Rae; Ahn, SeonJoo; Ji, Sunyoung; Lee, Jinhyuk

    2014-01-01

    The refinement of low-quality structures is an important challenge in protein structure prediction. Many studies have been conducted on protein structure refinement; the refinement of structures derived from NMR spectroscopy has been especially intensively studied. In this study, we generated flat-bottom distance potential instead of NOE data because NOE data have ambiguity and uncertainty. The potential was derived from distance information from given structures and prevented structural dislocation during the refinement process. A simulated annealing protocol was used to minimize the potential energy of the structure. The protocol was tested on 134 NMR structures in the Protein Data Bank (PDB) that also have X-ray structures. Among them, 50 structures were used as a training set to find the optimal "width" parameter in the flat-bottom distance potential functions. In the validation set (the other 84 structures), most of the 12 quality assessment scores of the refined structures were significantly improved (total score increased from 1.215 to 2.044). Moreover, the secondary structure similarity of the refined structure was improved over that of the original structure. Finally, we demonstrate that the combination of two energy potentials, statistical torsion angle potential (STAP) and the flat-bottom distance potential, can drive the refinement of NMR structures.

  2. How special is the biochemical function of native proteins?

    PubMed

    Skolnick, Jeffrey; Gao, Mu; Zhou, Hongyi

    2016-01-01

    Native proteins perform an amazing variety of biochemical functions, including enzymatic catalysis, and can engage in protein-protein and protein-DNA interactions that are essential for life. A key question is how special are these functional properties of proteins. Are they extremely rare, or are they an intrinsic feature? Comparison to the properties of compact conformations of artificially generated compact protein structures selected for thermodynamic stability but not any type of function, the artificial (ART) protein library, demonstrates that a remarkable number of the properties of native-like proteins are recapitulated. These include the complete set of small molecule ligand-binding pockets and most protein-protein interfaces. ART structures are predicted to be capable of weakly binding metabolites and cover a significant fraction of metabolic pathways, with the most enriched pathways including ancient ones such as glycolysis. Native-like active sites are also found in ART proteins. A small fraction of ART proteins are predicted to have strong protein-protein and protein-DNA interactions. Overall, it appears that biochemical function is an intrinsic feature of proteins which nature has significantly optimized during evolution. These studies raise questions as to the relative roles of specificity and promiscuity in the biochemical function and control of cells that need investigation.

  3. How special is the biochemical function of native proteins?

    PubMed Central

    Skolnick, Jeffrey; Gao, Mu; Zhou, Hongyi

    2016-01-01

    Native proteins perform an amazing variety of biochemical functions, including enzymatic catalysis, and can engage in protein-protein and protein-DNA interactions that are essential for life. A key question is how special are these functional properties of proteins. Are they extremely rare, or are they an intrinsic feature? Comparison to the properties of compact conformations of artificially generated compact protein structures selected for thermodynamic stability but not any type of function, the artificial (ART) protein library, demonstrates that a remarkable number of the properties of native-like proteins are recapitulated. These include the complete set of small molecule ligand-binding pockets and most protein-protein interfaces. ART structures are predicted to be capable of weakly binding metabolites and cover a significant fraction of metabolic pathways, with the most enriched pathways including ancient ones such as glycolysis. Native-like active sites are also found in ART proteins. A small fraction of ART proteins are predicted to have strong protein-protein and protein-DNA interactions. Overall, it appears that biochemical function is an intrinsic feature of proteins which nature has significantly optimized during evolution. These studies raise questions as to the relative roles of specificity and promiscuity in the biochemical function and control of cells that need investigation. PMID:26962440

  4. Embracing proteins: structural themes in aptamer-protein complexes.

    PubMed

    Gelinas, Amy D; Davies, Douglas R; Janjic, Nebojsa

    2016-02-01

    Understanding the structural rules that govern specific, high-affinity binding characteristic of aptamer-protein interactions is important in view of the increasing use of aptamers across many applications. From the modest number of 16 aptamer-protein structures currently available, trends are emerging. The flexible phosphodiester backbone allows folding into precise three-dimensional structures using known nucleic acid motifs as scaffolds that orient specific functional groups for target recognition. Still, completely novel motifs essential for structure and function are found in modified aptamers with diversity-enhancing side chains. Aptamers and antibodies, two classes of macromolecules used as affinity reagents with entirely different backbones and composition, recognize protein epitopes of similar size and with comparably high shape complementarity. PMID:26919170

  5. Membrane protein structure determination - the next generation.

    PubMed

    Moraes, Isabel; Evans, Gwyndaf; Sanchez-Weatherby, Juan; Newstead, Simon; Stewart, Patrick D Shaw

    2014-01-01

    The field of Membrane Protein Structural Biology has grown significantly since its first landmark in 1985 with the first three-dimensional atomic resolution structure of a membrane protein. Nearly twenty-six years later, the crystal structure of the beta2 adrenergic receptor in complex with G protein has contributed to another landmark in the field leading to the 2012 Nobel Prize in Chemistry. At present, more than 350 unique membrane protein structures solved by X-ray crystallography (http://blanco.biomol.uci.edu/mpstruc/exp/list, Stephen White Lab at UC Irvine) are available in the Protein Data Bank. The advent of genomics and proteomics initiatives combined with high-throughput technologies, such as automation, miniaturization, integration and third-generation synchrotrons, has enhanced membrane protein structure determination rate. X-ray crystallography is still the only method capable of providing detailed information on how ligands, cofactors, and ions interact with proteins, and is therefore a powerful tool in biochemistry and drug discovery. Yet the growth of membrane protein crystals suitable for X-ray diffraction studies amazingly remains a fine art and a major bottleneck in the field. It is often necessary to apply as many innovative approaches as possible. In this review we draw attention to the latest methods and strategies for the production of suitable crystals for membrane protein structure determination. In addition we also highlight the impact that third-generation synchrotron radiation has made in the field, summarizing the latest strategies used at synchrotron beamlines for screening and data collection from such demanding crystals. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Structural and biophysical characterisation of membrane protein-ligand binding.

  6. Structural plasticity of 4-α-helical bundles exemplified by the puzzle-like molecular assembly of the Rop protein.

    PubMed

    Amprazi, Maria; Kotsifaki, Dina; Providaki, Mary; Kapetaniou, Evangelia G; Fellas, Georgios; Kyriazidis, Ioannis; Pérez, Javier; Kokkinidis, Michael

    2014-07-29

    The dimeric Repressor of Primer (Rop) protein, a widely used model system for the study of coiled-coil 4-α-helical bundles, is characterized by a remarkable structural plasticity. Loop region mutations lead to a wide range of topologies, folding states, and altered physicochemical properties. A protein-folding study of Rop and several loop variants has identified specific residues and sequences that are linked to the observed structural plasticity. Apart from the native state, native-like and molten-globule states have been identified; these states are sensitive to reducing agents due to the formation of nonnative disulfide bridges. Pro residues in the loop are critical for the establishment of new topologies and molten globule states; their effects, however, can be in part compensated by Gly residues. The extreme plasticity in the assembly of 4-α-helical bundles reflects the capacity of the Rop sequence to combine a specific set of hydrophobic residues into strikingly different hydrophobic cores. These cores include highly hydrated ones that are consistent with the formation of interchain, nonnative disulfide bridges and the establishment of molten globules. Potential applications of this structural plasticity are among others in the engineering of bio-inspired materials. PMID:25024213

  7. Microsecond Rearrangements of Hydrophobic Clusters in an Initially Collapsed Globule Prime Structure Formation during the Folding of a Small Protein.

    PubMed

    Goluguri, Rama Reddy; Udgaonkar, Jayant B

    2016-07-31

    Determining how polypeptide chain collapse initiates structure formation during protein folding is a long standing goal. It has been challenging to characterize experimentally the dynamics of the polypeptide chain, which lead to the formation of a compact kinetic molten globule (MG) in about a millisecond. In this study, the sub-millisecond events that occur early during the folding of monellin from the guanidine hydrochloride-unfolded state have been characterized using multiple fluorescence and fluorescence resonance energy transfer probes. The kinetic MG is shown to form in a noncooperative manner from the unfolded (U) state as a result of at least three different processes happening during the first millisecond of folding. Initial chain compaction completes within the first 37μs, and further compaction occurs only after structure formation commences at a few milliseconds of folding. The transient nonnative and native-like hydrophobic clusters with side chains of certain residues buried form during the initial chain collapse and the nonnative clusters quickly disassemble. Subsequently, partial chain desolvation occurs, leading to the formation of a kinetic MG. The initial chain compaction and subsequent chain rearrangement appear to be barrierless processes. The two structural rearrangements within the collapsed globule appear to prime the protein for the actual folding transition. PMID:27370109

  8. 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.

  9. Protein Molecular Structures, Protein SubFractions, and Protein Availability Affected by Heat Processing: A Review

    SciTech Connect

    Yu,P.

    2007-01-01

    The utilization and availability of protein depended on the types of protein and their specific susceptibility to enzymatic hydrolysis (inhibitory activities) in the gastrointestine and was highly associated with protein molecular structures. Studying internal protein structure and protein subfraction profiles leaded to an understanding of the components that make up a whole protein. An understanding of the molecular structure of the whole protein was often vital to understanding its digestive behavior and nutritive value in animals. In this review, recently obtained information on protein molecular structural effects of heat processing was reviewed, in relation to protein characteristics affecting digestive behavior and nutrient utilization and availability. The emphasis of this review was on (1) using the newly advanced synchrotron technology (S-FTIR) as a novel approach to reveal protein molecular chemistry affected by heat processing within intact plant tissues; (2) revealing the effects of heat processing on the profile changes of protein subfractions associated with digestive behaviors and kinetics manipulated by heat processing; (3) prediction of the changes of protein availability and supply after heat processing, using the advanced DVE/OEB and NRC-2001 models, and (4) obtaining information on optimal processing conditions of protein as intestinal protein source to achieve target values for potential high net absorbable protein in the small intestine. The information described in this article may give better insight in the mechanisms involved and the intrinsic protein molecular structural changes occurring upon processing.

  10. Proteins with Novel Structure, Function and Dynamics

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pohorille, Andrew

    2014-01-01

    Recently, a small enzyme that ligates two RNA fragments with the rate of 10(exp 6) above background was evolved in vitro (Seelig and Szostak, Nature 448:828-831, 2007). This enzyme does not resemble any contemporary protein (Chao et al., Nature Chem. Biol. 9:81-83, 2013). It consists of a dynamic, catalytic loop, a small, rigid core containing two zinc ions coordinated by neighboring amino acids, and two highly flexible tails that might be unimportant for protein function. In contrast to other proteins, this enzyme does not contain ordered secondary structure elements, such as alpha-helix or beta-sheet. The loop is kept together by just two interactions of a charged residue and a histidine with a zinc ion, which they coordinate on the opposite side of the loop. Such structure appears to be very fragile. Surprisingly, computer simulations indicate otherwise. As the coordinating, charged residue is mutated to alanine, another, nearby charged residue takes its place, thus keeping the structure nearly intact. If this residue is also substituted by alanine a salt bridge involving two other, charged residues on the opposite sides of the loop keeps the loop in place. These adjustments are facilitated by high flexibility of the protein. Computational predictions have been confirmed experimentally, as both mutants retain full activity and overall structure. These results challenge our notions about what is required for protein activity and about the relationship between protein dynamics, stability and robustness. We hypothesize that small, highly dynamic proteins could be both active and fault tolerant in ways that many other proteins are not, i.e. they can adjust to retain their structure and activity even if subjected to mutations in structurally critical regions. This opens the doors for designing proteins with novel functions, structures and dynamics that have not been yet considered.

  11. Crystallization and Structure Analysis of Membrane Proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Newman, Richard

    In recent years, there has been great progress in the determination of high-resolution three-dimensional (3D) structures of membrane proteins. The first major breakthrough came with the crystallization (1) and X-ray crystallography (2,3) of the bacterial photosynthetic reaction center (see refs. 4 and 5 for reviews). The structure of another, entirely different membrane protein, the bacterial outer membrane porin from Rhodobacter capsulatus, has now been determined by X-ray crystallography (6). Recent results by electron crystallography of two-dimensional (2D) crystals have been most encouraging. The high-resolution 3D structure of bacteriorhodopsin (7) plant light-harvesting complex (8) and projection maps of several other membrane proteins at similar resolutions (9-11) have been obtained by this technique. Electron crystallography seems particularly appropriate for membrane proteins that are prone to form 2D crystals, and it is hoped that many more structures will be determined in this way.

  12. Contemporary Methodology for Protein Structure Determination.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hunkapiller, Michael W.; And Others

    1984-01-01

    Describes the nature and capabilities of methods used to characterize protein and peptide structure, indicating that they have undergone changes which have improved the speed, reliability, and applicability of the process. Also indicates that high-performance liquid chromatography and gel electrophoresis have made purifying proteins and peptides a…

  13. A 'periodic table' for protein structures.

    PubMed

    Taylor, William R

    2002-04-11

    Current structural genomics programs aim systematically to determine the structures of all proteins coded in both human and other genomes, providing a complete picture of the number and variety of protein structures that exist. In the past, estimates have been made on the basis of the incomplete sample of structures currently known. These estimates have varied greatly (between 1,000 and 10,000; see for example refs 1 and 2), partly because of limited sample size but also owing to the difficulties of distinguishing one structure from another. This distinction is usually topological, based on the fold of the protein; however, in strict topological terms (neglecting to consider intra-chain cross-links), protein chains are open strings and hence are all identical. To avoid this trivial result, topologies are determined by considering secondary links in the form of intra-chain hydrogen bonds (secondary structure) and tertiary links formed by the packing of secondary structures. However, small additions to or loss of structure can make large changes to these perceived topologies and such subjective solutions are neither robust nor amenable to automation. Here I formalize both secondary and tertiary links to allow the rigorous and automatic definition of protein topology.

  14. Structural Characteristics of Novel Protein Folds

    PubMed Central

    Fernandez-Fuentes, Narcis; Dybas, Joseph M.; Fiser, Andras

    2010-01-01

    Folds are the basic building blocks of protein structures. Understanding the emergence of novel protein folds is an important step towards understanding the rules governing the evolution of protein structure and function and for developing tools for protein structure modeling and design. We explored the frequency of occurrences of an exhaustively classified library of supersecondary structural elements (Smotifs), in protein structures, in order to identify features that would define a fold as novel compared to previously known structures. We found that a surprisingly small set of Smotifs is sufficient to describe all known folds. Furthermore, novel folds do not require novel Smotifs, but rather are a new combination of existing ones. Novel folds can be typified by the inclusion of a relatively higher number of rarely occurring Smotifs in their structures and, to a lesser extent, by a novel topological combination of commonly occurring Smotifs. When investigating the structural features of Smotifs, we found that the top 10% of most frequent ones have a higher fraction of internal contacts, while some of the most rare motifs are larger, and contain a longer loop region. PMID:20421995

  15. Information-driven structural modelling of protein-protein interactions.

    PubMed

    Rodrigues, João P G L M; Karaca, Ezgi; Bonvin, Alexandre M J J

    2015-01-01

    Protein-protein docking aims at predicting the three-dimensional structure of a protein complex starting from the free forms of the individual partners. As assessed in the CAPRI community-wide experiment, the most successful docking algorithms combine pure laws of physics with information derived from various experimental or bioinformatics sources. Of these so-called "information-driven" approaches, HADDOCK stands out as one of the most successful representatives. In this chapter, we briefly summarize which experimental information can be used to drive the docking prediction in HADDOCK, and then focus on the docking protocol itself. We discuss and illustrate with a tutorial example a "classical" protein-protein docking prediction, as well as more recent developments for modelling multi-body systems and large conformational changes. PMID:25330973

  16. Metamorphic proteins mediate evolutionary transitions of structure.

    PubMed

    Yadid, Itamar; Kirshenbaum, Noam; Sharon, Michal; Dym, Orly; Tawfik, Dan S

    2010-04-20

    The primary sequence of proteins usually dictates a single tertiary and quaternary structure. However, certain proteins undergo reversible backbone rearrangements. Such metamorphic proteins provide a means of facilitating the evolution of new folds and architectures. However, because natural folds emerged at the early stages of evolution, the potential role of metamorphic intermediates in mediating evolutionary transitions of structure remains largely unexplored. We evolved a set of new proteins based on approximately 100 amino acid fragments derived from tachylectin-2--a monomeric, 236 amino acids, five-bladed beta-propeller. Their structures reveal a unique pentameric assembly and novel beta-propeller structures. Although identical in sequence, the oligomeric subunits adopt two, or even three, different structures that together enable the pentameric assembly of two propellers connected via a small linker. Most of the subunits adopt a wild-type-like structure within individual five-bladed propellers. However, the bridging subunits exhibit domain swaps and asymmetric strand exchanges that allow them to complete the two propellers and connect them. Thus, the modular and metamorphic nature of these subunits enabled dramatic changes in tertiary and quaternary structure, while maintaining the lectin function. These oligomers therefore comprise putative intermediates via which beta-propellers can evolve from smaller elements. Our data also suggest that the ability of one sequence to equilibrate between different structures can be evolutionary optimized, thus facilitating the emergence of new structures.

  17. Strong improvement of interfacial properties can result from slight structural modifications of proteins: the case of native and dry-heated lysozyme.

    PubMed

    Desfougères, Yann; Saint-Jalmes, Arnaud; Salonen, Anniina; Vié, Véronique; Beaufils, Sylvie; Pezennec, Stéphane; Desbat, Bernard; Lechevalier, Valérie; Nau, Françoise

    2011-12-20

    Identification of the key physicochemical parameters of proteins that determine their interfacial properties is still incomplete and represents a real stake challenge, especially for food proteins. Many studies have thus consisted in comparing the interfacial behavior of different proteins, but it is difficult to draw clear conclusions when the molecules are completely different on several levels. Here the adsorption process of a model protein, the hen egg-white lysozyme, and the same protein that underwent a thermal treatment in the dry state, was characterized. The consequences of this treatment have been previously studied: net charge and hydrophobicity increase and lesser protein stability, but no secondary and tertiary structure modification (Desfougères, Y.; Jardin, J.; Lechevalier, V.; Pezennec, S.; Nau, F. Biomacromolecules 2011, 12, 156-166). The present study shows that these slight modifications dramatically increase the interfacial properties of the protein, since the adsorption to the air-water interface is much faster and more efficient (higher surface pressure). Moreover, a thick and strongly viscoelastic multilayer film is created, while native lysozyme adsorbs in a fragile monolayer film. Another striking result is that completely different behaviors were observed between two molecular species, i.e., native and native-like lysozyme, even though these species could not be distinguished by usual spectroscopic methods. This suggests that the air-water interface could be considered as a useful tool to reveal very subtle differences between protein molecules. PMID:22040020

  18. Interaction Energy Based Protein Structure Networks

    PubMed Central

    Vijayabaskar, M.S.; Vishveshwara, Saraswathi

    2010-01-01

    The three-dimensional structure of a protein is formed and maintained by the noncovalent interactions among the amino-acid residues of the polypeptide chain. These interactions can be represented collectively in the form of a network. So far, such networks have been investigated by considering the connections based on distances between the amino-acid residues. Here we present a method of constructing the structure network based on interaction energies among the amino-acid residues in the protein. We have investigated the properties of such protein energy-based networks (PENs) and have shown correlations to protein structural features such as the clusters of residues involved in stability, formation of secondary and super-secondary structural units. Further we demonstrate that the analysis of PENs in terms of parameters such as hubs and shortest paths can provide a variety of biologically important information, such as the residues crucial for stabilizing the folded units and the paths of communication between distal residues in the protein. Finally, the energy regimes for different levels of stabilization in the protein structure have clearly emerged from the PEN analysis. PMID:21112295

  19. Well-Ordered Trimeric HIV-1 Subtype B and C Soluble Spike Mimetics Generated by Negative Selection Display Native-like Properties

    PubMed Central

    Guenaga, Javier; de Val, Natalia; Tran, Karen; Feng, Yu; Satchwell, Karen; Ward, Andrew B.; Wyatt, Richard T.

    2015-01-01

    The structure of BG505 gp140 SOSIP, a soluble mimic of the native HIV-1 envelope glycoprotein (Env), marks the beginning of new era in Env structure-based immunogen design. Displaying a well-ordered quaternary structure, these subtype A-derived trimers display an excellent antigenic profile, discriminating recognition by broadly neutralizing antibodies (bNAbs) from non-broadly neutralizing antibodies (non-bNAbs), and provide a solid Env-based immunogenic platform starting point. Even with this important advance, obtaining homogeneous well-ordered soluble SOSIP trimers derived from other subtypes remains challenging. Here, we report the “rescue” of homogeneous well-ordered subtype B and C SOSIP trimers from a heterogeneous Env mixture using CD4 binding site-directed (CD4bs) non-bNAbs in a negative-selection purification process. These non-bNAbs recognize the primary receptor CD4bs only on disordered trimers but not on the native Env spike or well-ordered soluble trimers due to steric hindrance. Following negative selection to remove disordered oligomers, we demonstrated recovery of well-ordered, homogeneous trimers by electron microscopy (EM). We obtained 3D EM reconstructions of unliganded trimers, as well as in complex with sCD4, a panel of CD4bs-directed bNAbs, and the cleavage-dependent, trimer-specific bNAb, PGT151. Using bio-layer light interferometry (BLI) we demonstrated that the well-ordered trimers were efficiently recognized by bNAbs and poorly recognized by non-bNAbs, representing soluble mimics of the native viral spike. Biophysical characterization was consistent with the thermostability of a homogeneous species that could be further stabilized by specific bNAbs. This study revealed that Env trimers generate different frequencies of well-ordered versus disordered aberrant trimers even when they are genetically identical. By negatively selecting the native-like well-ordered trimers, we establish a new means to obtain soluble Env mimetics derived

  20. Protein folding: When ribosomes pick the structure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sivertsson, Elin M.; Itzhaki, Laura S.

    2014-05-01

    Anfinsen's principle tells us that the folded structure of a protein is determined solely by its sequence. Now, it has been shown that the rate at which a polypeptide chain is synthesized in the cell can affect which of two alternative folded structures it adopts.

  1. Versatile hemidesmosomal linker proteins: structure and function.

    PubMed

    Chaudhari, Pratik R; Vaidya, Milind M

    2015-04-01

    Hemidesmosomes are anchoring junctions which connect basal epidermal cells to the extracellular matrix. In complex epithelia like skin, hemidesmosomes are composed of transmembrane proteins like α6β4 integrin, BP180, CD151 and cytoplasmic proteins like BPAG1e and plectin. BPAG1e and plectin are plakin family cytolinker proteins which anchor intermediate filament proteins i.e. keratins to the hemidesmosomal transmembrane proteins. Mutations in BPAG1e and plectin lead to severe skin blistering disorders. Recent reports indicate that these hemidesmosomal linker proteins play a role in various cellular processes like cell motility and cytoskeleton dynamics apart from their known anchoring function. In this review, we will discuss their role in structural and signaling functions.

  2. Protein Structure Recognition: From Eigenvector Analysis to Structural Threading Method

    SciTech Connect

    Haibo Cao

    2003-12-12

    In this work, they try to understand the protein folding problem using pair-wise hydrophobic interaction as the dominant interaction for the protein folding process. They found a strong correlation between amino acid sequences and the corresponding native structure of the protein. Some applications of this correlation were discussed in this dissertation include the domain partition and a new structural threading method as well as the performance of this method in the CASP5 competition. In the first part, they give a brief introduction to the protein folding problem. Some essential knowledge and progress from other research groups was discussed. This part includes discussions of interactions among amino acids residues, lattice HP model, and the design ability principle. In the second part, they try to establish the correlation between amino acid sequence and the corresponding native structure of the protein. This correlation was observed in the eigenvector study of protein contact matrix. They believe the correlation is universal, thus it can be used in automatic partition of protein structures into folding domains. In the third part, they discuss a threading method based on the correlation between amino acid sequences and ominant eigenvector of the structure contact-matrix. A mathematically straightforward iteration scheme provides a self-consistent optimum global sequence-structure alignment. The computational efficiency of this method makes it possible to search whole protein structure databases for structural homology without relying on sequence similarity. The sensitivity and specificity of this method is discussed, along with a case of blind test prediction. In the appendix, they list the overall performance of this threading method in CASP5 blind test in comparison with other existing approaches.

  3. How Structure Defines Affinity in Protein-Protein Interactions

    PubMed Central

    Erijman, Ariel; Rosenthal, Eran; Shifman, Julia M.

    2014-01-01

    Protein-protein interactions (PPI) in nature are conveyed by a multitude of binding modes involving various surfaces, secondary structure elements and intermolecular interactions. This diversity results in PPI binding affinities that span more than nine orders of magnitude. Several early studies attempted to correlate PPI binding affinities to various structure-derived features with limited success. The growing number of high-resolution structures, the appearance of more precise methods for measuring binding affinities and the development of new computational algorithms enable more thorough investigations in this direction. Here, we use a large dataset of PPI structures with the documented binding affinities to calculate a number of structure-based features that could potentially define binding energetics. We explore how well each calculated biophysical feature alone correlates with binding affinity and determine the features that could be used to distinguish between high-, medium- and low- affinity PPIs. Furthermore, we test how various combinations of features could be applied to predict binding affinity and observe a slow improvement in correlation as more features are incorporated into the equation. In addition, we observe a considerable improvement in predictions if we exclude from our analysis low-resolution and NMR structures, revealing the importance of capturing exact intermolecular interactions in our calculations. Our analysis should facilitate prediction of new interactions on the genome scale, better characterization of signaling networks and design of novel binding partners for various target proteins. PMID:25329579

  4. Comparing anisotropic displacement parameters in protein structures.

    PubMed

    Merritt, E A

    1999-12-01

    The increasingly widespread use of synchrotron-radiation sources and cryo-preparation of samples in macromolecular crystallography has led to a dramatic increase in the number of macromolecular structures determined at atomic or near-atomic resolution. This permits expansion of the structural model to include anisotropic displacement parameters U(ij) for individual atoms. In order to explore the physical significance of these parameters in protein structures, it is useful to be able to compare quantitatively the electron-density distribution described by the refined U(ij) values associated with corresponding crystallographically independent atoms. This paper presents the derivation of an easily calculated correlation coefficient in real space between two atoms modeled with anisotropic displacement parameters. This measure is used to investigate the degree of similarity between chemically equivalent but crystallographically independent atoms in the set of protein structural models currently available from the Protein Data Bank.

  5. SCOP: a structural classification of proteins database.

    PubMed

    Hubbard, T J; Murzin, A G; Brenner, S E; Chothia, C

    1997-01-01

    The Structural Classification of Proteins (SCOP) database provides a detailed and comprehensive description of the relationships of all known proteins structures. The classification is on hierarchical levels: the first two levels, family and superfamily, describe near and far evolutionary relationships; the third, fold, describes geometrical relationships. The distinction between evolutionary relationships and those that arise from the physics and chemistry of proteins is a feature that is unique to this database, so far. SCOP also provides for each structure links to atomic co-ordinates, images of the structures, interactive viewers, sequence data, data on any conformational changes related to function and literature references. The database is freely accessible on the World Wide Web (WWW) with an entry point at URL http://scop.mrc-lmb.cam.ac.uk/scop/

  6. Structure and Non-Structure of Centrosomal Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Bertero, Michela G.; Boutin, Maïlys; Guarín, Nayibe; Méndez-Giraldez, Raúl; Nuñez, Alfonso; Pedrero, Juan G.; Redondo, Pilar; Sanz, María; Speroni, Silvia; Teichert, Florian; Bruix, Marta; Carazo, José M.; Gonzalez, Cayetano; Reina, José; Valpuesta, José M.; Vernos, Isabelle; Zabala, Juan C.; Montoya, Guillermo; Coll, Miquel; Bastolla, Ugo; Serrano, Luis

    2013-01-01

    Here we perform a large-scale study of the structural properties and the expression of proteins that constitute the human Centrosome. Centrosomal proteins tend to be larger than generic human proteins (control set), since their genes contain in average more exons (20.3 versus 14.6). They are rich in predicted disordered regions, which cover 57% of their length, compared to 39% in the general human proteome. They also contain several regions that are dually predicted to be disordered and coiled-coil at the same time: 55 proteins (15%) contain disordered and coiled-coil fragments that cover more than 20% of their length. Helices prevail over strands in regions homologous to known structures (47% predicted helical residues against 17% predicted as strands), and even more in the whole centrosomal proteome (52% against 7%), while for control human proteins 34.5% of the residues are predicted as helical and 12.8% are predicted as strands. This difference is mainly due to residues predicted as disordered and helical (30% in centrosomal and 9.4% in control proteins), which may correspond to alpha-helix forming molecular recognition features (α-MoRFs). We performed expression assays for 120 full-length centrosomal proteins and 72 domain constructs that we have predicted to be globular. These full-length proteins are often insoluble: Only 39 out of 120 expressed proteins (32%) and 19 out of 72 domains (26%) were soluble. We built or retrieved structural models for 277 out of 361 human proteins whose centrosomal localization has been experimentally verified. We could not find any suitable structural template with more than 20% sequence identity for 84 centrosomal proteins (23%), for which around 74% of the residues are predicted to be disordered or coiled-coils. The three-dimensional models that we built are available at http://ub.cbm.uam.es/centrosome/models/index.php. PMID:23671615

  7. 2003 NIH protein structure intiative workshop in protein production and crystallization for structural and functional genomics.

    SciTech Connect

    Adams, M.; Joachimiak, A.; Kim, R.; Montelione, G. T.; Norvell, J.; Biosciences Division; University of Georgia; LBNL; Rutgers Univ.; Robert Wood Johnson Medical School

    2004-03-01

    The United States National Institutes of Health (NIH) Protein Structure Initiative (PSI) is a joint government, university, and industry effort, organized and supported by the National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS), and aimed at reducing the costs in increasing the speed of protein structure determination. Its long-range goal is to make the three-dimensional atomic-level structures of most proteins in nature easily obtainable from knowledge of their corresponding DNA sequences (http://www.nigms.gov/psi). It is the primary U.S. component of a broad international effort in structural genomics, involving at least 20 projects throughout the world. The PSI is now in its fourth year. Nine PSI pilot research centers have been funded to explore the feasibility and impact of genomic scale protein structure analysis. To date, over 500 3D protein structures, providing the first structural representatives for hundreds of protein domain families, have been completed and deposited by the NIH centers into the public Protein Data Bank. In addition, new technologies for protein sample production, data organization, and structure analysis by X-ray crystallography and nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy have been developed. These technologies increase the efficiency of protein structure determination both for structural genomics and for the broader structural biology community. Although progress has been substantial, PSI pilot research centers have identified a number of important bottlenecks that need to be solved to meet the goals of the program. For example, it is now accepted that a major challenge to high-throughput protein structure determination is the fact that for some 70% of targeted proteins, it is difficult to produce protein samples and crystals suitable for structural analysis. In an effort to facilitate an effective exchange of developments and advancements between pilot centers, the NIGMS organized a workshop on gene cloning, protein

  8. Structure and function of antifreeze proteins.

    PubMed Central

    Davies, Peter L; Baardsnes, Jason; Kuiper, Michael J; Walker, Virginia K

    2002-01-01

    High-resolution three-dimensional structures are now available for four of seven non-homologous fish and insect antifreeze proteins (AFPs). For each of these structures, the ice-binding site of the AFP has been defined by site-directed mutagenesis, and ice etching has indicated that the ice surface is bound by the AFP. A comparison of these extremely diverse ice-binding proteins shows that they have the following attributes in common. The binding sites are relatively flat and engage a substantial proportion of the protein's surface area in ice binding. They are also somewhat hydrophobic -- more so than that portion of the protein exposed to the solvent. Surface-surface complementarity appears to be the key to tight binding in which the contribution of hydrogen bonding seems to be secondary to van der Waals contacts. PMID:12171656

  9. Structure and Dynamics of Intrinsically Disordered Proteins.

    PubMed

    Fu, Biao; Vendruscolo, Michele

    2015-01-01

    Intrinsically disordered proteins (IDPs) are involved in a wide range of essential biological processes, including in particular signalling and regulation. We are only beginning, however, to develop a detailed knowledge of the structure and dynamics of these proteins. It is becoming increasingly clear that, as IDPs populate highly heterogeneous states, they should be described in terms of conformational ensembles rather than as individual structures, as is instead most often the case for the native states of globular proteins. Within this context, in this chapter we describe the conceptual tools and methodological aspects associated with the description of the structure and dynamics of IDPs in terms of conformational ensembles. A major emphasis is given to methods in which molecular simulations are used in combination with experimental nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) measurements, as they are emerging as a powerful route to achieve an accurate determination of the conformational properties of IDPs. PMID:26387099

  10. Comparative Protein Structure Modeling Using MODELLER.

    PubMed

    Webb, Benjamin; Sali, Andrej

    2016-01-01

    Comparative protein structure modeling predicts the three-dimensional structure of a given protein sequence (target) based primarily on its alignment to one or more proteins of known structure (templates). The prediction process consists of fold assignment, target-template alignment, model building, and model evaluation. This unit describes how to calculate comparative models using the program MODELLER and how to use the ModBase database of such models, and discusses all four steps of comparative modeling, frequently observed errors, and some applications. Modeling lactate dehydrogenase from Trichomonas vaginalis (TvLDH) is described as an example. The download and installation of the MODELLER software is also described. © 2016 by John Wiley & Sons, Inc. PMID:27322406

  11. Comparative Protein Structure Modeling Using MODELLER.

    PubMed

    Webb, Benjamin; Sali, Andrej

    2016-06-20

    Comparative protein structure modeling predicts the three-dimensional structure of a given protein sequence (target) based primarily on its alignment to one or more proteins of known structure (templates). The prediction process consists of fold assignment, target-template alignment, model building, and model evaluation. This unit describes how to calculate comparative models using the program MODELLER and how to use the ModBase database of such models, and discusses all four steps of comparative modeling, frequently observed errors, and some applications. Modeling lactate dehydrogenase from Trichomonas vaginalis (TvLDH) is described as an example. The download and installation of the MODELLER software is also described. © 2016 by John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

  12. Approximate protein structural alignment in polynomial time.

    PubMed

    Kolodny, Rachel; Linial, Nathan

    2004-08-17

    Alignment of protein structures is a fundamental task in computational molecular biology. Good structural alignments can help detect distant evolutionary relationships that are hard or impossible to discern from protein sequences alone. Here, we study the structural alignment problem as a family of optimization problems and develop an approximate polynomial-time algorithm to solve them. For a commonly used scoring function, the algorithm runs in O(n(10)/epsilon(6)) time, for globular protein of length n, and it detects alignments that score within an additive error of epsilon from all optima. Thus, we prove that this task is computationally feasible, although the method that we introduce is too slow to be a useful everyday tool. We argue that such approximate solutions are, in fact, of greater interest than exact ones because of the noisy nature of experimentally determined protein coordinates. The measurement of similarity between a pair of protein structures used by our algorithm involves the Euclidean distance between the structures (appropriately rigidly transformed). We show that an alternative approach, which relies on internal distance matrices, must incorporate sophisticated geometric ingredients if it is to guarantee optimality and run in polynomial time. We use these observations to visualize the scoring function for several real instances of the problem. Our investigations yield insights on the computational complexity of protein alignment under various scoring functions. These insights can be used in the design of scoring functions for which the optimum can be approximated efficiently and perhaps in the development of efficient algorithms for the multiple structural alignment problem. PMID:15304646

  13. Structural modeling of snow flea antifreeze protein.

    PubMed

    Lin, Feng-Hsu; Graham, Laurie A; Campbell, Robert L; Davies, Peter L

    2007-03-01

    The glycine-rich antifreeze protein recently discovered in snow fleas exhibits strong freezing point depression activity without significantly changing the melting point of its solution (thermal hysteresis). BLAST searches did not detect any protein with significant similarity in current databases. Based on its circular dichroism spectrum, discontinuities in its tripeptide repeat pattern, and intramolecular disulfide bonding, a detailed theoretical model is proposed for the 6.5-kDa isoform. In the model, the 81-residue protein is organized into a bundle of six short polyproline type II helices connected (with one exception) by proline-containing turns. This structure forms two sheets of three parallel helices, oriented antiparallel to each other. The central helices are particularly rich in glycines that facilitate backbone carbonyl-amide hydrogen bonding to four neighboring helices. The modeled structure has similarities to polyglycine II proposed by Crick and Rich in 1955 and is a close match to the polyproline type II antiparallel sheet structure determined by Traub in 1969 for (Pro-Gly-Gly)(n). Whereas the latter two structures are formed by intermolecular interactions, the snow flea antifreeze is stabilized by intramolecular interactions between the helices facilitated by the regularly spaced turns and disulfide bonds. Like several other antifreeze proteins, this modeled protein is amphipathic with a putative hydrophobic ice-binding face. PMID:17158562

  14. Structural modeling of snow flea antifreeze protein.

    PubMed

    Lin, Feng-Hsu; Graham, Laurie A; Campbell, Robert L; Davies, Peter L

    2007-03-01

    The glycine-rich antifreeze protein recently discovered in snow fleas exhibits strong freezing point depression activity without significantly changing the melting point of its solution (thermal hysteresis). BLAST searches did not detect any protein with significant similarity in current databases. Based on its circular dichroism spectrum, discontinuities in its tripeptide repeat pattern, and intramolecular disulfide bonding, a detailed theoretical model is proposed for the 6.5-kDa isoform. In the model, the 81-residue protein is organized into a bundle of six short polyproline type II helices connected (with one exception) by proline-containing turns. This structure forms two sheets of three parallel helices, oriented antiparallel to each other. The central helices are particularly rich in glycines that facilitate backbone carbonyl-amide hydrogen bonding to four neighboring helices. The modeled structure has similarities to polyglycine II proposed by Crick and Rich in 1955 and is a close match to the polyproline type II antiparallel sheet structure determined by Traub in 1969 for (Pro-Gly-Gly)(n). Whereas the latter two structures are formed by intermolecular interactions, the snow flea antifreeze is stabilized by intramolecular interactions between the helices facilitated by the regularly spaced turns and disulfide bonds. Like several other antifreeze proteins, this modeled protein is amphipathic with a putative hydrophobic ice-binding face.

  15. Protein structure and neutral theory of evolution.

    PubMed

    Ptitsyn, O B; Volkenstein, M V

    1986-08-01

    The neutral theory of evolution is extended to the origin of protein molecules. Arguments are presented which suggest that the amino acid sequences of many globular proteins mainly represent "memorized" random sequences while biological evolution reduces to the "editing" these random sequences. Physical requirements for a functional globular protein are formulated and it is shown that many of these requirement do not involve strategical selection of amino acid sequences during biological evolution but are inherent also for typical random sequences. In particular, it is shown that random sequences of polar and amino acid residues can form alpha-helices and beta-strand with lengths and arrangement along the chain similar to those in real globular proteins. These alpha- and beta-regions in random sequences can form three-dimensional folding patterns also similar to those in proteins. The arguments are presented suggesting that even the tight packing of side groups inside protein core do not require very strong biological selection of amino acid sequences either. Thus many structural features of real proteins can exist also in random sequences and the biological selection is needed mainly for the creation of active site of protein and for their stability under physiological conditions.

  16. Enzyme dehydration using Microglassification™ preserves the protein's structure and function.

    PubMed

    Aniket; Gaul, David A; Bitterfield, Deborah L; Su, Jonathan T; Li, Victoria M; Singh, Ishita; Morton, Jackson; Needham, David

    2015-02-01

    Controlled enzyme dehydration using a new processing technique of Microglassification™ has been investigated. Aqueous solution microdroplets of lysozyme, α-chymotrypsin, catalase, and horseradish peroxidase were dehydrated in n-pentanol, n-octanol, n-decanol, triacetin, or butyl lactate, and changes in their structure and function were analyzed upon rehydration. Water solubility and microdroplet dissolution rate in each solvent decreased in the order: butyl lactate > n-pentanol > triacetin > n-octanol > n-decanol. Enzymes Microglassified™ in n-pentanol retained higher activity (93%-98%) than n-octanol (78%-85%) or n-decanol (75%-89%), whereas those Microglassified™ in triacetin (36%-75%) and butyl lactate (48%-79%) retained markedly lower activity. FTIR spectroscopy analyses showed α-helix to β-sheet transformation for all enzymes upon Microglassification™, reflecting a loss of bound water in the dried state; however, the enzymes reverted to native-like conformation upon rehydration. Accelerated stressed-storage tests using Microglassified™ lysozyme showed a significant (p < 0.01) decrease in enzymatic activity from 46,560 ± 2736 to 31,060 ± 4327 units/mg after 3 months of incubation; however, it was comparable to the activity of the lyophilized formulation throughout the test period. These results establish Microglassification™ as a viable technique for enzyme preservation without affecting its structure or function.

  17. Principles of protein-protein recognition from structure to thermodynamics.

    PubMed

    Janin, J

    1995-01-01

    Specific recognition is illustrated by X-ray structures of protease-inhibitor, antigen-antibody and other high affinity complexes including five electron transfer complexes. We attempt to give a physical definition to affinity and specificity on the basis of these data. In a protein-protein complex, specific recognition results from the assembly of complementary surfaces into well-packed interfaces that cover about 1500 A2 and contain about ten hydrogen bonds. These interfaces are larger than between molecules in protein crystals, and smaller than between subunits in oligomeric proteins. We relate the size and chemical nature of interfaces in complexes to the thermodynamical parameters that characterize affinity: the heat capacity and free enthalpy (Gibbs energy) of dissociation at equilibrium, the activation free enthalpy for the dissociation reaction. The same structural and thermodynamical parameters are inadequate for representing the specificity of recognition. We propose instead to describe specificity with the help of statistical physics, and we illustrate the application of the random energy model to antigen-antibody recognition by analyzing results of computer simulations by docking.

  18. Atomic-level analysis of membrane-protein structure.

    PubMed

    Hendrickson, Wayne A

    2016-06-01

    Membrane proteins are substantially more challenging than natively soluble proteins as subjects for structural analysis. Thus, membrane proteins are greatly underrepresented in structural databases. Recently, focused consortium efforts and advances in methodology for protein production, crystallographic analysis and cryo-EM analysis have accelerated the pace of atomic-level structure determination of membrane proteins.

  19. Trends in structural coverage of the protein universe and the impact of the Protein Structure Initiative.

    PubMed

    Khafizov, Kamil; Madrid-Aliste, Carlos; Almo, Steven C; Fiser, Andras

    2014-03-11

    The exponential growth of protein sequence data provides an ever-expanding body of unannotated and misannotated proteins. The National Institutes of Health-supported Protein Structure Initiative and related worldwide structural genomics efforts facilitate functional annotation of proteins through structural characterization. Recently there have been profound changes in the taxonomic composition of sequence databases, which are effectively redefining the scope and contribution of these large-scale structure-based efforts. The faster-growing bacterial genomic entries have overtaken the eukaryotic entries over the last 5 y, but also have become more redundant. Despite the enormous increase in the number of sequences, the overall structural coverage of proteins--including proteins for which reliable homology models can be generated--on the residue level has increased from 30% to 40% over the last 10 y. Structural genomics efforts contributed ∼50% of this new structural coverage, despite determining only ∼10% of all new structures. Based on current trends, it is expected that ∼55% structural coverage (the level required for significant functional insight) will be achieved within 15 y, whereas without structural genomics efforts, realizing this goal will take approximately twice as long.

  20. Reconstruction of SAXS Profiles from Protein Structures

    PubMed Central

    Putnam, Daniel K.; Lowe, Edward W.

    2013-01-01

    Small angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) is used for low resolution structural characterization of proteins often in combination with other experimental techniques. After briefly reviewing the theory of SAXS we discuss computational methods based on 1) the Debye equation and 2) Spherical Harmonics to compute intensity profiles from a particular macromolecular structure. Further, we review how these formulas are parameterized for solvent density and hydration shell adjustment. Finally we introduce our solution to compute SAXS profiles utilizing GPU acceleration. PMID:24688746

  1. Utilization of Protein Crystal Structures in Industry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ishikawa, Kohki

    In industry, protein crystallography is used in mainly two technologies. One is structure-based drug design, and the other is structure-based enzyme engineering. Some successful cases together with recent advances are presented in this article. The cases include the development of an anti-influenza drug, and the introduction of engineered acid phosphatase to the manufacturing process of nucleotides used as umami seasoning.

  2. Structural origins of diamagnetic anisotropy in proteins.

    PubMed Central

    Worcester, D L

    1978-01-01

    Magnetic anisotropy in proteins and polypeptides can be attributed to the diamagnetic anisotropy of the planar peptide bonds. The alpha helix in particular has large anisotropy due to the axial alignment of the peptide bonds. The regular arrangements of the peptide bonds in beta pleated sheet and collagen structures also produce substantial anisotropy, but less than for alpha helix. The anisotropy permits orientation of small structures of these types in magnetic fields of several kilogauss. PMID:281695

  3. Mapping protein and nucleic acid structure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bednyakov, I. V.; Zrelov, P. V.; Ivanov, V. V.; Polozov, R. V.; Sivozhelezov, V. S.; Stepanenko, V. A.; Chirgadze, Yu. N.

    2013-09-01

    Methods and algorithms to analyze surfaces of globular and fibrillar proteins, DNA, and RNA have been developed. These methods for the construction of maps of fragments of these objects in the original cylindrical projection developed herein essentially broaden the possibilities for studying the distribution of charges and surface topography of biological structures. This approach significantly supplements the qualitative characteristics of methods of visualizing biopolymer structures.

  4. Structural mechanisms of nonplanar hemes in proteins

    SciTech Connect

    Shelnutt, J.A.

    1997-05-01

    The objective is to assess the occurrence of nonplanar distortions of hemes and other tetrapyrroles in proteins and to determine the biological function of these distortions. Recently, these distortions were found by us to be conserved among proteins belonging to a functional class. Conservation of the conformation of the heme indicates a possible functional role. Researchers have suggested possible mechanisms by which heme distortions might influence biological properties; however, no heme distortion has yet been shown conclusively to participate in a structural mechanism of hemoprotein function. The specific aims of the proposed work are: (1) to characterize and quantify the distortions of the hemes in all of the more than 300 hemoprotein X-ray crystal structures in terms of displacements along the lowest-frequency normal coordinates, (2) to determine the structural features of the protein component that generate and control these nonplanar distortions by using spectroscopic studies and molecular-mechanics calculations for the native proteins, their mutants and heme-peptide fragments, and model porphyrins, (3) to determine spectroscopic markers for the various types of distortion, and, finally, (4) to discover the functional significance of the nonplanar distortions by correlating function with porphyrin conformation for proteins and model porphyrins.

  5. The lipocalin protein family: structure and function.

    PubMed Central

    Flower, D R

    1996-01-01

    The lipocalin protein family is a large group of small extracellular proteins. The family demonstrates great diversity at the sequence level; however, most lipocalins share three characteristic conserved sequence motifs, the kernel lipocalins, while a group of more divergent family members, the outlier lipocalins, share only one. Belying this sequence dissimilarity, lipocalin crystal structures are highly conserved and comprise a single eight-stranded continuously hydrogen-bonded antiparallel beta-barrel, which encloses an internal ligand-binding site. Together with two other families of ligand-binding proteins, the fatty-acid-binding proteins (FABPs) and the avidins, the lipocalins form part of an overall structural superfamily: the calycins. Members of the lipocalin family are characterized by several common molecular-recognition properties: the ability to bind a range of small hydrophobic molecules, binding to specific cell-surface receptors and the formation of complexes with soluble macromolecules. The varied biological functions of the lipocalins are mediated by one or more of these properties. In the past, the lipocalins have been classified as transport proteins; however, it is now clear that the lipocalins exhibit great functional diversity, with roles in retinol transport, invertebrate cryptic coloration, olfaction and pheromone transport, and prostaglandin synthesis. The lipocalins have also been implicated in the regulation of cell homoeostasis and the modulation of the immune response, and, as carrier proteins, to act in the general clearance of endogenous and exogenous compounds. PMID:8761444

  6. Determination of an ensemble of structures representing the intermediate state of the bacterial immunity protein Im7

    PubMed Central

    Gsponer, Joerg; Hopearuoho, Harri; Whittaker, Sara B.-M.; Spence, Graham R.; Moore, Geoffrey R.; Paci, Emanuele; Radford, Sheena E.; Vendruscolo, Michele

    2006-01-01

    We present a detailed structural characterization of the intermediate state populated during the folding and unfolding of the bacterial immunity protein Im7. We achieve this result by incorporating a variety of experimental data available for this species in molecular dynamics simulations. First, we define the structure of the exchange-competent intermediate state of Im7 by using equilibrium hydrogen-exchange protection factors. Second, we use this ensemble to predict Φ-values and compare the results with the experimentally determined Φ-values of the kinetic refolding intermediate. Third, we predict chemical-shift measurements and compare them with the measured chemical shifts of a mutational variant of Im7 for which the kinetic folding intermediate is the most stable state populated at equilibrium. Remarkably, we found that the properties of the latter two species are predicted with high accuracy from the exchange-competent intermediate that we determined, suggesting that these three states are characterized by a similar architecture in which helices I, II, and IV are aligned in a native-like, but reorganized, manner. Furthermore, the structural ensemble that we obtained enabled us to rationalize the results of tryptophan fluorescence experiments in the WT protein and a series of mutational variants. The results show that the integration of diverse sets of experimental data at relatively low structural resolution is a powerful approach that can provide insights into the structural organization of this conformationally heterogeneous three-helix intermediate with unprecedented detail and highlight the importance of both native and non-native interactions in stabilizing its structure. PMID:16371468

  7. Determination of an ensemble of structures representing the intermediate state of the bacterial immunity protein Im7.

    PubMed

    Gsponer, Joerg; Hopearuoho, Harri; Whittaker, Sara B-M; Spence, Graham R; Moore, Geoffrey R; Paci, Emanuele; Radford, Sheena E; Vendruscolo, Michele

    2006-01-01

    We present a detailed structural characterization of the intermediate state populated during the folding and unfolding of the bacterial immunity protein Im7. We achieve this result by incorporating a variety of experimental data available for this species in molecular dynamics simulations. First, we define the structure of the exchange-competent intermediate state of Im7 by using equilibrium hydrogen-exchange protection factors. Second, we use this ensemble to predict Phi-values and compare the results with the experimentally determined Phi-values of the kinetic refolding intermediate. Third, we predict chemical-shift measurements and compare them with the measured chemical shifts of a mutational variant of Im7 for which the kinetic folding intermediate is the most stable state populated at equilibrium. Remarkably, we found that the properties of the latter two species are predicted with high accuracy from the exchange-competent intermediate that we determined, suggesting that these three states are characterized by a similar architecture in which helices I, II, and IV are aligned in a native-like, but reorganized, manner. Furthermore, the structural ensemble that we obtained enabled us to rationalize the results of tryptophan fluorescence experiments in the WT protein and a series of mutational variants. The results show that the integration of diverse sets of experimental data at relatively low structural resolution is a powerful approach that can provide insights into the structural organization of this conformationally heterogeneous three-helix intermediate with unprecedented detail and highlight the importance of both native and non-native interactions in stabilizing its structure.

  8. Mammalian reoviruses contain a myristoylated structural protein.

    PubMed Central

    Nibert, M L; Schiff, L A; Fields, B N

    1991-01-01

    The structural protein mu 1 of mammalian reoviruses was noted to have a potential N-myristoylation sequence at the amino terminus of its deduced amino acid sequence. Virions labeled with [3H]myristic acid were used to demonstrate that mu 1 is modified by an amide-linked myristoyl group. A myristoylated peptide having a relative molecular weight (Mr) of approximately 4,000 was also shown to be a structural component of virions and was concluded to represent the 4.2-kDa amino-terminal fragment of mu 1 which is generated by the same proteolytic cleavage that yields the carboxy-terminal fragment and major outer capsid protein mu 1C. The myristoylated 4,000-Mr peptide was found to be present in reovirus intermediate subviral particles but to be absent from cores, indicating that it is a component of the outer capsid. A distinct large myristoylated fragment of the intact mu 1 protein was also identified in intermediate subviral particles, but no myristoylated mu-region proteins were identified in cores, consistent with the location of mu 1 in the outer capsid. Similarities between amino-terminal regions of the reovirus mu 1 protein and the poliovirus capsid polyprotein were noted. By analogy with other viruses that contain N-myristoylated structural proteins (particularly picornaviruses), we suggest that the myristoyl group attached to mu 1 and its amino-terminal fragments has an essential role in the assembly and structure of the reovirus outer capsid and in the process of reovirus entry into cells. Images PMID:2002551

  9. Solving coiled-coil protein structures

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Dauter, Zbigniew

    2015-02-26

    With the availability of more than 100,000 entries stored in the Protein Data Bank (PDB) that can be used as search models, molecular replacement (MR) is currently the most popular method of solving crystal structures of macromolecules. Significant methodological efforts have been directed in recent years towards making this approach more powerful and practical. This resulted in the creation of several computer programs, highly automated and user friendly, that are able to successfully solve many structures even by researchers who, although interested in structures of biomolecules, are not very experienced in crystallography.

  10. Simulations of kinetically irreversible protein aggregate structure.

    PubMed Central

    Patro, S Y; Przybycien, T M

    1994-01-01

    We have simulated the structure of kinetically irreversible protein aggregates in two-dimensional space using a lattice-based Monte-Carlo routine. Our model specifically accounts for the intermolecular interactions between hydrophobic and hydrophilic protein surfaces and a polar solvent. The simulations provide information about the aggregate density, the types of inter-monomer contacts and solvent content within the aggregates, the type and extent of solvent exposed perimeter, and the short- and long-range order all as a function of (i) the extent of monomer hydrophobic surface area and its distribution on the model protein surface and (ii) the magnitude of the hydrophobic-hydrophobic contact energy. An increase in the extent of monomer hydrophobic surface area resulted in increased aggregate densities with concomitant decreased system free energies. These effects are accompanied by increases in the number of hydrophobic-hydrophobic contacts and decreases in the solvent-exposed hydrophobic surface area of the aggregates. Grouping monomer hydrophobic surfaces in a single contiguous stretch resulted in lower aggregate densities and lower short range order. More favorable hydrophobic-hydrophobic contact energies produced structures with higher densities but the number of unfavorable protein-protein contacts was also observed to increase; greater configurational entropy produced the opposite effect. Properties predicted by our model are in good qualitative agreement with available experimental observations. Images FIGURE 6 FIGURE 13 PMID:8061184

  11. Exploiting Microbeams for Membrane Protein Structure Determination.

    PubMed

    Warren, Anna J; Axford, Danny; Paterson, Neil G; Owen, Robin L

    2016-01-01

    A reproducible, and sample independent means of predictably obtaining large, well-ordered crystals has proven elusive in macromolecular crystallography. In the structure determination pipeline, crystallisation often proves to be a rate-limiting step, and the process of obtaining even small or badly ordered crystals can prove time-consuming and laborious. This is particularly true in the field of membrane protein crystallography and this is reflected in the limited number of unique membrane protein structures deposited in the protein data bank (less than 650 by June 2016 - http://blanco.biomol.uci.edu/mpstruc ). Over recent years the requirement for, and time and cost associated with obtaining, large crystals has been partially alleviated through the development of beamline instrumentation allowing data collection, and structure solution, from ever-smaller crystals. Advances in several areas have led to a step change in what might be considered achievable during a synchrotron trip over the last decade. This chapter will briefly review the current status of the field, the tools available to ease data collection and processing, and give some examples of exploitation of these for membrane protein microfocus macromolecular crystallography. PMID:27553238

  12. Photoinduced structural changes to protein kinase A

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rozinek, Sarah C.; Thomas, Robert J.; Brancaleon, Lorenzo

    2014-03-01

    The importance of porphyrins in organisms is underscored by the ubiquitous biological and biochemical functions that are mediated by these compounds and by their potential biomedical and biotechnological applications. Protoporphyrin IX (PPIX) is the precursor to heme and has biomedical applications such as its use as a photosensitizer in phototherapy and photodetection of cancer. Among other applications, our group has demonstrated that low-irradiance exposure to laser irradiation of PPIX, Fe-PPIX, or meso-tetrakis (4-sulfonatophenyl) porphyrin (TSPP) non-covalently docked to a protein causes conformational changes in the polypeptide. Such approach can have remarkable consequences in the study of protein structure/function relationship and can be used to prompt non-native protein properties. Therefore we have investigated protein kinase A (PKA), a more relevant protein model towards the photo-treatment of cancer. PKA's enzymatic functions are regulated by the presence of cyclic adenosine monophosphate for intracellular signal transduction involved in, among other things, stimulation of transcription, tumorigenesis in Carney complex and migration of breast carcinoma cells. Since phosphorylation is a necessary step in some cancers and inflammatory diseases, inhibiting the protein kinase, and therefore phosphorylation, may serve to treat these diseases. Changes in absorption, steady-state fluorescence, and fluorescence lifetime indicate: 1) both TSPP and PPIX non-covalently bind to PKA where they maintain photoreactivity; 2) absorptive photoproduct formation occurs only when PKA is bound to TSPP and irradiated; and 3) PKA undergoes secondary structural changes after irradiation with either porphyrin bound. These photoinduced changes could affect the protein's enzymatic and signaling capabilities.

  13. Electronic structure of bacterial surface protein layers

    SciTech Connect

    Maslyuk, Volodymyr V.; Mertig, Ingrid; Bredow, Thomas; Mertig, Michael; Vyalikh, Denis V.; Molodtsov, Serguei L.

    2008-01-15

    We report an approach for the calculation of the electronic density of states of the dried two-dimensional crystalline surface protein layer (S layer) of the bacterium Bacillus sphaericus NCTC 9602. The proposed model is based on the consideration of individual amino acids in the corresponding conformation of the peptide chain which additively contribute to the electronic structure of the entire protein complex. The derived results agree well with the experimental data obtained by means of photoemission (PE), resonant PE, and near-edge x-ray absorption spectroscopy.

  14. Foldons, Protein Structural Modules, and Exons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Panchenko, Anna R.; Luthey-Schulten, Zaida; Wolynes, Peter G.

    1996-03-01

    Foldons, which are kinetically competent, quasi-independently folding units of a protein, may be defined using energy landscape analysis. Foldons can be identified by maxima in a scan of the ratio of a contiguous segment's energetic stability gap to the energy variance of that segment's molten globule states, reflecting the requirement of minimal frustration. The predicted foldons are compared with the exons and structural modules for 16 of the 30 proteins studied. Statistical analysis indicates a strong correlation between the energetically determined foldons and Go's geometrically defined structural modules, but there are marked sequence-dependent effects. There is only a weak correlation of foldons to exons. For γ II-crystallin, myoglobin, barnase, α -lactalbumin, and cytochrome c the foldons and some noncontiguous clusters of foldons compare well with intermediates observed in experiment.

  15. Structural Determinants of Misfolding in Multidomain Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Tian, Pengfei; Best, Robert B.

    2016-01-01

    Recent single molecule experiments, using either atomic force microscopy (AFM) or Förster resonance energy transfer (FRET) have shown that multidomain proteins containing tandem repeats may form stable misfolded structures. Topology-based simulation models have been used successfully to generate models for these structures with domain-swapped features, fully consistent with the available data. However, it is also known that some multidomain protein folds exhibit no evidence for misfolding, even when adjacent domains have identical sequences. Here we pose the question: what factors influence the propensity of a given fold to undergo domain-swapped misfolding? Using a coarse-grained simulation model, we can reproduce the known propensities of multidomain proteins to form domain-swapped misfolds, where data is available. Contrary to what might be naively expected based on the previously described misfolding mechanism, we find that the extent of misfolding is not determined by the relative folding rates or barrier heights for forming the domains present in the initial intermediates leading to folded or misfolded structures. Instead, it appears that the propensity is more closely related to the relative stability of the domains present in folded and misfolded intermediates. We show that these findings can be rationalized if the folded and misfolded domains are part of the same folding funnel, with commitment to one structure or the other occurring only at a relatively late stage of folding. Nonetheless, the results are still fully consistent with the kinetic models previously proposed to explain misfolding, with a specific interpretation of the observed rate coefficients. Finally, we investigate the relation between interdomain linker length and misfolding, and propose a simple alchemical model to predict the propensity for domain-swapped misfolding of multidomain proteins. PMID:27163669

  16. Protein Structure Prediction with Evolutionary Algorithms

    SciTech Connect

    Hart, W.E.; Krasnogor, N.; Pelta, D.A.; Smith, J.

    1999-02-08

    Evolutionary algorithms have been successfully applied to a variety of molecular structure prediction problems. In this paper we reconsider the design of genetic algorithms that have been applied to a simple protein structure prediction problem. Our analysis considers the impact of several algorithmic factors for this problem: the confirmational representation, the energy formulation and the way in which infeasible conformations are penalized, Further we empirically evaluated the impact of these factors on a small set of polymer sequences. Our analysis leads to specific recommendations for both GAs as well as other heuristic methods for solving PSP on the HP model.

  17. Residual structures in the unfolded state of starch-binding domain of glucoamylase revealed by near-UV circular dichroism and protein engineering techniques.

    PubMed

    Ota, Chiaki; Ikeguchi, Masamichi; Tanaka, Akiyoshi; Hamada, Daizo

    2016-10-01

    Protein folding is a thermodynamic process driven by energy gaps between the native and unfolded states. Although a wealth of information is available on the structure of folded species, there is a paucity of data on unfolded species. Here, we analyzed the structural properties of the unfolded state of the starch-binding domain of glucoamylase from Aspergillus niger (SBD) formed in the presence of guanidinium hydrochloride (GuHCl). Although far-UV CD and intrinsic tryptophan fluorescence spectra as well as small angle X-ray scattering suggested that SBD assumes highly unfolded structures in the presence of GuHCl, near-UV circular dichroism of wild-type SBD suggested the presence of residual structures in the unfolded state. Analyses of the unfolded states of tryptophan mutants (W543L, W563A, W590A and W615L) using Similarity Parameter, a modified version of root mean square deviation as a measure of similarity between two spectra, suggested that W543 and W563 have preferences to form native-like residual structures in the GuHCl-unfolded state. In contrast, W615 was entirely unstructured, while W590 tended to form non-native ordered structures in the unfolded state. These data and the amino acid sequence of SBD suggest that local structural propensities in the unfolded state can be determined by the probability of the presence of hydrophobic or charged residues nearby tryptophan residues. PMID:27164491

  18. Residual structures in the unfolded state of starch-binding domain of glucoamylase revealed by near-UV circular dichroism and protein engineering techniques.

    PubMed

    Ota, Chiaki; Ikeguchi, Masamichi; Tanaka, Akiyoshi; Hamada, Daizo

    2016-10-01

    Protein folding is a thermodynamic process driven by energy gaps between the native and unfolded states. Although a wealth of information is available on the structure of folded species, there is a paucity of data on unfolded species. Here, we analyzed the structural properties of the unfolded state of the starch-binding domain of glucoamylase from Aspergillus niger (SBD) formed in the presence of guanidinium hydrochloride (GuHCl). Although far-UV CD and intrinsic tryptophan fluorescence spectra as well as small angle X-ray scattering suggested that SBD assumes highly unfolded structures in the presence of GuHCl, near-UV circular dichroism of wild-type SBD suggested the presence of residual structures in the unfolded state. Analyses of the unfolded states of tryptophan mutants (W543L, W563A, W590A and W615L) using Similarity Parameter, a modified version of root mean square deviation as a measure of similarity between two spectra, suggested that W543 and W563 have preferences to form native-like residual structures in the GuHCl-unfolded state. In contrast, W615 was entirely unstructured, while W590 tended to form non-native ordered structures in the unfolded state. These data and the amino acid sequence of SBD suggest that local structural propensities in the unfolded state can be determined by the probability of the presence of hydrophobic or charged residues nearby tryptophan residues.

  19. The origin of consistent protein structure refinement from structural averaging.

    PubMed

    Park, Hahnbeom; DiMaio, Frank; Baker, David

    2015-06-01

    Recent studies have shown that explicit solvent molecular dynamics (MD) simulation followed by structural averaging can consistently improve protein structure models. We find that improvement upon averaging is not limited to explicit water MD simulation, as consistent improvements are also observed for more efficient implicit solvent MD or Monte Carlo minimization simulations. To determine the origin of these improvements, we examine the changes in model accuracy brought about by averaging at the individual residue level. We find that the improvement in model quality from averaging results from the superposition of two effects: a dampening of deviations from the correct structure in the least well modeled regions, and a reinforcement of consistent movements towards the correct structure in better modeled regions. These observations are consistent with an energy landscape model in which the magnitude of the energy gradient toward the native structure decreases with increasing distance from the native state.

  20. Visualizing chaperone-assisted protein folding.

    PubMed

    Horowitz, Scott; Salmon, Loïc; Koldewey, Philipp; Ahlstrom, Logan S; Martin, Raoul; Quan, Shu; Afonine, Pavel V; van den Bedem, Henry; Wang, Lili; Xu, Qingping; Trievel, Raymond C; Brooks, Charles L; Bardwell, James C A

    2016-07-01

    Challenges in determining the structures of heterogeneous and dynamic protein complexes have greatly hampered past efforts to obtain a mechanistic understanding of many important biological processes. One such process is chaperone-assisted protein folding. Obtaining structural ensembles of chaperone-substrate complexes would ultimately reveal how chaperones help proteins fold into their native state. To address this problem, we devised a new structural biology approach based on X-ray crystallography, termed residual electron and anomalous density (READ). READ enabled us to visualize even sparsely populated conformations of the substrate protein immunity protein 7 (Im7) in complex with the Escherichia coli chaperone Spy, and to capture a series of snapshots depicting the various folding states of Im7 bound to Spy. The ensemble shows that Spy-associated Im7 samples conformations ranging from unfolded to partially folded to native-like states and reveals how a substrate can explore its folding landscape while being bound to a chaperone. PMID:27239796

  1. Helical Membrane Protein Conformations and their Environment

    PubMed Central

    Cross, Timothy A.; Murray, Dylan T.; Watts, Anthony

    2013-01-01

    Evidence that membrane proteins respond conformationally and functionally to their environment is gaining pace. Structural models, by necessity, have been characterized in preparations where the protein has been removed from its native environment. Different structural methods have used various membrane mimetics that have recently included lipid bilayers as a more native-like environment. Structural tools applied to lipid bilayer-embedded integral proteins are informing us about important generic characteristics of how membrane proteins respond to the lipid environment as compared with their response to other non-lipid environments. Here, we review the current status of the field, with specific reference to observations of some well-studied α-helical membrane proteins, as a starting point to aid the development of possible generic principals for model refinement. PMID:23996195

  2. Discriminating the native structure from decoys using scoring functions based on the residue packing in globular proteins

    PubMed Central

    2009-01-01

    Background Setting the rules for the identification of a stable conformation of a protein is of utmost importance for the efficient generation of structures in computer simulation. For structure prediction, a considerable number of possible models are generated from which the best model has to be selected. Results Two scoring functions, Rs and Rp, based on the consideration of packing of residues, which indicate if the conformation of an amino acid sequence is native-like, are presented. These are defined using the solvent accessible surface area (ASA) and the partner number (PN) (other residues that are within 4.5 Å) of a particular residue. The two functions evaluate the deviation from the average packing properties (ASA or PN) of all residues in a polypeptide chain corresponding to a model of its three-dimensional structure. While simple in concept and computationally less intensive, both the functions are at least as efficient as any other energy functions in discriminating the native structure from decoys in a large number of standard decoy sets, as well as on models submitted for the targets of CASP7. Rs appears to be slightly more effective than Rp, as determined by the number of times the native structure possesses the minimum value for the function and its separation from the average value for the decoys. Conclusion Two parameters, Rs and Rp, are discussed that can very efficiently recognize the native fold for a sequence from an ensemble of decoy structures. Unlike many other algorithms that rely on the use of composite scoring function, these are based on a single parameter, viz., the accessible surface area (or the number of residues in contact), but still able to capture the essential attribute of the native fold. PMID:20038291

  3. Effect of trehalose on protein structure

    PubMed Central

    Jain, Nishant Kumar; Roy, Ipsita

    2009-01-01

    Trehalose is a ubiquitous molecule that occurs in lower and higher life forms but not in mammals. Till about 40 years ago, trehalose was visualized as a storage molecule, aiding the release of glucose for carrying out cellular functions. This perception has now changed dramatically. The role of trehalose has expanded, and this molecule has now been implicated in a variety of situations. Trehalose is synthesized as a stress-responsive factor when cells are exposed to environmental stresses like heat, cold, oxidation, desiccation, and so forth. When unicellular organisms are exposed to stress, they adapt by synthesizing huge amounts of trehalose, which helps them in retaining cellular integrity. This is thought to occur by prevention of denaturation of proteins by trehalose, which would otherwise degrade under stress. This explanation may be rational, since recently, trehalose has been shown to slow down the rate of polyglutamine-mediated protein aggregation and the resultant pathogenesis by stabilizing an aggregation-prone model protein. In recent years, trehalose has also proved useful in the cryopreservation of sperm and stem cells and in the development of a highly reliable organ preservation solution. This review aims to highlight the changing perception of the role of trehalose over the last 10 years and to propose common mechanisms that may be involved in all the myriad ways in which trehalose stabilizes protein structures. These will take into account the structure of trehalose molecule and its interactions with its environment, and the explanations will focus on the role of trehalose in preventing protein denaturation. PMID:19177348

  4. How Closely Related Are Conformations of Protein Ions Sampled by IM-MS to Native Solution Structures?

    PubMed

    Chen, Shu-Hua; Russell, David H

    2015-09-01

    Here, we critically evaluate the effects of changes in the ion internal energy (E(int)) on ion-neutral collision cross sections (CCS) of ions of two structurally diverse proteins, specifically the [M + 6H](6+) ion of ubiquitin (ubq(6+)), the [M + 5H](5+) ion of the intrinsically disordered protein (IDP) apo-metallothionein-2A (MT), and its partially- and fully-metalated isoform, the [CdiMT](5+) ion. The ion-neutral CCS for ions formed by "native-state" ESI show a strong dependence on E(int). Collisional activation is used to increase E(int) prior to the ions entering and within the traveling wave (TW) ion mobility analyzer. Comparisons of experimental CCSs with those generated by molecular dynamics (MD) simulation for solution-phase ions and solvent-free ions as a function of temperature provide new insights about conformational preferences and retention of solution conformations. The E(int)-dependent CCSs, which reveal increased conformational diversity of the ion population, are discussed in terms of folding/unfolding of solvent-free ions. For example, ubiquitin ions that have low internal energies retain native-like conformations, whereas ions that are heated by collisional activation possess higher internal energies and yield a broader range of CCS owing to increased conformational diversity due to losses of secondary and tertiary structures. In contrast, the CCS profile for the IDP apoMT is consistent with kinetic trapping of an ion population composed of a wide range of conformers, and as the E(int) is increased, these structurally labile conformers unfold to an elongated conformation.

  5. How Closely Related Are Conformations of Protein Ions Sampled by IM-MS to Native Solution Structures?

    PubMed

    Chen, Shu-Hua; Russell, David H

    2015-09-01

    Here, we critically evaluate the effects of changes in the ion internal energy (E(int)) on ion-neutral collision cross sections (CCS) of ions of two structurally diverse proteins, specifically the [M + 6H](6+) ion of ubiquitin (ubq(6+)), the [M + 5H](5+) ion of the intrinsically disordered protein (IDP) apo-metallothionein-2A (MT), and its partially- and fully-metalated isoform, the [CdiMT](5+) ion. The ion-neutral CCS for ions formed by "native-state" ESI show a strong dependence on E(int). Collisional activation is used to increase E(int) prior to the ions entering and within the traveling wave (TW) ion mobility analyzer. Comparisons of experimental CCSs with those generated by molecular dynamics (MD) simulation for solution-phase ions and solvent-free ions as a function of temperature provide new insights about conformational preferences and retention of solution conformations. The E(int)-dependent CCSs, which reveal increased conformational diversity of the ion population, are discussed in terms of folding/unfolding of solvent-free ions. For example, ubiquitin ions that have low internal energies retain native-like conformations, whereas ions that are heated by collisional activation possess higher internal energies and yield a broader range of CCS owing to increased conformational diversity due to losses of secondary and tertiary structures. In contrast, the CCS profile for the IDP apoMT is consistent with kinetic trapping of an ion population composed of a wide range of conformers, and as the E(int) is increased, these structurally labile conformers unfold to an elongated conformation. PMID:26115967

  6. The PDB is a covering set of small protein structures.

    PubMed

    Kihara, Daisuke; Skolnick, Jeffrey

    2003-12-01

    Structure comparisons of all representative proteins have been done. Employing the relative root mean square deviation (RMSD) from native enables the assessment of the statistical significance of structure alignments of different lengths in terms of a Z-score. Two conclusions emerge: first, proteins with their native fold can be distinguished by their Z-score. Second and somewhat surprising, all small proteins up to 100 residues in length have significant structure alignments to other proteins in a different secondary structure and fold class; i.e. 24.0% of them have 60% coverage by a template protein with a RMSD below 3.5A and 6.0% have 70% coverage. If the restriction that we align proteins only having different secondary structure types is removed, then in a representative benchmark set of proteins of 200 residues or smaller, 93% can be aligned to a single template structure (with average sequence identity of 9.8%), with a RMSD less than 4A, and 79% average coverage. In this sense, the current Protein Data Bank (PDB) is almost a covering set of small protein structures. The length of the aligned region (relative to the whole protein length) does not differ among the top hit proteins, indicating that protein structure space is highly dense. For larger proteins, non-related proteins can cover a significant portion of the structure. Moreover, these top hit proteins are aligned to different parts of the target protein, so that almost the entire molecule can be covered when combined. The number of proteins required to cover a target protein is very small, e.g. the top ten hit proteins can give 90% coverage below a RMSD of 3.5A for proteins up to 320 residues long. These results give a new view of the nature of protein structure space, and its implications for protein structure prediction are discussed.

  7. Quaternion maps of global protein structure.

    PubMed

    Hanson, Andrew J; Thakur, Sidharth

    2012-09-01

    The geometric structures of proteins are vital to the understanding of biochemical interactions. However, there is much yet to be understood about the spatial arrangements of the chains of amino acids making up any given protein. In particular, while conventional analysis tools like the Ramachandran plot supply some insight into the local relative orientation of pairs of amino acid residues, they provide little information about the global relative orientations of large groups of residues. We apply quaternion maps to families of coordinate frames defined naturally by amino acid residue structures as a way to expose global spatial relationships among residues within proteins. The resulting visualizations enable comparisons of absolute orientations as well as relative orientations, and thus generalize the framework of the Ramachandran plot. There are a variety of possible quaternion frames and visual representation strategies that can be chosen, and very complex quaternion maps can result. Just as Ramachandran plots are useful for addressing particular questions and not others, quaternion tools have characteristic domains of relevance. In particular, quaternion maps show great potential for answering specific questions about global residue alignment in crystallographic data and statistical orientation properties in Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) data that are very difficult to treat by other methods. PMID:23099777

  8. DAPS: Database of Aligned Protein Structures

    DOE Data Explorer

    Mallick, Parag; Rice, Danny; Eisenberg, David

    DAPS is based on the FSSP, DSSP, PDB and CATH databases. There also exists a subset of DAPS known as DDAPS (also pronounced DAPS) - Database of Distant Aligned Protein Structures. It is a database of structures that have low sequence similarity but share a similar fold. There are a number of filters used to make the DDAPS list more useful. The algorithm requires that an FSSP file exists for one of the members of a pair and that the other member is listed in that FSSP file. It requires that each member of the pair be within the CATH database and share a common CAT classification. It also requires that the secondary structure can be determined by DSSP. How is DAPS constructed? We begin with the set of all chains from the current release of the PDB. An all on all search is done on the list to find pairs that have the same fold acoording to both the FSSP and CATH databases and clustered into groups by a representative structure (representative structures have less than 25% sequence identity to each other). For each protein pair, regions aligned by the DALI program are extracted from the corresponding FSSP file, or recomputed using DALI-lite. In domain DAPS, only regions that are called "domains" by CATH are included in the alignment. The amino acid type, secondary structure type, and solvent accessibility are extracted from the DSSP file and written pairwise into the database. DAPS is updated with updates of CATH.[Taken from http://nihserver.mbi.ucla.edu/DAPS/daps_help.html

  9. Construction of proteins with molecular recognition capabilities using α3β3 de novo protein scaffolds.

    PubMed

    Okura, Hiromichi; Mihara, Hisakazu; Takahashi, Tsuyoshi

    2013-10-01

    The molecular recognition ability of proteins is essential in biological systems, and therefore a considerable amount of effort has been devoted to constructing desired target-binding proteins using a variety of naturally occurring proteins as scaffolds. However, since generating a binding site in a native protein can often affect its structural properties, highly stable de novo protein scaffolds may be more amenable than the native proteins. We previously reported the generation of de novo proteins comprising three α-helices and three β-strands (α3β3) from a genetic library coding simplified amino acid sets. Two α3β3 de novo proteins, vTAJ13 and vTAJ36, fold into a native-like stable and molten globule-like structures, respectively, even though the proteins have similar amino acid compositions. Here, we attempted to create binding sites for the vTAJ13 and vTAJ36 proteins to prove the utility of de novo designed artificial proteins as a molecular recognition tool. Randomization of six amino acids at two linker sites of vTAJ13 and vTAJ36 followed by biopanning generated binding proteins that recognize the target molecules, fluorescein and green fluorescent protein, with affinities of 10(-7)-10(-8) M. Of note, the selected proteins from the vTAJ13-based library tended to recognize the target molecules with high specificity, probably due to the native-like stable structure of vTAJ13. Our studies provide an example of the potential of de novo protein scaffolds, which are composed of a simplified amino acid set, to recognize a variety of target compounds.

  10. Are distance-dependent statistical potentials considering three interacting bodies superior to two-body statistical potentials for protein structure prediction?

    PubMed

    Ghomi, Hamed Tabatabaei; Thompson, Jared J; Lill, Markus A

    2014-10-01

    Distance-based statistical potentials have long been used to model condensed matter systems, e.g. as scoring functions in differentiating native-like protein structures from decoys. These scoring functions are based on the assumption that the total free energy of the protein can be calculated as the sum of pairwise free energy contributions derived from a statistical analysis of pair-distribution functions. However, this fundamental assumption has been challenged theoretically. In fact the free energy of a system with N particles is only exactly related to the N-body distribution function. Based on this argument coarse-grained multi-body statistical potentials have been developed to capture higher-order interactions. Having a coarse representation of the protein and using geometric contacts instead of pairwise interaction distances renders these models insufficient in modeling details of multi-body effects. In this study, we investigated if extending distance-dependent pairwise atomistic statistical potentials to corresponding interaction functions that are conditional on a third interacting body, defined as quasi-three-body statistical potentials, could model details of three-body interactions. We also tested if this approach could improve the predictive capabilities of statistical scoring functions for protein structure prediction. We analyzed the statistical dependency between two simultaneous pairwise interactions and showed that there is surprisingly little if any dependency of a third interacting site on pairwise atomistic statistical potentials. Also the protein structure prediction performance of these quasi-three-body potentials is comparable with their corresponding two-body counterparts. The scoring functions developed in this study showed better or comparable performances compared to some widely used scoring functions for protein structure prediction. PMID:25212727

  11. Structure prediction of magnetosome-associated proteins.

    PubMed

    Nudelman, Hila; Zarivach, Raz

    2014-01-01

    Magnetotactic bacteria (MTB) are Gram-negative bacteria that can navigate along geomagnetic fields. This ability is a result of a unique intracellular organelle, the magnetosome. These organelles are composed of membrane-enclosed magnetite (Fe3O4) or greigite (Fe3S4) crystals ordered into chains along the cell. Magnetosome formation, assembly, and magnetic nano-crystal biomineralization are controlled by magnetosome-associated proteins (MAPs). Most MAP-encoding genes are located in a conserved genomic region - the magnetosome island (MAI). The MAI appears to be conserved in all MTB that were analyzed so far, although the MAI size and organization differs between species. It was shown that MAI deletion leads to a non-magnetic phenotype, further highlighting its important role in magnetosome formation. Today, about 28 proteins are known to be involved in magnetosome formation, but the structures and functions of most MAPs are unknown. To reveal the structure-function relationship of MAPs we used bioinformatics tools in order to build homology models as a way to understand their possible role in magnetosome formation. Here we present a predicted 3D structural models' overview for all known Magnetospirillum gryphiswaldense strain MSR-1 MAPs.

  12. GIS: a comprehensive source for protein structure similarities.

    PubMed

    Guerler, Aysam; Knapp, Ernst-Walter

    2010-07-01

    A web service for analysis of protein structures that are sequentially or non-sequentially similar was generated. Recently, the non-sequential structure alignment algorithm GANGSTA+ was introduced. GANGSTA+ can detect non-sequential structural analogs for proteins stated to possess novel folds. Since GANGSTA+ ignores the polypeptide chain connectivity of secondary structure elements (i.e. alpha-helices and beta-strands), it is able to detect structural similarities also between proteins whose sequences were reshuffled during evolution. GANGSTA+ was applied in an all-against-all comparison on the ASTRAL40 database (SCOP version 1.75), which consists of >10,000 protein domains yielding about 55 x 10(6) possible protein structure alignments. Here, we provide the resulting protein structure alignments as a public web-based service, named GANGSTA+ Internet Services (GIS). We also allow to browse the ASTRAL40 database of protein structures with GANGSTA+ relative to an externally given protein structure using different constraints to select specific results. GIS allows us to analyze protein structure families according to the SCOP classification scheme. Additionally, users can upload their own protein structures for pairwise protein structure comparison, alignment against all protein structures of the ASTRAL40 database (SCOP version 1.75) or symmetry analysis. GIS is publicly available at http://agknapp.chemie.fu-berlin.de/gplus.

  13. A soft, mean-field potential derived from crystal contacts for predicting protein-protein interactions.

    PubMed

    Robert, C H; Janin, J

    1998-11-13

    We derive a series of novel mean-field potentials from statistical analyses of protein-protein contact regions in crystal structures. These potentials are parameterized in terms of the number of contacts made by an atom in an interface region. Such an explicit number dependence avoids the pairwise assumption and is intrinsically softer than distance-based approaches. It appears well suited to protein-protein docking applications, for which detailed interface geometry is generally lacking. In tests including protein complex reconstitution and docking of independently determined protein structures, we show that a hydrophobic potential of this type performs remarkably well, identifying native-like complexes by their favourable potential energies and in several cases demonstrating a recognition energy gap of 4-8 kcal/mol according to the system.

  14. Structure based alignment and clustering of proteins (STRALCP)

    DOEpatents

    Zemla, Adam T.; Zhou, Carol E.; Smith, Jason R.; Lam, Marisa W.

    2013-06-18

    Disclosed are computational methods of clustering a set of protein structures based on local and pair-wise global similarity values. Pair-wise local and global similarity values are generated based on pair-wise structural alignments for each protein in the set of protein structures. Initially, the protein structures are clustered based on pair-wise local similarity values. The protein structures are then clustered based on pair-wise global similarity values. For each given cluster both a representative structure and spans of conserved residues are identified. The representative protein structure is used to assign newly-solved protein structures to a group. The spans are used to characterize conservation and assign a "structural footprint" to the cluster.

  15. Protein recovery from inclusion bodies of Escherichia coli using mild solubilization process.

    PubMed

    Singh, Anupam; Upadhyay, Vaibhav; Upadhyay, Arun Kumar; Singh, Surinder Mohan; Panda, Amulya Kumar

    2015-03-25

    Formation of inclusion bodies in bacterial hosts poses a major challenge for large scale recovery of bioactive proteins. The process of obtaining bioactive protein from inclusion bodies is labor intensive and the yields of recombinant protein are often low. Here we review the developments in the field that are targeted at improving the yield, as well as quality of the recombinant protein by optimizing the individual steps of the process, especially solubilization of the inclusion bodies and refolding of the solubilized protein. Mild solubilization methods have been discussed which are based on the understanding of the fact that protein molecules in inclusion body aggregates have native-like structure. These methods solubilize the inclusion body aggregates while preserving the native-like protein structure. Subsequent protein refolding and purification results in high recovery of bioactive protein. Other parameters which influence the overall recovery of bioactive protein from inclusion bodies have also been discussed. A schematic model describing the utility of mild solubilization methods for high throughput recovery of bioactive protein has also been presented.

  16. Structural investigation of protein kinase C inhibitors

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Barak, D.; Shibata, M.; Rein, R.

    1991-01-01

    The phospholipid and Ca2+ dependent protein kinase (PKC) plays an essential role in a variety of cellular events. Inhibition of PKC was shown to arrest growth in tumor cell cultures making it a target for possible antitumor therapy. Calphostins are potent inhibitors of PKC with high affinity for the enzyme regulatory site. Structural characteristics of calphostins, which confer the inhibitory activity, are investigated by comparing their optimized structures with the existing models for PKC activation. The resulting model of inhibitory activity assumes interaction with two out of the three electrostatic interaction sites postulated for activators. The model shows two sites of hydrophobic interaction and enables the inhibitory activity of gossypol to be accounted for.

  17. NMR Studies of Protein Structure and Dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Xiang

    Available from UMI in association with The British Library. Requires signed TDF. This thesis describes applications of 2D homonuclear NMR techniques to the study of protein structure and dynamics in solution. The sequential assignments for the 3G-residue bovine Pancreatic Polypeptide (bPP) are reported. The secondary and tertiary structure of bPP in solution has been determined from experimental NMR data. bPP has a well defined C-terminal alpha-helix and a rather ordered conformation in the N-terminal region. The two segments are joined by a turn which is poorly defined. Both the N- and the C-terminus are highly disordered. The mean solution structure of bPP is remarkably similar to the crystal structure of avian Pancreatic Polypeptide (aPP). The average conformations of most side-chains from the alpha-helix of bPP in solution are closely similar to those of aPP in the crystalline state. A large number of side-chains of bPP, however, show significant conformational averaging in solution. The 89-residue kringle domain of urokinase from both human and recombinant sources has been investigated. Sequential assignments based primarily on the recombinant sample and the determination of secondary structure are presented. Two helices have been identified; one of these corresponds to that reported for t-PA kringle 2, but does not exist in other kringles with known structures. The second helix is thus far unique to the urokinase kringle. Three antiparallel beta-sheets and three tight turns have also been identified. The tertiary fold of the molecule conforms broadly to that found for other kringles. Three regions in the urokinase kringle exhibit high local mobility; one of these, the Pro56-Pro62 segment, forms part of the proposed binding site. The other two mobile regions are the N- and C-termini which are likely to form the interfaces between the kringle and the other two domains (EGF and protease) in urokinase. The differential dynamic behaviours of the kringle and

  18. 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

  19. 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

  20. Post-expression strategies for structural investigations of membrane proteins.

    PubMed

    Columbus, Linda

    2015-06-01

    Currently, membrane proteins only comprise 1.5% of the protein data bank and, thus, still remain a challenge for structural biologists. Expression, stabilization in membrane mimics (e.g. detergent), heterogeneity (conformational and chemical), and crystallization in the presence of a membrane mimic are four major bottlenecks encountered. In response, several post-expression protein modifications have been utilized to facilitate structure determination of membrane proteins. This review highlights four approaches: limited proteolysis, deglycosylation, cysteine alkylation, and lysine methylation. Combined these approaches have facilitated the structure determination of more than 40 membrane proteins and, therefore, are a useful addition to the membrane protein structural biologist's toolkit.

  1. Novel protein folds and their nonsequential structural analogs

    PubMed Central

    Guerler, Aysam; Knapp, Ernst-Walter

    2008-01-01

    Newly determined protein structures are classified to belong to a new fold, if the structures are sufficiently dissimilar from all other so far known protein structures. To analyze structural similarities of proteins, structure alignment tools are used. We demonstrate that the usage of nonsequential structure alignment tools, which neglect the polypeptide chain connectivity, can yield structure alignments with significant similarities between proteins of known three-dimensional structure and newly determined protein structures that possess a new fold. The recently introduced protein structure alignment tool, GANGSTA, is specialized to perform nonsequential alignments with proper assignment of the secondary structure types by focusing on helices and strands only. In the new version, GANGSTA+, the underlying algorithms were completely redesigned, yielding enhanced quality of structure alignments, offering alignment against a larger database of protein structures, and being more efficient. We applied DaliLite, TM-align, and GANGSTA+ on three protein crystal structures considered to be novel folds. Applying GANGSTA+ to these novel folds, we find proteins in the ASTRAL40 database, which possess significant structural similarities, albeit the alignments are nonsequential and in some cases involve secondary structure elements aligned in reverse orientation. A web server is available at http://agknapp.chemie.fu-berlin.de/gplus for pairwise alignment, visualization, and database comparison. PMID:18583523

  2. Structure-based druggability assessment of the mammalian structural proteome with inclusion of light protein flexibility.

    PubMed

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

    2014-07-01

    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.

  3. Effect of pH on the structure of the recombinant C-terminal domain of Nephila clavipes dragline silk protein.

    PubMed

    Gauthier, Martin; Leclerc, Jérémie; Lefèvre, Thierry; Gagné, Stéphane M; Auger, Michèle

    2014-12-01

    Spider silk proteins undergo a complex series of molecular events before being converted into an outstanding hierarchically organized fiber. Recent literature has underlined the crucial role of the C-terminal domain in silk protein stability and fiber formation. However, the effect of pH remains to be clarified. We have thus developed an efficient purification protocol to obtain stable native-like recombinant MaSp1 C-terminal domain of Nephila clavipes (NCCTD). Its structure was investigated as a function of pH using circular dichroism, fluorescence and solution NMR spectroscopy. The results show that the NCCTD structure is very sensitive to pH and suggest that a molten globule state occurs at pH 5.0 and below. Electronic microscopy images also indicate fiber formation at low pH and coarser globular particles at more basic pH. The results are consistent with a spinning process model where the NCCTD acts as an aggregation nucleus favoring the β-aggregation of the hydrophobic polyalanine repeats upon spinning.

  4. Structural determination of intact proteins using mass spectrometry

    DOEpatents

    Kruppa, Gary; Schoeniger, Joseph S.; Young, Malin M.

    2008-05-06

    The present invention relates to novel methods of determining the sequence and structure of proteins. Specifically, the present invention allows for the analysis of intact proteins within a mass spectrometer. Therefore, preparatory separations need not be performed prior to introducing a protein sample into the mass spectrometer. Also disclosed herein are new instrumental developments for enhancing the signal from the desired modified proteins, methods for producing controlled protein fragments in the mass spectrometer, eliminating complex microseparations, and protein preparatory chemical steps necessary for cross-linking based protein structure determination.Additionally, the preferred method of the present invention involves the determination of protein structures utilizing a top-down analysis of protein structures to search for covalent modifications. In the preferred method, intact proteins are ionized and fragmented within the mass spectrometer.

  5. Membrane protein structures without crystals, by single particle electron cryomicroscopy

    PubMed Central

    Vinothkumar, Kutti R

    2015-01-01

    It is an exciting period in membrane protein structural biology with a number of medically important protein structures determined at a rapid pace. However, two major hurdles still remain in the structural biology of membrane proteins. One is the inability to obtain large amounts of protein for crystallization and the other is the failure to get well-diffracting crystals. With single particle electron cryomicroscopy, both these problems can be overcome and high-resolution structures of membrane proteins and other labile protein complexes can be obtained with very little protein and without the need for crystals. In this review, I highlight recent advances in electron microscopy, detectors and software, which have allowed determination of medium to high-resolution structures of membrane proteins and complexes that have been difficult to study by other structural biological techniques. PMID:26435463

  6. Protein folding, protein structure and the origin of life: Theoretical methods and solutions of dynamical problems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Weaver, D. L.

    1982-01-01

    Theoretical methods and solutions of the dynamics of protein folding, protein aggregation, protein structure, and the origin of life are discussed. The elements of a dynamic model representing the initial stages of protein folding are presented. The calculation and experimental determination of the model parameters are discussed. The use of computer simulation for modeling protein folding is considered.

  7. Predicting the protein-protein interactions using primary structures with predicted protein surface

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Many biological functions involve various protein-protein interactions (PPIs). Elucidating such interactions is crucial for understanding general principles of cellular systems. Previous studies have shown the potential of predicting PPIs based on only sequence information. Compared to approaches that require other auxiliary information, these sequence-based approaches can be applied to a broader range of applications. Results This study presents a novel sequence-based method based on the assumption that protein-protein interactions are more related to amino acids at the surface than those at the core. The present method considers surface information and maintains the advantage of relying on only sequence data by including an accessible surface area (ASA) predictor recently proposed by the authors. This study also reports the experiments conducted to evaluate a) the performance of PPI prediction achieved by including the predicted surface and b) the quality of the predicted surface in comparison with the surface obtained from structures. The experimental results show that surface information helps to predict interacting protein pairs. Furthermore, the prediction performance achieved by using the surface estimated with the ASA predictor is close to that using the surface obtained from protein structures. Conclusion This work presents a sequence-based method that takes into account surface information for predicting PPIs. The proposed procedure of surface identification improves the prediction performance with an F-measure of 5.1%. The extracted surfaces are also valuable in other biomedical applications that require similar information. PMID:20122202

  8. Fold assessment for comparative protein structure modeling.

    PubMed

    Melo, Francisco; Sali, Andrej

    2007-11-01

    Accurate and automated assessment of both geometrical errors and incompleteness of comparative protein structure models is necessary for an adequate use of the models. Here, we describe a composite score for discriminating between models with the correct and incorrect fold. To find an accurate composite score, we designed and applied a genetic algorithm method that searched for a most informative subset of 21 input model features as well as their optimized nonlinear transformation into the composite score. The 21 input features included various statistical potential scores, stereochemistry quality descriptors, sequence alignment scores, geometrical descriptors, and measures of protein packing. The optimized composite score was found to depend on (1) a statistical potential z-score for residue accessibilities and distances, (2) model compactness, and (3) percentage sequence identity of the alignment used to build the model. The accuracy of the composite score was compared with the accuracy of assessment by single and combined features as well as by other commonly used assessment methods. The testing set was representative of models produced by automated comparative modeling on a genomic scale. The composite score performed better than any other tested score in terms of the maximum correct classification rate (i.e., 3.3% false positives and 2.5% false negatives) as well as the sensitivity and specificity across the whole range of thresholds. The composite score was implemented in our program MODELLER-8 and was used to assess models in the MODBASE database that contains comparative models for domains in approximately 1.3 million protein sequences.

  9. 3-Dimensional Protein Structure of Influenza

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2004-01-01

    The loss of productivity due to flu is staggering. Costs range as much as $20 billio a year. High mutation rates of the flu virus have hindered development of new drugs or vaccines. The secret lies in a small molecule which is attached to the host cell's surface. Each flu virus, no matter what strain, must remove this small molecule to escape the host cell to spread infection. Using data from space and earth grown crystals, researchers from the Center of Macromolecular Crystallography (CMC) are desining drugs to bind with this protein's active site. This lock and key fit reduces the spread of flu in the body by blocking its escape route. In collaboration with its corporate partner, the CMC has refined drug structure in preparation for clinical trials. Tested and approved relief is expected to reach drugstores by year 2004.

  10. Connectivity independent protein-structure alignment: a hierarchical approach

    PubMed Central

    Kolbeck, Bjoern; May, Patrick; Schmidt-Goenner, Tobias; Steinke, Thomas; Knapp, Ernst-Walter

    2006-01-01

    Background Protein-structure alignment is a fundamental tool to study protein function, evolution and model building. In the last decade several methods for structure alignment were introduced, but most of them ignore that structurally similar proteins can share the same spatial arrangement of secondary structure elements (SSE) but differ in the underlying polypeptide chain connectivity (non-sequential SSE connectivity). Results We perform protein-structure alignment using a two-level hierarchical approach implemented in the program GANGSTA. On the first level, pair contacts and relative orientations between SSEs (i.e. α-helices and β-strands) are maximized with a genetic algorithm (GA). On the second level residue pair contacts from the best SSE alignments are optimized. We have tested the method on visually optimized structure alignments of protein pairs (pairwise mode) and for database scans. For a given protein structure, our method is able to detect significant structural similarity of functionally important folds with non-sequential SSE connectivity. The performance for structure alignments with strictly sequential SSE connectivity is comparable to that of other structure alignment methods. Conclusion As demonstrated for several applications, GANGSTA finds meaningful protein-structure alignments independent of the SSE connectivity. GANGSTA is able to detect structural similarity of protein folds that are assigned to different superfamilies but nevertheless possess similar structures and perform related functions, even if these proteins differ in SSE connectivity. PMID:17118190

  11. Structural hot spots for the solubility of globular proteins

    PubMed Central

    Ganesan, Ashok; Siekierska, Aleksandra; Beerten, Jacinte; Brams, Marijke; Van Durme, Joost; De Baets, Greet; Van der Kant, Rob; Gallardo, Rodrigo; Ramakers, Meine; Langenberg, Tobias; Wilkinson, Hannah; De Smet, Frederik; Ulens, Chris; Rousseau, Frederic; Schymkowitz, Joost

    2016-01-01

    Natural selection shapes protein solubility to physiological requirements and recombinant applications that require higher protein concentrations are often problematic. This raises the question whether the solubility of natural protein sequences can be improved. We here show an anti-correlation between the number of aggregation prone regions (APRs) in a protein sequence and its solubility, suggesting that mutational suppression of APRs provides a simple strategy to increase protein solubility. We show that mutations at specific positions within a protein structure can act as APR suppressors without affecting protein stability. These hot spots for protein solubility are both structure and sequence dependent but can be computationally predicted. We demonstrate this by reducing the aggregation of human α-galactosidase and protective antigen of Bacillus anthracis through mutation. Our results indicate that many proteins possess hot spots allowing to adapt protein solubility independently of structure and function. PMID:26905391

  12. Ensemble-based evaluation for protein structure models

    PubMed Central

    Jamroz, Michal; Kolinski, Andrzej; Kihara, Daisuke

    2016-01-01

    Motivation: Comparing protein tertiary structures is a fundamental procedure in structural biology and protein bioinformatics. Structure comparison is important particularly for evaluating computational protein structure models. Most of the model structure evaluation methods perform rigid body superimposition of a structure model to its crystal structure and measure the difference of the corresponding residue or atom positions between them. However, these methods neglect intrinsic flexibility of proteins by treating the native structure as a rigid molecule. Because different parts of proteins have different levels of flexibility, for example, exposed loop regions are usually more flexible than the core region of a protein structure, disagreement of a model to the native needs to be evaluated differently depending on the flexibility of residues in a protein. Results: We propose a score named FlexScore for comparing protein structures that consider flexibility of each residue in the native state of proteins. Flexibility information may be extracted from experiments such as NMR or molecular dynamics simulation. FlexScore considers an ensemble of conformations of a protein described as a multivariate Gaussian distribution of atomic displacements and compares a query computational model with the ensemble. We compare FlexScore with other commonly used structure similarity scores over various examples. FlexScore agrees with experts’ intuitive assessment of computational models and provides information of practical usefulness of models. Availability and implementation: https://bitbucket.org/mjamroz/flexscore Contact: dkihara@purdue.edu Supplementary information: Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online. PMID:27307633

  13. Evolution and physics in comparative protein structure modeling.

    PubMed

    Fiser, András; Feig, Michael; Brooks, Charles L; Sali, Andrej

    2002-06-01

    From a physical perspective, the native structure of a protein is a consequence of physical forces acting on the protein and solvent atoms during the folding process. From a biological perspective, the native structure of proteins is a result of evolution over millions of years. Correspondingly, there are two types of protein structure prediction methods, de novo prediction and comparative modeling. We review comparative protein structure modeling and discuss the incorporation of physical considerations into the modeling process. A good starting point for achieving this aim is provided by comparative modeling by satisfaction of spatial restraints. Incorporation of physical considerations is illustrated by an inclusion of solvation effects into the modeling of loops.

  14. Investigating Protein Structure and Evolution with SCOP2.

    PubMed

    Andreeva, Antonina; Howorth, Dave; Chothia, Cyrus; Kulesha, Eugene; Murzin, Alexey G

    2015-03-09

    SCOP2 is a successor to the Structural Classification of Proteins (SCOP) database that organizes proteins of known structure according to their structural and evolutionary relationships. It was designed to provide a more advanced framework for the classification of proteins. The SCOP2 classification is described in terms of a directed acyclic graph in which each node defines a relationship of particular type that is represented by a region of protein structure and sequence. The SCOP2 data are accessible via SCOP2-Browser and SCOP2-Graph. This protocol unit describes different ways to explore and investigate the SCOP2 evolutionary and structural groupings.

  15. Characterization and Prediction of Protein Flexibility Based on Structural Alphabets

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Bin

    2016-01-01

    Motivation. To assist efforts in determining and exploring the functional properties of proteins, it is desirable to characterize and predict protein flexibilities. Results. In this study, the conformational entropy is used as an indicator of the protein flexibility. We first explore whether the conformational change can capture the protein flexibility. The well-defined decoy structures are converted into one-dimensional series of letters from a structural alphabet. Four different structure alphabets, including the secondary structure in 3-class and 8-class, the PB structure alphabet (16-letter), and the DW structure alphabet (28-letter), are investigated. The conformational entropy is then calculated from the structure alphabet letters. Some of the proteins show high correlation between the conformation entropy and the protein flexibility. We then predict the protein flexibility from basic amino acid sequence. The local structures are predicted by the dual-layer model and the conformational entropy of the predicted class distribution is then calculated. The results show that the conformational entropy is a good indicator of the protein flexibility, but false positives remain a problem. The DW structure alphabet performs the best, which means that more subtle local structures can be captured by large number of structure alphabet letters. Overall this study provides a simple and efficient method for the characterization and prediction of the protein flexibility. PMID:27660756

  16. Characterization and Prediction of Protein Flexibility Based on Structural Alphabets

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Bin

    2016-01-01

    Motivation. To assist efforts in determining and exploring the functional properties of proteins, it is desirable to characterize and predict protein flexibilities. Results. In this study, the conformational entropy is used as an indicator of the protein flexibility. We first explore whether the conformational change can capture the protein flexibility. The well-defined decoy structures are converted into one-dimensional series of letters from a structural alphabet. Four different structure alphabets, including the secondary structure in 3-class and 8-class, the PB structure alphabet (16-letter), and the DW structure alphabet (28-letter), are investigated. The conformational entropy is then calculated from the structure alphabet letters. Some of the proteins show high correlation between the conformation entropy and the protein flexibility. We then predict the protein flexibility from basic amino acid sequence. The local structures are predicted by the dual-layer model and the conformational entropy of the predicted class distribution is then calculated. The results show that the conformational entropy is a good indicator of the protein flexibility, but false positives remain a problem. The DW structure alphabet performs the best, which means that more subtle local structures can be captured by large number of structure alphabet letters. Overall this study provides a simple and efficient method for the characterization and prediction of the protein flexibility.

  17. Protein Structure, Function Set for Explosive Increase in Understanding.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chemical and Engineering News, 1986

    1986-01-01

    Cites advances in x-ray diffraction, nuclear magnetic resonance, computer modeling, and display to guide the design and analysis of protein structures. Reviews recent advances in knowledge, synthesis techniques, and theory of proteins. (JM)

  18. Prediction of three-dimensional transmembrane helical protein structures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barth, Patrick

    Membrane proteins are critical to living cells and their dysfunction can lead to serious diseases. High-resolution structures of these proteins would provide very valuable information for designing eficient therapies but membrane protein crystallization is a major bottleneck. As an important alternative approach, methods for predicting membrane protein structures have been developed in recent years. This chapter focuses on the problem of modeling the structure of transmembrane helical proteins, and describes recent advancements, current limitations, and future challenges facing de novo modeling, modeling with experimental constraints, and high-resolution comparative modeling of these proteins. Abbreviations: MP, membrane protein; SP, water-soluble protein; RMSD, root-mean square deviation; Cα RMSD, root-mean square deviation over Cα atoms; TM, transmembrane; TMH, transmembrane helix; GPCR, G protein-coupled receptor; 3D, three dimensional; NMR, nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy; EPR, electron paramagnetic resonance spectroscopy; FTIR, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy.

  19. Protein Production for Structural Genomics Using E. coli Expression

    PubMed Central

    Makowska-Grzyska, Magdalena; Kim, Youngchang; Maltseva, Natalia; Li, Hui; Zhou, Min; Joachimiak, Grazyna; Babnigg, Gyorgy; Joachimiak, Andrzej

    2014-01-01

    The goal of structural biology is to reveal details of the molecular structure of proteins in order to understand their function and mechanism. X-ray crystallography and NMR are the two best methods for atomic level structure determination. However, these methods require milligram quantities of proteins. In this chapter a reproducible methodology for large-scale protein production applicable to a diverse set of proteins is described. The approach is based on protein expression in E. coli as a fusion with a cleavable affinity tag that was tested on over 20,000 proteins. Specifically, a protocol for fermentation of large quantities of native proteins in disposable culture vessels is presented. A modified protocol that allows for the production of selenium-labeled proteins in defined media is also offered. Finally, a method for the purification of His6-tagged proteins on immobilized metal affinity chromatography columns that generates high-purity material is described in detail. PMID:24590711

  20. Internal symmetry in protein structures: prevalence, functional relevance and evolution.

    PubMed

    Balaji, Santhanam

    2015-06-01

    Symmetry has been found at various levels of biological organization in the protein structural universe. Numerous evolutionary studies have proposed connections between internal symmetry within protein tertiary structures, quaternary associations and protein functions. Recent computational methods, such as SymD and CE-Symm, facilitate a large-scale detection of internal symmetry in protein structures. Based on the results from these methods, about 20% of SCOP folds, superfamilies and families are estimated to have structures with internal symmetry (Figure 1d). All-β and membrane proteins fold classes contain a relatively high number of unique instances of internal symmetry. In addition to the axis of symmetry, anecdotal evidence suggests that, the region of connection or contact between symmetric units could coincide with functionally relevant sites within a fold. General principles that underlie protein internal symmetry and their connections to protein structural integrity and functions remain to be elucidated.

  1. Protein structure validation and analysis with X-ray crystallography.

    PubMed

    Papageorgiou, Anastassios C; Mattsson, Jesse

    2014-01-01

    X-ray crystallography is the main technique for the determination of protein structures. About 85 % of all protein structures known to date have been elucidated using X-ray crystallography. Knowledge of the three-dimensional structure of proteins can be used in various applications in biotechnology, biomedicine, drug design, and basic research and as a validation tool for protein modifications, ligand binding, and structural authenticity. Moreover, the requirement for pure, homogeneous, and stable protein solutions in crystallizations makes X-ray crystallography beneficial in other fields of protein research as well. Here, we describe the technique of X-ray protein crystallography and the steps involved for a successful three-dimensional crystal structure determination.

  2. Site-specific thermodynamic stability and unfolding of a de novo designed protein structural motif mapped by 13C isotopically edited IR spectroscopy.

    PubMed

    Kubelka, Ginka S; Kubelka, Jan

    2014-04-23

    The mechanism of protein folding remains poorly understood, in part due to limited experimental information available about partially folded states. Isotopically edited infrared (IR) spectroscopy has emerged as a promising method for studying protein structural changes with site-specific resolution, but its full potential to systematically probe folding at multiple protein sites has not yet been realized. We have used (13)C isotopically edited IR spectroscopy to investigate the site-specific thermal unfolding at seven different locations in the de novo designed helix-turn-helix protein αtα. As one of the few stable helix-turn-helix motifs, αtα is an excellent model for studying the roles of secondary and tertiary interactions in folding. Circular dichroism (CD) experiments on the full αtα motif and its two peptide fragments show that interhelical tertiary contacts are critical for stabilization of the secondary structure. The site-specific thermal unfolding probed by (13)C isotopically edited IR is likewise consistent with primarily tertiary stabilization of the local structure. The least thermally stable part of the αtα motif is near the turn where the interhelical contacts are rather loose, while the motif's center with best established core packing has the highest stability. Similar correlation between the local thermal stability and tertiary contacts was found previously for a naturally occurring helix-turn-helix motif. These results underline the importance of native-like tertiary stabilizing interactions in folding, in agreement with recent state-of-the art folding simulations as well as simplified, native-centric models.

  3. Predicting protein-protein interactions in unbalanced data using the primary structure of proteins

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Elucidating protein-protein interactions (PPIs) is essential to constructing protein interaction networks and facilitating our understanding of the general principles of biological systems. Previous studies have revealed that interacting protein pairs can be predicted by their primary structure. Most of these approaches have achieved satisfactory performance on datasets comprising equal number of interacting and non-interacting protein pairs. However, this ratio is highly unbalanced in nature, and these techniques have not been comprehensively evaluated with respect to the effect of the large number of non-interacting pairs in realistic datasets. Moreover, since highly unbalanced distributions usually lead to large datasets, more efficient predictors are desired when handling such challenging tasks. Results This study presents a method for PPI prediction based only on sequence information, which contributes in three aspects. First, we propose a probability-based mechanism for transforming protein sequences into feature vectors. Second, the proposed predictor is designed with an efficient classification algorithm, where the efficiency is essential for handling highly unbalanced datasets. Third, the proposed PPI predictor is assessed with several unbalanced datasets with different positive-to-negative ratios (from 1:1 to 1:15). This analysis provides solid evidence that the degree of dataset imbalance is important to PPI predictors. Conclusions Dealing with data imbalance is a key issue in PPI prediction since there are far fewer interacting protein pairs than non-interacting ones. This article provides a comprehensive study on this issue and develops a practical tool that achieves both good prediction performance and efficiency using only protein sequence information. PMID:20361868

  4. Implementation of a Parallel Protein Structure Alignment Service on Cloud

    PubMed Central

    Hung, Che-Lun; Lin, Yaw-Ling

    2013-01-01

    Protein structure alignment has become an important strategy by which to identify evolutionary relationships between protein sequences. Several alignment tools are currently available for online comparison of protein structures. In this paper, we propose a parallel protein structure alignment service based on the Hadoop distribution framework. This service includes a protein structure alignment algorithm, a refinement algorithm, and a MapReduce programming model. The refinement algorithm refines the result of alignment. To process vast numbers of protein structures in parallel, the alignment and refinement algorithms are implemented using MapReduce. We analyzed and compared the structure alignments produced by different methods using a dataset randomly selected from the PDB database. The experimental results verify that the proposed algorithm refines the resulting alignments more accurately than existing algorithms. Meanwhile, the computational performance of the proposed service is proportional to the number of processors used in our cloud platform. PMID:23671842

  5. Implementation of a parallel protein structure alignment service on cloud.

    PubMed

    Hung, Che-Lun; Lin, Yaw-Ling

    2013-01-01

    Protein structure alignment has become an important strategy by which to identify evolutionary relationships between protein sequences. Several alignment tools are currently available for online comparison of protein structures. In this paper, we propose a parallel protein structure alignment service based on the Hadoop distribution framework. This service includes a protein structure alignment algorithm, a refinement algorithm, and a MapReduce programming model. The refinement algorithm refines the result of alignment. To process vast numbers of protein structures in parallel, the alignment and refinement algorithms are implemented using MapReduce. We analyzed and compared the structure alignments produced by different methods using a dataset randomly selected from the PDB database. The experimental results verify that the proposed algorithm refines the resulting alignments more accurately than existing algorithms. Meanwhile, the computational performance of the proposed service is proportional to the number of processors used in our cloud platform. PMID:23671842

  6. Protein backbone torsion angle-based structure comparison and secondary structure database web server.

    PubMed

    Jung, Sunghoon; Bae, Se-Eun; Ahn, Insung; Son, Hyeon S

    2013-09-01

    Structural information has been a major concern for biological and pharmaceutical studies for its intimate relationship to the function of a protein. Three-dimensional representation of the positions of protein atoms is utilized among many structural information repositories that have been published. The reliability of the torsional system, which represents the native processes of structural change in the structural analysis, was partially proven with previous structural alignment studies. Here, a web server providing structural information and analysis based on the backbone torsional representation of a protein structure is newly introduced. The web server offers functions of secondary structure database search, secondary structure calculation, and pair-wise protein structure comparison, based on a backbone torsion angle representation system. Application of the implementation in pair-wise structural alignment showed highly accurate results. The information derived from this web server might be further utilized in the field of ab initio protein structure modeling or protein homology-related analyses.

  7. Structure and Function of Microbial Metal-Reduction Proteins

    SciTech Connect

    Xu, Ying; Crawford, Oakly H.; Xu, Dong; Larimer, Frank W.; Uberbacher, Edward C.; Zhou, Jizhong

    2009-09-02

    In this project, we proposed (i) identification of metal-reduction genes, (ii) development of new threading techniques and (iii) fold recognition and structure prediction of metal-reduction proteins. However, due to the reduction of the budget, we revised our plan to focus on two specific aims of (i) developing a new threading-based protein structure prediction method, and (ii) developing an expert system for protein structure prediction.

  8. The Potato leafroll virus structural proteins manipulate overlapping, yet distinct protein interaction networks during infection

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Potato leafroll virus (PLRV) produces a readthrough protein (RTP) via translational readthrough of the coat protein amber stop codon. The RTP functions as a structural component of the virion and as a non-incorporated protein in concert with numerous insect and plant proteins to regulate virus movem...

  9. The Protein Structure Initiative Structural Biology Knowledgebase Technology Portal: a structural biology web resource.

    PubMed

    Gifford, Lida K; Carter, Lester G; Gabanyi, Margaret J; Berman, Helen M; Adams, Paul D

    2012-06-01

    The Technology Portal of the Protein Structure Initiative Structural Biology Knowledgebase (PSI SBKB; http://technology.sbkb.org/portal/ ) is a web resource providing information about methods and tools that can be used to relieve bottlenecks in many areas of protein production and structural biology research. Several useful features are available on the web site, including multiple ways to search the database of over 250 technological advances, a link to videos of methods on YouTube, and access to a technology forum where scientists can connect, ask questions, get news, and develop collaborations. The Technology Portal is a component of the PSI SBKB ( http://sbkb.org ), which presents integrated genomic, structural, and functional information for all protein sequence targets selected by the Protein Structure Initiative. Created in collaboration with the Nature Publishing Group, the SBKB offers an array of resources for structural biologists, such as a research library, editorials about new research advances, a featured biological system each month, and a functional sleuth for searching protein structures of unknown function. An overview of the various features and examples of user searches highlight the information, tools, and avenues for scientific interaction available through the Technology Portal.

  10. Structure of bone morphogenetic protein 9 procomplex

    PubMed Central

    Mi, Li-Zhi; Brown, Christopher T.; Gao, Yijie; Tian, Yuan; Le, Viet Q.; Walz, Thomas; Springer, Timothy A.

    2015-01-01

    Bone morphogenetic proteins (BMPs) belong to the TGF-β family, whose 33 members regulate multiple aspects of morphogenesis. TGF-β family members are secreted as procomplexes containing a small growth factor dimer associated with two larger prodomains. As isolated procomplexes, some members are latent, whereas most are active; what determines these differences is unknown. Here, studies on pro-BMP structures and binding to receptors lead to insights into mechanisms that regulate latency in the TGF-β family and into the functions of their highly divergent prodomains. The observed open-armed, nonlatent conformation of pro-BMP9 and pro-BMP7 contrasts with the cross-armed, latent conformation of pro-TGF-β1. Despite markedly different arm orientations in pro-BMP and pro-TGF-β, the arm domain of the prodomain can similarly associate with the growth factor, whereas prodomain elements N- and C-terminal to the arm associate differently with the growth factor and may compete with one another to regulate latency and stepwise displacement by type I and II receptors. Sequence conservation suggests that pro-BMP9 can adopt both cross-armed and open-armed conformations. We propose that interactors in the matrix stabilize a cross-armed pro-BMP conformation and regulate transition between cross-armed, latent and open-armed, nonlatent pro-BMP conformations. PMID:25751889

  11. Folded Proteins Occur Frequently in Libraries of Random Amino Acid Sequences

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Davidson, Alan R.; Sauer, Robert T.

    1994-03-01

    A library of synthetic genes encoding 80- to 100-residue proteins composed mainly of random combinations of glutamine (Q), leucine (L), and arginine (R) has been expressed in Escherichia coli. These genes also encode an epitope tag and six carboxyl-terminal histidines. Screening of this library by immunoblotting showed that 5% of these QLR proteins are expressed at readily detectable levels. Three well-expressed QLR proteins were purified and characterized. Each of these proteins has significant α-helical content, is largely resistant to degradation by Pronase, and has a distinct oligomeric structure. In addition, one protein unfolds in a highly cooperative manner. These properties of the QLR proteins demonstrate that they possess folded structures with some native-like properties. The QLR proteins differ from most natural proteins, however, in being remarkably resistant to denaturant-induced and thermal-induced unfolding and in being relatively insoluble in the absence of denaturants.

  12. Protein Structure and Function Prediction Using I-TASSER.

    PubMed

    Yang, Jianyi; Zhang, Yang

    2015-01-01

    I-TASSER is a hierarchical protocol for automated protein structure prediction and structure-based function annotation. Starting from the amino acid sequence of target proteins, I-TASSER first generates full-length atomic structural models from multiple threading alignments and iterative structural assembly simulations followed by atomic-level structure refinement. The biological functions of the protein, including ligand-binding sites, enzyme commission number, and gene ontology terms, are then inferred from known protein function databases based on sequence and structure profile comparisons. I-TASSER is freely available as both an on-line server and a stand-alone package. This unit describes how to use the I-TASSER protocol to generate structure and function prediction and how to interpret the prediction results, as well as alternative approaches for further improving the I-TASSER modeling quality for distant-homologous and multi-domain protein targets.

  13. Dissecting the relationship between protein structure and sequence variation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shahmoradi, Amir; Wilke, Claus; Wilke Lab Team

    2015-03-01

    Over the past decade several independent works have shown that some structural properties of proteins are capable of predicting protein evolution. The strength and significance of these structure-sequence relations, however, appear to vary widely among different proteins, with absolute correlation strengths ranging from 0 . 1 to 0 . 8 . Here we present the results from a comprehensive search for the potential biophysical and structural determinants of protein evolution by studying more than 200 structural and evolutionary properties in a dataset of 209 monomeric enzymes. We discuss the main protein characteristics responsible for the general patterns of protein evolution, and identify sequence divergence as the main determinant of the strengths of virtually all structure-evolution relationships, explaining ~ 10 - 30 % of observed variation in sequence-structure relations. In addition to sequence divergence, we identify several protein structural properties that are moderately but significantly coupled with the strength of sequence-structure relations. In particular, proteins with more homogeneous back-bone hydrogen bond energies, large fractions of helical secondary structures and low fraction of beta sheets tend to have the strongest sequence-structure relation. BEACON-NSF center for the study of evolution in action.

  14. Expression strategies for structural studies of eukaryotic membrane proteins.

    PubMed

    Lyons, Joseph A; Shahsavar, Azadeh; Paulsen, Peter Aasted; Pedersen, Bjørn Panyella; Nissen, Poul

    2016-06-01

    Integral membrane proteins in eukaryotes are central to various cellular processes and key targets in structural biology, biotechnology and drug development. However, the number of available structures for eukaryotic membrane protein belies their physiological importance. Recently, the number of available eukaryotic membrane protein structures has been steadily increasing due to the development of novel strategies in construct design, expression and structure determination. Here, we examine the major expression systems exploited for eukaryotic membrane proteins. Additionally we strive to tabulate and describe the recent expression strategies in eukaryotic membrane protein structural biology. We find that a majority of targets have been expressed in advanced host systems and modified from their wild-type form with distinct focus on conformation and thermostabilisation. However, strategies for native protein purification should also be considered where possible, particularly in light of the recent advances in single particle cryo electron microscopy.

  15. Expression strategies for structural studies of eukaryotic membrane proteins.

    PubMed

    Lyons, Joseph A; Shahsavar, Azadeh; Paulsen, Peter Aasted; Pedersen, Bjørn Panyella; Nissen, Poul

    2016-06-01

    Integral membrane proteins in eukaryotes are central to various cellular processes and key targets in structural biology, biotechnology and drug development. However, the number of available structures for eukaryotic membrane protein belies their physiological importance. Recently, the number of available eukaryotic membrane protein structures has been steadily increasing due to the development of novel strategies in construct design, expression and structure determination. Here, we examine the major expression systems exploited for eukaryotic membrane proteins. Additionally we strive to tabulate and describe the recent expression strategies in eukaryotic membrane protein structural biology. We find that a majority of targets have been expressed in advanced host systems and modified from their wild-type form with distinct focus on conformation and thermostabilisation. However, strategies for native protein purification should also be considered where possible, particularly in light of the recent advances in single particle cryo electron microscopy. PMID:27362979

  16. De novo protein design: how do we expand into the universe of possible protein structures?

    PubMed

    Woolfson, Derek N; Bartlett, Gail J; Burton, Antony J; Heal, Jack W; Niitsu, Ai; Thomson, Andrew R; Wood, Christopher W

    2015-08-01

    Protein scientists are paving the way to a new phase in protein design and engineering. Approaches and methods are being developed that could allow the design of proteins beyond the confines of natural protein structures. This possibility of designing entirely new proteins opens new questions: What do we build? How do we build into protein-structure space where there are few, if any, natural structures to guide us? To what uses can the resulting proteins be put? And, what, if anything, does this pursuit tell us about how natural proteins fold, function and evolve? We describe the origins of this emerging area of fully de novo protein design, how it could be developed, where it might lead, and what challenges lie ahead.

  17. The unexpected structure of the designed protein Octarellin V.1 forms a challenge for protein structure prediction tools.

    PubMed

    Figueroa, Maximiliano; Sleutel, Mike; Vandevenne, Marylene; Parvizi, Gregory; Attout, Sophie; Jacquin, Olivier; Vandenameele, Julie; Fischer, Axel W; Damblon, Christian; Goormaghtigh, Erik; Valerio-Lepiniec, Marie; Urvoas, Agathe; Durand, Dominique; Pardon, Els; Steyaert, Jan; Minard, Philippe; Maes, Dominique; Meiler, Jens; Matagne, André; Martial, Joseph A; Van de Weerdt, Cécile

    2016-07-01

    Despite impressive successes in protein design, designing a well-folded protein of more 100 amino acids de novo remains a formidable challenge. Exploiting the promising biophysical features of the artificial protein Octarellin V, we improved this protein by directed evolution, thus creating a more stable and soluble protein: Octarellin V.1. Next, we obtained crystals of Octarellin V.1 in complex with crystallization chaperons and determined the tertiary structure. The experimental structure of Octarellin V.1 differs from its in silico design: the (αβα) sandwich architecture bears some resemblance to a Rossman-like fold instead of the intended TIM-barrel fold. This surprising result gave us a unique and attractive opportunity to test the state of the art in protein structure prediction, using this artificial protein free of any natural selection. We tested 13 automated webservers for protein structure prediction and found none of them to predict the actual structure. More than 50% of them predicted a TIM-barrel fold, i.e. the structure we set out to design more than 10years ago. In addition, local software runs that are human operated can sample a structure similar to the experimental one but fail in selecting it, suggesting that the scoring and ranking functions should be improved. We propose that artificial proteins could be used as tools to test the accuracy of protein structure prediction algorithms, because their lack of evolutionary pressure and unique sequences features.

  18. Comparative structures and properties of elastic proteins.

    PubMed Central

    Tatham, Arthur S; Shewry, Peter R

    2002-01-01

    Elastic proteins are characterized by being able to undergo significant deformation, without rupture, before returning to their original state when the stress is removed. The sequences of elastic proteins contain elastomeric domains, which comprise repeated sequences, which in many cases appear to form beta-turns. In addition, the majority also contain domains that form intermolecular cross-links, which may be covalent or non-covalent. The mechanism of elasticity varies between the different proteins and appears to be related to the biological role of the protein. PMID:11911780

  19. Protein folding of the SAP domain, a naturally occurring two-helix bundle.

    PubMed

    Dodson, Charlotte A; Arbely, Eyal

    2015-07-01

    The SAP domain from the Saccharomyces cerevisiae Tho1 protein is comprised of just two helices and a hydrophobic core and is one of the smallest proteins whose folding has been characterised. Φ-value analysis revealed that Tho1 SAP folds through a transition state where helix 1 is the most extensively formed element of secondary structure and flickering native-like core contacts from Leu35 are also present. The contacts that contribute most to native state stability of Tho1 SAP are not formed in the transition state.

  20. Molten globules, entropy-driven conformational change and protein folding.

    PubMed

    Baldwin, Robert L; Rose, George D

    2013-02-01

    The exquisite side chain close-packing in the protein core and at binding interfaces has prompted a conviction that packing selectivity is the primary mechanism for molecular recognition in folding and/or binding reactions. Contrary to this view, molten globule proteins can adopt native topology and bind targets tightly and specifically in the absence of side chain close-packing. The molten globule is a highly dynamic form with native-like secondary structure and a loose protein core that admits solvent. The related (but still controversial) dry molten globule is an expanded form of the native protein with largely intact topology but a tighter protein core that excludes solvent. Neither form retains side chain close-packing, and therefore both structure and function must result from other factors, assuming that the reality of the dry molten globule is accepted. This simplifying realization calls for a re-evaluation of established models. PMID:23237704

  1. DOCK/PIERR: web server for structure prediction of protein-protein complexes.

    PubMed

    Viswanath, Shruthi; Ravikant, D V S; Elber, Ron

    2014-01-01

    In protein docking we aim to find the structure of the complex formed when two proteins interact. Protein-protein interactions are crucial for cell function. Here we discuss the usage of DOCK/PIERR. In DOCK/PIERR, a uniformly discrete sampling of orientations of one protein with respect to the other, are scored, followed by clustering, refinement, and reranking of structures. The novelty of this method lies in the scoring functions used. These are obtained by examining hundreds of millions of correctly and incorrectly docked structures, using an algorithm based on mathematical programming, with provable convergence properties.

  2. Addressing the Role of Conformational Diversity in Protein Structure Prediction.

    PubMed

    Palopoli, Nicolas; Monzon, Alexander Miguel; Parisi, Gustavo; Fornasari, Maria Silvina

    2016-01-01

    Computational modeling of tertiary structures has become of standard use to study proteins that lack experimental characterization. Unfortunately, 3D structure prediction methods and model quality assessment programs often overlook that an ensemble of conformers in equilibrium populates the native state of proteins. In this work we collected sets of publicly available protein models and the corresponding target structures experimentally solved and studied how they describe the conformational diversity of the protein. For each protein, we assessed the quality of the models against known conformers by several standard measures and identified those models ranked best. We found that model rankings are defined by both the selected target conformer and the similarity measure used. 70% of the proteins in our datasets show that different models are structurally closest to different conformers of the same protein target. We observed that model building protocols such as template-based or ab initio approaches describe in similar ways the conformational diversity of the protein, although for template-based methods this description may depend on the sequence similarity between target and template sequences. Taken together, our results support the idea that protein structure modeling could help to identify members of the native ensemble, highlight the importance of considering conformational diversity in protein 3D quality evaluations and endorse the study of the variability of the native structure for a meaningful biological analysis. PMID:27159429

  3. Addressing the Role of Conformational Diversity in Protein Structure Prediction

    PubMed Central

    Parisi, Gustavo; Fornasari, Maria Silvina

    2016-01-01

    Computational modeling of tertiary structures has become of standard use to study proteins that lack experimental characterization. Unfortunately, 3D structure prediction methods and model quality assessment programs often overlook that an ensemble of conformers in equilibrium populates the native state of proteins. In this work we collected sets of publicly available protein models and the corresponding target structures experimentally solved and studied how they describe the conformational diversity of the protein. For each protein, we assessed the quality of the models against known conformers by several standard measures and identified those models ranked best. We found that model rankings are defined by both the selected target conformer and the similarity measure used. 70% of the proteins in our datasets show that different models are structurally closest to different conformers of the same protein target. We observed that model building protocols such as template-based or ab initio approaches describe in similar ways the conformational diversity of the protein, although for template-based methods this description may depend on the sequence similarity between target and template sequences. Taken together, our results support the idea that protein structure modeling could help to identify members of the native ensemble, highlight the importance of considering conformational diversity in protein 3D quality evaluations and endorse the study of the variability of the native structure for a meaningful biological analysis. PMID:27159429

  4. Structure determination of archaea-specific ribosomal protein L46a reveals a novel protein fold

    SciTech Connect

    Feng, Yingang; Song, Xiaxia; Lin, Jinzhong; Xuan, Jinsong; Cui, Qiu; Wang, Jinfeng

    2014-07-18

    Highlights: • The archaea-specific ribosomal protein L46a has no homology to known proteins. • Three dimensional structure and backbone dynamics of L46a were determined by NMR. • The structure of L46a represents a novel protein fold. • A potential rRNA-binding surface on L46a was identified. • The potential position of L46a on the ribosome was proposed. - Abstract: Three archaea-specific ribosomal proteins recently identified show no sequence homology with other known proteins. Here we determined the structure of L46a, the most conserved one among the three proteins, from Sulfolobus solfataricus P2 using NMR spectroscopy. The structure presents a twisted β-sheet formed by the N-terminal part and two helices at the C-terminus. The L46a structure has a positively charged surface which is conserved in the L46a protein family and is the potential rRNA-binding site. Searching homologous structures in Protein Data Bank revealed that the structure of L46a represents a novel protein fold. The backbone dynamics identified by NMR relaxation experiments reveal significant flexibility at the rRNA binding surface. The potential position of L46a on the ribosome was proposed by fitting the structure into a previous electron microscopy map of the ribosomal 50S subunit, which indicated that L46a contacts to domain I of 23S rRNA near a multifunctional ribosomal protein L7ae.

  5. Kinetics of Incorporation of Structural Proteins into Sindbis Virions

    PubMed Central

    Scheele, Christina M.; Pfefferkorn, E. R.

    1969-01-01

    The morphogenesis of Sindbis virus was studied by determining the kinetics with which newly synthesized nucleocapsid and envelope proteins appeared in virions released into the extracellular medium. Assembly of the nucleocapsid was more rapid than modification of the cellular membrane by the addition of the viral envelope protein. However, both viral structural proteins were efficiently incorporated into virions; a 0.5-hr pulse-labeling period resulted in the release of maximally labeled virus during the next hour. When protein synthesis was inhibited, release of virus soon declined even though large amounts of both viral structural proteins were present within the cell and ribonucleic acid replication was unaffected. PMID:5771964

  6. Protein folds and families: sequence and structure alignments.

    PubMed

    Holm, L; Sander, C

    1999-01-01

    Dali and HSSP are derived databases organizing protein space in the structurally known regions. We use an automatic structure alignment program (Dali) for the classification of all known 3D structures based on all-against-all comparison of 3D structures in the Protein Data Bank. The HSSP database associates 1D sequences with known 3D structures using a position-weighted dynamic programming method for sequence profile alignment (MaxHom). As a result, the HSSP database not only provides aligned sequence families, but also implies secondary and tertiary structures covering 36% of all sequences in Swiss-Prot. The structure classification by Dali and the sequence families in HSSP can be browsed jointly from a web interface providing a rich network of links between neighbours in fold space, between domains and proteins, and between structures and sequences. In particular, this results in a database of explicit multiple alignments of protein families in the twilight zone of sequence similarity. The organization of protein structures and families provides a map of the currently known regions of the protein universe that is useful for the analysis of folding principles, for the evolutionary unification of protein families and for maximizing the information return from experimental structure determination. The databases are available from http://www.embl-ebi.ac.uk/dali/

  7. Structured States of Disordered Proteins from Genomic Sequences.

    PubMed

    Toth-Petroczy, Agnes; Palmedo, Perry; Ingraham, John; Hopf, Thomas A; Berger, Bonnie; Sander, Chris; Marks, Debora S

    2016-09-22

    Protein flexibility ranges from simple hinge movements to functional disorder. Around half of all human proteins contain apparently disordered regions with little 3D or functional information, and many of these proteins are associated with disease. Building on the evolutionary couplings approach previously successful in predicting 3D states of ordered proteins and RNA, we developed a method to predict the potential for ordered states for all apparently disordered proteins with sufficiently rich evolutionary information. The approach is highly accurate (79%) for residue interactions as tested in more than 60 known disordered regions captured in a bound or specific condition. Assessing the potential for structure of more than 1,000 apparently disordered regions of human proteins reveals a continuum of structural order with at least 50% with clear propensity for three- or two-dimensional states. Co-evolutionary constraints reveal hitherto unseen structures of functional importance in apparently disordered proteins. PMID:27662088

  8. The Structure and Function of Non-Collagenous Bone Proteins

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hook, Magnus; McQuillan, David J.

    1997-01-01

    The research done under the cooperative research agreement for the project titled 'The structure and function of non-collagenous bone proteins' represented the first phase of an ongoing program to define the structural and functional relationships of the principal noncollagenous proteins in bone. An ultimate goal of this research is to enable design and execution of useful pharmacological compounds that will have a beneficial effect in treatment of osteoporosis, both land-based and induced by long-duration space travel. The goals of the now complete first phase were as follows: 1. Establish and/or develop powerful recombinant protein expression systems; 2. Develop and refine isolation and purification of recombinant proteins; 3. Express wild-type non-collagenous bone proteins; 4. Express site-specific mutant proteins and domains of wild-type proteins to enhance likelihood of crystal formation for subsequent solution of structure.

  9. Structured States of Disordered Proteins from Genomic Sequences.

    PubMed

    Toth-Petroczy, Agnes; Palmedo, Perry; Ingraham, John; Hopf, Thomas A; Berger, Bonnie; Sander, Chris; Marks, Debora S

    2016-09-22

    Protein flexibility ranges from simple hinge movements to functional disorder. Around half of all human proteins contain apparently disordered regions with little 3D or functional information, and many of these proteins are associated with disease. Building on the evolutionary couplings approach previously successful in predicting 3D states of ordered proteins and RNA, we developed a method to predict the potential for ordered states for all apparently disordered proteins with sufficiently rich evolutionary information. The approach is highly accurate (79%) for residue interactions as tested in more than 60 known disordered regions captured in a bound or specific condition. Assessing the potential for structure of more than 1,000 apparently disordered regions of human proteins reveals a continuum of structural order with at least 50% with clear propensity for three- or two-dimensional states. Co-evolutionary constraints reveal hitherto unseen structures of functional importance in apparently disordered proteins.

  10. The history of the CATH structural classification of protein domains

    PubMed Central

    Sillitoe, Ian; Dawson, Natalie; Thornton, Janet; Orengo, Christine

    2015-01-01

    This article presents a historical review of the protein structure classification database CATH. Together with the SCOP database, CATH remains comprehensive and reasonably up-to-date with the now more than 100,000 protein structures in the PDB. We review the expansion of the CATH and SCOP resources to capture predicted domain structures in the genome sequence data and to provide information on the likely functions of proteins mediated by their constituent domains. The establishment of comprehensive function annotation resources has also meant that domain families can be functionally annotated allowing insights into functional divergence and evolution within protein families. PMID:26253692

  11. Overview on the use of NMR to examine protein structure.

    PubMed

    Breukels, Vincent; Konijnenberg, Albert; Nabuurs, Sanne M; Doreleijers, Jurgen F; Kovalevskaya, Nadezda V; Vuister, Geerten W

    2011-04-01

    Any protein structure determination process contains several steps, starting from obtaining a suitable sample, then moving on to acquiring data and spectral assignment, and lastly to the final steps of structure determination and validation. This unit describes all of these steps, starting with the basic physical principles behind NMR and some of the most commonly measured and observed phenomena such as chemical shift, scalar and residual coupling, and the nuclear Overhauser effect. Then, in somewhat more detail, the process of spectral assignment and structure elucidation is explained. Furthermore, the use of NMR to study protein-ligand interaction, protein dynamics, or protein folding is described. PMID:21488042

  12. Mixing and Matching Detergents for Membrane Protein NMR Structure Determination

    SciTech Connect

    Columbus, Linda; Lipfert, Jan; Jambunathan, Kalyani; Fox, Daniel A.; Sim, Adelene Y.L.; Doniach, Sebastian; Lesley, Scott A.

    2009-10-21

    One major obstacle to membrane protein structure determination is the selection of a detergent micelle that mimics the native lipid bilayer. Currently, detergents are selected by exhaustive screening because the effects of protein-detergent interactions on protein structure are poorly understood. In this study, the structure and dynamics of an integral membrane protein in different detergents is investigated by nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) and electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) spectroscopy and small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS). The results suggest that matching of the micelle dimensions to the protein's hydrophobic surface avoids exchange processes that reduce the completeness of the NMR observations. Based on these dimensions, several mixed micelles were designed that improved the completeness of NMR observations. These findings provide a basis for the rational design of mixed micelles that may advance membrane protein structure determination by NMR.

  13. Design of structurally distinct proteins using strategies inspired by evolution.

    PubMed

    Jacobs, T M; Williams, B; Williams, T; Xu, X; Eletsky, A; Federizon, J F; Szyperski, T; Kuhlman, B

    2016-05-01

    Natural recombination combines pieces of preexisting proteins to create new tertiary structures and functions. We describe a computational protocol, called SEWING, which is inspired by this process and builds new proteins from connected or disconnected pieces of existing structures. Helical proteins designed with SEWING contain structural features absent from other de novo designed proteins and, in some cases, remain folded at more than 100°C. High-resolution structures of the designed proteins CA01 and DA05R1 were solved by x-ray crystallography (2.2 angstrom resolution) and nuclear magnetic resonance, respectively, and there was excellent agreement with the design models. This method provides a new strategy to rapidly create large numbers of diverse and designable protein scaffolds.

  14. Tactile Teaching: Exploring Protein Structure/Function Using Physical Models

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Herman, Tim; Morris, Jennifer; Colton, Shannon; Batiza, Ann; Patrick, Michael; Franzen, Margaret; Goodsell, David S.

    2006-01-01

    The technology now exists to construct physical models of proteins based on atomic coordinates of solved structures. We review here our recent experiences in using physical models to teach concepts of protein structure and function at both the high school and the undergraduate levels. At the high school level, physical models are used in a…

  15. Computational design of proteins with novel structure and functions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wei, Yang; Lu-Hua, Lai

    2016-01-01

    Computational design of proteins is a relatively new field, where scientists search the enormous sequence space for sequences that can fold into desired structure and perform desired functions. With the computational approach, proteins can be designed, for example, as regulators of biological processes, novel enzymes, or as biotherapeutics. These approaches not only provide valuable information for understanding of sequence-structure-function relations in proteins, but also hold promise for applications to protein engineering and biomedical research. In this review, we briefly introduce the rationale for computational protein design, then summarize the recent progress in this field, including de novo protein design, enzyme design, and design of protein-protein interactions. Challenges and future prospects of this field are also discussed. Project supported by the National Basic Research Program of China (Grant No. 2015CB910300), the National High Technology Research and Development Program of China (Grant No. 2012AA020308), and the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant No. 11021463).

  16. Dynamics of the Glycophorin A Dimer in Membranes of Native-Like Composition Uncovered by Coarse-Grained Molecular Dynamics Simulations

    PubMed Central

    Flinner, Nadine; Schleiff, Enrico

    2015-01-01

    Membranes are central for cells as borders to the environment or intracellular organelle definition. They are composed of and harbor different molecules like various lipid species and sterols, and they are generally crowded with proteins. The membrane system is very dynamic and components show lateral, rotational and translational diffusion. The consequence of the latter is that phase separation can occur in membranes in vivo and in vitro. It was documented that molecular dynamics simulations of an idealized plasma membrane model result in formation of membrane areas where either saturated lipids and cholesterol (liquid-ordered character, Lo) or unsaturated lipids (liquid-disordered character, Ld) were enriched. Furthermore, current discussions favor the idea that proteins are sorted into the liquid-disordered phase of model membranes, but experimental support for the behavior of isolated proteins in native membranes is sparse. To gain insight into the protein behavior we built a model of the red blood cell membrane with integrated glycophorin A dimer. The sorting and the dynamics of the dimer were subsequently explored by coarse-grained molecular dynamics simulations. In addition, we inspected the impact of lipid head groups and the presence of cholesterol within the membrane on the dynamics of the dimer within the membrane. We observed that cholesterol is important for the formation of membrane areas with Lo and Ld character. Moreover, it is an important factor for the reproduction of the dynamic behavior of the protein found in its native environment. The protein dimer was exclusively sorted into the domain of Ld character in the model red blood cell plasma membrane. Therefore, we present structural information on the glycophorin A dimer distribution in the plasma membrane in the absence of other factors like e.g. lipid anchors in a coarse grain resolution. PMID:26222139

  17. Parallel screening and optimization of protein constructs for structural studies

    PubMed Central

    Rasia, Rodolfo M; Noirclerc-Savoye, Marjolaine; Bologna, Nicolás G; Gallet, Benoit; Plevin, Michael J; Blanchard, Laurence; Palatnik, Javier F; Brutscher, Bernhard; Vernet, Thierry; Boisbouvier, Jérôme

    2009-01-01

    A major challenge in structural biology remains the identification of protein constructs amenable to structural characterization. Here, we present a simple method for parallel expression, labeling, and purification of protein constructs (up to 80 kDa) combined with rapid evaluation by NMR spectroscopy. Our approach, which is equally applicable for manual or automated implementation, offers an efficient way to identify and optimize protein constructs for NMR or X-ray crystallographic investigations. PMID:19177520

  18. A threading approach to protein structure prediction: Studies on TNF-like molecules, Rev proteins, and protein kinases

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ihm, Yungok

    The main focus of this dissertation is the application of the threading approach to specific biological problems. The threading scheme developed in our group targets incorporating important structural features necessary for detecting structural similarity between the target sequence and the template structure. This enables us to use our threading method to solve problems for which sequence-based methods are not very much useful. We applied our threading method to predict the three-dimensional structures of lentivirus (EIAV, HIV-1, FIV, SIV) Rev proteins. Predicted structures of Rev proteins suggest that they share a structural similarity among themselves (four-helix bundle). Also, the threading approach has been utilized for screening for potential TNF-like molecules in Arabidopsis. The threading approach identified 35 potential TNF-like proteins in Arabidopsis, six of which are particularly interesting to be tested for the receptor kinase ligand activity. Threading method has also been used to identify potentially new protein kinases, which are not included in the protein kinase data base of C. elegans and Arabidopis. We identified eleven potentially new protein kinases and an additional protein worth investigating for protein kinase activity in C. elegans. Further, we identified ten potentially new protein kinases and additional four proteins worth investigating for the protein kinase activity in Arabidopsis.

  19. In-Cell Protein Structures from 2D NMR Experiments.

    PubMed

    Müntener, Thomas; Häussinger, Daniel; Selenko, Philipp; Theillet, Francois-Xavier

    2016-07-21

    In-cell NMR spectroscopy provides atomic resolution insights into the structural properties of proteins in cells, but it is rarely used to solve entire protein structures de novo. Here, we introduce a paramagnetic lanthanide-tag to simultaneously measure protein pseudocontact shifts (PCSs) and residual dipolar couplings (RDCs) to be used as input for structure calculation routines within the Rosetta program. We employ this approach to determine the structure of the protein G B1 domain (GB1) in intact Xenopus laevis oocytes from a single set of 2D in-cell NMR experiments. Specifically, we derive well-defined GB1 ensembles from low concentration in-cell NMR samples (∼50 μM) measured at moderate magnetic field strengths (600 MHz), thus offering an easily accessible alternative for determining intracellular protein structures. PMID:27379949

  20. Automating the determination of 3D protein structure

    SciTech Connect

    Rayl, K.D.

    1993-12-31

    The creation of an automated method for determining 3D protein structure would be invaluable to the field of biology and presents an interesting challenge to computer science. Unfortunately, given the current level of protein knowledge, a completely automated solution method is not yet feasible, therefore, our group has decided to integrate existing databases and theories to create a software system that assists X-ray crystallographers in specifying a particular protein structure. By breaking the problem of determining overall protein structure into small subproblems, we hope to come closer to solving a novel structure by solving each component. By generating necessary information for structure determination, this method provides the first step toward designing a program to determine protein conformation automatically.

  1. Structural characterization of recombinant therapeutic proteins by circular dichroism.

    PubMed

    Bertucci, Carlo; Pistolozzi, Marco; De Simone, Angela

    2011-10-01

    Most of the protein therapeutics are now produced by recombinant DNA technology. The advantages of recombinant proteins are related to their higher specificity and to their safety as exposure to animal or human diseases. However, several problems are still present in development of recombinant proteins as therapeutics, such as low bioavailability, short serum half-life, and immune response. Their successful application hinges on the protein stereochemical stability, and on the folding and the tendency to aggregate induced by purification steps and storage. All these aspects determine the failure of many potential protein therapies, and limitations in the development of the formulation. The application of multiple analytical techniques is important in order to obtain a detailed product profile and to understand how manufacturing can influence product structure and activity. Surely the protein conformation is a key aspect to be assessed, because a specific conformation is often essential for the biological function of the protein. Thus, there is a growing need to perform structural studies under the conditions in which the proteins operate, and to monitor the structural changes of the protein. Circular dichroism has been increasingly recognised as a valuable and reliable technique to get this information. In particular, examples will be here reported on the use of circular dichroism spectroscopy in the structural characterization of free and formulated recombinant proteins, looking at the prediction of the secondary structure, propensity to conformational changes, stability, and tendency to aggregate.

  2. 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

  3. GSAFold: a new application of GSA to protein structure prediction.

    PubMed

    Melo, Marcelo C R; Bernardi, Rafael C; Fernandes, Tácio V A; Pascutti, Pedro G

    2012-08-01

    The folding process defines three-dimensional protein structures from their amino acid chains. A protein's structure determines its activity and properties; thus knowing such conformation on an atomic level is essential for both basic and applied studies of protein function and dynamics. However, the acquisition of such structures by experimental methods is slow and expensive, and current computational methods mostly depend on previously known structures to determine new ones. Here we present a new software called GSAFold that applies the generalized simulated annealing (GSA) algorithm on ab initio protein structure prediction. The GSA is a stochastic search algorithm employed in energy minimization and used in global optimization problems, especially those that depend on long-range interactions, such as gravity models and conformation optimization of small molecules. This new implementation applies, for the first time in ab initio protein structure prediction, an analytical inverse for the Visitation function of GSA. It also employs the broadly used NAMD Molecular Dynamics package to carry out energy calculations, allowing the user to select different force fields and parameterizations. Moreover, the software also allows the execution of several simulations simultaneously. Applications that depend on protein structures include rational drug design and structure-based protein function prediction. Applying GSAFold in a test peptide, it was possible to predict the structure of mastoparan-X to a root mean square deviation of 3.00 Å. PMID:22622959

  4. Protein design by fusion: implications for protein structure prediction and evolution

    SciTech Connect

    Skorupka, Katarzyna; Han, Seong Kyu; Nam, Hyun-Jun; Kim, Sanguk; Faham, Salem

    2013-11-19

    Domain fusion is a useful tool in protein design. Here, the structure of a fusion of the heterodimeric flagella-assembly proteins FliS and FliC is reported. Although the ability of the fusion protein to maintain the structure of the heterodimer may be apparent, threading-based structural predictions do not properly fuse the heterodimer. Additional examples of naturally occurring heterodimers that are homologous to full-length proteins were identified. These examples highlight that the designed protein was engineered by the same tools as used in the natural evolution of proteins and that heterodimeric structures contain a wealth of information, currently unused, that can improve structural predictions.

  5. The impact of protein characterization in structural proteomics.

    PubMed

    Geerlof, Arie; Brown, J; Coutard, B; Egloff, M P; Enguita, F J; Fogg, M J; Gilbert, R J C; Groves, M R; Haouz, A; Nettleship, J E; Nordlund, P; Owens, R J; Ruff, M; Sainsbury, S; Svergun, D I; Wilmanns, Matthias

    2006-10-01

    Protein characterization plays a role in two key aspects of structural proteomics. The first is the quality assessment of the produced protein preparations. Obtaining well diffracting crystals is one of the major bottlenecks in the structure-determination pipeline. Often, this is caused by the poor quality of the protein preparation used for crystallization trials. Hence, it is essential to perform an extensive quality assessment of the protein preparations prior to crystallization and to use the results in the evaluation of the process. Here, a protein-production and crystallization strategy is proposed with threshold values for protein purity (95%) and monodispersity (85%) below which a further optimization of the protein-production process is strongly recommended. The second aspect is the determination of protein characteristics such as domains, oligomeric state, post-translational modifications and protein-protein and protein-ligand interactions. In this paper, applications and new developments of protein-characterization methods using MS, fluorescence spectroscopy, static light scattering, analytical ultracentrifugation and small-angle X-ray scattering within the EC Structural Proteomics in Europe contract are described. Examples of the application of the various methods are given. PMID:17001090

  6. Prediction of Protein Structure Using Surface Accessibility Data

    PubMed Central

    Hartlmüller, Christoph; Göbl, Christoph

    2016-01-01

    Abstract An approach to the de novo structure prediction of proteins is described that relies on surface accessibility data from NMR paramagnetic relaxation enhancements by a soluble paramagnetic compound (sPRE). This method exploits the distance‐to‐surface information encoded in the sPRE data in the chemical shift‐based CS‐Rosetta de novo structure prediction framework to generate reliable structural models. For several proteins, it is demonstrated that surface accessibility data is an excellent measure of the correct protein fold in the early stages of the computational folding algorithm and significantly improves accuracy and convergence of the standard Rosetta structure prediction approach. PMID:27560616

  7. Prediction of Protein Structure Using Surface Accessibility Data.

    PubMed

    Hartlmüller, Christoph; Göbl, Christoph; Madl, Tobias

    2016-09-19

    An approach to the de novo structure prediction of proteins is described that relies on surface accessibility data from NMR paramagnetic relaxation enhancements by a soluble paramagnetic compound (sPRE). This method exploits the distance-to-surface information encoded in the sPRE data in the chemical shift-based CS-Rosetta de novo structure prediction framework to generate reliable structural models. For several proteins, it is demonstrated that surface accessibility data is an excellent measure of the correct protein fold in the early stages of the computational folding algorithm and significantly improves accuracy and convergence of the standard Rosetta structure prediction approach.

  8. Prediction of Protein Structure Using Surface Accessibility Data.

    PubMed

    Hartlmüller, Christoph; Göbl, Christoph; Madl, Tobias

    2016-09-19

    An approach to the de novo structure prediction of proteins is described that relies on surface accessibility data from NMR paramagnetic relaxation enhancements by a soluble paramagnetic compound (sPRE). This method exploits the distance-to-surface information encoded in the sPRE data in the chemical shift-based CS-Rosetta de novo structure prediction framework to generate reliable structural models. For several proteins, it is demonstrated that surface accessibility data is an excellent measure of the correct protein fold in the early stages of the computational folding algorithm and significantly improves accuracy and convergence of the standard Rosetta structure prediction approach. PMID:27560616

  9. PSCDB: a database for protein structural change upon ligand binding.

    PubMed

    Amemiya, Takayuki; Koike, Ryotaro; Kidera, Akinori; Ota, Motonori

    2012-01-01

    Proteins are flexible molecules that undergo structural changes to function. The Protein Data Bank contains multiple entries for identical proteins determined under different conditions, e.g. with and without a ligand molecule, which provides important information for understanding the structural changes related to protein functions. We gathered 839 protein structural pairs of ligand-free and ligand-bound states from monomeric or homo-dimeric proteins, and constructed the Protein Structural Change DataBase (PSCDB). In the database, we focused on whether the motions were coupled with ligand binding. As a result, the protein structural changes were classified into seven classes, i.e. coupled domain motion (59 structural changes), independent domain motion (70), coupled local motion (125), independent local motion (135), burying ligand motion (104), no significant motion (311) and other type motion (35). PSCDB provides lists of each class. On each entry page, users can view detailed information about the motion, accompanied by a morphing animation of the structural changes. PSCDB is available at http://idp1.force.cs.is.nagoya-u.ac.jp/pscdb/. PMID:22080505

  10. Solid-state NMR structures of integral membrane proteins.

    PubMed

    Patching, Simon G

    2015-01-01

    Solid-state NMR is unique for its ability to obtain three-dimensional structures and to measure atomic-resolution structural and dynamic information for membrane proteins in native lipid bilayers. An increasing number and complexity of integral membrane protein structures have been determined by solid-state NMR using two main methods. Oriented sample solid-state NMR uses macroscopically aligned lipid bilayers to obtain orientational restraints that define secondary structure and global fold of embedded peptides and proteins and their orientation and topology in lipid bilayers. Magic angle spinning (MAS) solid-state NMR uses unoriented rapidly spinning samples to obtain distance and torsion angle restraints that define tertiary structure and helix packing arrangements. Details of all current protein structures are described, highlighting developments in experimental strategy and other technological advancements. Some structures originate from combining solid- and solution-state NMR information and some have used solid-state NMR to refine X-ray crystal structures. Solid-state NMR has also validated the structures of proteins determined in different membrane mimetics by solution-state NMR and X-ray crystallography and is therefore complementary to other structural biology techniques. By continuing efforts in identifying membrane protein targets and developing expression, isotope labelling and sample preparation strategies, probe technology, NMR experiments, calculation and modelling methods and combination with other techniques, it should be feasible to determine the structures of many more membrane proteins of biological and biomedical importance using solid-state NMR. This will provide three-dimensional structures and atomic-resolution structural information for characterising ligand and drug interactions, dynamics and molecular mechanisms of membrane proteins under physiological lipid bilayer conditions.

  11. Solid-state NMR structures of integral membrane proteins.

    PubMed

    Patching, Simon G

    2015-01-01

    Solid-state NMR is unique for its ability to obtain three-dimensional structures and to measure atomic-resolution structural and dynamic information for membrane proteins in native lipid bilayers. An increasing number and complexity of integral membrane protein structures have been determined by solid-state NMR using two main methods. Oriented sample solid-state NMR uses macroscopically aligned lipid bilayers to obtain orientational restraints that define secondary structure and global fold of embedded peptides and proteins and their orientation and topology in lipid bilayers. Magic angle spinning (MAS) solid-state NMR uses unoriented rapidly spinning samples to obtain distance and torsion angle restraints that define tertiary structure and helix packing arrangements. Details of all current protein structures are described, highlighting developments in experimental strategy and other technological advancements. Some structures originate from combining solid- and solution-state NMR information and some have used solid-state NMR to refine X-ray crystal structures. Solid-state NMR has also validated the structures of proteins determined in different membrane mimetics by solution-state NMR and X-ray crystallography and is therefore complementary to other structural biology techniques. By continuing efforts in identifying membrane protein targets and developing expression, isotope labelling and sample preparation strategies, probe technology, NMR experiments, calculation and modelling methods and combination with other techniques, it should be feasible to determine the structures of many more membrane proteins of biological and biomedical importance using solid-state NMR. This will provide three-dimensional structures and atomic-resolution structural information for characterising ligand and drug interactions, dynamics and molecular mechanisms of membrane proteins under physiological lipid bilayer conditions. PMID:26857803

  12. Macromolecular crowding increases structural content of folded proteins.

    PubMed

    Perham, Michael; Stagg, Loren; Wittung-Stafshede, Pernilla

    2007-10-30

    Here we show that increased amount of secondary structure is acquired in the folded states of two structurally-different proteins (alpha-helical VlsE and alpha/beta flavodoxin) in the presence of macromolecular crowding agents. The structural content of flavodoxin and VlsE is enhanced by 33% and 70%, respectively, in 400 mg/ml Ficoll 70 (pH 7, 20 degrees C) and correlates with higher protein-thermal stability. In the same Ficoll range, there are only small effects on the unfolded-state structures of the proteins. This is the first in vitro assessment of crowding effects on the native-state structures at physiological conditions. Our findings imply that for proteins with low intrinsic stability, the functional structures in vivo may differ from those observed in dilute buffers. PMID:17919600

  13. Supramolecular Structures with Blood Plasma Proteins, Sugars and Nanosilica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Turov, V. V.; Gun'ko, V. M.; Galagan, N. P.; Rugal, A. A.; Barvinchenko, V. M.; Gorbyk, P. P.

    Supramolecular structures with blood plasma proteins (albumin, immunoglobulin and fibrinogen (HPF)), protein/water/silica and protein/water/ silica/sugar (glucose, fructose and saccharose) were studied by NMR, adsorption, IR and UV spectroscopy methods. Hydration parameters, amounts of weakly and strongly bound waters and interfacial energy (γ S) were determined over a wide range of component concentrations. The γ S(C protein,C silica) graphs were used to estimate the energy of protein-protein, protein-surface and particle-particle interactions. It was shown that interfacial energy of self-association (γ as) of protein molecules depends on a type of proteins. A large fraction of water bound to proteins can be displaced by sugars, and the effect of disaccharide (saccharose) was greater than that of monosugars. Changes in the structural parameters of cavities in HPF molecules and complexes with HPF/silica nanoparticles filled by bound water were analysed using NMR-cryoporometry showing that interaction of proteins with silica leads to a significant decrease in the amounts of water bound to both protein and silica surfaces. Bionanocomposites with BSA/nanosilica/sugar can be used to influence states of living cells and tissues after cryopreservation or other treatments. It was shown that interaction of proteins with silica leads to strong decrease in the volume of all types of internal cavities filled by water.

  14. Synchrotron IR microspectroscopy for protein structure analysis: Potential and questions

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Yu, Peiqiang

    2006-01-01

    Synchrotron radiation-based Fourier transform infrared microspectroscopy (S-FTIR) has been developed as a rapid, direct, non-destructive, bioanalytical technique. This technique takes advantage of synchrotron light brightness and small effective source size and is capable of exploring the molecular chemical make-up within microstructures of a biological tissue without destruction of inherent structures at ultra-spatial resolutions within cellular dimension. To date there has been very little application of this advanced technique to the study of pure protein inherent structure at a cellular level in biological tissues. In this review, a novel approach was introduced to show the potential of the newly developed, advancedmore » synchrotron-based analytical technology, which can be used to localize relatively “pure“ protein in the plant tissues and relatively reveal protein inherent structure and protein molecular chemical make-up within intact tissue at cellular and subcellular levels. Several complex protein IR spectra data analytical techniques (Gaussian and Lorentzian multi-component peak modeling, univariate and multivariate analysis, principal component analysis (PCA), and hierarchical cluster analysis (CLA) are employed to relatively reveal features of protein inherent structure and distinguish protein inherent structure differences between varieties/species and treatments in plant tissues. By using a multi-peak modeling procedure, RELATIVE estimates (but not EXACT determinations) for protein secondary structure analysis can be made for comparison purpose. The issues of pro- and anti-multi-peaking modeling/fitting procedure for relative estimation of protein structure were discussed. By using the PCA and CLA analyses, the plant molecular structure can be qualitatively separate one group from another, statistically, even though the spectral assignments are not known. The synchrotron-based technology provides a new approach for protein structure research in

  15. A protein relational database and protein family knowledge bases to facilitate structure-based design analyses.

    PubMed

    Mobilio, Dominick; Walker, Gary; Brooijmans, Natasja; Nilakantan, Ramaswamy; Denny, R Aldrin; Dejoannis, Jason; Feyfant, Eric; Kowticwar, Rupesh K; Mankala, Jyoti; Palli, Satish; Punyamantula, Sairam; Tatipally, Maneesh; John, Reji K; Humblet, Christine

    2010-08-01

    The Protein Data Bank is the most comprehensive source of experimental macromolecular structures. It can, however, be difficult at times to locate relevant structures with the Protein Data Bank search interface. This is particularly true when searching for complexes containing specific interactions between protein and ligand atoms. Moreover, searching within a family of proteins can be tedious. For example, one cannot search for some conserved residue as residue numbers vary across structures. We describe herein three databases, Protein Relational Database, Kinase Knowledge Base, and Matrix Metalloproteinase Knowledge Base, containing protein structures from the Protein Data Bank. In Protein Relational Database, atom-atom distances between protein and ligand have been precalculated allowing for millisecond retrieval based on atom identity and distance constraints. Ring centroids, centroid-centroid and centroid-atom distances and angles have also been included permitting queries for pi-stacking interactions and other structural motifs involving rings. Other geometric features can be searched through the inclusion of residue pair and triplet distances. In Kinase Knowledge Base and Matrix Metalloproteinase Knowledge Base, the catalytic domains have been aligned into common residue numbering schemes. Thus, by searching across Protein Relational Database and Kinase Knowledge Base, one can easily retrieve structures wherein, for example, a ligand of interest is making contact with the gatekeeper residue.

  16. Function and structure of GFP-like proteins in the protein data bank.

    PubMed

    Ong, Wayne J-H; Alvarez, Samuel; Leroux, Ivan E; Shahid, Ramza S; Samma, Alex A; Peshkepija, Paola; Morgan, Alicia L; Mulcahy, Shawn; Zimmer, Marc

    2011-04-01

    The RCSB protein databank contains 266 crystal structures of green fluorescent proteins (GFP) and GFP-like proteins. This is the first systematic analysis of all the GFP-like structures in the pdb. We have used the pdb to examine the function of fluorescent proteins (FP) in nature, aspects of excited state proton transfer (ESPT) in FPs, deformation from planarity of the chromophore and chromophore maturation. The conclusions reached in this review are that (1) The lid residues are highly conserved, particularly those on the "top" of the β-barrel. They are important to the function of GFP-like proteins, perhaps in protecting the chromophore or in β-barrel formation. (2) The primary/ancestral function of GFP-like proteins may well be to aid in light induced electron transfer. (3) The structural prerequisites for light activated proton pumps exist in many structures and it's possible that like bioluminescence, proton pumps are secondary functions of GFP-like proteins. (4) In most GFP-like proteins the protein matrix exerts a significant strain on planar chromophores forcing most GFP-like proteins to adopt non-planar chromophores. These chromophoric deviations from planarity play an important role in determining the fluorescence quantum yield. (5) The chemospatial characteristics of the chromophore cavity determine the isomerization state of the chromophore. The cavities of highlighter proteins that can undergo cis/trans isomerization have chemospatial properties that are common to both cis and trans GFP-like proteins.

  17. High-throughput characterization of intrinsic disorder in proteins from the Protein Structure Initiative.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Derrick E; Xue, Bin; Sickmeier, Megan D; Meng, Jingwei; Cortese, Marc S; Oldfield, Christopher J; Le Gall, Tanguy; Dunker, A Keith; Uversky, Vladimir N

    2012-10-01

    The identification of intrinsically disordered proteins (IDPs) among the targets that fail to form satisfactory crystal structures in the Protein Structure Initiative represents a key to reducing the costs and time for determining three-dimensional structures of proteins. To help in this endeavor, several Protein Structure Initiative Centers were asked to send samples of both crystallizable proteins and proteins that failed to crystallize. The abundance of intrinsic disorder in these proteins was evaluated via computational analysis using predictors of natural disordered regions (PONDR®) and the potential cleavage sites and corresponding fragments were determined. Then, the target proteins were analyzed for intrinsic disorder by their resistance to limited proteolysis. The rates of tryptic digestion of sample target proteins were compared to those of lysozyme/myoglobin, apomyoglobin, and α-casein as standards of ordered, partially disordered and completely disordered proteins, respectively. At the next stage, the protein samples were subjected to both far-UV and near-UV circular dichroism (CD) analysis. For most of the samples, a good agreement between CD data, predictions of disorder and the rates of limited tryptic digestion was established. Further experimentation is being performed on a smaller subset of these samples in order to obtain more detailed information on the ordered/disordered nature of the proteins.

  18. Redesigning the hydrophobic core of a four-helix-bundle protein.

    PubMed Central

    Munson, M.; O'Brien, R.; Sturtevant, J. M.; Regan, L.

    1994-01-01

    Rationally redesigned variants of the 4-helix-bundle protein Rop are described. The novel proteins have simplified, repacked, hydrophobic cores and yet reproduce the structure and native-like physical properties of the wild-type protein. The repacked proteins have been characterized thermodynamically and their equilibrium and kinetic thermal and chemical unfolding properties are compared with those of wild-type Rop. The equilibrium stability of the repacked proteins to thermal denaturation is enhanced relative to that of the wild-type protein. The rate of chemically induced folding and unfolding of wild-type Rop is extremely slow when compared with other small proteins. Interestingly, although the repacked proteins are more thermally stable than the wild type, their rates of chemically induced folding and unfolding are greatly increased in comparison to wild type. Perhaps as a consequence of this, their equilibrium stabilities to chemical denaturants are slightly reduced in comparison to the wild type. PMID:7535612

  19. Genome Pool Strategy for Structural Coverage of Protein Families

    SciTech Connect

    Jaroszewski, L.; Slabinski, L.; Wooley, J.; Deacon, A.M.; Lesley, S.A.; Wilson, I.A.; Godzik, A.

    2009-05-18

    Even closely homologous proteins often have different crystallization properties and propensities. This observation can be used to introduce an additional dimension into crystallization trials by simultaneous targeting multiple homologs in what we call a 'genome pool' strategy. We show that this strategy works because protein physicochemical properties correlated with crystallization success have a surprisingly broad distribution within most protein families. There are also easy and difficult families where this distribution is tilted in one direction. This leads to uneven structural coverage of protein families, with more easy ones solved. Increasing the size of the genome pool can improve chances of solving the difficult ones. In contrast, our analysis does not indicate that any specific genomes are easy or difficult. Finally, we show that the group of proteins with known 3D structures is systematically different from the general pool of known proteins and we assess the structural consequences of these differences.

  20. Tuning structure of oppositely charged nanoparticle and protein complexes

    SciTech Connect

    Kumar, Sugam Aswal, V. K.; Callow, P.

    2014-04-24

    Small-angle neutron scattering (SANS) has been used to probe the structures of anionic silica nanoparticles (LS30) and cationic lyszyme protein (M.W. 14.7kD, I.P. ∼ 11.4) by tuning their interaction through the pH variation. The protein adsorption on nanoparticles is found to be increasing with pH and determined by the electrostatic attraction between two components as well as repulsion between protein molecules. We show the strong electrostatic attraction between nanoparticles and protein molecules leads to protein-mediated aggregation of nanoparticles which are characterized by fractal structures. At pH 5, the protein adsorption gives rise to nanoparticle aggregation having surface fractal morphology with close packing of nanoparticles. The surface fractals transform to open structures of mass fractal morphology at higher pH (7 and 9) on approaching isoelectric point (I.P.)

  1. SuperMimic – Fitting peptide mimetics into protein structures

    PubMed Central

    Goede, Andrean; Michalsky, Elke; Schmidt, Ulrike; Preissner, Robert

    2006-01-01

    Background Various experimental techniques yield peptides that are biologically active but have unfavourable pharmacological properties. The design of structurally similar organic compounds, i.e. peptide mimetics, is a challenging field in medicinal chemistry. Results SuperMimic identifies compounds that mimic parts of a protein, or positions in proteins that are suitable for inserting mimetics. The application provides libraries that contain peptidomimetic building blocks on the one hand and protein structures on the other. The search for promising peptidomimetic linkers for a given peptide is based on the superposition of the peptide with several conformers of the mimetic. New synthetic elements or proteins can be imported and used for searching. Conclusion We present a graphical user interface for finding peptide mimetics that can be inserted into a protein or for fitting small molecules into a protein. Using SuperMimic, promising locations in proteins for the insertion of mimetics can be found quickly and conveniently. PMID:16403211

  2. Structural and Energetic Characterization of the Ankyrin Repeat Protein Family

    PubMed Central

    Parra, R. Gonzalo; Espada, Rocío; Verstraete, Nina; Ferreiro, Diego U.

    2015-01-01

    Ankyrin repeat containing proteins are one of the most abundant solenoid folds. Usually implicated in specific protein-protein interactions, these proteins are readily amenable for design, with promising biotechnological and biomedical applications. Studying repeat protein families presents technical challenges due to the high sequence divergence among the repeating units. We developed and applied a systematic method to consistently identify and annotate the structural repetitions over the members of the complete Ankyrin Repeat Protein Family, with increased sensitivity over previous studies. We statistically characterized the number of repeats, the folding of the repeat-arrays, their structural variations, insertions and deletions. An energetic analysis of the local frustration patterns reveal the basic features underlying fold stability and its relation to the functional binding regions. We found a strong linear correlation between the conservation of the energetic features in the repeat arrays and their sequence variations, and discuss new insights into the organization and function of these ubiquitous proteins. PMID:26691182

  3. Kinetics of protein adsorption on gold nanoparticle with variable protein structure and nanoparticle size.

    PubMed

    Khan, S; Gupta, A; Verma, N C; Nandi, C K

    2015-10-28

    The spontaneous protein adsorption on nanomaterial surfaces and the formation of a protein corona around nanoparticles are poorly understood physical phenomena, with high biological relevance. The complexity arises mainly due to the poor knowledge of the structural orientation of the adsorbed proteins onto the nanoparticle surface and difficulties in correlating the protein nanoparticle interaction to the protein corona in real time scale. Here, we provide quantitative insights into the kinetics, number, and binding orientation of a few common blood proteins when they interact with citrate and cetyltriethylammoniumbromide stabilized spherical gold nanoparticles with variable sizes. The kinetics of the protein adsorption was studied experimentally by monitoring the change in hydrodynamic diameter and zeta potential of the nanoparticle-protein complex. To understand the competitive binding of human serum albumin and hemoglobin, time dependent fluorescence quenching was studied using dual fluorophore tags. We have performed molecular docking of three different proteins--human serum albumin, bovine serum albumin, and hemoglobin--on different nanoparticle surfaces to elucidate the possible structural orientation of the adsorbed protein. Our data show that the growth kinetics of a protein corona is exclusively dependent on both protein structure and surface chemistry of the nanoparticles. The study quantitatively suggests that a general physical law of protein adsorption is unlikely to exist as the interaction is unique and specific for a given pair. PMID:26520545

  4. Structural Instability Tuning as a Regulatory Mechanism in Protein-Protein Interactions

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Li; Balabanidou, Vassilia; Remeta, David P.; Minetti, Conceição A.S.A.; Portaliou, Athina G.; Economou, Anastassios; Kalodimos, Charalampos G.

    2011-01-01

    SUMMARY Protein-protein interactions mediate a vast number of cellular processes. Here we present a regulatory mechanism in protein-protein interactions mediated by finely-tuned structural instability coupled with molecular mimicry. We show that a set of type III secretion (TTS) autoinhibited homodimeric chaperones adopt a molten-globule-like state that transiently exposes the substrate binding site as a means to become rapidly poised for binding to their cognate protein substrates. Packing defects at the homodimeric interface stimulate binding whereas correction of these defects results in less labile chaperones that give rise to non-functional biological systems. The protein substrates use structural mimicry to offset the “weak spots” in the chaperones and to counteract their autoinhibitory conformation. This regulatory mechanism of protein activity is evolutionary conserved among several TSS systems and presents a lucid example of functional advantage conferred upon a biological system by finely-tuned structural instability. PMID:22152477

  5. Using linear algebra for protein structural comparison and classification

    PubMed Central

    2009-01-01

    In this article, we describe a novel methodology to extract semantic characteristics from protein structures using linear algebra in order to compose structural signature vectors which may be used efficiently to compare and classify protein structures into fold families. These signatures are built from the pattern of hydrophobic intrachain interactions using Singular Value Decomposition (SVD) and Latent Semantic Indexing (LSI) techniques. Considering proteins as documents and contacts as terms, we have built a retrieval system which is able to find conserved contacts in samples of myoglobin fold family and to retrieve these proteins among proteins of varied folds with precision of up to 80%. The classifier is a web tool available at our laboratory website. Users can search for similar chains from a specific PDB, view and compare their contact maps and browse their structures using a JMol plug-in. PMID:21637532

  6. Revealing Higher Order Protein Structure Using Mass Spectrometry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chait, Brian T.; Cadene, Martine; Olinares, Paul Dominic; Rout, Michael P.; Shi, Yi

    2016-06-01

    The development of rapid, sensitive, and accurate mass spectrometric methods for measuring peptides, proteins, and even intact protein assemblies has made mass spectrometry (MS) an extraordinarily enabling tool for structural biology. Here, we provide a personal perspective of the increasingly useful role that mass spectrometric techniques are exerting during the elucidation of higher order protein structures. Areas covered in this brief perspective include MS as an enabling tool for the high resolution structural biologist, for compositional analysis of endogenous protein complexes, for stoichiometry determination, as well as for integrated approaches for the structural elucidation of protein complexes. We conclude with a vision for the future role of MS-based techniques in the development of a multi-scale molecular microscope.

  7. Using linear algebra for protein structural comparison and classification.

    PubMed

    Gomide, Janaína; Melo-Minardi, Raquel; Dos Santos, Marcos Augusto; Neshich, Goran; Meira, Wagner; Lopes, Júlio César; Santoro, Marcelo

    2009-07-01

    In this article, we describe a novel methodology to extract semantic characteristics from protein structures using linear algebra in order to compose structural signature vectors which may be used efficiently to compare and classify protein structures into fold families. These signatures are built from the pattern of hydrophobic intrachain interactions using Singular Value Decomposition (SVD) and Latent Semantic Indexing (LSI) techniques. Considering proteins as documents and contacts as terms, we have built a retrieval system which is able to find conserved contacts in samples of myoglobin fold family and to retrieve these proteins among proteins of varied folds with precision of up to 80%. The classifier is a web tool available at our laboratory website. Users can search for similar chains from a specific PDB, view and compare their contact maps and browse their structures using a JMol plug-in.

  8. Multiple oligomeric structures of a bacterial small heat shock protein

    PubMed Central

    Mani, Nandini; Bhandari, Spraha; Moreno, Rodolfo; Hu, Liya; Prasad, B. V. Venkataram; Suguna, Kaza

    2016-01-01

    Small heat shock proteins are ubiquitous molecular chaperones that form the first line of defence against the detrimental effects of cellular stress. Under conditions of stress they undergo drastic conformational rearrangements in order to bind to misfolded substrate proteins and prevent cellular protein aggregation. Owing to the dynamic nature of small heat shock protein oligomers, elucidating the structural basis of chaperone action and oligomerization still remains a challenge. In order to understand the organization of sHSP oligomers, we have determined crystal structures of a small heat shock protein from Salmonella typhimurium in a dimeric form and two higher oligomeric forms: an 18-mer and a 24-mer. Though the core dimer structure is conserved in all the forms, structural heterogeneity arises due to variation in the terminal regions. PMID:27053150

  9. Bayesian inference of protein structure from chemical shift data

    PubMed Central

    Bratholm, Lars A.; Christensen, Anders S.; Hamelryck, Thomas

    2015-01-01

    Protein chemical shifts are routinely used to augment molecular mechanics force fields in protein structure simulations, with weights of the chemical shift restraints determined empirically. These weights, however, might not be an optimal descriptor of a given protein structure and predictive model, and a bias is introduced which might result in incorrect structures. In the inferential structure determination framework, both the unknown structure and the disagreement between experimental and back-calculated data are formulated as a joint probability distribution, thus utilizing the full information content of the data. Here, we present the formulation of such a probability distribution where the error in chemical shift prediction is described by either a Gaussian or Cauchy distribution. The methodology is demonstrated and compared to a set of empirically weighted potentials through Markov chain Monte Carlo simulations of three small proteins (ENHD, Protein G and the SMN Tudor Domain) using the PROFASI force field and the chemical shift predictor CamShift. Using a clustering-criterion for identifying the best structure, together with the addition of a solvent exposure scoring term, the simulations suggests that sampling both the structure and the uncertainties in chemical shift prediction leads more accurate structures compared to conventional methods using empirical determined weights. The Cauchy distribution, using either sampled uncertainties or predetermined weights, did, however, result in overall better convergence to the native fold, suggesting that both types of distribution might be useful in different aspects of the protein structure prediction. PMID:25825683

  10. Bayesian inference of protein structure from chemical shift data.

    PubMed

    Bratholm, Lars A; Christensen, Anders S; Hamelryck, Thomas; Jensen, Jan H

    2015-01-01

    Protein chemical shifts are routinely used to augment molecular mechanics force fields in protein structure simulations, with weights of the chemical shift restraints determined empirically. These weights, however, might not be an optimal descriptor of a given protein structure and predictive model, and a bias is introduced which might result in incorrect structures. In the inferential structure determination framework, both the unknown structure and the disagreement between experimental and back-calculated data are formulated as a joint probability distribution, thus utilizing the full information content of the data. Here, we present the formulation of such a probability distribution where the error in chemical shift prediction is described by either a Gaussian or Cauchy distribution. The methodology is demonstrated and compared to a set of empirically weighted potentials through Markov chain Monte Carlo simulations of three small proteins (ENHD, Protein G and the SMN Tudor Domain) using the PROFASI force field and the chemical shift predictor CamShift. Using a clustering-criterion for identifying the best structure, together with the addition of a solvent exposure scoring term, the simulations suggests that sampling both the structure and the uncertainties in chemical shift prediction leads more accurate structures compared to conventional methods using empirical determined weights. The Cauchy distribution, using either sampled uncertainties or predetermined weights, did, however, result in overall better convergence to the native fold, suggesting that both types of distribution might be useful in different aspects of the protein structure prediction.

  11. PDBparam: Online Resource for Computing Structural Parameters of Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Nagarajan, R.; Archana, A.; Thangakani, A. Mary; Jemimah, S.; Velmurugan, D.; Gromiha, M. Michael

    2016-01-01

    Understanding the structure–function relationship in proteins is a longstanding goal in molecular and computational biology. The development of structure-based parameters has helped to relate the structure with the function of a protein. Although several structural features have been reported in the literature, no single server can calculate a wide-ranging set of structure-based features from protein three-dimensional structures. In this work, we have developed a web-based tool, PDBparam, for computing more than 50 structure-based features for any given protein structure. These features are classified into four major categories: (i) interresidue interactions, which include short-, medium-, and long-range interactions, contact order, long-range order, total contact distance, contact number, and multiple contact index, (ii) secondary structure propensities such as α-helical propensity, β-sheet propensity, and propensity of amino acids to exist at various positions of α-helix and amino acid compositions in high B-value regions, (iii) physicochemical properties containing ionic interactions, hydrogen bond interactions, hydrophobic interactions, disulfide interactions, aromatic interactions, surrounding hydrophobicity, and buriedness, and (iv) identification of binding site residues in protein–protein, protein–nucleic acid, and protein–ligand complexes. The server can be freely accessed at http://www.iitm.ac.in/bioinfo/pdbparam/. We suggest the use of PDBparam as an effective tool for analyzing protein structures. PMID:27330281

  12. Structural Analysis of Protein-Protein Interactions in Type I Polyketide Synthases

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Wei; Qiao, Kangjian; Tang, Yi

    2013-01-01

    Polyketide synthases (PKSs) are responsible for synthesizing a myriad of natural products with agricultural, medicinal relevance. The PKSs consist of multiple functional domains of which each can catalyze a specified chemical reaction leading to the synthesis of polyketides. Biochemical studies showed that protein-substrate and protein-protein interactions play crucial roles in these complex regio-/stereo- selective biochemical processes. Recent developments on X-ray crystallography and protein NMR techniques have allowed us to understand the biosynthetic mechanism of these enzymes from their structures. These structural studies have facilitated the elucidation of sequence-function relationship of PKSs and will ultimately contribute to the prediction of product structure. This review will focus on the current knowledge of type I PKS structures and the protein-protein interactions in this system. PMID:23249187

  13. Structural analysis of protein-protein interactions in type I polyketide synthases.

    PubMed

    Xu, Wei; Qiao, Kangjian; Tang, Yi

    2013-01-01

    Polyketide synthases (PKSs) are responsible for synthesizing a myriad of natural products with agricultural, medicinal relevance. The PKSs consist of multiple functional domains of which each can catalyze a specified chemical reaction leading to the synthesis of polyketides. Biochemical studies showed that protein-substrate and protein-protein interactions play crucial roles in these complex regio-/stereo-selective biochemical processes. Recent developments on X-ray crystallography and protein NMR techniques have allowed us to understand the biosynthetic mechanism of these enzymes from their structures. These structural studies have facilitated the elucidation of the sequence-function relationship of PKSs and will ultimately contribute to the prediction of product structure. This review will focus on the current knowledge of type I PKS structures and the protein-protein interactions in this system.

  14. Fusion proteins as alternate crystallization paths to difficult structure problems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Carter, Daniel C.; Rueker, Florian; Ho, Joseph X.; Lim, Kap; Keeling, Kim; Gilliland, Gary; Ji, Xinhua

    1994-01-01

    The three-dimensional structure of a peptide fusion product with glutathione transferase from Schistosoma japonicum (SjGST) has been solved by crystallographic methods to 2.5 A resolution. Peptides or proteins can be fused to SjGST and expressed in a plasmid for rapid synthesis in Escherichia coli. Fusion proteins created by this commercial method can be purified rapidly by chromatography on immobilized glutathione. The potential utility of using SjGST fusion proteins as alternate paths to the crystallization and structure determination of proteins is demonstrated.

  15. NMR-based structural biology of proteins in supercooled water.

    PubMed

    Szyperski, Thomas; Mills, Jeffrey L

    2011-03-01

    NMR-based structural biology of proteins can be pursued efficiently in supercooled water at temperatures well below the freezing point of water. This enables one to study protein structure, dynamics, hydration and cold denaturation in an unperturbed aqueous solution at very low temperatures. Furthermore, such studies enable one to accurately measure thermodynamic parameters associated with protein cold denaturation. Presently available approaches to acquire NMR data for supercooled aqueous protein solutions are surveyed, new insights obtained from such studies are summarized, and future perspectives are discussed.

  16. Cotranslational protein folding on the ribosome monitored in real time.

    PubMed

    Holtkamp, Wolf; Kokic, Goran; Jäger, Marcus; Mittelstaet, Joerg; Komar, Anton A; Rodnina, Marina V

    2015-11-27

    Protein domains can fold into stable tertiary structures while they are synthesized on the ribosome. We used a high-performance, reconstituted in vitro translation system to investigate the folding of a small five-helix protein domain-the N-terminal domain of Escherichia coli N5-glutamine methyltransferase HemK-in real time. Our observations show that cotranslational folding of the protein, which folds autonomously and rapidly in solution, proceeds through a compact, non-native conformation that forms within the peptide tunnel of the ribosome. The compact state rearranges into a native-like structure immediately after the full domain sequence has emerged from the ribosome. Both folding transitions are rate-limited by translation, allowing for quasi-equilibrium sampling of the conformational space restricted by the ribosome. Cotranslational folding may be typical of small, intrinsically rapidly folding protein domains. PMID:26612953

  17. Conservation of protein structure over four billion years

    PubMed Central

    Ingles-Prieto, Alvaro; Ibarra-Molero, Beatriz; Delgado-Delgado, Asuncion; Perez-Jimenez, Raul; Fernandez, Julio M.; Gaucher, Eric A.; Sanchez-Ruiz, Jose M.; Gavira, Jose A.

    2013-01-01

    SUMMARY Little is known with certainty about the evolution of protein structures in general and the degree of protein structure conservation over planetary time scales in particular. Here we report the X-ray crystal structures of seven laboratory resurrections of Precambrian thioredoxins dating back up to ~4 billion years before present. Despite considerable sequence differences compared with extant enzymes, the ancestral proteins display the canonical thioredoxin fold while only small structural changes have occurred over 4 billion years. This remarkable degree of structure conservation since a time near the last common ancestor of life supports a punctuated-equilibrium model of structure evolution in which the generation of new folds occurs over comparatively short periods of time and is followed by long periods of structural stasis. PMID:23932589

  18. Conservation of protein structure over four billion years.

    PubMed

    Ingles-Prieto, Alvaro; Ibarra-Molero, Beatriz; Delgado-Delgado, Asuncion; Perez-Jimenez, Raul; Fernandez, Julio M; Gaucher, Eric A; Sanchez-Ruiz, Jose M; Gavira, Jose A

    2013-09-01

    Little is known about the evolution of protein structures and the degree of protein structure conservation over planetary time scales. Here, we report the X-ray crystal structures of seven laboratory resurrections of Precambrian thioredoxins dating up to approximately four billion years ago. Despite considerable sequence differences compared with extant enzymes, the ancestral proteins display the canonical thioredoxin fold, whereas only small structural changes have occurred over four billion years. This remarkable degree of structure conservation since a time near the last common ancestor of life supports a punctuated-equilibrium model of structure evolution in which the generation of new folds occurs over comparatively short periods and is followed by long periods of structural stasis. PMID:23932589

  19. Electron crystallography for structural and functional studies of membrane proteins.

    PubMed

    Fujiyoshi, Yoshinori

    2011-01-01

    Membrane proteins are important research targets for basic biological sciences and drug design, but studies of their structure and function are considered difficult to perform. Studies of membrane structures have been greatly facilitated by technological and instrumental advancements in electron microscopy together with methodological advancements in biology. Electron crystallography is especially useful in studying the structure and function of membrane proteins. Electron crystallography is now an established method of analyzing the structures of membrane proteins in lipid bilayers, which resembles their natural biological environment. To better understand the neural system function from a structural point of view, we developed the cryo-electron microscope with a helium-cooled specimen stage, which allows for analysis of the structures of membrane proteins at a resolution higher than 3 Å. This review introduces recent instrumental advances in cryo-electron microscopy and presents some examples of structure analyses of membrane proteins, such as bacteriorhodopsin, water channels and gap junction channels. This review has two objectives: first, to provide a personal historical background to describe how we came to develop the cryo-electron microscope and second, to discuss some of the technology required for the structural analysis of membrane proteins based on cryo-electron microscopy.

  20. Structure characterization of protein fractions from lotus ( Nelumbo nucifera) seed

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zeng, Hong-Yan; Cai, Lian-Hui; Cai, Xi-Ling; Wang, Ya-Ju; Li, Yu-Qin

    2011-08-01

    Protein fractionation of lotus seed was carried out and the structures of the protein fractions were studied. Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) as well as ultraviolet visible spectroscopy (UV-vis) was used to investigate changes in molecular structures of the protein fractions. FTIR and UV-vis spectra showed the protein fractions had different protein molecular structures. FTIR spectra showed β-sheets and β-turns as the major secondary structures in the individual protein fractions, while the amounts of α-helix and random coil structures among the different fractions did not significantly change. The amounts of β-sheet structures of albumin and globulin were significantly higher than ones of prolamin and glutelin, implying albumin and globulin had high stabilities because of the high content in β-sheet structures. The observed similarity in the amounts of α-helix, random coil, β-sheet and β-turn structures shared by albumin and globulin indicated that their interior conformations were similar.

  1. Structural study of surfactant-dependent interaction with protein

    SciTech Connect

    Mehan, Sumit; Aswal, Vinod K.; Kohlbrecher, Joachim

    2015-06-24

    Small-angle neutron scattering (SANS) has been used to study the complex structure of anionic BSA protein with three different (cationic DTAB, anionic SDS and non-ionic C12E10) surfactants. These systems form very different surfactant-dependent complexes. We show that the structure of protein-surfactant complex is initiated by the site-specific electrostatic interaction between the components, followed by the hydrophobic interaction at high surfactant concentrations. It is also found that hydrophobic interaction is preferred over the electrostatic interaction in deciding the resultant structure of protein-surfactant complexes.

  2. Structural study of surfactant-dependent interaction with protein

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mehan, Sumit; Aswal, Vinod K.; Kohlbrecher, Joachim

    2015-06-01

    Small-angle neutron scattering (SANS) has been used to study the complex structure of anionic BSA protein with three different (cationic DTAB, anionic SDS and non-ionic C12E10) surfactants. These systems form very different surfactant-dependent complexes. We show that the structure of protein-surfactant complex is initiated by the site-specific electrostatic interaction between the components, followed by the hydrophobic interaction at high surfactant concentrations. It is also found that hydrophobic interaction is preferred over the electrostatic interaction in deciding the resultant structure of protein-surfactant complexes.

  3. Supervised classification of protein structures based on convex hull representation.

    PubMed

    Wang, Yong; Wu, Ling-Yun; Chen, Luonan; Zhang, Xiang-Sun

    2007-01-01

    One of the central problems in functional genomics is to establish the classification schemes of protein structures. In this paper the relationship of protein structures is uncovered within the framework of supervised learning. Specifically, the novel patterns based on convex hull representation are firstly extracted from a protein structure, then the classification system is constructed and machine learning methods such as neural networks, Hidden Markov Models (HMM) and Support Vector Machines (SVMs) are applied. The CATH scheme is highlighted in the classification experiments. The results indicate that the proposed supervised classification scheme is effective and efficient.

  4. Understanding the sequence determinants of conformational switching using protein design.

    PubMed Central

    Dalal, S.; Regan, L.

    2000-01-01

    An important goal of protein design is to understand the forces that stabilize a particular fold in preference to alternative folds. Here, we describe an extension of earlier studies in which we successfully designed a stable, native-like helical protein that is 50% identical in sequence to a predominantly beta-sheet protein, the B1 domain of Streptococcal IgG-binding protein G. We report the characteristics of a series of variants of our original design that have even higher sequence identity to the B1 domain. Their properties illustrate the extent to which protein stability and conformation can be modulated through careful manipulation of key amino acid residues. Our results have implications for understanding conformational change phenomena of central biological importance and in probing the malleability of the sequence/structure relationship. PMID:11045612

  5. A Dominant Factor for Structural Classification of Protein Crystals.

    PubMed

    Qi, Fei; Fudo, Satoshi; Neya, Saburo; Hoshino, Tyuji

    2015-08-24

    With the increasing number of solved protein crystal structures, much information on protein shape and atom geometry has become available. It is of great interest to know the structural diversity for a single kind of protein. Our preliminary study suggested that multiple crystal structures of a single kind of protein can be classified into several groups from the viewpoint of structural similarity. In order to broadly examine this finding, cluster analysis was applied to the crystal structures of hemoglobin (Hb), myoglobin (Mb), human serum albumin (HSA), hen egg-white lysozyme (HEWL), and human immunodeficiency virus type 1 protease (HIV-1 PR), downloaded from the Protein Data Bank (PDB). As a result of classification by cluster analysis, 146 crystal structures of Hb were separated into five groups. The crystal structures of Mb (n = 284), HEWL (n = 336), HSA (n = 63), and HIV-1 PR (n = 488) were separated into six, five, three, and six groups, respectively. It was found that a major factor causing these structural separations is the space group of crystals and that crystallizing agents have an influence on the crystal structures. Amino acid mutation is a minor factor for the separation because no obvious point mutation making a specific cluster group was observed for the five kinds of proteins. In the classification of Hb and Mb, the species of protein source such as humans, rabbits, and mice is another significant factor. When the difference in amino sequence is large among species, the species of protein source is the primary factor causing cluster separation in the classification of crystal structures. PMID:26230289

  6. Accuracy of functional surfaces on comparatively modeled protein structures

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Jieling; Dundas, Joe; Kachalo, Sema; Ouyang, Zheng; Liang, Jie

    2012-01-01

    Identification and characterization of protein functional surfaces are important for predicting protein function, understanding enzyme mechanism, and docking small compounds to proteins. As the rapid speed of accumulation of protein sequence information far exceeds that of structures, constructing accurate models of protein functional surfaces and identify their key elements become increasingly important. A promising approach is to build comparative models from sequences using known structural templates such as those obtained from structural genome projects. Here we assess how well this approach works in modeling binding surfaces. By systematically building three-dimensional comparative models of proteins using Modeller, we determine how well functional surfaces can be accurately reproduced. We use an alpha shape based pocket algorithm to compute all pockets on the modeled structures, and conduct a large-scale computation of similarity measurements (pocket RMSD and fraction of functional atoms captured) for 26,590 modeled enzyme protein structures. Overall, we find that when the sequence fragment of the binding surfaces has more than 45% identity to that of the tempalte protein, the modeled surfaces have on average an RMSD of 0.5 Å, and contain 48% or more of the binding surface atoms, with nearly all of the important atoms in the signatures of binding pockets captured. PMID:21541664

  7. Viral Capsid Proteins Are Segregated in Structural Fold Space

    PubMed Central

    Cheng, Shanshan; Brooks, Charles L.

    2013-01-01

    Viral capsid proteins assemble into large, symmetrical architectures that are not found in complexes formed by their cellular counterparts. Given the prevalence of the signature jelly-roll topology in viral capsid proteins, we are interested in whether these functionally unique capsid proteins are also structurally unique in terms of folds. To explore this question, we applied a structure-alignment based clustering of all protein chains in VIPERdb filtered at 40% sequence identity to identify distinct capsid folds, and compared the cluster medoids with a non-redundant subset of protein domains in the SCOP database, not including the viral capsid entries. This comparison, using Template Modeling (TM)-score, identified 2078 structural “relatives” of capsid proteins from the non-capsid set, covering altogether 210 folds following the definition in SCOP. The statistical significance of the 210 folds shared by two sets of the same sizes, estimated from 10,000 permutation tests, is less than 0.0001, which is an upper bound on the p-value. We thus conclude that viral capsid proteins are segregated in structural fold space. Our result provides novel insight on how structural folds of capsid proteins, as opposed to their surface chemistry, might be constrained during evolution by requirement of the assembled cage-like architecture. Also importantly, our work highlights a guiding principle for virus-based nanoplatform design in a wide range of biomedical applications and materials science. PMID:23408879

  8. Sequence and structural analysis of BTB domain proteins

    PubMed Central

    Stogios, Peter J; Downs, Gregory S; Jauhal, Jimmy JS; Nandra, Sukhjeen K; Privé, Gilbert G

    2005-01-01

    Background The BTB domain (also known as the POZ domain) is a versatile protein-protein interaction motif that participates in a wide range of cellular functions, including transcriptional regulation, cytoskeleton dynamics, ion channel assembly and gating, and targeting proteins for ubiquitination. Several BTB domain structures have been experimentally determined, revealing a highly conserved core structure. Results We surveyed the protein architecture, genomic distribution and sequence conservation of BTB domain proteins in 17 fully sequenced eukaryotes. The BTB domain is typically found as a single copy in proteins that contain only one or two other types of domain, and this defines the BTB-zinc finger (BTB-ZF), BTB-BACK-kelch (BBK), voltage-gated potassium channel T1 (T1-Kv), MATH-BTB, BTB-NPH3 and BTB-BACK-PHR (BBP) families of proteins, among others. In contrast, the Skp1 and ElonginC proteins consist almost exclusively of the core BTB fold. There are numerous lineage-specific expansions of BTB proteins, as seen by the relatively large number of BTB-ZF and BBK proteins in vertebrates, MATH-BTB proteins in Caenorhabditis elegans, and BTB-NPH3 proteins in Arabidopsis thaliana. Using the structural homology between Skp1 and the PLZF BTB homodimer, we present a model of a BTB-Cul3 SCF-like E3 ubiquitin ligase complex that shows that the BTB dimer or the T1 tetramer is compatible in this complex. Conclusion Despite widely divergent sequences, the BTB fold is structurally well conserved. The fold has adapted to several different modes of self-association and interactions with non-BTB proteins. PMID:16207353

  9. A sampling approach for protein backbone fragment conformations.

    PubMed

    Yu, J Y; Zhang, W

    2013-01-01

    In protein structure prediction, backbone fragment bias information can narrow down the conformational space of the whole polypeptide chain significantly. Unlike existing methods that use fragments as building blocks, the paper presents a probabilistic sampling approach for protein backbone torsion angles by modelling angular correlation of (phi, psi) with a directional statistics distribution. Given a protein sequence and secondary structure information, this method samples backbone fragments conformations by using a backtrack sampling algorithm for the hidden Markov model with multiple inputs and a single output. The proposed approach is applied to a fragment library, and some well-known structural motifs are sampled very well on the optimal path. Computational results show that the method can help to obtain native-like backbone fragments conformations. PMID:23777175

  10. Overexpression of membrane proteins in mammalian cells for structural studies

    PubMed Central

    Andréll, Juni

    2013-01-01

    The number of structures of integral membrane proteins from higher eukaryotes is steadily increasing due to a number of innovative protein engineering and crystallization strategies devised over the last few years. However, it is sobering to reflect that these structures represent only a tiny proportion of the total number of membrane proteins encoded by a mammalian genome. In addition, the structures determined to date are of the most tractable membrane proteins, i.e., those that are expressed functionally and to high levels in yeast or in insect cells using the baculovirus expression system. However, some membrane proteins that are expressed inefficiently in these systems can be produced at sufficiently high levels in mammalian cells to allow structure determination. Mammalian expression systems are an under-used resource in structural biology and represent an effective way to produce fully functional membrane proteins for structural studies. This review will discuss examples of vertebrate membrane protein overexpression in mammalian cells using a variety of viral, constitutive or inducible expression systems. PMID:22963530

  11. 3D complex: a structural classification of protein complexes.

    PubMed

    Levy, Emmanuel D; Pereira-Leal, Jose B; Chothia, Cyrus; Teichmann, Sarah A

    2006-11-17

    Most of the proteins in a cell assemble into complexes to carry out their function. It is therefore crucial to understand the physicochemical properties as well as the evolution of interactions between proteins. The Protein Data Bank represents an important source of information for such studies, because more than half of the structures are homo- or heteromeric protein complexes. Here we propose the first hierarchical classification of whole protein complexes of known 3-D structure, based on representing their fundamental structural features as a graph. This classification provides the first overview of all the complexes in the Protein Data Bank and allows nonredundant sets to be derived at different levels of detail. This reveals that between one-half and two-thirds of known structures are multimeric, depending on the level of redundancy accepted. We also analyse the structures in terms of the topological arrangement of their subunits and find that they form a small number of arrangements compared with all theoretically possible ones. This is because most complexes contain four subunits or less, and the large majority are homomeric. In addition, there is a strong tendency for symmetry in complexes, even for heteromeric complexes. Finally, through comparison of Biological Units in the Protein Data Bank with the Protein Quaternary Structure database, we identified many possible errors in quaternary structure assignments. Our classification, available as a database and Web server at http://www.3Dcomplex.org, will be a starting point for future work aimed at understanding the structure and evolution of protein complexes.

  12. Structural changes in gluten protein structure after addition of emulsifier. A Raman spectroscopy study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ferrer, Evelina G.; Gómez, Analía V.; Añón, María C.; Puppo, María C.

    2011-06-01

    Food protein product, gluten protein, was chemically modified by varying levels of sodium stearoyl lactylate (SSL); and the extent of modifications (secondary and tertiary structures) of this protein was analyzed by using Raman spectroscopy. Analysis of the Amide I band showed an increase in its intensity mainly after the addition of the 0.25% of SSL to wheat flour to produced modified gluten protein, pointing the formation of a more ordered structure. Side chain vibrations also confirmed the observed changes.

  13. Protein structure determination by exhaustive search of Protein Data Bank derived databases.

    PubMed

    Stokes-Rees, Ian; Sliz, Piotr

    2010-12-14

    Parallel sequence and structure alignment tools have become ubiquitous and invaluable at all levels in the study of biological systems. We demonstrate the application and utility of this same parallel search paradigm to the process of protein structure determination, benefitting from the large and growing corpus of known structures. Such searches were previously computationally intractable. Through the method of Wide Search Molecular Replacement, developed here, they can be completed in a few hours with the aide of national-scale federated cyberinfrastructure. By dramatically expanding the range of models considered for structure determination, we show that small (less than 12% structural coverage) and low sequence identity (less than 20% identity) template structures can be identified through multidimensional template scoring metrics and used for structure determination. Many new macromolecular complexes can benefit significantly from such a technique due to the lack of known homologous protein folds or sequences. We demonstrate the effectiveness of the method by determining the structure of a full-length p97 homologue from Trichoplusia ni. Example cases with the MHC/T-cell receptor complex and the EmoB protein provide systematic estimates of minimum sequence identity, structure coverage, and structural similarity required for this method to succeed. We describe how this structure-search approach and other novel computationally intensive workflows are made tractable through integration with the US national computational cyberinfrastructure, allowing, for example, rapid processing of the entire Structural Classification of Proteins protein fragment database.

  14. Structural difficulty index: a reliable measure for modelability of protein tertiary structures.

    PubMed

    Kaushik, Rahul; Jayaram, B

    2016-09-01

    The success in protein tertiary-structure prediction is considered to be a function of coverage and similarity/identity of their sequences with suitable templates in the structural databases. However, this measure of modelability of a protein sequence into its structure may be misleading. Addressing this limitation, we propose here a 'structural difficulty (SD)' index, which is derived from secondary structures, homology and physicochemical features of protein sequences. The SD index reflects the capability of predicting accurate structures and helps to assess the potential for developing proteome level structural databases for various organisms with some of the best methodologies available currently. For instance, the plausibility of populating the structural database of human proteome with reliable quality structures under 3 Å root mean square deviation from the corresponding natives is found to be ∼37% of a total of 11 084 manually curated soluble proteins and ∼64% for all annotated and reviewed unique soluble protein (344 661 sequences) of UniProtKB. Also for 77 human pathogenic viruses comprising 2365 globular viral proteins out of which only 162 structures are solved experimentally, SD index scores 1336 proteins in the modelable zone. Availability of reliable protein structures may prove a crucial aid in developing species-wise structural proteomic databases for accelerating function annotation and for drug development endeavors.

  15. A novel method to compare protein structures using local descriptors

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Protein structure comparison is one of the most widely performed tasks in bioinformatics. However, currently used methods have problems with the so-called "difficult similarities", including considerable shifts and distortions of structure, sequential swaps and circular permutations. There is a demand for efficient and automated systems capable of overcoming these difficulties, which may lead to the discovery of previously unknown structural relationships. Results We present a novel method for protein structure comparison based on the formalism of local descriptors of protein structure - DEscriptor Defined Alignment (DEDAL). Local similarities identified by pairs of similar descriptors are extended into global structural alignments. We demonstrate the method's capability by aligning structures in difficult benchmark sets: curated alignments in the SISYPHUS database, as well as SISY and RIPC sets, including non-sequential and non-rigid-body alignments. On the most difficult RIPC set of sequence alignment pairs the method achieves an accuracy of 77% (the second best method tested achieves 60% accuracy). Conclusions DEDAL is fast enough to be used in whole proteome applications, and by lowering the threshold of detectable structure similarity it may shed additional light on molecular evolution processes. It is well suited to improving automatic classification of structure domains, helping analyze protein fold space, or to improving protein classification schemes. DEDAL is available online at http://bioexploratorium.pl/EP/DEDAL. PMID:21849047

  16. Drug leads for interactive protein targets with unknown structure.

    PubMed

    Fernández, Ariel; Scott, L Ridgway

    2016-04-01

    The disruption of protein-protein interfaces (PPIs) remains a challenge in drug discovery. The problem becomes daunting when the structure of the target protein is unknown and is even further complicated when the interface is susceptible to disruptive phosphorylation. Based solely on protein sequence and information about phosphorylation-susceptible sites within the PPI, a new technology has been developed to identify drug leads to inhibit protein associations. Here we reveal this technology and contrast it with current structure-based technologies for the generation of drug leads. The novel technology is illustrated by a patented invention to treat heart failure. The success of this technology shows that it is possible to generate drug leads in the absence of target structure. PMID:26484433

  17. Protein Structure and Stability in Neat Ionic Liquid

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bihari, Malvika; Russell, Thomas P.; Hoagland, David A.

    2010-03-01

    Ionic liquid (IL) as a medium for room temperature preservation of biomacromolecules has been proposed, and to investigate the possibility, we studied physicochemical and enzymatic properties of several proteins in the neat hydrophilic IL, ethylmethyl imidazolium ethyl sulfate [EMIM][EtSO4]. Molecular dissolution of α-chymotypsin, cytochrome-c and other proteins could be achieved with moderate heating (60C). Dynamic light scattering and dilute solution viscometry typically reveal protein size slightly larger than in buffer, suggesting different solvation or protein unfolding. Spectroscopic methods (UV-Vis, fluorescence, FTIR, CD) show largely unchanged secondary structure but significantly changed tertiary structure. IL-dissolved cytochrome-c has heightened peroxidase activity, supporting the same conclusions. Transfer of dissolved protein from IL to buffer and ensuing alterations to protein conformation/activity will be discussed.

  18. Using Circular Dichroism Spectra to Estimate Protein Secondary Structure

    SciTech Connect

    Greenfield, N.

    2006-01-01

    Circular dichroism (CD) is an excellent tool for rapid determination of the secondary structure and folding properties of proteins that have been obtained using recombinant techniques or purified from tissues. The most widely used applications of protein CD are to determine whether an expressed, purified protein is folded, or if a mutation affects its conformation or stability. In addition, it can be used to study protein interactions. This protocol details the basic steps of obtaining and interpreting CD data and methods for analyzing spectra to estimate the secondary structural composition of proteins. CD has the advantage that it is that measurements may be made on multiple samples containing 20 {mu}g or less of proteins in physiological buffers in a few hours. However, it does not give the residue-specific information that can be obtained by X-ray crystallography or NMR.

  19. Using circular dichroism spectra to estimate protein secondary structure

    PubMed Central

    Greenfield, Norma J.

    2009-01-01

    Circular dichroism (CD) is an excellent tool for rapid determination of the secondary structure and folding properties of proteins that have been obtained using recombinant techniques or purified from tissues. The most widely used applications of protein CD are to determine whether an expressed, purified protein is folded, or if a mutation affects its conformation or stability. In addition, it can be used to study protein interactions. This protocol details the basic steps of obtaining and interpreting CD data and methods for analyzing spectra to estimate the secondary structural composition of proteins. CD has the advantage that it is that measurements may be made on multiple samples containing 20 µg or less of proteins in physiological buffers in a few hours. However, it does not give the residue-specific information that can be obtained by X-ray crystallography or NMR. PMID:17406547

  20. Effects of NMR Spectral Resolution on Protein Structure Calculation

    PubMed Central

    Tikole, Suhas; Jaravine, Victor; Orekhov, Vladislav Yu.; Güntert, Peter

    2013-01-01

    Adequate digital resolution and signal sensitivity are two critical factors for protein structure determinations by solution NMR spectroscopy. The prime objective for obtaining high digital resolution is to resolve peak overlap, especially in NOESY spectra with thousands of signals where the signal analysis needs to be performed on a large scale. Achieving maximum digital resolution is usually limited by the practically available measurement time. We developed a method utilizing non-uniform sampling for balancing digital resolution and signal sensitivity, and performed a large-scale analysis of the effect of the digital resolution on the accuracy of the resulting protein structures. Structure calculations were performed as a function of digital resolution for about 400 proteins with molecular sizes ranging between 5 and 33 kDa. The structural accuracy was assessed by atomic coordinate RMSD values from the reference structures of the proteins. In addition, we monitored also the number of assigned NOESY cross peaks, the average signal sensitivity, and the chemical shift spectral overlap. We show that high resolution is equally important for proteins of every molecular size. The chemical shift spectral overlap depends strongly on the corresponding spectral digital resolution. Thus, knowing the extent of overlap can be a predictor of the resulting structural accuracy. Our results show that for every molecular size a minimal digital resolution, corresponding to the natural linewidth, needs to be achieved for obtaining the highest accuracy possible for the given protein size using state-of-the-art automated NOESY assignment and structure calculation methods. PMID:23874675

  1. Protein aggregation and lyophilization: Protein structural descriptors as predictors of aggregation propensity

    PubMed Central

    Roughton, Brock C.; Iyer, Lavanya K.; Bertelsen, Esben; Topp, Elizabeth M.; Camarda, Kyle V.

    2014-01-01

    Lyophilization can induce aggregation in therapeutic proteins, but the relative importance of protein structure, formulation and processing conditions are poorly understood. To evaluate the contribution of protein structure to lyophilization-induced aggregation, fifteen proteins were co-lyophilized with each of five excipients. Extent of aggregation following lyophilization, measured using size-exclusion chromatography, was correlated with computational and biophysical protein structural descriptors via multiple linear regression. Descriptor selection was performed using exhaustive search and forward selection. The results demonstrate that, for a given excipient, extent of aggregation is highly correlated by eight to twelve structural descriptors. Leave-one-out cross validation showed that the correlations were able to successfully predict the aggregation for a protein “left out” of the data set. Selected descriptors varied with excipient, indicating both protein structure and excipient type contribute to lyophilization-induced aggregation. The results show some descriptors used to predict protein aggregation in solution are useful in predicting lyophilized protein aggregation. PMID:24516290

  2. Structural and functional properties of hemp seed protein products.

    PubMed

    Malomo, Sunday A; He, Rong; Aluko, Rotimi E

    2014-08-01

    The effects of pH and protein concentration on some structural and functional properties of hemp seed protein isolate (HPI, 84.15% protein content) and defatted hemp seed protein meal (HPM, 44.32% protein content) were determined. The HPI had minimum protein solubility (PS) at pH 4.0, which increased as pH was decreased or increased. In contrast, the HPM had minimum PS at pH 3.0, which increased at higher pH values. Gel electrophoresis showed that some of the high molecular weight proteins (>45 kDa) present in HPM were not well extracted by the alkali and were absent or present in low ratio in the HPI polypeptide profile. The amino acid composition showed that the isolation process increased the Arg/Lys ratio of HPI (5.52%) when compared to HPM (3.35%). Intrinsic fluorescence and circular dichroism data indicate that the HPI proteins had a well-defined structure at pH 3.0, which was lost as pH value increased. The differences in structural conformation of HPI at different pH values were reflected as better foaming capacity at pH 3.0 when compared to pH 5.0, 7.0, and 9.0. At 10 and 25 mg/mL protein concentrations, emulsions formed by the HPM had smaller oil droplet sizes (higher quality), when compared to the HPI-formed emulsions. In contrast at 50 mg/mL protein concentration, the HPI-formed emulsions had smaller oil droplet sizes (except at pH 3.0). We conclude that the functional properties of hemp seed protein products are dependent on structural conformations as well as protein concentration and pH.

  3. MEGADOCK: an all-to-all protein-protein interaction prediction system using tertiary structure data.

    PubMed

    Ohue, Masahito; Matsuzaki, Yuri; Uchikoga, Nobuyuki; Ishida, Takashi; Akiyama, Yutaka

    2014-01-01

    The elucidation of protein-protein interaction (PPI) networks is important for understanding cellular structure and function and structure-based drug design. However, the development of an effective method to conduct exhaustive PPI screening represents a computational challenge. We have been investigating a protein docking approach based on shape complementarity and physicochemical properties. We describe here the development of the protein-protein docking software package "MEGADOCK" that samples an extremely large number of protein dockings at high speed. MEGADOCK reduces the calculation time required for docking by using several techniques such as a novel scoring function called the real Pairwise Shape Complementarity (rPSC) score. We showed that MEGADOCK is capable of exhaustive PPI screening by completing docking calculations 7.5 times faster than the conventional docking software, ZDOCK, while maintaining an acceptable level of accuracy. When MEGADOCK was applied to a subset of a general benchmark dataset to predict 120 relevant interacting pairs from 120 x 120 = 14,400 combinations of proteins, an F-measure value of 0.231 was obtained. Further, we showed that MEGADOCK can be applied to a large-scale protein-protein interaction-screening problem with accuracy better than random. When our approach is combined with parallel high-performance computing systems, it is now feasible to search and analyze protein-protein interactions while taking into account three-dimensional structures at the interactome scale. MEGADOCK is freely available at http://www.bi.cs.titech.ac.jp/megadock. PMID:23855673

  4. The Use of Experimental Structures to Model Protein Dynamics

    PubMed Central

    Katebi, Ataur R.; Sankar, Kannan; Jia, Kejue; Jernigan, Robert L.

    2014-01-01

    Summary The number of solved protein structures submitted in the Protein Data Bank (PDB) has increased dramatically in recent years. For some specific proteins, this number is very high – for example, there are over 550 solved structures for HIV-1 protease, one protein that is essential for the life cycle of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) which causes acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) in humans. The large number of structures for the same protein and its variants include a sample of different conformational states of the protein. A rich set of structures solved experimentally for the same protein has information buried within the dataset that can explain the functional dynamics and structural mechanism of the protein. To extract the dynamics information and functional mechanism from the experimental structures, this chapter focuses on two methods – Principal Component Analysis (PCA) and Elastic Network Models (ENM). PCA is a widely used statistical dimensionality reduction technique to classify and visualize high-dimensional data. On the other hand, ENMs are well-established simple biophysical method for modeling the functionally important global motions of proteins. This chapter covers the basics of these two. Moreover, an improved ENM version that utilizes the variations found within a given set of structures for a protein is described. As a practical example, we have extracted the functional dynamics and mechanism of HIV-1 protease dimeric structure by using a set of 329 PDB structures of this protein. We have described, step by step, how to select a set of protein structures, how to extract the needed information from the PDB files for PCA, how to extract the dynamics information using PCA, how to calculate ENM modes, how to measure the congruency between the dynamics computed from the principal components (PCs) and the ENM modes, and how to compute entropies using the PCs. We provide the computer programs or references to software tools to

  5. The use of experimental structures to model protein dynamics.

    PubMed

    Katebi, Ataur R; Sankar, Kannan; Jia, Kejue; Jernigan, Robert L

    2015-01-01

    The number of solved protein structures submitted in the Protein Data Bank (PDB) has increased dramatically in recent years. For some specific proteins, this number is very high-for example, there are over 550 solved structures for HIV-1 protease, one protein that is essential for the life cycle of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) which causes acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) in humans. The large number of structures for the same protein and its variants include a sample of different conformational states of the protein. A rich set of structures solved experimentally for the same protein has information buried within the dataset that can explain the functional dynamics and structural mechanism of the protein. To extract the dynamics information and functional mechanism from the experimental structures, this chapter focuses on two methods-Principal Component Analysis (PCA) and Elastic Network Models (ENM). PCA is a widely used statistical dimensionality reduction technique to classify and visualize high-dimensional data. On the other hand, ENMs are well-established simple biophysical method for modeling the functionally important global motions of proteins. This chapter covers the basics of these two. Moreover, an improved ENM version that utilizes the variations found within a given set of structures for a protein is described. As a practical example, we have extracted the functional dynamics and mechanism of HIV-1 protease dimeric structure by using a set of 329 PDB structures of this protein. We have described, step by step, how to select a set of protein structures, how to extract the needed information from the PDB files for PCA, how to extract the dynamics information using PCA, how to calculate ENM modes, how to measure the congruency between the dynamics computed from the principal components (PCs) and the ENM modes, and how to compute entropies using the PCs. We provide the computer programs or references to software tools to accomplish each step

  6. Structural Perspectives on the Evolutionary Expansion of Unique Protein-Protein Binding Sites.

    PubMed

    Goncearenco, Alexander; Shaytan, Alexey K; Shoemaker, Benjamin A; Panchenko, Anna R

    2015-09-15

    Structures of protein complexes provide atomistic insights into protein interactions. Human proteins represent a quarter of all structures in the Protein Data Bank; however, available protein complexes cover less than 10% of the human proteome. Although it is theoretically possible to infer interactions in human proteins based on structures of homologous protein complexes, it is still unclear to what extent protein interactions and binding sites are conserved, and whether protein complexes from remotely related species can be used to infer interactions and binding sites. We considered biological units of protein complexes and clustered protein-protein binding sites into similarity groups based on their structure and sequence, which allowed us to identify unique binding sites. We showed that the growth rate of the number of unique binding sites in the Protein Data Bank was much slower than the growth rate of the number of structural complexes. Next, we investigated the evolutionary roots of unique binding sites and identified the major phyletic branches with the largest expansion in the number of novel binding sites. We found that many binding sites could be traced to the universal common ancestor of all cellular organisms, whereas relatively few binding sites emerged at the major evolutionary branching points. We analyzed the physicochemical properties of unique binding sites and found that the most ancient sites were the largest in size, involved many salt bridges, and were the most compact and least planar. In contrast, binding sites that appeared more recently in the evolution of eukaryotes were characterized by a larger fraction of polar and aromatic residues, and were less compact and more planar, possibly due to their more transient nature and roles in signaling processes.

  7. Structural studies of human glioma pathogenesis-related protein 1

    SciTech Connect

    Asojo, Oluwatoyin A.; Koski, Raymond A.; Bonafé, Nathalie

    2011-10-01

    Structural analysis of a truncated soluble domain of human glioma pathogenesis-related protein 1, a membrane protein implicated in the proliferation of aggressive brain cancer, is presented. Human glioma pathogenesis-related protein 1 (GLIPR1) is a membrane protein that is highly upregulated in brain cancers but is barely detectable in normal brain tissue. GLIPR1 is composed of a signal peptide that directs its secretion, a conserved cysteine-rich CAP (cysteine-rich secretory proteins, antigen 5 and pathogenesis-related 1 proteins) domain and a transmembrane domain. GLIPR1 is currently being investigated as a candidate for prostate cancer gene therapy and for glioblastoma targeted therapy. Crystal structures of a truncated soluble domain of the human GLIPR1 protein (sGLIPR1) solved by molecular replacement using a truncated polyalanine search model of the CAP domain of stecrisp, a snake-venom cysteine-rich secretory protein (CRISP), are presented. The correct molecular-replacement solution could only be obtained by removing all loops from the search model. The native structure was refined to 1.85 Å resolution and that of a Zn{sup 2+} complex was refined to 2.2 Å resolution. The latter structure revealed that the putative binding cavity coordinates Zn{sup 2+} similarly to snake-venom CRISPs, which are involved in Zn{sup 2+}-dependent mechanisms of inflammatory modulation. Both sGLIPR1 structures have extensive flexible loop/turn regions and unique charge distributions that were not observed in any of the previously reported CAP protein structures. A model is also proposed for the structure of full-length membrane-bound GLIPR1.

  8. Vertebrate Membrane Proteins: Structure, Function, and Insights from Biophysical Approaches

    PubMed Central

    MÜLLER, DANIEL J.; WU, NAN; PALCZEWSKI, KRZYSZTOF

    2008-01-01

    Membrane proteins are key targets for pharmacological intervention because they are vital for cellular function. Here, we analyze recent progress made in the understanding of the structure and function of membrane proteins with a focus on rhodopsin and development of atomic force microscopy techniques to study biological membranes. Membrane proteins are compartmentalized to carry out extra- and intracellular processes. Biological membranes are densely populated with membrane proteins that occupy approximately 50% of their volume. In most cases membranes contain lipid rafts, protein patches, or paracrystalline formations that lack the higher-order symmetry that would allow them to be characterized by diffraction methods. Despite many technical difficulties, several crystal structures of membrane proteins that illustrate their internal structural organization have been determined. Moreover, high-resolution atomic force microscopy, near-field scanning optical microscopy, and other lower resolution techniques have been used to investigate these structures. Single-molecule force spectroscopy tracks interactions that stabilize membrane proteins and those that switch their functional state; this spectroscopy can be applied to locate a ligand-binding site. Recent development of this technique also reveals the energy landscape of a membrane protein, defining its folding, reaction pathways, and kinetics. Future development and application of novel approaches during the coming years should provide even greater insights to the understanding of biological membrane organization and function. PMID:18321962

  9. Defining and predicting structurally conserved regions in protein superfamilies

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Ivan K.; Grishin, Nick V.

    2013-01-01

    Motivation: The structures of homologous proteins are generally better conserved than their sequences. This phenomenon is demonstrated by the prevalence of structurally conserved regions (SCRs) even in highly divergent protein families. Defining SCRs requires the comparison of two or more homologous structures and is affected by their availability and divergence, and our ability to deduce structurally equivalent positions among them. In the absence of multiple homologous structures, it is necessary to predict SCRs of a protein using information from only a set of homologous sequences and (if available) a single structure. Accurate SCR predictions can benefit homology modelling and sequence alignment. Results: Using pairwise DaliLite alignments among a set of homologous structures, we devised a simple measure of structural conservation, termed structural conservation index (SCI). SCI was used to distinguish SCRs from non-SCRs. A database of SCRs was compiled from 386 SCOP superfamilies containing 6489 protein domains. Artificial neural networks were then trained to predict SCRs with various features deduced from a single structure and homologous sequences. Assessment of the predictions via a 5-fold cross-validation method revealed that predictions based on features derived from a single structure perform similarly to ones based on homologous sequences, while combining sequence and structural features was optimal in terms of accuracy (0.755) and Matthews correlation coefficient (0.476). These results suggest that even without information from multiple structures, it is still possible to effectively predict SCRs for a protein. Finally, inspection of the structures with the worst predictions pinpoints difficulties in SCR definitions. Availability: The SCR database and the prediction server can be found at http://prodata.swmed.edu/SCR. Contact: 91huangi@gmail.com or grishin@chop.swmed.edu Supplementary information: Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics

  10. Structural dependencies of protein backbone 2JNC' couplings.

    PubMed

    Juranić, Nenad; Dannenberg, J J; Cornilescu, Gabriel; Salvador, Pedro; Atanasova, Elena; Ahn, Hee-Chul; Macura, Slobodan; Markley, John L; Prendergast, Franklyn G

    2008-04-01

    Protein folding can introduce strain in peptide covalent geometry, including deviations from planarity that are difficult to detect, especially for a protein in solution. We have found dependencies in protein backbone (2)J(NC') couplings on the planarity and the relative orientation of the sequential peptide planes. These dependences were observed in experimental (2)J(NC') couplings from seven proteins, and also were supported by DFT calculations for a model tripeptide. Findings indicate that elevated (2)J(NC') couplings may serve as reporters of structural strain in the protein backbone imposed by protein folds. Such information, supplemented with the H-bond strengths derived from (h3)J(NC') couplings, provides useful insight into the overall energy profile of the protein backbone in solution.

  11. Potato leafroll virus structural proteins manipulate overlapping, yet distinct protein interaction networks during infection.

    PubMed

    DeBlasio, Stacy L; Johnson, Richard; Sweeney, Michelle M; Karasev, Alexander; Gray, Stewart M; MacCoss, Michael J; Cilia, Michelle

    2015-06-01

    Potato leafroll virus (PLRV) produces a readthrough protein (RTP) via translational readthrough of the coat protein amber stop codon. The RTP functions as a structural component of the virion and as a nonincorporated protein in concert with numerous insect and plant proteins to regulate virus movement/transmission and tissue tropism. Affinity purification coupled to quantitative MS was used to generate protein interaction networks for a PLRV mutant that is unable to produce the read through domain (RTD) and compared to the known wild-type PLRV protein interaction network. By quantifying differences in the protein interaction networks, we identified four distinct classes of PLRV-plant interactions: those plant and nonstructural viral proteins interacting with assembled coat protein (category I); plant proteins in complex with both coat protein and RTD (category II); plant proteins in complex with the RTD (category III); and plant proteins that had higher affinity for virions lacking the RTD (category IV). Proteins identified as interacting with the RTD are potential candidates for regulating viral processes that are mediated by the RTP such as phloem retention and systemic movement and can potentially be useful targets for the development of strategies to prevent infection and/or viral transmission of Luteoviridae species that infect important crop species. PMID:25787689

  12. Potato leafroll virus structural proteins manipulate overlapping, yet distinct protein interaction networks during infection.

    PubMed

    DeBlasio, Stacy L; Johnson, Richard; Sweeney, Michelle M; Karasev, Alexander; Gray, Stewart M; MacCoss, Michael J; Cilia, Michelle

    2015-06-01

    Potato leafroll virus (PLRV) produces a readthrough protein (RTP) via translational readthrough of the coat protein amber stop codon. The RTP functions as a structural component of the virion and as a nonincorporated protein in concert with numerous insect and plant proteins to regulate virus movement/transmission and tissue tropism. Affinity purification coupled to quantitative MS was used to generate protein interaction networks for a PLRV mutant that is unable to produce the read through domain (RTD) and compared to the known wild-type PLRV protein interaction network. By quantifying differences in the protein interaction networks, we identified four distinct classes of PLRV-plant interactions: those plant and nonstructural viral proteins interacting with assembled coat protein (category I); plant proteins in complex with both coat protein and RTD (category II); plant proteins in complex with the RTD (category III); and plant proteins that had higher affinity for virions lacking the RTD (category IV). Proteins identified as interacting with the RTD are potential candidates for regulating viral processes that are mediated by the RTP such as phloem retention and systemic movement and can potentially be useful targets for the development of strategies to prevent infection and/or viral transmission of Luteoviridae species that infect important crop species.

  13. Compact structure and proteins of pasta retard in vitro digestive evolution of branched starch molecular structure.

    PubMed

    Zou, Wei; Sissons, Mike; Warren, Frederick J; Gidley, Michael J; Gilbert, Robert G

    2016-11-01

    The roles that the compact structure and proteins in pasta play in retarding evolution of starch molecular structure during in vitro digestion are explored, using four types of cooked samples: whole pasta, pasta powder, semolina (with proteins) and extracted starch without proteins. These were subjected to in vitro digestion with porcine α-amylase, collecting samples at different times and characterizing the weight distribution of branched starch molecules using size-exclusion chromatography. Measurement of α-amylase activity showed that a protein (or proteins) from semolina or pasta powder interacted with α-amylase, causing reduced enzymatic activity and retarding digestion of branched starch molecules with hydrodynamic radius (Rh)<100nm; this protein(s) was susceptible to proteolysis. Thus the compact structure of pasta protects the starch and proteins in the interior of the whole pasta, reducing the enzymatic degradation of starch molecules, especially for molecules with Rh>100nm. PMID:27516291

  14. Structural protein 4.1 is located in mammalian centrosomes

    SciTech Connect

    Krauss, S.W.; Chasis, J.A.; Rogers, C.; Mohandas, N.; Krockmalnic, G.; Penman, S.

    1997-07-01

    Structural protein 4.1 was first characterized as an important 80-kDa protein in the mature red cell membrane skeleton. It is now known to be a member of a family of protein isoforms detected at diverse intracellular sites in many nucleated mammalian cells. We recently reported that protein 4.1 isoforms are present at interphase in nuclear matrix and are rearranged during the cell cycle. Here we report that protein 4.1 epitopes are present in centrosomes of human and murine cells and are detected by using affinity-purified antibodies specific for 80-kDa red cell 4.1 and for 4.1 peptides. Immunofluorescence, by both conventional and confocal microscopy, showed that protein 4.1 epitopes localized in the pericentriolar region. Protein 4.1 epitopes remained in centrosomes after extraction of cells with detergent, salt, and DNase. Higher resolution electron microscopy of detergent-extracted cell whole mounts showed centrosomal protein 4.1 epitopes distributed along centriolar cylinders and on pericentriolar fibers, at least some of which constitute the filamentous network surrounding each centriole. Double-label electron microscopy showed that protein 4.1 epitopes were predominantly localized in regions also occupied by epitopes for centrosome-specific autoimmune serum 5051 but were not found on microtubules. Our results suggest that protein 4.1 is an integral component of centrosome structure, in which it may play an important role in centrosome function during cell division and organization of cellular architecture.

  15. Structural protein 4.1 is located in mammalian centrosomes.

    PubMed

    Krauss, S W; Chasis, J A; Rogers, C; Mohandas, N; Krockmalnic, G; Penman, S

    1997-07-01

    Structural protein 4.1 was first characterized as an important 80-kDa protein in the mature red cell membrane skeleton. It is now known to be a member of a family of protein isoforms detected at diverse intracellular sites in many nucleated mammalian cells. We recently reported that protein 4.1 isoforms are present at interphase in nuclear matrix and are rearranged during the cell cycle. Here we report that protein 4.1 epitopes are present in centrosomes of human and murine cells and are detected by using affinity-purified antibodies specific for 80-kDa red cell 4.1 and for 4.1 peptides. Immunofluorescence, by both conventional and confocal microscopy, showed that protein 4.1 epitopes localized in the pericentriolar region. Protein 4.1 epitopes remained in centrosomes after extraction of cells with detergent, salt, and DNase. Higher resolution electron microscopy of detergent-extracted cell whole mounts showed centrosomal protein 4.1 epitopes distributed along centriolar cylinders and on pericentriolar fibers, at least some of which constitute the filamentous network surrounding each centriole. Double-label electron microscopy showed that protein 4.1 epitopes were predominately localized in regions also occupied by epitopes for centrosome-specific autoimmune serum 5051 but were not found on microtubules. Our results suggest that protein 4.1 is an integral component of centrosome structure, in which it may play an important role in centrosome function during cell division and organization of cellular architecture.

  16. Illuminating structural proteins in viral "dark matter" with metaproteomics.

    PubMed

    Brum, Jennifer R; Ignacio-Espinoza, J Cesar; Kim, Eun-Hae; Trubl, Gareth; Jones, Robert M; Roux, Simon; VerBerkmoes, Nathan C; Rich, Virginia I; Sullivan, Matthew B

    2016-03-01

    Viruses are ecologically important, yet environmental virology is limited by dominance of unannotated genomic sequences representing taxonomic and functional "viral dark matter." Although recent analytical advances are rapidly improving taxonomic annotations, identifying functional dark matter remains problematic. Here, we apply paired metaproteomics and dsDNA-targeted metagenomics to identify 1,875 virion-associated proteins from the ocean. Over one-half of these proteins were newly functionally annotated and represent abundant and widespread viral metagenome-derived protein clusters (PCs). One primarily unannotated PC dominated the dataset, but structural modeling and genomic context identified this PC as a previously unidentified capsid protein from multiple uncultivated tailed virus families. Furthermore, four of the five most abundant PCs in the metaproteome represent capsid proteins containing the HK97-like protein fold previously found in many viruses that infect all three domains of life. The dominance of these proteins within our dataset, as well as their global distribution throughout the world's oceans and seas, supports prior hypotheses that this HK97-like protein fold is the most abundant biological structure on Earth. Together, these culture-independent analyses improve virion-associated protein annotations, facilitate the investigation of proteins within natural viral communities, and offer a high-throughput means of illuminating functional viral dark matter.

  17. Illuminating structural proteins in viral "dark matter" with metaproteomics

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Brum, Jennifer R.; Ignacio-Espinoza, J. Cesar; Kim, Eun -Hae; Trubl, Gareth; Jones, Robert M.; Roux, Simon; Verberkmoes, Nathan C.; Rich, Virginia I.; Sullivan, Matthew B.

    2016-02-16

    Viruses are ecologically important, yet environmental virology is limited by dominance of unannotated genomic sequences representing taxonomic and functional "viral dark matter." Although recent analytical advances are rapidly improving taxonomic annotations, identifying functional darkmatter remains problematic. Here, we apply paired metaproteomics and dsDNA-targeted metagenomics to identify 1,875 virion-associated proteins from the ocean. Over one-half of these proteins were newly functionally annotated and represent abundant and widespread viral metagenome-derived protein clusters (PCs). One primarily unannotated PC dominated the dataset, but structural modeling and genomic context identified this PC as a previously unidentified capsid protein from multiple uncultivated tailed virus families. Furthermore,more » four of the five most abundant PCs in the metaproteome represent capsid proteins containing the HK97-like protein fold previously found in many viruses that infect all three domains of life. The dominance of these proteins within our dataset, as well as their global distribution throughout the world's oceans and seas, supports prior hypotheses that this HK97-like protein fold is the most abundant biological structure on Earth. Altogether, these culture-independent analyses improve virion-associated protein annotations, facilitate the investigation of proteins within natural viral communities, and offer a high-throughput means of illuminating functional viral dark matter.« less

  18. Illuminating structural proteins in viral "dark matter" with metaproteomics.

    PubMed

    Brum, Jennifer R; Ignacio-Espinoza, J Cesar; Kim, Eun-Hae; Trubl, Gareth; Jones, Robert M; Roux, Simon; VerBerkmoes, Nathan C; Rich, Virginia I; Sullivan, Matthew B

    2016-03-01

    Viruses are ecologically important, yet environmental virology is limited by dominance of unannotated genomic sequences representing taxonomic and functional "viral dark matter." Although recent analytical advances are rapidly improving taxonomic annotations, identifying functional dark matter remains problematic. Here, we apply paired metaproteomics and dsDNA-targeted metagenomics to identify 1,875 virion-associated proteins from the ocean. Over one-half of these proteins were newly functionally annotated and represent abundant and widespread viral metagenome-derived protein clusters (PCs). One primarily unannotated PC dominated the dataset, but structural modeling and genomic context identified this PC as a previously unidentified capsid protein from multiple uncultivated tailed virus families. Furthermore, four of the five most abundant PCs in the metaproteome represent capsid proteins containing the HK97-like protein fold previously found in many viruses that infect all three domains of life. The dominance of these proteins within our dataset, as well as their global distribution throughout the world's oceans and seas, supports prior hypotheses that this HK97-like protein fold is the most abundant biological structure on Earth. Together, these culture-independent analyses improve virion-associated protein annotations, facilitate the investigation of proteins within natural viral communities, and offer a high-throughput means of illuminating functional viral dark matter. PMID:26884177

  19. Overcoming bottlenecks in the membrane protein structural biology pipeline.

    PubMed

    Hardy, David; Bill, Roslyn M; Jawhari, Anass; Rothnie, Alice J

    2016-06-15

    Membrane proteins account for a third of the eukaryotic proteome, but are greatly under-represented in the Protein Data Bank. Unfortunately, recent technological advances in X-ray crystallography and EM cannot account for the poor solubility and stability of membrane protein samples. A limitation of conventional detergent-based methods is that detergent molecules destabilize membrane proteins, leading to their aggregation. The use of orthologues, mutants and fusion tags has helped improve protein stability, but at the expense of not working with the sequence of interest. Novel detergents such as glucose neopentyl glycol (GNG), maltose neopentyl glycol (MNG) and calixarene-based detergents can improve protein stability without compromising their solubilizing properties. Styrene maleic acid lipid particles (SMALPs) focus on retaining the native lipid bilayer of a membrane protein during purification and biophysical analysis. Overcoming bottlenecks in the membrane protein structural biology pipeline, primarily by maintaining protein stability, will facilitate the elucidation of many more membrane protein structures in the near future. PMID:27284049

  20. Structural Transitions and Aggregation in Amyloidogenic Proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Steckmann, Timothy; Chapagain, Prem; Gerstman, Bernard; Computational and Theoretical Biophysics Group at Florida International University Team

    2014-03-01

    Amyloid fibrils are a common component in many debilitating human neurological diseases such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's. A detailed molecular-level understanding of the formation process of amyloid fibrils is crucial for developing methods to slow down or prevent these horrific diseases. Alpha-helix to beta-sheet structural transformation is commonly observed in the process of fibril formation. We performed replica-exchange molecular dynamics simulations of structural transformations in an engineered model peptide cc-beta. Several sets of simulations with different number of cc-beta monomers were considered. Conversion of alpha-helix monomers to beta strands and the aggregation of beta strand monomers into sheets were analyzed as a function of the system size. Hydrogen bond analysis was performed and the beta-aggregate structures were characterized by a nematic order parameter.

  1. Conformational changes in redox pairs of protein structures

    PubMed Central

    Fan, Samuel W; George, Richard A; Haworth, Naomi L; Feng, Lina L; Liu, Jason Y; Wouters, Merridee A

    2009-01-01

    Disulfides are conventionally viewed as structurally stabilizing elements in proteins but emerging evidence suggests two disulfide subproteomes exist. One group mediates the well known role of structural stabilization. A second redox-active group are best known for their catalytic functions but are increasingly being recognized for their roles in regulation of protein function. Redox-active disulfides are, by their very nature, more susceptible to reduction than structural disulfides; and conversely, the Cys pairs that form them are more susceptible to oxidation. In this study, we searched for potentially redox-active Cys Pairs by scanning the Protein Data Bank for structures of proteins in alternate redox states. The PDB contains over 1134 unique redox pairs of proteins, many of which exhibit conformational differences between alternate redox states. Several classes of structural changes were observed, proteins that exhibit: disulfide oxidation following expulsion of metals such as zinc; major reorganisation of the polypeptide backbone in association with disulfide redox-activity; order/disorder transitions; and changes in quaternary structure. Based on evidence gathered supporting disulfide redox activity, we propose disulfides present in alternate redox states are likely to have physiologically relevant redox activity. PMID:19598234

  2. MUFOLD: A new solution for protein 3D structure prediction

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Jingfen; Wang, Qingguo; Barz, Bogdan; He, Zhiquan; Kosztin, Ioan; Shang, Yi; Xu, Dong

    2010-01-01

    There have been steady improvements in protein structure prediction during the past 2 decades. However, current methods are still far from consistently predicting structural models accurately with computing power accessible to common users. Toward achieving more accurate and efficient structure prediction, we developed a number of novel methods and integrated them into a software package, MUFOLD. First, a systematic protocol was developed to identify useful templates and fragments from Protein Data Bank for a given target protein. Then, an efficient process was applied for iterative coarse-grain model generation and evaluation at the Cα or backbone level. In this process, we construct models using interresidue spatial restraints derived from alignments by multidimensional scaling, evaluate and select models through clustering and static scoring functions, and iteratively improve the selected models by integrating spatial restraints and previous models. Finally, the full-atom models were evaluated using molecular dynamics simulations based on structural changes under simulated heating. We have continuously improved the performance of MUFOLD by using a benchmark of 200 proteins from the Astral database, where no template with >25% sequence identity to any target protein is included. The average root-mean-square deviation of the best models from the native structures is 4.28 Å, which shows significant and systematic improvement over our previous methods. The computing time of MUFOLD is much shorter than many other tools, such as Rosetta. MUFOLD demonstrated some success in the 2008 community-wide experiment for protein structure prediction CASP8. PMID:19927325

  3. A Historical Perspective and Overview of Protein Structure Prediction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wooley, John C.; Ye, Yuzhen

    Carrying on many different biological functions, proteins are all composed of one or more polypeptide chains, each containing from several to hundreds or even thousands of the 20 amino acids. During the 1950s at the dawn of modern biochemistry, an essential question for biochemists was to understand the structure and function of these polypeptide chains. The sequences of protein, also referred to as their primary structures, determine the different chemical properties for different proteins, and thus continue to captivate much of the attention of biochemists. As an early step in characterizing protein chemistry, British biochemist Frederick Sanger designed an experimental method to identify the sequence of insulin (Sanger et al., 1955). He became the first person to obtain the primary structure of a protein and in 1958 won his first Nobel Price in Chemistry. This important progress in sequencing did not answer the question of whether a single (individual) protein has a distinctive shape in three dimensions (3D), and if so, what factors determine its 3D architecture. However, during the period when Sanger was studying the primary structure of proteins, American biochemist Christian Anfinsen observed that the active polypeptide chain of a model protein, bovine pancreatic ribonuclease (RNase), could fold spontaneously into a unique 3D structure, which was later called native conformation of the protein (Anfinsen et al., 1954). Anfinsen also studied the refolding of RNase enzyme and observed that an enzyme unfolded under extreme chemical environment could refold spontaneously back into its native conformation upon changing the environment back to natural conditions (Anfinsen et al., 1961). By 1962, Anfinsen had developed his theory of protein folding (which was summarized in his 1972 Nobel acceptance speech): "The native conformation is determined by the totality of interatomic interactions and hence, by the amino acid sequence, in a given environment."

  4. Generating folded protein structures with a lattice chain growth algorithm

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gan, Hin Hark; Tropsha, Alexander; Schlick, Tamar

    2000-10-01

    We present a new application of the chain growth algorithm to lattice generation of protein structure and thermodynamics. Given the difficulty of ab initio protein structure prediction, this approach provides an alternative to current folding algorithms. The chain growth algorithm, unlike Metropolis folding algorithms, generates independent protein structures to achieve rapid and efficient exploration of configurational space. It is a modified version of the Rosenbluth algorithm where the chain growth transition probability is a normalized Boltzmann factor; it was previously applied only to simple polymers and protein models with two residue types. The independent protein configurations, generated segment-by-segment on a refined cubic lattice, are based on a single interaction site for each amino acid and a statistical interaction energy derived by Miyazawa and Jernigan. We examine for several proteins the algorithm's ability to produce nativelike folds and its effectiveness for calculating protein thermodynamics. Thermal transition profiles associated with the internal energy, entropy, and radius of gyration show characteristic folding/unfolding transitions and provide evidence for unfolding via partially unfolded (molten-globule) states. From the configurational ensembles, the protein structures with the lowest distance root-mean-square deviations (dRMSD) vary between 2.2 to 3.8 Å, a range comparable to results of an exhaustive enumeration search. Though the ensemble-averaged dRMSD values are about 1.5 to 2 Å larger, the lowest dRMSD structures have similar overall folds to the native proteins. These results demonstrate that the chain growth algorithm is a viable alternative to protein simulations using the whole chain.

  5. CMsearch: simultaneous exploration of protein sequence space and structure space improves not only protein homology detection but also protein structure prediction

    PubMed Central

    Cui, Xuefeng; Lu, Zhiwu; Wang, Sheng; Jing-Yan Wang, Jim; Gao, Xin

    2016-01-01

    Motivation: Protein homology detection, a fundamental problem in computational biology, is an indispensable step toward predicting protein structures and understanding protein functions. Despite the advances in recent decades on sequence alignment, threading and alignment-free methods, protein homology detection remains a challenging open problem. Recently, network methods that try to find transitive paths in the protein structure space demonstrate the importance of incorporating network information of the structure space. Yet, current methods merge the sequence space and the structure space into a single space, and thus introduce inconsistency in combining different sources of information. Method: We present a novel network-based protein homology detection method, CMsearch, based on cross-modal learning. Instead of exploring a single network built from the mixture of sequence and structure space information, CMsearch builds two separate networks to represent the sequence space and the structure space. It then learns sequence–structure correlation by simultaneously taking sequence information, structure information, sequence space information and structure space information into consideration. Results: We tested CMsearch on two challenging tasks, protein homology detection and protein structure prediction, by querying all 8332 PDB40 proteins. Our results demonstrate that CMsearch is insensitive to the similarity metrics used to define the sequence and the structure spaces. By using HMM–HMM alignment as the sequence similarity metric, CMsearch clearly outperforms state-of-the-art homology detection methods and the CASP-winning template-based protein structure prediction methods. Availability and implementation: Our program is freely available for download from http://sfb.kaust.edu.sa/Pages/Software.aspx. Contact: xin.gao@kaust.edu.sa Supplementary information: Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online. PMID:27307635

  6. Impact of structure space continuity on protein fold classification

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Jinrui; Zhang, Jianzhi

    2016-01-01

    Protein structure classification hierarchically clusters domain structures based on structure and/or sequence similarities and plays important roles in the study of protein structure-function relationship and protein evolution. Among many classifications, SCOP and CATH are widely viewed as the gold standards. Fold classification is of special interest because this is the lowest level of classification that does not depend on protein sequence similarity. The current fold classifications such as those in SCOP and CATH are controversial because they implicitly assume that folds are discrete islands in the structure space, whereas increasing evidence suggests significant similarities among folds and supports a continuous fold space. Although this problem is widely recognized, its impact on fold classification has not been quantitatively evaluated. Here we develop a likelihood method to classify a domain into the existing folds of CATH or SCOP using both query-fold structure similarities and within-fold structure heterogeneities. The new classification differs from the original classification for 3.4–12% of domains, depending on factors such as the structure similarity score and original classification scheme used. Because these factors differ for different biological purposes, our results indicate that the importance of considering structure space continuity in fold classification depends on the specific question asked. PMID:27006112

  7. An Algebro-Topological Description of Protein Domain Structure

    PubMed Central

    Penner, Robert Clark; Knudsen, Michael; Wiuf, Carsten; Andersen, Jørgen Ellegaard

    2011-01-01

    The space of possible protein structures appears vast and continuous, and the relationship between primary, secondary and tertiary structure levels is complex. Protein structure comparison and classification is therefore a difficult but important task since structure is a determinant for molecular interaction and function. We introduce a novel mathematical abstraction based on geometric topology to describe protein domain structure. Using the locations of the backbone atoms and the hydrogen bonds, we build a combinatorial object – a so-called fatgraph. The description is discrete yet gives rise to a 2-dimensional mathematical surface. Thus, each protein domain corresponds to a particular mathematical surface with characteristic topological invariants, such as the genus (number of holes) and the number of boundary components. Both invariants are global fatgraph features reflecting the interconnectivity of the domain by hydrogen bonds. We introduce the notion of robust variables, that is variables that are robust towards minor changes in the structure/fatgraph, and show that the genus and the number of boundary components are robust. Further, we invesigate the distribution of different fatgraph variables and show how only four variables are capable of distinguishing different folds. We use local (secondary) and global (tertiary) fatgraph features to describe domain structures and illustrate that they are useful for classification of domains in CATH. In addition, we combine our method with two other methods thereby using primary, secondary, and tertiary structure information, and show that we can identify a large percentage of new and unclassified structures in CATH. PMID:21629687

  8. Statistical potential for assessment and prediction of protein structures

    PubMed Central

    Shen, Min-yi; Sali, Andrej

    2006-01-01

    Protein structures in the Protein Data Bank provide a wealth of data about the interactions that determine the native states of proteins. Using the probability theory, we derive an atomic distance-dependent statistical potential from a sample of native structures that does not depend on any adjustable parameters (Discrete Optimized Protein Energy, or DOPE). DOPE is based on an improved reference state that corresponds to noninteracting atoms in a homogeneous sphere with the radius dependent on a sample native structure; it thus accounts for the finite and spherical shape of the native structures. The DOPE potential was extracted from a nonredundant set of 1472 crystallographic structures. We tested DOPE and five other scoring functions by the detection of the native state among six multiple target decoy sets, the correlation between the score and model error, and the identification of the most accurate non-native structure in the decoy set. For all decoy sets, DOPE is the best performing function in terms of all criteria, except for a tie in one criterion for one decoy set. To facilitate its use in various applications, such as model assessment, loop modeling, and fitting into cryo-electron microscopy mass density maps combined with comparative protein structure modeling, DOPE was incorporated into the modeling package MODELLER-8. PMID:17075131

  9. Artificial membranes for membrane protein purification, functionality and structure studies.

    PubMed

    Parmar, Mayuriben J; Lousa, Carine De Marcos; Muench, Stephen P; Goldman, Adrian; Postis, Vincent L G

    2016-06-15

    Membrane proteins represent one of the most important targets for pharmaceutical companies. Unfortunately, technical limitations have long been a major hindrance in our understanding of the function and structure of such proteins. Recent years have seen the refinement of classical approaches and the emergence of new technologies that have resulted in a significant step forward in the field of membrane protein research. This review summarizes some of the current techniques used for studying membrane proteins, with overall advantages and drawbacks for each method. PMID:27284055

  10. Water Determines the Structure and Dynamics of Proteins.

    PubMed

    Bellissent-Funel, Marie-Claire; Hassanali, Ali; Havenith, Martina; Henchman, Richard; Pohl, Peter; Sterpone, Fabio; van der Spoel, David; Xu, Yao; Garcia, Angel E

    2016-07-13

    Water is an essential participant in the stability, structure, dynamics, and function of proteins and other biomolecules. Thermodynamically, changes in the aqueous environment affect the stability of biomolecules. Structurally, water participates chemically in the catalytic function of proteins and nucleic acids and physically in the collapse of the protein chain during folding through hydrophobic collapse and mediates binding through the hydrogen bond in complex formation. Water is a partner that slaves the dynamics of proteins, and water interaction with proteins affect their dynamics. Here we provide a review of the experimental and computational advances over the past decade in understanding the role of water in the dynamics, structure, and function of proteins. We focus on the combination of X-ray and neutron crystallography, NMR, terahertz spectroscopy, mass spectroscopy, thermodynamics, and computer simulations to reveal how water assist proteins in their function. The recent advances in computer simulations and the enhanced sensitivity of experimental tools promise major advances in the understanding of protein dynamics, and water surely will be a protagonist. PMID:27186992

  11. Water Determines the Structure and Dynamics of Proteins.

    PubMed

    Bellissent-Funel, Marie-Claire; Hassanali, Ali; Havenith, Martina; Henchman, Richard; Pohl, Peter; Sterpone, Fabio; van der Spoel, David; Xu, Yao; Garcia, Angel E

    2016-07-13

    Water is an essential participant in the stability, structure, dynamics, and function of proteins and other biomolecules. Thermodynamically, changes in the aqueous environment affect the stability of biomolecules. Structurally, water participates chemically in the catalytic function of proteins and nucleic acids and physically in the collapse of the protein chain during folding through hydrophobic collapse and mediates binding through the hydrogen bond in complex formation. Water is a partner that slaves the dynamics of proteins, and water interaction with proteins affect their dynamics. Here we provide a review of the experimental and computational advances over the past decade in understanding the role of water in the dynamics, structure, and function of proteins. We focus on the combination of X-ray and neutron crystallography, NMR, terahertz spectroscopy, mass spectroscopy, thermodynamics, and computer simulations to reveal how water assist proteins in their function. The recent advances in computer simulations and the enhanced sensitivity of experimental tools promise major advances in the understanding of protein dynamics, and water surely will be a protagonist.

  12. Proteins at flowing interfaces: From understanding structure to treating disease

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Posada, David; Young, James; Hirsa, Amir

    2012-11-01

    The field of soft matter offers vast opportunities for scientific and technological developments, with many challenges that need to be addressed by various disciplines. Fluid dynamics has a tremendous potential for greater impact, from broadening fundamental understanding to treating disease. Here we demonstrate the use of fluid dynamics in two biotechnology problems involving proteins at the air/water interface: a) 2-Dimensional protein crystallization and b) amyloid fibril formation. Protein crystallization is usually the most challenging step in X-ray diffraction analysis of protein structure. Recently it was demonstrated that flow can induce 2-D protein crystallization at conditions under which quiescent systems do not form crystals. A different form of protein structuring, namely amyloid fibrillization, is also of interest due to its association with several neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease. Protein denaturation, which is the root of the fibrillization process, is also a significant concern in biotherapeutics production. Both problems are studied by using shearing free-surface flows in simple geometries. The common finding is that flow can significantly enhance the growth of protein structures.

  13. 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

  14. Characterizing Protein Structure, Dynamics and Conformation in Lyophilized Solids

    PubMed Central

    Moorthy, Balakrishnan S.; Iyer, Lavanya K.; Topp, Elizabeth M.

    2015-01-01

    The long-term stability of protein therapeutics in the solid-state depends on the preservation of native structure during lyophilization and in the lyophilized powder. Proteins can reversibly or irreversibly unfold upon lyophilization, acquiring conformations susceptible to degradation during storage. Therefore, characterizing proteins in the dried state is crucial for the design of safe and efficacious formulations. This review summarizes the basic principles and applications of the analytical techniques that are commonly used to characterize protein structure, dynamics and conformation in lyophilized solids. The review also discusses the applications of recently developed mass spectrometry based methods (solid-state hydrogen deuterium exchange mass spectrometry (ssHDX-MS) and solid-state photolytic labeling mass spectrometry (ssPL-MS)) and their ability to study proteins in the solid-state at high resolution. PMID:26446463

  15. Molecular dynamics of protein A and a WW domain with a united-residue model including hydrodynamic interaction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lipska, Agnieszka G.; Seidman, Steven R.; Sieradzan, Adam K.; Giełdoń, Artur; Liwo, Adam; Scheraga, Harold A.

    2016-05-01

    The folding of the N-terminal part of the B-domain of staphylococcal protein A (PDB ID: 1BDD, a 46-residue three-α-helix bundle) and the formin-binding protein 28 WW domain (PDB ID: 1E0L, a 37-residue three-stranded anti-parallel β protein) was studied by means of Langevin dynamics with the coarse-grained UNRES force field to assess the influence of hydrodynamic interactions on protein-folding pathways and kinetics. The unfolded, intermediate, and native-like structures were identified by cluster analysis, and multi-exponential functions were fitted to the time dependence of the fractions of native and intermediate structures, respectively, to determine bulk kinetics. It was found that introducing hydrodynamic interactions slows down both the formation of an intermediate state and the transition from the collapsed structures to the final native-like structures by creating multiple kinetic traps. Therefore, introducing hydrodynamic interactions considerably slows the folding, as opposed to the results obtained from earlier studies with the use of Gō-like models.

  16. Molecular dynamics of protein A and a WW domain with a united-residue model including hydrodynamic interaction.

    PubMed

    Lipska, Agnieszka G; Seidman, Steven R; Sieradzan, Adam K; Giełdoń, Artur; Liwo, Adam; Scheraga, Harold A

    2016-05-14

    The folding of the N-terminal part of the B-domain of staphylococcal protein A (PDB ID: 1BDD, a 46-residue three-α-helix bundle) and the formin-binding protein 28 WW domain (PDB ID: 1E0L, a 37-residue three-stranded anti-parallel β protein) was studied by means of Langevin dynamics with the coarse-grained UNRES force field to assess the influence of hydrodynamic interactions on protein-folding pathways and kinetics. The unfolded, intermediate, and native-like structures were identified by cluster analysis, and multi-exponential functions were fitted to the time dependence of the fractions of native and intermediate structures, respectively, to determine bulk kinetics. It was found that introducing hydrodynamic interactions slows down both the formation of an intermediate state and the transition from the collapsed structures to the final native-like structures by creating multiple kinetic traps. Therefore, introducing hydrodynamic interactions considerably slows the folding, as opposed to the results obtained from earlier studies with the use of Gō-like models. PMID:27179474

  17. Structure-based modeling of protein: DNA specificity

    PubMed Central

    Joyce, Adam P.; Zhang, Chi; Bradley, Philip

    2015-01-01

    Protein:DNA interactions are essential to a range of processes that maintain and express the information encoded in the genome. Structural modeling is an approach that aims to understand these interactions at the physicochemical level. It has been proposed that structural modeling can lead to deeper understanding of the mechanisms of protein:DNA interactions, and that progress in this field can not only help to rationalize the observed specificities of DNA-binding proteins but also to allow researchers to engineer novel DNA site specificities. In this review we discuss recent developments in the structural description of protein:DNA interactions and specificity, as well as the challenges facing the field in the future. PMID:25414269

  18. Deprotonated imidodiphosphate in AMPPNP-containing protein structures

    SciTech Connect

    Dauter, Miroslawa; Dauter, Zbigniew

    2011-12-01

    In certain AMPPNP-containing protein structures, the nitrogen bridging the two terminal phosphate groups can be deprotonated. Many different proteins utilize the chemical energy provided by the cofactor adenosine triphosphate (ATP) for their proper function. A number of structures in the Protein Data Bank (PDB) contain adenosine 5′-(β,γ-imido)triphosphate (AMPPNP), a nonhydrolysable analog of ATP in which the bridging O atom between the two terminal phosphate groups is substituted by the imido function. Under mild conditions imides do not have acidic properties and thus the imide nitrogen should be protonated. However, an analysis of protein structures containing AMPPNP reveals that the imide group is deprotonated in certain complexes if the negative charges of the phosphate moieties in AMPPNP are in part neutralized by coordinating divalent metals or a guanidinium group of an arginine.

  19. Crystal structure of Homo sapiens protein LOC79017

    SciTech Connect

    Bae, Euiyoung; Bingman, Craig A.; Aceti, David J.; Phillips, Jr., George N.

    2010-02-08

    LOC79017 (MW 21.0 kDa, residues 1-188) was annotated as a hypothetical protein encoded by Homo sapiens chromosome 7 open reading frame 24. It was selected as a target by the Center for Eukaryotic Structural Genomics (CESG) because it did not share more than 30% sequence identity with any protein for which the three-dimensional structure is known. The biological function of the protein has not been established yet. Parts of LOC79017 were identified as members of uncharacterized Pfam families (residues 1-95 as PB006073 and residues 104-180 as PB031696). BLAST searches revealed homologues of LOC79017 in many eukaryotes, but none of them have been functionally characterized. Here, we report the crystal structure of H. sapiens protein LOC79017 (UniGene code Hs.530024, UniProt code O75223, CESG target number go.35223).

  20. A challenging interpretation of a hexagonally layered protein structure

    PubMed Central

    Thompson, Michael C.; Yeates, Todd O.

    2014-01-01

    The carboxysome is a giant protein complex that acts as a metabolic organelle in cyanobacteria and some chemoautotrophs. Its outer structure is formed by the assembly of thousands of copies of hexameric shell protein subunits into a molecular layer. The structure determination of a CcmK1 shell protein mutant (L11K) from the β-carboxysome of the cyanobacterium Synechocystis PCC6803 led to challenges in structure determination. Twinning, noncrystallographic symmetry and packing of hexameric units in a special arrangement led to initial difficulties in space-group assignment. The correct space group was clarified after initial model refinement revealed additional symmetry. This study provides an instructive example in which broken symmetry requires a new choice of unit-cell origin in order to identify the highest symmetry space group. An additional observation related to the packing arrangement of molecules in this crystal suggests that these hexameric shell proteins might have lower internal symmetry than previously believed. PMID:24419393

  1. Local Crystalline Structure in an Amorphous Protein Dense Phase

    PubMed Central

    Greene, Daniel G.; Modla, Shannon; Wagner, Norman J.; Sandler, Stanley I.; Lenhoff, Abraham M.

    2015-01-01

    Proteins exhibit a variety of dense phases ranging from gels, aggregates, and precipitates to crystalline phases and dense liquids. Although the structure of the crystalline phase is known in atomistic detail, little attention has been paid to noncrystalline protein dense phases, and in many cases the structures of these phases are assumed to be fully amorphous. In this work, we used small-angle neutron scattering, electron microscopy, and electron tomography to measure the structure of ovalbumin precipitate particles salted out with ammonium sulfate. We found that the ovalbumin phase-separates into core-shell particles with a core radius of ∼2 μm and shell thickness of ∼0.5 μm. Within this shell region, nanostructures comprised of crystallites of ovalbumin self-assemble into a well-defined bicontinuous network with branches ∼12 nm thick. These results demonstrate that the protein gel is comprised in part of nanocrystalline protein. PMID:26488663

  2. Automated High Throughput Protein Crystallization Screening at Nanoliter Scale and Protein Structural Study on Lactate Dehydrogenase

    SciTech Connect

    Li, Fenglei

    2006-08-09

    The purposes of our research were: (1) To develop an economical, easy to use, automated, high throughput system for large scale protein crystallization screening. (2) To develop a new protein crystallization method with high screening efficiency, low protein consumption and complete compatibility with high throughput screening system. (3) To determine the structure of lactate dehydrogenase complexed with NADH by x-ray protein crystallography to study its inherent structural properties. Firstly, we demonstrated large scale protein crystallization screening can be performed in a high throughput manner with low cost, easy operation. The overall system integrates liquid dispensing, crystallization and detection and serves as a whole solution to protein crystallization screening. The system can dispense protein and multiple different precipitants in nanoliter scale and in parallel. A new detection scheme, native fluorescence, has been developed in this system to form a two-detector system with a visible light detector for detecting protein crystallization screening results. This detection scheme has capability of eliminating common false positives by distinguishing protein crystals from inorganic crystals in a high throughput and non-destructive manner. The entire system from liquid dispensing, crystallization to crystal detection is essentially parallel, high throughput and compatible with automation. The system was successfully demonstrated by lysozyme crystallization screening. Secondly, we developed a new crystallization method with high screening efficiency, low protein consumption and compatibility with automation and high throughput. In this crystallization method, a gas permeable membrane is employed to achieve the gentle evaporation required by protein crystallization. Protein consumption is significantly reduced to nanoliter scale for each condition and thus permits exploring more conditions in a phase diagram for given amount of protein. In addition

  3. A domain specific data management architecture for protein structure data.

    PubMed

    Wang, Yanchao; Sunderraman, R; Tian, Hao

    2006-01-01

    In this paper, we propose an architecture that extends the Object-Oriented Database (OODB) system architecture by adding domain specific additional layers to manage protein structure data. The two layers introduced above OODB are Protein-QL, domain-specific query language and Protein-OODB, a domain-specific data layer. This architecture is designed specifically for the protein domain, but it is the first step in building a general Bio-OODBMS for biological applications. Three internal data types are defined for the primary, secondary, and tertiary protein structures, respectively, to simplify queries in Protein-QL. This enables the domain scientists to easily formulate data requests. We use lambda-DB as the back-end database to implement Protein-QL. Queries in Protein-QL are compiled into OQL which are then executed against the database. In order to make the underlying OODB system (lambda-DB) more powerful, we introduce additional constraints to check the integrity of protein data. PMID:17945914

  4. Relationship between Molecular Structure Characteristics of Feed Proteins and Protein In vitro Digestibility and Solubility.

    PubMed

    Bai, Mingmei; Qin, Guixin; Sun, Zewei; Long, Guohui

    2016-08-01

    The nutritional value of feed proteins and their utilization by livestock are related not only to the chemical composition but also to the structure of feed proteins, but few studies thus far have investigated the relationship between the structure of feed proteins and their solubility as well as digestibility in monogastric animals. To address this question we analyzed soybean meal, fish meal, corn distiller's dried grains with solubles, corn gluten meal, and feather meal by Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy to determine the protein molecular spectral band characteristics for amides I and II as well as α-helices and β-sheets and their ratios. Protein solubility and in vitro digestibility were measured with the Kjeldahl method using 0.2% KOH solution and the pepsin-pancreatin two-step enzymatic method, respectively. We found that all measured spectral band intensities (height and area) of feed proteins were correlated with their the in vitro digestibility and solubility (p≤0.003); moreover, the relatively quantitative amounts of α-helices, random coils, and α-helix to β-sheet ratio in protein secondary structures were positively correlated with protein in vitro digestibility and solubility (p≤0.004). On the other hand, the percentage of β-sheet structures was negatively correlated with protein in vitro digestibility (p<0.001) and solubility (p = 0.002). These results demonstrate that the molecular structure characteristics of feed proteins are closely related to their in vitro digestibility at 28 h and solubility. Furthermore, the α-helix-to-β-sheet ratio can be used to predict the nutritional value of feed proteins.

  5. Computational large-scale mapping of protein-protein interactions using structural complexes.

    PubMed

    Shoemaker, Benjamin; Wuchty, Stefan; Panchenko, Anna R

    2013-01-01

    Although the identification of protein interactions by high-throughput methods progresses at a fast pace, "interactome" datasets still suffer from high rates of false positives and low coverage. To map the interactome of any organism, this unit presents a computational framework to predict protein-protein or gene-gene interactions utilizing experimentally determined evidence of structural complexes, atomic details of binding interfaces and evolutionary conservation.

  6. Protein structure prediction with local adjust tabu search algorithm

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Protein folding structure prediction is one of the most challenging problems in the bioinformatics domain. Because of the complexity of the realistic protein structure, the simplified structure model and the computational method should be adopted in the research. The AB off-lattice model is one of the simplification models, which only considers two classes of amino acids, hydrophobic (A) residues and hydrophilic (B) residues. Results The main work of this paper is to discuss how to optimize the lowest energy configurations in 2D off-lattice model and 3D off-lattice model by using Fibonacci sequences and real protein sequences. In order to avoid falling into local minimum and faster convergence to the global minimum, we introduce a novel method (SATS) to the protein structure problem, which combines simulated annealing algorithm and tabu search algorithm. Various strategies, such as the new encoding strategy, the adaptive neighborhood generation strategy and the local adjustment strategy, are adopted successfully for high-speed searching the optimal conformation corresponds to the lowest energy of the protein sequences. Experimental results show that some of the results obtained by the improved SATS are better than those reported in previous literatures, and we can sure that the lowest energy folding state for short Fibonacci sequences have been found. Conclusions Although the off-lattice models is not very realistic, they can reflect some important characteristics of the realistic protein. It can be found that 3D off-lattice model is more like native folding structure of the realistic protein than 2D off-lattice model. In addition, compared with some previous researches, the proposed hybrid algorithm can more effectively and more quickly search the spatial folding structure of a protein chain. PMID:25474708

  7. Connecting Protein Structure to Intermolecular Interactions: A Computer Modeling Laboratory

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Abualia, Mohammed; Schroeder, Lianne; Garcia, Megan; Daubenmire, Patrick L.; Wink, Donald J.; Clark, Ginevra A.

    2016-01-01

    An understanding of protein folding relies on a solid foundation of a number of critical chemical concepts, such as molecular structure, intra-/intermolecular interactions, and relating structure to function. Recent reports show that students struggle on all levels to achieve these understandings and use them in meaningful ways. Further, several…

  8. HMGA proteins as modulators of chromatin structure during transcriptional activation

    PubMed Central

    Ozturk, Nihan; Singh, Indrabahadur; Mehta, Aditi; Braun, Thomas; Barreto, Guillermo

    2013-01-01

    High mobility group (HMG) proteins are the most abundant non-histone chromatin associated proteins. HMG proteins bind to DNA and nucleosome and alter the structure of chromatin locally and globally. Accessibility to DNA within chromatin is a central factor that affects DNA-dependent nuclear processes, such as transcription, replication, recombination, and repair. HMG proteins associate with different multi-protein complexes to regulate these processes by mediating accessibility to DNA. HMG proteins can be subdivided into three families: HMGA, HMGB, and HMGN. In this review, we will focus on recent advances in understanding the function of HMGA family members, specifically their role in gene transcription regulation during development and cancer. PMID:25364713

  9. Structural mechanism of G protein activation by G protein-coupled receptor.

    PubMed

    Duc, Nguyen Minh; Kim, Hee Ryung; Chung, Ka Young

    2015-09-15

    G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) are a family of membrane receptors that regulate physiology and pathology of various organs. Consequently, about 40% of drugs in the market targets GPCRs. Heterotrimeric G proteins are composed of α, β, and γ subunits, and act as the key downstream signaling molecules of GPCRs. The structural mechanism of G protein activation by GPCRs has been of a great interest, and a number of biochemical and biophysical studies have been performed since the late 80's. These studies investigated the interface between GPCR and G proteins and the structural mechanism of GPCR-induced G protein activation. Recently, arrestins are also reported to be important molecular switches in GPCR-mediated signal transduction, and the physiological output of arrestin-mediated signal transduction is different from that of G protein-mediated signal transduction. Understanding the structural mechanism of the activation of G proteins and arrestins would provide fundamental information for the downstream signaling-selective GPCR-targeting drug development. This review will discuss the structural mechanism of GPCR-induced G protein activation by comparing previous biochemical and biophysical studies.

  10. A carrier protein strategy yields the structure of dalbavancin

    PubMed Central

    Economou, Nicoleta J.; Nahoum, Virginie; Weeks, Stephen D.; Grasty, Kimberly C.; Zentner, Isaac J.; Townsend, Tracy M.; Bhuiya, Mohammad W.; Cocklin, Simon; Loll, Patrick J.

    2012-01-01

    Many large natural product antibiotics act by specifically binding and sequestering target molecules found on bacterial cells. We have developed a new strategy to expedite the structural analysis of such antibiotic-target complexes, in which we covalently link the target molecules to carrier proteins, and then crystallize the entire carrier/target/antibiotic complex. Using native chemical ligation, we have linked the Lys-d-Ala-d-Ala binding epitope for glycopeptide antibiotics to three different carrier proteins. We show that recognition of this peptide by multiple antibiotics is not compromised by the presence of the carrier protein partner, and use this approach to determine the first-ever crystal structure for the new therapeutic dalbavancin. We also report the first crystal structure of an asymmetric ristocetin antibiotic dimer, as well as the structure of vancomycin bound to a carrier-target fusion. The dalbavancin structure reveals an antibiotic molecule that has closed around its binding partner; it also suggests mechanisms by which the drug can enhance its half-life by binding to serum proteins, and be targeted to bacterial membranes. Notably, the carrier protein approach is not limited to peptide ligands such as Lys-d-Ala-d-Ala, but is applicable to a diverse range of targets. This strategy is likely to yield structural insights that accelerate new therapeutic development. PMID:22352468

  11. NMR structure of hypothetical protein MG354 from Mycoplasmagenitalium

    SciTech Connect

    Pelton, Jeffrey G.; Shi, Jianxia; Yokotoa, Hisao; Kim, Rosalind; Wemmer, David E.

    2005-04-12

    Mycoplasma genitalium (Mg) and M. pneumoniae (Mp) are human pathogens with two of the smallest genomes sequenced to date ({approx} 480 and 680 genes, respectively). The Berkeley Structural Genomics Center is determining representative structures for gene products in these organisms, helping to understand the set of protein folds needed to sustain this minimal organism. The protein coded by gene MG354 (gi3844938) from M. genitalium has a relatively unique sequence, related only to MPN530 from M. pneumoniae (68% identity, coverage 99%) and MGA{_}0870 from the avian pathogen M. gallisepticum (23% identity, coverage 94%), has no homologue with a determined structure, and no functional annotations.

  12. High-Resolution Protein Structure Determination by Serial Femtosecond Crystallography

    PubMed Central

    Boutet, Sébastien; Lomb, Lukas; Williams, Garth J.; Barends, Thomas R. M.; Aquila, Andrew; Doak, R. Bruce; Weierstall, Uwe; DePonte, Daniel P.; Steinbrener, Jan; Shoeman, Robert L.; Messerschmidt, Marc; Barty, Anton; White, Thomas A.; Kassemeyer, Stephan; Kirian, Richard A.; Seibert, M. Marvin; Montanez, Paul A.; Kenney, Chris; Herbst, Ryan; Hart, Philip; Pines, Jack; Haller, Gunther; Gruner, Sol M.; Philipp, Hugh T.; Tate, Mark W.; Hromalik, Marianne; Koerner, Lucas J.; van Bakel, Niels; Morse, John; Ghonsalves, Wilfred; Arnlund, David; Bogan, Michael J.; Caleman, Carl; Fromme, Raimund; Hampton, Christina Y.; Hunter, Mark S.; Johansson, Linda C.; Katona, Gergely; Kupitz, Christopher; Liang, Mengning; Martin, Andrew V.; Nass, Karol; Redecke, Lars; Stellato, Francesco; Timneanu, Nicusor; Wang, Dingjie; Zatsepin, Nadia A.; Schafer, Donald; Defever, James; Neutze, Richard; Fromme, Petra; Spence, John C. H.; Chapman, Henry N.; Schlichting, Ilme

    2013-01-01

    Structure determination of proteins and other macromolecules has historically required the growth of high-quality crystals sufficiently large to diffract x-rays efficiently while withstanding radiation damage. We applied serial femtosecond crystallography (SFX) using an x-ray free-electron laser (XFEL) to obtain high-resolution structural information from microcrystals (less than 1 micrometer by 1 micrometer by 3 micrometers) of the well-characterized model protein lysozyme. The agreement with synchrotron data demonstrates the immediate relevance of SFX for analyzing the structure of the large group of difficult-to-crystallize molecules. PMID:22653729

  13. High-resolution protein structure determination by serial femtosecond crystallography.

    PubMed

    Boutet, Sébastien; Lomb, Lukas; Williams, Garth J; Barends, Thomas R M; Aquila, Andrew; Doak, R Bruce; Weierstall, Uwe; DePonte, Daniel P; Steinbrener, Jan; Shoeman, Robert L; Messerschmidt, Marc; Barty, Anton; White, Thomas A; Kassemeyer, Stephan; Kirian, Richard A; Seibert, M Marvin; Montanez, Paul A; Kenney, Chris; Herbst, Ryan; Hart, Philip; Pines, Jack; Haller, Gunther; Gruner, Sol M; Philipp, Hugh T; Tate, Mark W; Hromalik, Marianne; Koerner, Lucas J; van Bakel, Niels; Morse, John; Ghonsalves, Wilfred; Arnlund, David; Bogan, Michael J; Caleman, Carl; Fromme, Raimund; Hampton, Christina Y; Hunter, Mark S; Johansson, Linda C; Katona, Gergely; Kupitz, Christopher; Liang, Mengning; Martin, Andrew V; Nass, Karol; Redecke, Lars; Stellato, Francesco; Timneanu, Nicusor; Wang, Dingjie; Zatsepin, Nadia A; Schafer, Donald; Defever, James; Neutze, Richard; Fromme, Petra; Spence, John C H; Chapman, Henry N; Schlichting, Ilme

    2012-07-20

    Structure determination of proteins and other macromolecules has historically required the growth of high-quality crystals sufficiently large to diffract x-rays efficiently while withstanding radiation damage. We applied serial femtosecond crystallography (SFX) using an x-ray free-electron laser (XFEL) to obtain high-resolution structural information from microcrystals (less than 1 micrometer by 1 micrometer by 3 micrometers) of the well-characterized model protein lysozyme. The agreement with synchrotron data demonstrates the immediate relevance of SFX for analyzing the structure of the large group of difficult-to-crystallize molecules.

  14. High-resolution protein structure determination by serial femtosecond crystallography.

    PubMed

    Boutet, Sébastien; Lomb, Lukas; Williams, Garth J; Barends, Thomas R M; Aquila, Andrew; Doak, R Bruce; Weierstall, Uwe; DePonte, Daniel P; Steinbrener, Jan; Shoeman, Robert L; Messerschmidt, Marc; Barty, Anton; White, Thomas A; Kassemeyer, Stephan; Kirian, Richard A; Seibert, M Marvin; Montanez, Paul A; Kenney, Chris; Herbst, Ryan; Hart, Philip; Pines, Jack; Haller, Gunther; Gruner, Sol M; Philipp, Hugh T; Tate, Mark W; Hromalik, Marianne; Koerner, Lucas J; van Bakel, Niels; Morse, John; Ghonsalves, Wilfred; Arnlund, David; Bogan, Michael J; Caleman, Carl; Fromme, Raimund; Hampton, Christina Y; Hunter, Mark S; Johansson, Linda C; Katona, Gergely; Kupitz, Christopher; Liang, Mengning; Martin, Andrew V; Nass, Karol; Redecke, Lars; Stellato, Francesco; Timneanu, Nicusor; Wang, Dingjie; Zatsepin, Nadia A; Schafer, Donald; Defever, James; Neutze, Richard; Fromme, Petra; Spence, John C H; Chapman, Henry N; Schlichting, Ilme

    2012-07-20

    Structure determination of proteins and other macromolecules has historically required the growth of high-quality crystals sufficiently large to diffract x-rays efficiently while withstanding radiation damage. We applied serial femtosecond crystallography (SFX) using an x-ray free-electron laser (XFEL) to obtain high-resolution structural information from microcrystals (less than 1 micrometer by 1 micrometer by 3 micrometers) of the well-characterized model protein lysozyme. The agreement with synchrotron data demonstrates the immediate relevance of SFX for analyzing the structure of the large group of difficult-to-crystallize molecules. PMID:22653729

  15. Protein-protein structure prediction by scoring molecular dynamics trajectories of putative poses.

    PubMed

    Sarti, Edoardo; Gladich, Ivan; Zamuner, Stefano; Correia, Bruno E; Laio, Alessandro

    2016-09-01

    The prediction of protein-protein interactions and their structural configuration remains a largely unsolved problem. Most of the algorithms aimed at finding the native conformation of a protein complex starting from the structure of its monomers are based on searching the structure corresponding to the global minimum of a suitable scoring function. However, protein complexes are often highly flexible, with mobile side chains and transient contacts due to thermal fluctuations. Flexibility can be neglected if one aims at finding quickly the approximate structure of the native complex, but may play a role in structure refinement, and in discriminating solutions characterized by similar scores. We here benchmark the capability of some state-of-the-art scoring functions (BACH-SixthSense, PIE/PISA and Rosetta) in discriminating finite-temperature ensembles of structures corresponding to the native state and to non-native configurations. We produce the ensembles by running thousands of molecular dynamics simulations in explicit solvent starting from poses generated by rigid docking and optimized in vacuum. We find that while Rosetta outperformed the other two scoring functions in scoring the structures in vacuum, BACH-SixthSense and PIE/PISA perform better in distinguishing near-native ensembles of structures generated by molecular dynamics in explicit solvent. Proteins 2016; 84:1312-1320. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:27253756

  16. The Protein Model Portal—a comprehensive resource for protein structure and model information

    PubMed Central

    Haas, Juergen; Roth, Steven; Arnold, Konstantin; Kiefer, Florian; Schmidt, Tobias; Bordoli, Lorenza; Schwede, Torsten

    2013-01-01

    The Protein Model Portal (PMP) has been developed to foster effective use of 3D molecular models in biomedical research by providing convenient and comprehensive access to structural information for proteins. Both experimental structures and theoretical models for a given protein can be searched simultaneously and analyzed for structural variability. By providing a comprehensive view on structural information, PMP offers the opportunity to apply consistent assessment and validation criteria to the complete set of structural models available for proteins. PMP is an open project so that new methods developed by the community can contribute to PMP, for example, new modeling servers for creating homology models and model quality estimation servers for model validation. The accuracy of participating modeling servers is continuously evaluated by the Continuous Automated Model EvaluatiOn (CAMEO) project. The PMP offers a unique interface to visualize structural coverage of a protein combining both theoretical models and experimental structures, allowing straightforward assessment of the model quality and hence their utility. The portal is updated regularly and actively developed to include latest methods in the field of computational structural biology. Database URL: http://www.proteinmodelportal.org PMID:23624946

  17. Develop Infrared Structural Biology for Probing Structural Dynamics of Protein Functions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xie, Aihua; Kang, Zhouyang; Causey, Oliver; Liu, Charle

    2015-03-01

    Protein functions are carried out through a series of structural transitions. Lack of knowledge on functionally important structural motions of proteins impedes our understanding of protein functions. Infrared structural biology is an emerging technology with powerful applications for protein structural dynamics. One key element of infrared structural biology is the development of vibrational structural marker (VSM) database library that translates infrared spectroscopic signals into specific structural information. We report the development of VSM for probing the type, geometry and strength of hydrogen bonding interactions of buried COO- side chains of Asp and Glu in proteins. Quantum theory based first principle computational studies combined with bioinformatic hydrogen bond analysis are employed in this study. We will discuss the applications of VSM in mechanistic studies of protein functions. Infrared structural biology is expected to emerge as a powerful technique for elucidating the functional mechanism of a broad range of proteins, including water soluble and membrane proteins. This work is supported by OCAST HR10-078 and NSF DBI1338097.

  18. WeFold: A Coopetition for Protein Structure Prediction

    PubMed Central

    Khoury, George A.; Liwo, Adam; Khatib, Firas; Zhou, Hongyi; Chopra, Gaurav; Bacardit, Jaume; Bortot, Leandro O.; Faccioli, Rodrigo A.; Deng, Xin; He, Yi; Krupa, Pawel; Li, Jilong; Mozolewska, Magdalena A.; Sieradzan, Adam K.; Smadbeck, James; Wirecki, Tomasz; Cooper, Seth; Flatten, Jeff; Xu, Kefan; Baker, David; Cheng, Jianlin; Delbem, Alexandre C. B.; Floudas, Christodoulos A.; Keasar, Chen; Levitt, Michael; Popović, Zoran; Scheraga, Harold A.; Skolnick, Jeffrey; Crivelli, Silvia N.; Players, Foldit

    2014-01-01

    The protein structure prediction problem continues to elude scientists. Despite the introduction of many methods, only modest gains were made over the last decade for certain classes of prediction targets. To address this challenge, a social-media based worldwide collaborative effort, named WeFold, was undertaken by thirteen labs. During the collaboration, the labs were simultaneously competing with each other. Here, we present the first attempt at “coopetition” in scientific research applied to the protein structure prediction and refinement problems. The coopetition was possible by allowing the participating labs to contribute different components of their protein structure prediction pipelines and create new hybrid pipelines that they tested during CASP10. This manuscript describes both successes and areas needing improvement as identified throughout the first WeFold experiment and discusses the efforts that are underway to advance this initiative. A footprint of all contributions and structures are publicly accessible at http://www.wefold.org. PMID:24677212

  19. Integrating Mass Spectrometry of Intact Protein Complexes into Structural Proteomics

    PubMed Central

    Hyung, Suk-Joon; Ruotolo, Brandon T.

    2013-01-01

    Summary Mass spectrometry analysis of intact protein complexes has emerged as an established technology for assessing the composition and connectivity within dynamic, heterogeneous multiprotein complexes at low concentrations and in the context of mixtures. As this technology continues to move forward, one of the main challenges is to integrate the information content of such intact protein complex measurements with other mass spectrometry approaches in structural biology. Methods such as H/D exchange, oxidative foot-printing, chemical cross-linking, affinity purification, and ion mobility separation add complementary information that allows access to every level of protein structure and organization. Here, we survey the structural information that can be retrieved by such experiments, demonstrate the applicability of integrative mass spectrometry approaches in structural proteomics, and look to the future to explore upcoming innovations in this rapidly-advancing area. PMID:22611037

  20. Sequence- and Temperature-Dependent Properties of Unfolded and Disordered Proteins from Atomistic Simulations.

    PubMed

    Zerze, Gül H; Best, Robert B; Mittal, Jeetain

    2015-11-19

    We use all-atom molecular simulation with explicit solvent to study the properties of selected intrinsically disordered proteins and unfolded states of foldable proteins, which include chain dimensions and shape, secondary structure propensity, solvent accessible surface area, and contact formation. We find that the qualitative scaling behavior of the chains matches expectations from theory under ambient conditions. In particular, unfolded globular proteins tend to be more collapsed under the same conditions than charged disordered sequences of the same length. However, inclusion of explicit solvent in addition naturally captures temperature-dependent solvation effects, which results in an initial collapse of the chains as temperature is increased, in qualitative agreement with experiment. There is a universal origin to the collapse, revealed in the change of hydration of individual residues as a function of temperature: namely, that the initial collapse is driven by unfavorable solvation free energy of individual residues, which in turn has a strong temperature dependence. We also observe that in unfolded globular proteins, increased temperature also initially favors formation of native-like (rather than non-native-like) structure. Our results help to establish how sequence encodes the degree of intrinsic disorder or order as well as its response to changes in environmental conditions. PMID:26498157

  1. CASP10-BCL::Fold efficiently samples topologies of large proteins.

    PubMed

    Heinze, Sten; Putnam, Daniel K; Fischer, Axel W; Kohlmann, Tim; Weiner, Brian E; Meiler, Jens

    2015-03-01

    During CASP10 in summer 2012, we tested BCL::Fold for prediction of free modeling (FM) and template-based modeling (TBM) targets. BCL::Fold assembles the tertiary structure of a protein from predicted secondary structure elements (SSEs) omitting more flexible loop regions early on. This approach enables the sampling of conformational space for larger proteins with more complex topologies. In preparation of CASP11, we analyzed the quality of CASP10 models throughout the prediction pipeline to understand BCL::Fold's ability to sample the native topology, identify native-like models by scoring and/or clustering approaches, and our ability to add loop regions and side chains to initial SSE-only models. The standout observation is that BCL::Fold sampled topologies with a GDT_TS score > 33% for 12 of 18 and with a topology score > 0.8 for 11 of 18 test cases de novo. Despite the sampling success of BCL::Fold, significant challenges still exist in clustering and loop generation stages of the pipeline. The clustering approach employed for model selection often failed to identify the most native-like assembly of SSEs for further refinement and submission. It was also observed that for some β-strand proteins model refinement failed as β-strands were not properly aligned to form hydrogen bonds removing otherwise accurate models from the pool. Further, BCL::Fold samples frequently non-natural topologies that require loop regions to pass through the center of the protein.

  2. Dynamic insight into protein structure utilizing red edge excitation shift.

    PubMed

    Chattopadhyay, Amitabha; Haldar, Sourav

    2014-01-21

    Proteins are considered the workhorses in the cellular machinery. They are often organized in a highly ordered conformation in the crowded cellular environment. These conformations display characteristic dynamics over a range of time scales. An emerging consensus is that protein function is critically dependent on its dynamics. The subtle interplay between structure and dynamics is a hallmark of protein organization and is essential for its function. Depending on the environmental context, proteins can adopt a range of conformations such as native, molten globule, unfolded (denatured), and misfolded states. Although protein crystallography is a well established technique, it is not always possible to characterize various protein conformations by X-ray crystallography due to transient nature of these states. Even in cases where structural characterization is possible, the information obtained lacks dynamic component, which is needed to understand protein function. In this overall scenario, approaches that reveal information on protein dynamics are much appreciated. Dynamics of confined water has interesting implications in protein folding. Interfacial hydration combines the motion of water molecules with the slow moving protein molecules. The red edge excitation shift (REES) approach becomes relevant in this context. REES is defined as the shift in the wavelength of maximum fluorescence emission toward higher wavelengths, caused by a shift in the excitation wavelength toward the red edge of absorption spectrum. REES arises due to slow rates (relative to fluorescence lifetime) of solvent relaxation (reorientation) around an excited state fluorophore in organized assemblies such as proteins. Consequently, REES depends on the environment-induced motional restriction imposed on the solvent molecules in the immediate vicinity of the fluorophore. In the case of a protein, the confined water in the protein creates a dipolar field that acts as the solvent for a fluorophore

  3. Dynamic insight into protein structure utilizing red edge excitation shift.

    PubMed

    Chattopadhyay, Amitabha; Haldar, Sourav

    2014-01-21

    Proteins are considered the workhorses in the cellular machinery. They are often organized in a highly ordered conformation in the crowded cellular environment. These conformations display characteristic dynamics over a range of time scales. An emerging consensus is that protein function is critically dependent on its dynamics. The subtle interplay between structure and dynamics is a hallmark of protein organization and is essential for its function. Depending on the environmental context, proteins can adopt a range of conformations such as native, molten globule, unfolded (denatured), and misfolded states. Although protein crystallography is a well established technique, it is not always possible to characterize various protein conformations by X-ray crystallography due to transient nature of these states. Even in cases where structural characterization is possible, the information obtained lacks dynamic component, which is needed to understand protein function. In this overall scenario, approaches that reveal information on protein dynamics are much appreciated. Dynamics of confined water has interesting implications in protein folding. Interfacial hydration combines the motion of water molecules with the slow moving protein molecules. The red edge excitation shift (REES) approach becomes relevant in this context. REES is defined as the shift in the wavelength of maximum fluorescence emission toward higher wavelengths, caused by a shift in the excitation wavelength toward the red edge of absorption spectrum. REES arises due to slow rates (relative to fluorescence lifetime) of solvent relaxation (reorientation) around an excited state fluorophore in organized assemblies such as proteins. Consequently, REES depends on the environment-induced motional restriction imposed on the solvent molecules in the immediate vicinity of the fluorophore. In the case of a protein, the confined water in the protein creates a dipolar field that acts as the solvent for a fluorophore

  4. Rotational order–disorder structure of fluorescent protein FP480

    SciTech Connect

    Pletnev, Sergei; Morozova, Kateryna S.; Verkhusha, Vladislav V.; Dauter, Zbigniew

    2009-09-01

    An analysis of the rotational order–disorder structure of fluorescent protein FP480 is presented. In the last decade, advances in instrumentation and software development have made crystallography a powerful tool in structural biology. Using this method, structural information can now be acquired from pathological crystals that would have been abandoned in earlier times. In this paper, the order–disorder (OD) structure of fluorescent protein FP480 is discussed. The structure is composed of tetramers with 222 symmetry incorporated into the lattice in two different ways, namely rotated 90° with respect to each other around the crystal c axis, with tetramer axes coincident with crystallographic twofold axes. The random distribution of alternatively oriented tetramers in the crystal creates a rotational OD structure with statistically averaged I422 symmetry, although the presence of very weak and diffuse additional reflections suggests that the randomness is only approximate.

  5. Protein Structure Refinement Using 13Cα Chemical Shift Tensors

    PubMed Central

    Wylie, Benjamin J.; Schwieters, Charles D.; Oldfield, Eric; Rienstra, Chad M.

    2009-01-01

    We have obtained the 13Cα chemical shift tensors for each amino acid in the protein GB1. We then developed a CST force field and incorporated this into the Xplor-NIH structure determination program. GB1 structures obtained by using CST restraints had improved precision over those obtained in the absence of CST restraints, and were also more accurate. When combined with isotropic chemical shifts, distance and vector angle restraints, the root-mean squared error with respect to existing x-ray structures was better than ~1.0 Å. These results are of broad general interest since they show that chemical shift tensors can be used in protein structure refinement, improving both structural accuracy and precision, opening up the way to accurate de novo structure determination. PMID:19123862

  6. Organization, structure and activity of proteins in monolayers.

    PubMed

    Boucher, Julie; Trudel, Eric; Méthot, Mario; Desmeules, Philippe; Salesse, Christian

    2007-08-01

    Many different processes take place at the cell membrane interface. Indeed, for instance, ligands bind membrane proteins which in turn activate peripheral membrane proteins, some of which are enzymes whose action is also located at the membrane interface. Native cell membranes are difficult to use to gain information on the activity of individual proteins at the membrane interface because of the large number of different proteins involved in membranous processes. Model membrane systems, such as monolayers at the air-water interface, have thus been extensively used during the last 50 years to reconstitute proteins and to gain information on their organization, structure and activity in membranes. In the present paper, we review the recent work we have performed with membrane and peripheral proteins as well as enzymes in monolayers at the air-water interface. We show that the structure and orientation of gramicidin has been determined by combining different methods. Furthermore, we demonstrate that the secondary structure of rhodopsin and bacteriorhodopsin is indistinguishable from that in native membranes when appropriate conditions are used. We also show that the kinetics and extent of monolayer binding of myristoylated recoverin is much faster than that of the nonmyristoylated form and that this binding is highly favored by the presence polyunsaturated phospholipids. Moreover, we show that the use of fragments of RPE65 allow determine which region of this protein is most likely involved in membrane binding. Monomolecular films were also used to further understand the hydrolysis of organized phospholipids by phospholipases A2 and C.

  7. Organization, Structure and Activity of Proteins in Monolayers

    SciTech Connect

    Boucher,J.; Trudel, E.; Methot, M.; Desmeules, P.; Salesse, C.

    2007-01-01

    Many different processes take place at the cell membrane interface. Indeed, for instance, ligands bind membrane proteins which in turn activate peripheral membrane proteins, some of which are enzymes whose action is also located at the membrane interface. Native cell membranes are difficult to use to gain information on the activity of individual proteins at the membrane interface because of the large number of different proteins involved in membranous processes. Model membrane systems, such as monolayers at the air-water interface, have thus been extensively used during the last 50 years to reconstitute proteins and to gain information on their organization, structure and activity in membranes. In the present paper, we review the recent work we have performed with membrane and peripheral proteins as well as enzymes in monolayers at the air-water interface. We show that the structure and orientation of gramicidin has been determined by combining different methods. Furthermore, we demonstrate that the secondary structure of rhodopsin and bacteriorhodopsin is indistinguishable from that in native membranes when appropriate conditions are used. We also show that the kinetics and extent of monolayer binding of myristoylated recoverin is much faster than that of the nonmyristoylated form and that this binding is highly favored by the presence polyunsaturated phospholipids. Moreover, we show that the use of fragments of RPE65 allow determine which region of this protein is most likely involved in membrane binding. Monomolecular films were also used to further understand the hydrolysis of organized phospholipids by phospholipases A2 and C.

  8. Optimal isotope labelling for NMR protein structure determinations.

    PubMed

    Kainosho, Masatsune; Torizawa, Takuya; Iwashita, Yuki; Terauchi, Tsutomu; Mei Ono, Akira; Güntert, Peter

    2006-03-01

    Nuclear-magnetic-resonance spectroscopy can determine the three-dimensional structure of proteins in solution. However, its potential has been limited by the difficulty of interpreting NMR spectra in the presence of broadened and overlapping resonance lines and low signal-to-noise ratios. Here we present stereo-array isotope labelling (SAIL), a technique that can overcome many of these problems by applying a complete stereospecific and regiospecific pattern of stable isotopes that is optimal with regard to the quality and information content of the resulting NMR spectra. SAIL uses exclusively chemically and enzymatically synthesized amino acids for cell-free protein expression. We demonstrate for the 17-kDa protein calmodulin and the 41-kDa maltodextrin-binding protein that SAIL offers sharpened lines, spectral simplification without loss of information, and the ability to rapidly collect the structural restraints required to solve a high-quality solution structure for proteins twice as large as commonly solved by NMR. It thus makes a large class of proteins newly accessible to detailed solution structure determination.

  9. Structural basis for the enhanced stability of highly fluorinated proteins

    PubMed Central

    Buer, Benjamin C.; Meagher, Jennifer L.; Stuckey, Jeanne A.; Marsh, E. Neil G.

    2012-01-01

    Noncanonical amino acids have proved extremely useful for modifying the properties of proteins. Among them, extensively fluorinated (fluorous) amino acids seem particularly effective in increasing protein stability; however, in the absence of structural data, the basis of this stabilizing effect remains poorly understood. To address this problem, we solved X-ray structures for three small proteins with hydrophobic cores that are packed with either fluorocarbon or hydrocarbon side chains and compared their stabilities. Although larger, the fluorinated residues are accommodated within the protein with minimal structural perturbation, because they closely match the shape of the hydrocarbon side chains that they replace. Thus, stability increases seem to be better explained by increases in buried hydrophobic surface area that accompany fluorination than by specific fluorous interactions between fluorinated side chains. This finding is illustrated by the design of a highly fluorinated protein that, by compensating for the larger volume and surface area of the fluorinated side chains, exhibits similar stability to its nonfluorinated counterpart. These structure-based observations should inform efforts to rationally modulate protein function using noncanonical amino acids. PMID:22411812

  10. Gene3D: modelling protein structure, function and evolution.

    PubMed

    Yeats, Corin; Maibaum, Michael; Marsden, Russell; Dibley, Mark; Lee, David; Addou, Sarah; Orengo, Christine A

    2006-01-01

    The Gene3D release 4 database and web portal (http://cathwww.biochem.ucl.ac.uk:8080/Gene3D) provide a combined structural, functional and evolutionary view of the protein world. It is focussed on providing structural annotation for protein sequences without structural representatives--including the complete proteome sets of over 240 different species. The protein sequences have also been clustered into whole-chain families so as to aid functional prediction. The structural annotation is generated using HMM models based on the CATH domain families; CATH is a repository for manually deduced protein domains. Amongst the changes from the last publication are: the addition of over 100 genomes and the UniProt sequence database, domain data from Pfam, metabolic pathway and functional data from COGs, KEGG and GO, and protein-protein interaction data from MINT and BIND. The website has been rebuilt to allow more sophisticated querying and the data returned is presented in a clearer format with greater functionality. Furthermore, all data can be downloaded in a simple XML format, allowing users to carry out complex investigations at their own computers.

  11. Changes in protein structure at the interface accompanying complex formation.

    PubMed

    Chakravarty, Devlina; Janin, Joël; Robert, Charles H; Chakrabarti, Pinak

    2015-11-01

    Protein interactions are essential in all biological processes. The changes brought about in the structure when a free component forms a complex with another molecule need to be characterized for a proper understanding of molecular recognition as well as for the successful implementation of docking algorithms. Here, unbound (U) and bound (B) forms of protein structures from the Protein-Protein Interaction Affinity Database are compared in order to enumerate the changes that occur at the interface atoms/residues in terms of the solvent-accessible surface area (ASA), secondary structure, temperature factors (B factors) and disorder-to-order transitions. It is found that the interface atoms optimize contacts with the atoms in the partner protein, which leads to an increase in their ASA in the bound interface in the majority (69%) of the proteins when compared with the unbound interface, and this is independent of the root-mean-square deviation between the U and B forms. Changes in secondary structure during the transition indicate a likely extension of helices and strands at the expense of turns and coils. A reduction in flexibility during complex formation is reflected in the decrease in B factors of the interface residues on going from the U form to the B form. There is, however, no distinction in flexibility between the interface and the surface in the monomeric structure, thereby highlighting the potential problem of using B factors for the prediction of binding sites in the unbound form for docking another protein. 16% of the proteins have missing (disordered) residues in the U form which are observed (ordered) in the B form, mostly with an irregular conformation; the data set also shows differences in the composition of interface and non-interface residues in the disordered polypeptide segments as well as differences in their surface burial.

  12. The structure of pyogenecin immunity protein, a novel bacteriocin-like immunity protein from streptococcus pyogenes.

    SciTech Connect

    Chang, C.; Coggill, P.; Bateman, A.; Finn, R.; Cymborowski, M.; Otwinowski, Z.; Minor, W.; Volkart, L.; Joachimiak, A.; Wellcome Trust Sanger Inst.; Univ. of Virginia; UT Southwestern Medical Center

    2009-12-17

    Many Gram-positive lactic acid bacteria (LAB) produce anti-bacterial peptides and small proteins called bacteriocins, which enable them to compete against other bacteria in the environment. These peptides fall structurally into three different classes, I, II, III, with class IIa being pediocin-like single entities and class IIb being two-peptide bacteriocins. Self-protective cognate immunity proteins are usually co-transcribed with these toxins. Several examples of cognates for IIa have already been solved structurally. Streptococcus pyogenes, closely related to LAB, is one of the most common human pathogens, so knowledge of how it competes against other LAB species is likely to prove invaluable. We have solved the crystal structure of the gene-product of locus Spy-2152 from S. pyogenes, (PDB: 2fu2), and found it to comprise an anti-parallel four-helix bundle that is structurally similar to other bacteriocin immunity proteins. Sequence analyses indicate this protein to be a possible immunity protein protective against class IIa or IIb bacteriocins. However, given that S. pyogenes appears to lack any IIa pediocin-like proteins but does possess class IIb bacteriocins, we suggest this protein confers immunity to IIb-like peptides. Combined structural, genomic and proteomic analyses have allowed the identification and in silico characterization of a new putative immunity protein from S. pyogenes, possibly the first structure of an immunity protein protective against potential class IIb two-peptide bacteriocins. We have named the two pairs of putative bacteriocins found in S. pyogenes pyogenecin 1, 2, 3 and 4.

  13. Protein structure prediction enhanced with evolutionary diversity : SPEED.

    SciTech Connect

    DeBartolo, J.; Hocky, G.; Wilde, M.; Xu, J.; Freed, K. F.; Sosnick, T. R.; Univ. of Chicago; Toyota Technological Inst. at Chicago

    2010-03-01

    For naturally occurring proteins, similar sequence implies similar structure. Consequently, multiple sequence alignments (MSAs) often are used in template-based modeling of protein structure and have been incorporated into fragment-based assembly methods. Our previous homology-free structure prediction study introduced an algorithm that mimics the folding pathway by coupling the formation of secondary and tertiary structure. Moves in the Monte Carlo procedure involve only a change in a single pair of {phi},{psi} backbone dihedral angles that are obtained from a Protein Data Bank-based distribution appropriate for each amino acid, conditional on the type and conformation of the flanking residues. We improve this method by using MSAs to enrich the sampling distribution, but in a manner that does not require structural knowledge of any protein sequence (i.e., not homologous fragment insertion). In combination with other tools, including clustering and refinement, the accuracies of the predicted secondary and tertiary structures are substantially improved and a global and position-resolved measure of confidence is introduced for the accuracy of the predictions. Performance of the method in the Critical Assessment of Structure Prediction (CASP8) is discussed.

  14. 3D structures of membrane proteins from genomic sequencing

    PubMed Central

    Hopf, Thomas A.; Colwell, Lucy J.; Sheridan, Robert; Rost, Burkhard; Sander, Chris; Marks, Debora S.

    2012-01-01

    Summary We show that amino acid co-variation in proteins, extracted from the evolutionary sequence record, can be used to fold transmembrane proteins. We use this technique to predict previously unknown, 3D structures for 11 transmembrane proteins (with up to 14 helices) from their sequences alone. The prediction method (EVfold_membrane), applies a maximum entropy approach to infer evolutionary co-variation in pairs of sequence positions within a protein family and then generates all-atom models with the derived pairwise distance constraints. We benchmark the approach with blinded, de novo computation of known transmembrane protein structures from 23 families, demonstrating unprecedented accuracy of the method for large transmembrane proteins. We show how the method can predict oligomerization, functional sites, and conformational changes in transmembrane proteins. With the rapid rise in large-scale sequencing, more accurate and more comprehensive information on evolutionary constraints can be decoded from genetic variation, greatly expanding the repertoire of transmembrane proteins amenable to modelling by this method. PMID:22579045

  15. Identification of local variations within secondary structures of proteins.

    PubMed

    Kumar, Prasun; Bansal, Manju

    2015-05-01

    Secondary-structure elements (SSEs) play an important role in the folding of proteins. Identification of SSEs in proteins is a common problem in structural biology. A new method, ASSP (Assignment of Secondary Structure in Proteins), using only the path traversed by the C(α) atoms has been developed. The algorithm is based on the premise that the protein structure can be divided into continuous or uniform stretches, which can be defined in terms of helical parameters, and depending on their values the stretches can be classified into different SSEs, namely α-helices, 310-helices, π-helices, extended β-strands and polyproline II (PPII) and other left-handed helices. The methodology was validated using an unbiased clustering of these parameters for a protein data set consisting of 1008 protein chains, which suggested that there are seven well defined clusters associated with different SSEs. Apart from α-helices and extended β-strands, 310-helices and π-helices were also found to occur in substantial numbers. ASSP was able to discriminate non-α-helical segments from flanking α-helices, which were often identified as part of α-helices by other algorithms. ASSP can also lead to the identification of novel SSEs. It is believed that ASSP could provide a better understanding of the finer nuances of protein secondary structure and could make an important contribution to the better understanding of comparatively less frequently occurring structural motifs. At the same time, it can contribute to the identification of novel SSEs. A standalone version of the program for the Linux as well as the Windows operating systems is freely downloadable and a web-server version is also available at http://nucleix.mbu.iisc.ernet.in/assp/index.php.

  16. Identification of local variations within secondary structures of proteins.

    PubMed

    Kumar, Prasun; Bansal, Manju

    2015-05-01

    Secondary-structure elements (SSEs) play an important role in the folding of proteins. Identification of SSEs in proteins is a common problem in structural biology. A new method, ASSP (Assignment of Secondary Structure in Proteins), using only the path traversed by the C(α) atoms has been developed. The algorithm is based on the premise that the protein structure can be divided into continuous or uniform stretches, which can be defined in terms of helical parameters, and depending on their values the stretches can be classified into different SSEs, namely α-helices, 310-helices, π-helices, extended β-strands and polyproline II (PPII) and other left-handed helices. The methodology was validated using an unbiased clustering of these parameters for a protein data set consisting of 1008 protein chains, which suggested that there are seven well defined clusters associated with different SSEs. Apart from α-helices and extended β-strands, 310-helices and π-helices were also found to occur in substantial numbers. ASSP was able to discriminate non-α-helical segments from flanking α-helices, which were often identified as part of α-helices by other algorithms. ASSP can also lead to the identification of novel SSEs. It is believed that ASSP could provide a better understanding of the finer nuances of protein secondary structure and could make an important contribution to the better understanding of comparatively less frequently occurring structural motifs. At the same time, it can contribute to the identification of novel SSEs. A standalone version of the program for the Linux as well as the Windows operating systems is freely downloadable and a web-server version is also available at http://nucleix.mbu.iisc.ernet.in/assp/index.php. PMID:25945573

  17. Protein-associated water and secondary structure effect removal of blood proteins from metallic substrates.

    PubMed

    Anand, Gaurav; Zhang, Fuming; Linhardt, Robert J; Belfort, Georges

    2011-03-01

    Removing adsorbed protein from metals has significant health and industrial consequences. There are numerous protein-adsorption studies using model self-assembled monolayers or polymeric substrates but hardly any high-resolution measurements of adsorption and removal of proteins on industrially relevant transition metals. Surgeons and ship owners desire clean metal surfaces to reduce transmission of disease via surgical instruments and minimize surface fouling (to reduce friction and corrosion), respectively. A major finding of this work is that, besides hydrophobic interaction adhesion energy, water content in an adsorbed protein layer and secondary structure of proteins determined the access and hence ability to remove adsorbed proteins from metal surfaces with a strong alkaline-surfactant solution (NaOH and 5 mg/mL SDS in PBS at pH 11). This is demonstrated with three blood proteins (bovine serum albumin, immunoglobulin, and fibrinogen) and four transition metal substrates and stainless steel (platinum (Pt), gold (Au), tungsten (W), titanium (Ti), and 316 grade stainless steel (SS)). All the metallic substrates were checked for chemical contaminations like carbon and sulfur and were characterized using X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS). While Pt and Au surfaces were oxide-free (fairly inert elements), W, Ti, and SS substrates were associated with native oxide. Difference measurements between a quartz crystal microbalance with dissipation (QCM-D) and surface plasmon resonance spectroscopy (SPR) provided a measure of the water content in the protein-adsorbed layers. Hydrophobic adhesion forces, obtained with atomic force microscopy, between the proteins and the metals correlated with the amount of the adsorbed protein-water complex. Thus, the amount of protein adsorbed decreased with Pt, Au, W, Ti and SS, in this order. Neither sessile contact angle nor surface roughness of the metal substrates was useful as predictors here. All three globular proteins

  18. Protein-associated water and secondary structure effect removal of blood proteins from metallic substrates.

    PubMed

    Anand, Gaurav; Zhang, Fuming; Linhardt, Robert J; Belfort, Georges

    2011-03-01

    Removing adsorbed protein from metals has significant health and industrial consequences. There are numerous protein-adsorption studies using model self-assembled monolayers or polymeric substrates but hardly any high-resolution measurements of adsorption and removal of proteins on industrially relevant transition metals. Surgeons and ship owners desire clean metal surfaces to reduce transmission of disease via surgical instruments and minimize surface fouling (to reduce friction and corrosion), respectively. A major finding of this work is that, besides hydrophobic interaction adhesion energy, water content in an adsorbed protein layer and secondary structure of proteins determined the access and hence ability to remove adsorbed proteins from metal surfaces with a strong alkaline-surfactant solution (NaOH and 5 mg/mL SDS in PBS at pH 11). This is demonstrated with three blood proteins (bovine serum albumin, immunoglobulin, and fibrinogen) and four transition metal substrates and stainless steel (platinum (Pt), gold (Au), tungsten (W), titanium (Ti), and 316 grade stainless steel (SS)). All the metallic substrates were checked for chemical contaminations like carbon and sulfur and were characterized using X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS). While Pt and Au surfaces were oxide-free (fairly inert elements), W, Ti, and SS substrates were associated with native oxide. Difference measurements between a quartz crystal microbalance with dissipation (QCM-D) and surface plasmon resonance spectroscopy (SPR) provided a measure of the water content in the protein-adsorbed layers. Hydrophobic adhesion forces, obtained with atomic force microscopy, between the proteins and the metals correlated with the amount of the adsorbed protein-water complex. Thus, the amount of protein adsorbed decreased with Pt, Au, W, Ti and SS, in this order. Neither sessile contact angle nor surface roughness of the metal substrates was useful as predictors here. All three globular proteins

  19. Large-scale production and protein engineering of G protein-coupled receptors for structural studies

    PubMed Central

    Milić, Dalibor; Veprintsev, Dmitry B.

    2015-01-01

    Structural studies of G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) gave insights into molecular mechanisms of their action and contributed significantly to molecular pharmacology. This is primarily due to technical advances in protein engineering, production and crystallization of these important receptor targets. On the other hand, NMR spectroscopy of GPCRs, which can provide information about their dynamics, still remains challenging due to difficulties in preparation of isotopically labeled receptors and their low long-term stabilities. In this review, we discuss methods used for expression and purification of GPCRs for crystallographic and NMR studies. We also summarize protein engineering methods that played a crucial role in obtaining GPCR crystal structures. PMID:25873898

  20. Large-scale production and protein engineering of G protein-coupled receptors for structural studies.

    PubMed

    Milić, Dalibor; Veprintsev, Dmitry B

    2015-01-01

    Structural studies of G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) gave insights into molecular mechanisms of their action and contributed significantly to molecular pharmacology. This is primarily due to technical advances in protein engineering, production and crystallization of these important receptor targets. On the other hand, NMR spectroscopy of GPCRs, which can provide information about their dynamics, still remains challenging due to difficulties in preparation of isotopically labeled receptors and their low long-term stabilities. In this review, we discuss methods used for expression and purification of GPCRs for crystallographic and NMR studies. We also summarize protein engineering methods that played a crucial role in obtaining GPCR crystal structures.

  1. A challenging interpretation of a hexagonally layered protein structure

    SciTech Connect

    Thompson, Michael C.; Yeates, Todd O.

    2014-01-01

    The authors describe the structure determination of a hexagonally layered protein structure that suffered from a complicated combination of translational non-crystallographic symmetry and hemihedral twinning. This case serves as a reminder that broken crystallographic symmetry resulting from doubling of a unit-cell axis often requires a new choice of origin. The carboxysome is a giant protein complex that acts as a metabolic organelle in cyanobacteria and some chemoautotrophs. Its outer structure is formed by the assembly of thousands of copies of hexameric shell protein subunits into a molecular layer. The structure determination of a CcmK1 shell protein mutant (L11K) from the β-carboxysome of the cyanobacterium Synechocystis PCC6803 led to challenges in structure determination. Twinning, noncrystallographic symmetry and packing of hexameric units in a special arrangement led to initial difficulties in space-group assignment. The correct space group was clarified after initial model refinement revealed additional symmetry. This study provides an instructive example in which broken symmetry requires a new choice of unit-cell origin in order to identify the highest symmetry space group. An additional observation related to the packing arrangement of molecules in this crystal suggests that these hexameric shell proteins might have lower internal symmetry than previously believed.

  2. RepeatsDB: a database of tandem repeat protein structures

    PubMed Central

    Di Domenico, Tomás; Potenza, Emilio; Walsh, Ian; Gonzalo Parra, R.; Giollo, Manuel; Minervini, Giovanni; Piovesan, Damiano; Ihsan, Awais; Ferrari, Carlo; Kajava, Andrey V.; Tosatto, Silvio C.E.

    2014-01-01

    RepeatsDB (http://repeatsdb.bio.unipd.it/) is a database of annotated tandem repeat protein structures. Tandem repeats pose a difficult problem for the analysis of protein structures, as the underlying sequence can be highly degenerate. Several repeat types haven been studied over the years, but their annotation was done in a case-by-case basis, thus making large-scale analysis difficult. We developed RepeatsDB to fill this gap. Using state-of-the-art repeat detection methods and manual curation, we systematically annotated the Protein Data Bank, predicting 10 745 repeat structures. In all, 2797 structures were classified according to a recently proposed classification schema, which was expanded to accommodate new findings. In addition, detailed annotations were performed in a subset of 321 proteins. These annotations feature information on start and end positions for the repeat regions and units. RepeatsDB is an ongoing effort to systematically classify and annotate structural protein repeats in a consistent way. It provides users with the possibility to access and download high-quality datasets either interactively or programmatically through web services. PMID:24311564

  3. MALISAM: a database of structurally analogous motifs in proteins.

    PubMed

    Cheng, Hua; Kim, Bong-Hyun; Grishin, Nick V

    2008-01-01

    MALISAM (manual alignments for structurally analogous motifs) represents the first database containing pairs of structural analogs and their alignments. To find reliable analogs, we developed an approach based on three ideas. First, an insertion together with a part of the evolutionary core of one domain family (a hybrid motif) is analogous to a similar motif contained within the core of another domain family. Second, a motif at an interface, formed by secondary structural elements (SSEs) contributed by two or more domains or subunits contacting along that interface, is analogous to a similar motif present in the core of a single domain. Third, an artificial protein obtained through selection from random peptides or in sequence design experiments not biased by sequences of a particular homologous family, is analogous to a structurally similar natural protein. Each analogous pair is superimposed and aligned manually, as well as by several commonly used programs. Applications of this database may range from protein evolution studies, e.g. development of remote homology inference tools and discriminators between homologs and analogs, to protein-folding research, since in the absence of evolutionary reasons, similarity between proteins is caused by structural and folding constraints. The database is publicly available at http://prodata.swmed.edu/malisam. PMID:17855399

  4. From protein structure to function via single crystal optical spectroscopy

    PubMed Central

    Ronda, Luca; Bruno, Stefano; Bettati, Stefano; Storici, Paola; Mozzarelli, Andrea

    2015-01-01

    The more than 100,000 protein structures determined by X-ray crystallography provide a wealth of information for the characterization of biological processes at the molecular level. However, several crystallographic “artifacts,” including conformational selection, crystallization conditions and radiation damages, may affect the quality and the interpretation of the electron density maps, thus limiting the relevance of structure determinations. Moreover, for most of these structures, no functional data have been obtained in the crystalline state, thus posing serious questions on their validity in infereing protein mechanisms. In order to solve these issues, spectroscopic methods have been applied for the determination of equilibrium and kinetic properties of proteins in the crystalline state. These methods are UV-vis spectrophotometry, spectrofluorimetry, IR, EPR, Raman, and resonance Raman spectroscopy. Some of these approaches have been implemented with on-line instruments at X-ray synchrotron beamlines. Here, we provide an overview of investigations predominantly carried out in our laboratory by single crystal polarized absorption UV-vis microspectrophotometry, the most applied technique for the functional characterization of proteins in the crystalline state. Studies on hemoglobins, pyridoxal 5′-phosphate dependent enzymes and green fluorescent protein in the crystalline state have addressed key biological issues, leading to either straightforward structure-function correlations or limitations to structure-based mechanisms. PMID:25988179

  5. Protein Vivisection Reveals Elusive Intermediates in Folding

    SciTech Connect

    Zheng, Zhongzhou; Sosnick, Tobin R.

    2010-05-25

    Although most folding intermediates escape detection, their characterization is crucial to the elucidation of folding mechanisms. Here, we outline a powerful strategy to populate partially unfolded intermediates: A buried aliphatic residue is substituted with a charged residue (e.g., Leu {yields} Glu{sup -}) to destabilize and unfold a specific region of the protein. We applied this strategy to ubiquitin, reversibly trapping a folding intermediate in which the {beta}5-strand is unfolded. The intermediate refolds to a native-like structure upon charge neutralization under mildly acidic conditions. Characterization of the trapped intermediate using NMR and hydrogen exchange methods identifies a second folding intermediate and reveals the order and free energies of the two major folding events on the native side of the rate-limiting step. This general strategy may be combined with other methods and have broad applications in the study of protein folding and other reactions that require trapping of high-energy states.

  6. Protein vivisection reveals elusive intermediates in folding.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Zhongzhou; Sosnick, Tobin R

    2010-04-01

    Although most folding intermediates escape detection, their characterization is crucial to the elucidation of folding mechanisms. Here, we outline a powerful strategy to populate partially unfolded intermediates: A buried aliphatic residue is substituted with a charged residue (e.g., Leu-->Glu(-)) to destabilize and unfold a specific region of the protein. We applied this strategy to ubiquitin, reversibly trapping a folding intermediate in which the beta5-strand is unfolded. The intermediate refolds to a native-like structure upon charge neutralization under mildly acidic conditions. Characterization of the trapped intermediate using NMR and hydrogen exchange methods identifies a second folding intermediate and reveals the order and free energies of the two major folding events on the native side of the rate-limiting step. This general strategy may be combined with other methods and have broad applications in the study of protein folding and other reactions that require trapping of high-energy states.

  7. Structural stability of proteins in aqueous and nonpolar environments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yasuda, Satoshi; Oshima, Hiraku; Kinoshita, Masahiro

    2012-10-01

    A protein folds into its native structure with the α-helix and/or β-sheet in aqueous solution under the physiological condition. The relative content of these secondary structures largely varies from protein to protein. However, such structural variability is not exhibited in nonaqueous environment. For example, there is a strong trend that alcohol induces a protein to form α-helices, and many of the membrane proteins within the lipid bilayer consists of α-helices. Here we investigate the structural stability of proteins in aqueous and nonpolar environments using our recently developed free-energy function F = (Λ - TS)/(kBT0) = Λ/(kBT0) - S/kB (T0 = 298 K and the absolute temperature T is set at T0) which is based on statistical thermodynamics. Λ/(kBT0) and S/kB are the energetic and entropic components, respectively, and kB is Boltzmann's constant. A smaller value of the positive quantity, -S, represents higher efficiency of the backbone and side-chain packing promoted by the entropic effect arising from the translational displacement of solvent molecules or the CH2, CH3, and CH groups which constitute nonpolar chains of lipid molecules. As for Λ, in aqueous solution, a transition to a more compact structure of a protein accompanies the break of protein-solvent hydrogen bonds: As the number of donors and acceptors buried without protein intramolecular hydrogen bonding increases, Λ becomes higher. In nonpolar solvent, lower Λ simply implies more intramolecular hydrogen bonds formed. We find the following. The α-helix and β-sheet are advantageous with respect to -S as well as Λ and to be formed as much as possible. In aqueous solution, the solvent-entropy effect on the structural stability is so strong that the close packing of side chains is dominantly important, and the α-helix and β-sheet contents are judiciously adjusted to accomplish it. In nonpolar solvent, the solvent-entropy effect is substantially weaker than in aqueous solution. Λ is

  8. Lipid nanotechnologies for structural studies of membrane-associated proteins.

    PubMed

    Stoilova-McPhie, Svetla; Grushin, Kirill; Dalm, Daniela; Miller, Jaimy

    2014-11-01

    We present a methodology of lipid nanotubes (LNT) and nanodisks technologies optimized in our laboratory for structural studies of membrane-associated proteins at close to physiological conditions. The application of these lipid nanotechnologies for structure determination by cryo-electron microscopy (cryo-EM) is fundamental for understanding and modulating their function. The LNTs in our studies are single bilayer galactosylceramide based nanotubes of ∼20 nm inner diameter and a few microns in length, that self-assemble in aqueous solutions. The lipid nanodisks (NDs) are self-assembled discoid lipid bilayers of ∼10 nm diameter, which are stabilized in aqueous solutions by a belt of amphipathic helical scaffold proteins. By combining LNT and ND technologies, we can examine structurally how the membrane curvature and lipid composition modulates the function of the membrane-associated proteins. As proof of principle, we have engineered these lipid nanotechnologies to mimic the activated platelet's phosphtaidylserine rich membrane and have successfully assembled functional membrane-bound coagulation factor VIII in vitro for structure determination by cryo-EM. The macromolecular organization of the proteins bound to ND and LNT are further defined by fitting the known atomic structures within the calculated three-dimensional maps. The combination of LNT and ND technologies offers a means to control the design and assembly of a wide range of functional membrane-associated proteins and complexes for structural studies by cryo-EM. The presented results confirm the suitability of the developed methodology for studying the functional structure of membrane-associated proteins, such as the coagulation factors, at a close to physiological environment.

  9. Fundamental Characteristics of AAA+ Protein Family Structure and Function

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Many complex cellular events depend on multiprotein complexes known as molecular machines to efficiently couple the energy derived from adenosine triphosphate hydrolysis to the generation of mechanical force. Members of the AAA+ ATPase superfamily (ATPases Associated with various cellular Activities) are critical components of many molecular machines. AAA+ proteins are defined by conserved modules that precisely position the active site elements of two adjacent subunits to catalyze ATP hydrolysis. In many cases, AAA+ proteins form a ring structure that translocates a polymeric substrate through the central channel using specialized loops that project into the central channel. We discuss the major features of AAA+ protein structure and function with an emphasis on pivotal aspects elucidated with archaeal proteins. PMID:27703410

  10. The first crystal structure of an archaeal helical repeat protein

    PubMed Central

    Yoneda, Kazunari; Sakuraba, Haruhiko; Tsuge, Hideaki; Katunuma, Nobuhiko; Kuramitsu, Seiki; Kawabata, Takeshi; Ohshima, Toshihisa

    2005-01-01

    The crystal structure of ST1625p, a protein encoded by a hypothetical open reading frame ST1625 in the genome of the hyperthermophilic archaeon Sulfolobus tokodaii, was determined at 2.2 Å resolution. The only sequence similarity exhibited by the amino-acid sequence of ST1625p was a 33% identity with the sequence of SSO0983p from S. solfataricus. The 19 kDa monomeric protein was observed to consist of a right-handed superhelix assembled from a tandem repeat of ten α-­helices. A structural homology search using the DALI and MATRAS algorithms indicates that this protein can be classified as a helical repeat protein. PMID:16511116

  11. Structure and function of seed lipid-body-associated proteins.

    PubMed

    Purkrtova, Zita; Jolivet, Pascale; Miquel, Martine; Chardot, Thierry

    2008-10-01

    Many organisms among the different kingdoms store reserve lipids in discrete subcellular organelles called lipid bodies. In plants, lipid bodies can be found in seeds but also in fruits (olives, ...), and in leaves (plastoglobules). These organelles protect plant lipid reserves against oxidation and hydrolysis until seed germination and seedling establishment. They can be stabilized by specific structural proteins, namely the oleosins and caleosins, which act as natural emulsifiers. Considering the putative role of some of them in controlling the size of lipid bodies, these proteins may constitute important targets for seed improvement both in term of oil seed yield and optimization of technological processes for extraction of oil and storage proteins. We present here an overview of the data on the structure of these proteins, which are scarce, and sometimes contradictory and on their functional roles. PMID:18926488

  12. Piccolo, a presynaptic zinc finger protein structurally related to bassoon.

    PubMed

    Fenster, S D; Chung, W J; Zhai, R; Cases-Langhoff, C; Voss, B; Garner, A M; Kaempf, U; Kindler, S; Gundelfinger, E D; Garner, C C

    2000-01-01

    Piccolo is a novel component of the presynaptic cytoskeletal matrix (PCM) assembled at the active zone of neurotransmitter release. Analysis of its primary structure reveals that Piccolo is a multidomain zinc finger protein structurally related to Bassoon, another PCM protein. Both proteins were found to be shared components of glutamatergic and GABAergic CNS synapses but not of the cholinergic neuromuscular junction. The Piccolo zinc fingers were found to interact with the dual prenylated rab3A and VAMP2/Synaptobrevin II receptor PRA1. We show that PRA1 is a synaptic vesicle-associated protein that is colocalized with Piccolo in nerve terminals of hippocampal primary neurons. These data suggest that Piccolo plays a role in the trafficking of synaptic vesicles (SVs) at the active zone.

  13. Structure of apo acyl carrier protein and a proposal to engineer protein crystallization through metal ions

    SciTech Connect

    Qiu, Xiayang; Janson, Cheryl A.

    2010-11-16

    A topic of current interest is engineering surface mutations in order to improve the success rate of protein crystallization. This report explores the possibility of using metal-ion-mediated crystal-packing interactions to facilitate rational design. Escherichia coli apo acyl carrier protein was chosen as a test case because of its high content of negatively charged carboxylates suitable for metal binding with moderate affinity. The protein was successfully crystallized in the presence of zinc ions. The crystal structure was determined to 1.1 {angstrom} resolution with MAD phasing using anomalous signals from the co-crystallized Zn{sup 2+} ions. The case study suggested an integrated strategy for crystallization and structure solution of proteins via engineering surface Asp and Glu mutants, crystallizing them in the presence of metal ions such as Zn{sup 2+} and solving the structures using anomalous signals.

  14. Structural and Functional Characterization of the VQ Protein Family and VQ Protein Variants from Soybean

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Yuan; Yang, Yan; Zhou, Xinjian; Chi, Yingjun; Fan, Baofang; Chen, Zhixiang

    2016-01-01

    Proteins containing the FxxxVQxhTG or VQ motif interact with WRKY transcription factors. Although VQ proteins have been reported in several plants, knowledge about their structures, functions and evolution is still very limited. Here, we report structural and functional analysis of the VQ protein family from soybean. Like Arabidopsis homologues, soybean VQ proteins bind only Group I and IIc WRKY proteins and a substantial number of their genes are responsive to stress-associated phytohormones. Overexpression of some soybean VQ genes in Arabidopsis had strong effects on plant growth, development, disease resistance and heat tolerance. Phylogenetic analysis, sequence alignment and site-directed mutagenesis revealed that the region immediately upstream of the FxxxVQxhTG motif also affects binding to WRKY proteins. Consistent with a larger WRKY-binding VQ domain, soybean VQ22 protein from cultivated soybean contains a 4-amino acid deletion in the region preceding its VQ motif that completely abolishes its binding to WRKY proteins. By contrast, the 4-amino acid deletion is absent in the VQ22 protein from wild soybean species (Glycine soja). Overexpression of wild soybean VQ22 in cultivated soybean inhibited growth, particularly after cold treatment. Thus, the mutation of soybean VQ22 is associated with advantageous phenotypes and may have been positively selected during evolution. PMID:27708406

  15. From Ramachandran Maps to Tertiary Structures of Proteins.

    PubMed

    DasGupta, Debarati; Kaushik, Rahul; Jayaram, B

    2015-08-27

    Sequence to structure of proteins is an unsolved problem. A possible coarse grained resolution to this entails specification of all the torsional (Φ, Ψ) angles along the backbone of the polypeptide chain. The Ramachandran map quite elegantly depicts the allowed conformational (Φ, Ψ) space of proteins which is still very large for the purposes of accurate structure generation. We have divided the allowed (Φ, Ψ) space in Ramachandran maps into 27 distinct conformations sufficient to regenerate a structure to within 5 Å from the native, at least for small proteins, thus reducing the structure prediction problem to a specification of an alphanumeric string, i.e., the amino acid sequence together with one of the 27 conformations preferred by each amino acid residue. This still theoretically results in 27(n) conformations for a protein comprising "n" amino acids. We then investigated the spatial correlations at the two-residue (dipeptide) and three-residue (tripeptide) levels in what may be described as higher order Ramachandran maps, with the premise that the allowed conformational space starts to shrink as we introduce neighborhood effects. We found, for instance, for a tripeptide which potentially can exist in any of the 27(3) "allowed" conformations, three-fourths of these conformations are redundant to the 95% confidence level, suggesting sequence context dependent preferred conformations. We then created a look-up table of preferred conformations at the tripeptide level and correlated them with energetically favorable conformations. We found in particular that Boltzmann probabilities calculated from van der Waals energies for each conformation of tripeptides correlate well with the observed populations in the structural database (the average correlation coefficient is ∼0.8). An alpha-numeric string and hence the tertiary structure can be generated for any sequence from the look-up table within minutes on a single processor and to a higher level of accuracy

  16. The correlation of fragmentation and structure of a protein

    SciTech Connect

    Wu, Qinyuan; Cheng, Xueheng; Van Orden, S.

    1995-12-31

    Characterization of proteins of similar structures is important to understanding the biological function of the proteins and the processes with which they are involved. Cytochrome c variants typically have similar sequences, and have similar conformations in solution with almost identical absorption spectra and redox potentials. The authors chose cytochrome c`s from bovine, tuna, rabbit and horse as a model system in studying large biomolecules using MS{sup n} of multiply charged ions generated from electrospray ionization (ESI).

  17. Structure of mega-hemocyanin reveals protein origami in snails.

    PubMed

    Gatsogiannis, Christos; Hofnagel, Oliver; Markl, Jürgen; Raunser, Stefan

    2015-01-01

    Mega-hemocyanin is a 13.5 MDa oxygen transporter found in the hemolymph of some snails. Similar to typical gastropod hemocyanins, it is composed of 400 kDa building blocks but has additional 550 kDa subunits. Together, they form a large, completely filled cylinder. The structural basis for this highly complex protein packing is not known so far. Here, we report the electron cryomicroscopy (cryo-EM) structure of mega-hemocyanin complexes from two different snail species. The structures reveal that mega-hemocyanin is composed of flexible building blocks that differ in their conformation, but not in their primary structure. Like a protein origami, these flexible blocks are optimally packed, implementing different local symmetries and pseudosymmetries. A comparison between the two structures suggests a surprisingly simple evolutionary mechanism leading to these large oxygen transporters. PMID:25482543

  18. HOMSTRAD: a database of protein structure alignments for homologous families.

    PubMed

    Mizuguchi, K; Deane, C M; Blundell, T L; Overington, J P

    1998-11-01

    We describe a database of protein structure alignments for homologous families. The database HOMSTRAD presently contains 130 protein families and 590 aligned structures, which have been selected on the basis of quality of the X-ray analysis and accuracy of the structure. For each family, the database provides a structure-based alignment derived using COMPARER and annotated with JOY in a special format that represents the local structural environment of each amino acid residue. HOMSTRAD also provides a set of superposed atomic coordinates obtained using MNYFIT, which can be viewed with a graphical user interface or used for comparative modeling studies. The database is freely available on the World Wide Web at: http://www-cryst.bioc.cam. ac.uk/-homstrad/, with search facilities and links to other databases.

  19. Structural Conservation of the Myoviridae Phage Tail Sheath Protein Fold

    SciTech Connect

    Aksyuk, Anastasia A.; Kurochkina, Lidia P.; Fokine, Andrei; Forouhar, Farhad; Mesyanzhinov, Vadim V.; Tong, Liang; Rossmann, Michael G.

    2012-02-21

    Bacteriophage phiKZ is a giant phage that infects Pseudomonas aeruginosa, a human pathogen. The phiKZ virion consists of a 1450 {angstrom} diameter icosahedral head and a 2000 {angstrom}-long contractile tail. The structure of the whole virus was previously reported, showing that its tail organization in the extended state is similar to the well-studied Myovirus bacteriophage T4 tail. The crystal structure of a tail sheath protein fragment of phiKZ was determined to 2.4 {angstrom} resolution. Furthermore, crystal structures of two prophage tail sheath proteins were determined to 1.9 and 3.3 {angstrom} resolution. Despite low sequence identity between these proteins, all of these structures have a similar fold. The crystal structure of the phiKZ tail sheath protein has been fitted into cryo-electron-microscopy reconstructions of the extended tail sheath and of a polysheath. The structural rearrangement of the phiKZ tail sheath contraction was found to be similar to that of phage T4.

  20. (PS)2: protein structure prediction server version 3.0.

    PubMed

    Huang, Tsun-Tsao; Hwang, Jenn-Kang; Chen, Chu-Huang; Chu, Chih-Sheng; Lee, Chi-Wen; Chen, Chih-Chieh

    2015-07-01

    Protein complexes are involved in many biological processes. Examining coupling between subunits of a complex would be useful to understand the molecular basis of protein function. Here, our updated (PS)(2) web server predicts the three-dimensional structures of protein complexes based on comparative modeling; furthermore, this server examines the coupling between subunits of the predicted complex by combining structural and evolutionary considerations. The predicted complex structure could be indicated and visualized by Java-based 3D graphics viewers and the structural and evolutionary profiles are shown and compared chain-by-chain. For each subunit, considerations with or without the packing contribution of other subunits cause the differences in similarities between structural and evolutionary profiles, and these differences imply which form, complex or monomeric, is preferred in the biological condition for the subunit. We believe that the (PS)(2) server would be a useful tool for biologists who are interested not only in the structures of protein complexes but also in the coupling between subunits of the complexes. The (PS)(2) is freely available at http://ps2v3.life.nctu.edu.tw/. PMID:25943546

  1. (PS)2: protein structure prediction server version 3.0.

    PubMed

    Huang, Tsun-Tsao; Hwang, Jenn-Kang; Chen, Chu-Huang; Chu, Chih-Sheng; Lee, Chi-Wen; Chen, Chih-Chieh

    2015-07-01

    Protein complexes are involved in many biological processes. Examining coupling between subunits of a complex would be useful to understand the molecular basis of protein function. Here, our updated (PS)(2) web server predicts the three-dimensional structures of protein complexes based on comparative modeling; furthermore, this server examines the coupling between subunits of the predicted complex by combining structural and evolutionary considerations. The predicted complex structure could be indicated and visualized by Java-based 3D graphics viewers and the structural and evolutionary profiles are shown and compared chain-by-chain. For each subunit, considerations with or without the packing contribution of other subunits cause the differences in similarities between structural and evolutionary profiles, and these differences imply which form, complex or monomeric, is preferred in the biological condition for the subunit. We believe that the (PS)(2) server would be a useful tool for biologists who are interested not only in the structures of protein complexes but also in the coupling between subunits of the complexes. The (PS)(2) is freely available at http://ps2v3.life.nctu.edu.tw/.

  2. Expanding the model: anisotropic displacement parameters in protein structure refinement.

    PubMed

    Merritt, E A

    1999-06-01

    Recent technological improvements in crystallographic data collection have led to a surge in the number of protein structures being determined at atomic or near-atomic resolution. At this resolution, structural models can be expanded to include anisotropic displacement parameters (ADPs) for individual atoms. New protocols and new tools are needed to refine, analyze and validate such models optimally. One such tool, PARVATI, has been used to examine all protein structures (peptide chains >50 residues) for which expanded models including ADPs are available from the Protein Data Bank. The distribution of anisotropy within each of these refined models is broadly similar across the entire set of structures, with a mean anisotropy A in the range 0.4-0.5. This is a significant departure from a purely isotropic model and explains why the inclusion of ADPs yields a substantial improvement in the crystallographic residuals R and Rfree. The observed distribution of anisotropy may prove useful in the validation of very high resolution structures. A more complete understanding of this distribution may also allow the development of improved protein structural models, even at lower resolution.

  3. MEGADOCK: An All-to-All Protein-Protein Interaction Prediction System Using Tertiary Structure Data

    PubMed Central

    Ohue, Masahito; Matsuzaki, Yuri; Uchikoga, Nobuyuki; Ishida, Takashi; Akiyama, Yutaka

    2014-01-01

    The elucidation of protein-protein interaction (PPI) networks is important for understanding cellular structure and function and structure-based drug design. However, the development of an effective method to conduct exhaustive PPI screening represents a computational challenge. We have been investigating a protein docking approach based on shape complementarity and physicochemical properties. We describe here the development of the protein-protein docking software package “MEGADOCK” that samples an extremely large number of protein dockings at high speed. MEGADOCK reduces the calculation time required for docking by using several techniques such as a novel scoring function called the real Pairwise Shape Complementarity (rPSC) score. We showed that MEGADOCK is capable of exhaustive PPI screening by completing docking calculations 7.5 times faster than the conventional docking software, ZDOCK, while maintaining an acceptable level of accuracy. When MEGADOCK was applied to a subset of a general benchmark dataset to predict 120 relevant interacting pairs from 120 x 120 = 14,400 combinations of proteins, an F-measure value of 0.231 was obtained. Further, we showed that MEGADOCK can be applied to a large-scale protein-protein interaction-screening problem with accuracy better than random. When our approach is combined with parallel high-performance computing systems, it is now feasible to search and analyze protein-protein interactions while taking into account three-dimensional structures at the interactome scale. MEGADOCK is freely available at http://www.bi.cs.titech.ac.jp/megadock. PMID:23855673

  4. Protein conducting channels-mechanisms, structures and applications.

    PubMed

    Bonardi, Francesco; Nouwen, Nico; Feringa, Ben L; Driessen, Arnold J M

    2012-03-01

    In the past decade among the main developments in the field of bionanotechnology is the application of proteins in devices. Research focuses on the modification of enzyme systems by means of chemical and physical tools in order to achieve full control of their function and to employ them for specific tasks. Membrane protein channels are intriguing biological devices as they allow the recognition and passage of a variety of macromolecules through an otherwise impermeable lipid bilayer. Hence, membrane proteins can be used as sensory devices for detection or as molecular nanovalves to allow for the controlled release of molecules. Here, we discuss the structure and function of three different channel proteins that mediate the membrane passage of macromolecules using different mechanisms. These systems are described in a comparative manner and an overview is provided of the technological advances in employing these proteins in external (or human) controllable devices.

  5. RNA structures regulating ribosomal protein biosynthesis in bacilli.

    PubMed

    Deiorio-Haggar, Kaila; Anthony, Jon; Meyer, Michelle M

    2013-07-01

    In Bacilli, there are three experimentally validated ribosomal-protein autogenous regulatory RNAs that are not shared with E. coli. Each of these RNAs forms a unique secondary structure that interacts with a ribosomal protein encoded by a downstream gene, namely S4, S15, and L20. Only one of these RNAs that interacts with L20 is currently found in the RNA Families Database. We created, or modified, existing structural alignments for these three RNAs and used them to perform homology searches. We have determined that each structure exhibits a narrow phylogenetic distribution, mostly relegated to the Firmicute class Bacilli. This work, in conjunction with other similar work, demonstrates that there are most likely many non-homologous RNA regulatory elements regulating ribosomal protein biosynthesis that still await discovery and characterization in other bacterial species. PMID:23611891

  6. RNA structures regulating ribosomal protein biosynthesis in bacilli

    PubMed Central

    Deiorio-Haggar, Kaila; Anthony, Jon; Meyer, Michelle M.

    2013-01-01

    In Bacilli, there are three experimentally validated ribosomal-protein autogenous regulatory RNAs that are not shared with E. coli. Each of these RNAs forms a unique secondary structure that interacts with a ribosomal protein encoded by a downstream gene, namely S4, S15, and L20. Only one of these RNAs that interacts with L20 is currently found in the RNA Families Database. We created, or modified, existing structural alignments for these three RNAs and used them to perform homology searches. We have determined that each structure exhibits a narrow phylogenetic distribution, mostly relegated to the Firmicute class Bacilli. This work, in conjunction with other similar work, demonstrates that there are most likely many non-homologous RNA regulatory elements regulating ribosomal protein biosynthesis that still await discovery and characterization in other bacterial species. PMID:23611891

  7. Structure and Function of CW Domain Containing Proteins.

    PubMed

    Liu, Yanli; Liu, Shasha; Zhang, Xinxin; Liang, Xiao; Zahid, Kashif Rafiq; Liu, Ke; Liu, Jinlin; Deng, Lingfu; Yang, Jihong; Qi, Chao

    2016-01-01

    The CW domain is a zinc binding domain, composed of approximately 50- 60 amino acid residues with four conserved cysteine (C) and two to four conserved tryptophan (W) residues. The members of the superfamily of CW domain containing proteins, comprised of 12 different eukaryotic nuclear protein families, are extensively expressed in vertebrates, vertebrate-infecting parasites and higher plants, where they are often involved in chromatin remodeling, methylation recognition, epigenetic regulation and early embryonic development. Since the first CW domain structure was determined 5 years ago, structures of five CW domains have been solved so far. In this review, we will discuss these recent advances in understanding the identification, definition, structure, and functions of the CW domain containing proteins. PMID:26806410

  8. Protein structure determination with paramagnetic solid-state NMR spectroscopy.

    PubMed

    Sengupta, Ishita; Nadaud, Philippe S; Jaroniec, Christopher P

    2013-09-17

    Many structures of the proteins and protein assemblies that play central roles in fundamental biological processes and disease pathogenesis are not readily accessible via the conventional techniques of single-crystal X-ray diffraction and solution-state nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR). On the other hand, many of these challenging biological systems are suitable targets for atomic-level structural and dynamic analysis by magic-angle spinning (MAS) solid-state NMR spectroscopy, a technique that has far less stringent limitations on the molecular size and crystalline state. Over the past decade, major advances in instrumentation and methodology have prompted rapid growth in the field of biological solid-state NMR. However, despite this progress, one challenge for the elucidation of three-dimensional (3D) protein structures via conventional MAS NMR methods is the relative lack of long-distance data. Specifically, extracting unambiguous interatomic distance restraints larger than ∼5 Å from through-space magnetic dipole-dipole couplings among the protein (1)H, (13)C, and (15)N nuclei has proven to be a considerable challenge for researchers. It is possible to circumvent this problem by extending the structural studies to include several analogs of the protein of interest, intentionally modified to contain covalently attached paramagnetic tags at selected sites. In these paramagnetic proteins, the hyperfine couplings between the nuclei and unpaired electrons can manifest themselves in NMR spectra in the form of relaxation enhancements of the nuclear spins that depend on the electron-nucleus distance. These effects can be significant for nuclei located up to ∼20 Å away from the paramagnetic center. In this Account, we discuss MAS NMR structural studies of nitroxide and EDTA-Cu(2+) labeled variants of a model 56 amino acid globular protein, B1 immunoglobulin-binding domain of protein G (GB1), in the microcrystalline solid phase. We used a set of six EDTA-Cu(2

  9. Protein secondary structural types are differentially coded on messenger RNA.

    PubMed Central

    Thanaraj, T. A.; Argos, P.

    1996-01-01

    Tricodon regions on messenger RNAs corresponding to a set of proteins from Escherichia coli were scrutinized for their translation speed. The fractional frequency values of the individual codons as they occur in mRNAs of highly expressed genes from Escherichia coli were taken as an indicative measure of the translation speed. The tricodons were classified by the sum of the frequency values of the constituent codons. Examination of the conformation of the encoded amino acid residues in the corresponding protein tertiary structures revealed a correlation between codon usage in mRNA and topological features of the encoded proteins. Alpha helices on proteins tend to be preferentially coded by translationally fast mRNA regions while the slow segments often code for beta strands and coil regions. Fast regions correspondingly avoid coding for beta strands and coil regions while the slow regions similarly move away from encoding alpha helices. Structural and mechanistic aspects of the ribosome peptide channel support the relevance of sequence fragment translation and subsequent conformation. A discussion is presented relating the observation to the reported kinetic data on the formation and stabilization of protein secondary structural types during protein folding. The observed absence of such strong positive selection for codons in non-highly expressed genes is compatible with existing theories that mutation pressure may well dominate codon selection in non-highly expressed genes. PMID:8897597

  10. On Ramachandran angles, closed strings and knots in protein structure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Si; Niemi, Antti J.

    2016-08-01

    The Ramachandran angles (φ,\\psi ) of a protein backbone form the vertices of a piecewise geodesic curve on the surface of a torus. When the ends of the curve are connected to each other similarly, by a geodesic, the result is a closed string that in general wraps around the torus a number of times both in the meridional and the longitudinal directions. The two wrapping numbers are global characteristics of the protein structure. A statistical analysis of the wrapping numbers in terms of crystallographic x-ray structures in the protein data bank (PDB) reveals that proteins have no net chirality in the ϕ direction but in the ψ direction, proteins prefer to display chirality. A comparison between the wrapping numbers and the concept of folding index discloses a non-linearity in their relationship. Thus these three integer valued invariants can be used in tandem, to scrutinize and classify the global loop structure of individual PDB proteins, in terms of the overall fold topology.

  11. Structural study of coacervation in protein-polyelectrolyte complexes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chodankar, S.; Aswal, V. K.; Kohlbrecher, J.; Vavrin, R.; Wagh, A. G.

    2008-09-01

    Coacervation is a dense liquid-liquid phase separation and herein we report coacervation of protein bovine serum albumin (BSA) in the presence of polyelectrolyte sodium polystyrene sulfonate (NaPSS) under varying solution conditions. Small-angle neutron scattering (SANS) measurements have been performed on above protein-polyelectrolyte complexes to study the structural evolution of the process that leads to coacervation and the phase separated coacervate as a function of solution pH , protein-polyelectrolyte ratio and ionic strength. SANS study prior to phase separation on the BSA-NaPSS complex shows a fractal structure representing a necklace model of protein macromolecules randomly distributed along the polystyrene sulfonate chain. The fractal dimension of the complex decreases as pH is shifted away from the isoelectric point (˜4.7) of BSA protein, which indicates the decrease in the compactness of the complex structure due to increase in the charge repulsion between the protein macromolecules bound to the polyelectrolyte. Concentration-dependence studies of the polyelectrolyte in the complex suggest coexistence of two populations of polyelectrolytes, first one fully saturated with proteins and another one free from proteins. Coacervation phase has been obtained through the turbidity measurement by varying pH of the aqueous solution containing protein and polyelectrolyte from neutral to acidic regime to get them to where the two components are oppositely charged. The spontaneous formation of coacervates is observed for pH values less than 4. SANS study on coacervates shows two length scales related to complex aggregations (mesh size and overall extent of the complex) hierarchically branched to form a larger network. The mesh size represents the distance between cross-linked points in the primary complex, which decreases with increase in ionic strength and remains the same on varying the protein-polyelectrolyte ratio. On the other hand, the overall extent of the

  12. Protein mechanics: a route from structure to function.

    PubMed

    Lavery, Richard; Sacquin-Mora, Sophie

    2007-08-01

    In order to better understand the mechanical properties of proteins, we have developed simulation tools which enable these properties to be analysed on a residue-by-residue basis. Although these calculations are relatively expensive with all-atom protein models, good results can be obtained much faster using coarse-grained approaches. The results show that proteins are surprisingly heterogeneous from a mechanical point of view and that functionally important residues often exhibit unusual mechanical behaviour. This finding offers a novel means for detecting functional sites and also potentially provides a route for understanding the links between structure and function in more general terms.

  13. Structural Basis for Protein Phosphatase 1 Regulation and Specificity

    PubMed Central

    Peti, Wolfgang; Nairn, Angus C.; Page, Rebecca

    2012-01-01

    The ubiquitous Ser/Thr Protein Phosphatase 1 (PP1) regulates diverse, essential cellular processes such as cell cycle progression, protein synthesis, muscle contraction, carbohydrate metabolism, transcription and neuronal signaling. However, the free catalytic subunit of PP1, while an effective enzyme, lacks substrate specificity. Instead, it depends on a diverse set of regulatory proteins (≥200) to confer specificity towards distinct substrates. Here, we discuss recent advances in structural studies of PP1 holoenzyme complexes and summarize the new insights these studies have provided into the molecular basis of PP1 regulation and specificity. PMID:22284538

  14. Crystal Structure of Human Retinoblastoma Binding Protein 9

    SciTech Connect

    Vorobiev, S.; Su, M; Seetharaman, J; Huang, Y; Chen, C; Maglaqui, M; Janjua, H; Montelione, G; Tong, L; et. al.

    2009-01-01

    As a step towards better integrating protein three-dimensional (3D) structural information in cancer systems biology, the Northeast Structural Genomics Consortium (NESG) (www.nesg.org) has constructed a Human Cancer Pathway Protein Interaction Network (HCPIN) by analysis of several classical cancer-associated signaling pathways and their physical protein-protein interactions. Many well-known cancer-associated proteins play central roles as hubs or bottlenecks in the HCPIN (http://nmr.cabm.rutgers.edu/hcpin). NESG has selected more than 1000 human proteins and protein domains from the HCPIN for sample production and 3D structure determination. The long-range goal of this effort is to provide a comprehensive 3D structure-function database for human cancer-associated proteins and protein complexes, in the context of their interaction networks. Human retinoblastoma binding protein 9 (RBBP9) is one of the HCPIN proteins targeted by NESG. RBBP9 was initially identified as the product of a new gene, Bog (for B5T over-expressed gene), in several transformed rat liver epithelial cell lines resistant to the growth-inhibitory effect of TGF-1 as well as in primary human liver tumors. RBBP9 contains the retinoblastoma (Rb) binding motif LxCxE in its sequence, and was shown to interact with Rb by yeast two-hybrid and coimmunoprecipitation experiments. Mutation of the Leu residue in this motif to Gln blocked the binding to Rb. RBBP9 can displace E2F1 from E2F1-Rb complexes, and over expression of RBBP9 overcomes TGF-1 induced growth arrest and results in transformation of rat liver epithelial cells leading to hepatoblastoma-like tumors in nude mice. RBBP9 may also play a role in cellular responses to chronic low dose radiation. A close homolog of RBBP9, sharing 93% amino acid sequence identity and also known as RBBP10, interacts with a protein with sua5-yciO-yrdC domains.

  15. The solution structure of an anti-CRISPR protein

    PubMed Central

    Maxwell, Karen L.; Garcia, Bianca; Bondy-Denomy, Joseph; Bona, Diane; Hidalgo-Reyes, Yurima; Davidson, Alan R.

    2016-01-01

    Bacterial CRISPR–Cas adaptive immune systems use small guide RNAs to protect against phage infection and invasion by foreign genetic elements. We previously demonstrated that a group of Pseudomonas aeruginosa phages encode anti-CRISPR proteins that inactivate the type I-F and I-E CRISPR–Cas systems using distinct mechanisms. Here, we present the three-dimensional structure of an anti-CRISPR protein and map a functional surface that is critical for its potent inhibitory activity. The interaction of the anti-CRISPR protein with the CRISPR–Cas complex through this functional surface is proposed to prevent the binding of target DNA. PMID:27725669

  16. Evolutionary perspectives on protein structure, stability, and functionality

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goldstein, Richard A.

    Proteins are the result of a long process of evolution. It is due to this process that they have developed properties rather different from those of random strings of amino acids. If we wish to understand the properties of proteins, we need to understand the underlying process of Darwinian evolution, and how its stochastic nature interacts with the underlying fitness landscape. In this review, I describe some of the underlying theory of evolution. I then discuss how these theories can help us understand the structure, thermodynamics, and functioning of naturally-occurring proteins.

  17. Protein structure similarity clustering and natural product structure as guiding principles for chemical genomics.

    PubMed

    Koch, M A; Waldmann, H

    2006-01-01

    The majority of all proteins are modularly built from a limited set of approximately 1,000 structural domains. The knowledge of a common protein fold topology in the ligand-sensing cores of protein domains can be exploited for the design of small-molecule libraries in the development of inhibitors and ligands. Thus, a novel strategy of clustering protein domain cores based exclusively on structure similarity considerations (protein structure similarity clustering, PSSC) has been successfully applied to the development of small-molecule inhibitors of acetylcholinesterase and the 11beta-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenases based on the structure of a naturally occurring Cdc25 inhibitor. The efficiency of making use of the scaffolds of natural products as biologically prevalidated starting points for the design of compound libraries is further highlighted by the development of benzopyran-based FXR ligands.

  18. A deeply knotted protein structure and how it might fold

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Taylor, William R.

    2000-08-01

    The search for knots in protein has uncovered little that would cause Alexander the Great to reach for his sword. Excluding knots formed by post-translational crosslinking, the few proteins considered to be knotted form simple trefoil knots with one end of the chain extending through a loop by only a few residues, ten in the `best' example. A knot in an open chain (as distinct from a closed circle) is not rigorously defined and many weak protein knots disappear if the structure is viewed from a different angle. Here I describe a computer algorithm to detect knots in open chains that is not sensitive to viewpoint and that can define the region of the chain giving rise to the knot. It characterizes knots in proteins by the number of residues that must be removed from each end to abolish the knot. I applied this algorithm to the protein structure database and discovered a deep, figure-of-eight knot in the plant protein acetohydroxy acid isomeroreductase. I propose a protein folding pathway that may explain how such a knot is formed.

  19. A deeply knotted protein structure and how it might fold.

    PubMed

    Taylor, W R

    2000-08-24

    The search for knots in protein has uncovered little that would cause Alexander the Great to reach for his sword. Excluding knots formed by post-translational crosslinking, the few proteins considered to be knotted form simple trefoil knots with one end of the chain extending through a loop by only a few residues, ten in the 'best' example. A knot in an open chain (as distinct from a closed circle) is not rigorously defined and many weak protein knots disappear if the structure is viewed from a different angle. Here I describe a computer algorithm to detect knots in open chains that is not sensitive to viewpoint and that can define the region of the chain giving rise to the knot. It characterizes knots in proteins by the number of residues that must be removed from each end to abolish the knot. I applied this algorithm to the protein structure database and discovered a deep, figure-of-eight knot in the plant protein acetohydroxy acid isomeroreductase. I propose a protein folding pathway that may explain how such a knot is formed.

  20. Brownian Dynamics Simulation of Protein Solutions: Structural and Dynamical Properties

    SciTech Connect

    Mereghetti, Paolo; Gabdoulline, Razif; Wade, Rebecca C.

    2010-12-01

    The study of solutions of biomacromolecules provides an important basis for understanding the behavior of many fundamental cellular processes, such as protein folding, self-assembly, biochemical reactions, and signal transduction. Here, we describe a Brownian dynamics simulation procedure and its validation for the study of the dynamic and structural properties of protein solutions. In the model used, the proteins are treated as atomically detailed rigid bodies moving in a continuum solvent. The protein-protein interaction forces are described by the sum of electrostatic interaction, electrostatic desolvation, nonpolar desolvation, and soft-core repulsion terms. The linearized Poisson-Boltzmann equation is solved to compute electrostatic terms. Simulations of homogeneous solutions of three different proteins with varying concentrations, pH, and ionic strength were performed. The results were compared to experimental data and theoretical values in terms of long-time self-diffusion coefficients, second virial coefficients, and structure factors. The results agree with the experimental trends and, in many cases, experimental values are reproduced quantitatively. There are no parameters specific to certain protein types in the interaction model, and hence the model should be applicable to the simulation of the behavior of mixtures of macromolecules in cell-like crowded environments.

  1. Wood Contains a Cell-Wall Structural Protein

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bao, Wuli; O'Malley, David M.; Sederoff, Ronald R.

    1992-07-01

    A pine extensin-like protein (PELP) has been localized in metabolically active cells of differentiating xylem and in mature wood of loblolly pine (Pinus taeda L.). This proline-rich glycosylated protein was purified from cell walls of differentiating xylem by differential solubility and gel electrophoresis. Polyclonal rabbit antibodies were raised against the deglycosylated purified protein (dPELP) and purified antibody was used for immunolocalization. Immunogold and alkaline phosphatase secondary antibody staining both show antigen in secondary cell walls of earlywood and less staining in latewood. Immunoassays of milled dry wood were developed and used to show increased availability of antigen after hydrogen fluoride or cellulase treatment and decreased antigen after chlorite treatment. The specificity of the antigen-antibody reaction was confirmed by competition assays and by preadsorption of antibody to the purified protein. We propose that extensin-like protein is present in xylem cell walls during lignification and that the protein remains as a structural component of cell walls in wood for many years after xylogenesis. We suggest that such structural proteins play important roles in the differentiation of xylem and thereby could affect the properties of wood.

  2. Protein structure prediction provides comparable performance to crystallographic structures in docking-based virtual screening.

    PubMed

    Du, Hongying; Brender, Jeffrey R; Zhang, Jian; Zhang, Yang

    2015-01-01

    Structure based virtual screening has largely been limited to protein targets for which either an experimental structure is available or a strongly homologous template exists so that a high-resolution model can be constructed. The performance of state of the art protein structure predictions in virtual screening in systems where only weakly homologous templates are available is largely untested. Using the challenging DUD database of structural decoys, we show here that even using templates with only weak sequence homology (<30% sequence identity) structural models can be constructed by I-TASSER which achieve comparable enrichment rates to using the experimental bound crystal structure in the majority of the cases studied. For 65% of the targets, the I-TASSER models, which are constructed essentially in the apo conformations, reached 70% of the virtual screening performance of using the holo-crystal structures. A correlation was observed between the success of I-TASSER in modeling the global fold and local structures in the binding pockets of the proteins versus the relative success in virtual screening. The virtual screening performance can be further improved by the recognition of chemical features of the ligand compounds. These results suggest that the combination of structure-based docking and advanced protein structure modeling methods should be a valuable approach to the large-scale drug screening and discovery studies, especially for the proteins lacking crystallographic structures.

  3. Structure and Protein-Protein Interaction Studies on Chlamydia trachomatis Protein CT670 (YscO Homolog)

    SciTech Connect

    Lorenzini, Emily; Singer, Alexander; Singh, Bhag; Lam, Robert; Skarina, Tatiana; Chirgadze, Nickolay Y.; Savchenko, Alexei; Gupta, Radhey S.

    2010-07-28

    Comparative genomic studies have identified many proteins that are found only in various Chlamydiae species and exhibit no significant sequence similarity to any protein in organisms that do not belong to this group. The CT670 protein of Chlamydia trachomatis is one of the proteins whose genes are in one of the type III secretion gene clusters but whose cellular functions are not known. CT670 shares several characteristics with the YscO protein of Yersinia pestis, including the neighboring genes, size, charge, and secondary structure, but the structures and/or functions of these proteins remain to be determined. Although a BLAST search with CT670 did not identify YscO as a related protein, our analysis indicated that these two proteins exhibit significant sequence similarity. In this paper, we report that the CT670 crystal, solved at a resolution of 2 {angstrom}, consists of a single coiled coil containing just two long helices. Gel filtration and analytical ultracentrifugation studies showed that in solution CT670 exists in both monomeric and dimeric forms and that the monomer predominates at lower protein concentrations. We examined the interaction of CT670 with many type III secretion system-related proteins (viz., CT091, CT665, CT666, CT667, CT668, CT669, CT671, CT672, and CT673) by performing bacterial two-hybrid assays. In these experiments, CT670 was found to interact only with the CT671 protein (YscP homolog), whose gene is immediately downstream of ct670. A specific interaction between CT670 and CT671 was also observed when affinity chromatography pull-down experiments were performed. These results suggest that CT670 and CT671 are putative homologs of the YcoO and YscP proteins, respectively, and that they likely form a chaperone-effector pair.

  4. Prefusion structure of a human coronavirus spike protein

    PubMed Central

    Kirchdoerfer, Robert N.; Cottrell, Christopher A.; Wang, Nianshuang; Pallesen, Jesper; Yassine, Hadi M.; Turner, Hannah L.; Corbett, Kizzmekia S.; Graham, Barney S.; McLellan, Jason S.; Ward, Andrew B.

    2016-01-01

    HKU1 is a human betacoronavirus that causes mild yet prevalent respiratory disease1 and is related to the zoonotic SARS2 and MERS3 betacoronaviruses that have high fatality rates and pandemic potential. Cell tropism and host range is determined in part by the coronavirus spike (S) protein4, which binds cellular receptors and mediates membrane fusion. As the largest known class I fusion protein, its size and extensive glycosylation have hindered structural studies of the full ectodomain, thus preventing a molecular understanding of its function and limiting development of effective interventions. Here we present the 4.0 Å resolution structure of the trimeric HKU1 S protein determined using single-particle cryo-electron microscopy. In the prefusion conformation, the receptor-binding subunits, S1, rest atop the fusion-mediating subunits, S2, preventing their conformational rearrangement. Surprisingly, the S1 C-terminal domains are interdigitated and form extensive quaternary interactions that occlude surfaces known to bind protein receptors in other coronaviruses. These features, along with the location of the two protease sites known to be important for coronavirus entry, provide a structural basis to support a model of membrane fusion mediated by progressive S protein destabilization through receptor binding and proteolytic cleavage. Additionally, these studies should serve as a foundation for the structure-based design of betacoronavirus vaccine immunogens. PMID:26935699

  5. Functional and Structural Analysis of the Conserved EFhd2 Protein

    PubMed Central

    Acosta, Yancy Ferrer; Rodríguez Cruz, Eva N.; Vaquer, Ana del C.; Vega, Irving E.

    2013-01-01

    EFhd2 is a novel protein conserved from C. elegans to H. sapiens. This novel protein was originally identified in cells of the immune and central nervous systems. However, it is most abundant in the central nervous system, where it has been found associated with pathological forms of the microtubule-associated protein tau. The physiological or pathological roles of EFhd2 are poorly understood. In this study, a functional and structural analysis was carried to characterize the molecular requirements for EFhd2’s calcium binding activity. The results showed that mutations of a conserved aspartate on either EF-hand motif disrupted the calcium binding activity, indicating that these motifs work in pair as a functional calcium binding domain. Furthermore, characterization of an identified single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP) that introduced a missense mutation indicates the importance of a conserved phenylalanine on EFhd2 calcium binding activity. Structural analysis revealed that EFhd2 is predominantly composed of alpha helix and random coil structures and that this novel protein is thermostable. EFhd2’s thermo stability depends on its N-terminus. In the absence of the N-terminus, calcium binding restored EFhd2’s thermal stability. Overall, these studies contribute to our understanding on EFhd2 functional and structural properties, and introduce it into the family of canonical EF-hand domain containing proteins. PMID:22973849

  6. Protein Secondary Structure Prediction Using Deep Convolutional Neural Fields.

    PubMed

    Wang, Sheng; Peng, Jian; Ma, Jianzhu; Xu, Jinbo

    2016-01-01

    Protein secondary structure (SS) prediction is important for studying protein structure and function. When only the sequence (profile) information is used as input feature, currently the best predictors can obtain ~80% Q3 accuracy, which has not been improved in the past decade. Here we present DeepCNF (Deep Convolutional Neural Fields) for protein SS prediction. DeepCNF is a Deep Learning extension of Conditional Neural Fields (CNF), which is an integration of Conditional Random Fields (CRF) and shallow neural networks. DeepCNF can model not only complex sequence-structure relationship by a deep hierarchical architecture, but also interdependency between adjacent SS labels, so it is much more powerful than CNF. Experimental results show that DeepCNF can obtain ~84% Q3 accuracy, ~85% SOV score, and ~72% Q8 accuracy, respectively, on the CASP and CAMEO test proteins, greatly outperforming currently popular predictors. As a general framework, DeepCNF can be used to predict other protein structure properties such as contact number, disorder regions, and solvent accessibility. PMID:26752681

  7. Protein Secondary Structure Prediction Using Deep Convolutional Neural Fields

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Sheng; Peng, Jian; Ma, Jianzhu; Xu, Jinbo

    2016-01-01

    Protein secondary structure (SS) prediction is important for studying protein structure and function. When only the sequence (profile) information is used as input feature, currently the best predictors can obtain ~80% Q3 accuracy, which has not been improved in the past decade. Here we present DeepCNF (Deep Convolutional Neural Fields) for protein SS prediction. DeepCNF is a Deep Learning extension of Conditional Neural Fields (CNF), which is an integration of Conditional Random Fields (CRF) and shallow neural networks. DeepCNF can model not only complex sequence-structure relationship by a deep hierarchical architecture, but also interdependency between adjacent SS labels, so it is much more powerful than CNF. Experimental results show that DeepCNF can obtain ~84% Q3 accuracy, ~85% SOV score, and ~72% Q8 accuracy, respectively, on the CASP and CAMEO test proteins, greatly outperforming currently popular predictors. As a general framework, DeepCNF can be used to predict other protein structure properties such as contact number, disorder regions, and solvent accessibility.

  8. Refolding and purification of recombinant L-asparaginase from inclusion bodies of E. coli into active tetrameric protein

    PubMed Central

    Upadhyay, Arun K.; Singh, Anupam; Mukherjee, K. J.; Panda, Amulya K.

    2014-01-01

    A tetrameric protein of therapeutic importance, Escherichia coli L-asparaginase-II was expressed in Escherichia coli as inclusion bodies (IBs). Asparaginase IBs were solubilized using low concentration of urea and refolded into active tetrameric protein using pulsatile dilution method. Refolded asparaginase was purified in two steps by ion-exchange and gel filtration chromatographic techniques. The recovery of bioactive asparaginase from IBs was around 50%. The melting temperature (Tm) of the purified asparaginase was found to be 64°C. The specific activity of refolded, purified asparaginase was found to be comparable to the commercial asparaginase (190 IU/mg). Enzymatic activity of the refolded asparaginase was high even at four molar urea solutions, where the IB aggregates are completely solubilized. From the comparison of chemical denaturation data and activity at different concentrations of guanidine hydrochloride, it was observed that dissociation of monomeric units precedes the complete loss of helical secondary structures. Protection of the existing native-like protein structure during solubilization of IB aggregates with 4 M urea improved the propensity of monomer units to form oligomeric structure. Our mild solubilization technique retaining native-like structures, improved recovery of asparaginase in bioactive tetrameric form. PMID:25309524

  9. mulPBA: an efficient multiple protein structure alignment method based on a structural alphabet.

    PubMed

    Léonard, Sylvain; Joseph, Agnel Praveen; Srinivasan, Narayanaswamy; Gelly, Jean-Christophe; de Brevern, Alexandre G

    2014-04-01

    The increasing number of available protein structures requires efficient tools for multiple structure comparison. Indeed, multiple structural alignments are essential for the analysis of function, evolution and architecture of protein structures. For this purpose, we proposed a new web server called multiple Protein Block Alignment (mulPBA). This server implements a method based on a structural alphabet to describe the backbone conformation of a protein chain in terms of dihedral angles. This 'sequence-like' representation enables the use of powerful sequence alignment methods for primary structure comparison, followed by an iterative refinement of the structural superposition. This approach yields alignments superior to most of the rigid-body alignment methods and highly comparable with the flexible structure comparison approaches. We implement this method in a web server designed to do multiple structure superimpositions from a set of structures given by the user. Outputs are given as both sequence alignment and superposed 3D structures visualized directly by static images generated by PyMol or through a Jmol applet allowing dynamic interaction. Multiple global quality measures are given. Relatedness between structures is indicated by a distance dendogram. Superimposed structures in PDB format can be also downloaded, and the results are quickly obtained. mulPBA server can be accessed at www.dsimb.inserm.fr/dsimb_tools/mulpba/ .

  10. Optimizing an emperical scoring function for transmembrane protein structure determination.

    SciTech Connect

    Young, Malin M.; Sale, Kenneth L.; Gray, Genetha Anne; Kolda, Tamara Gibson

    2003-10-01

    We examine the problem of transmembrane protein structure determination. Like many other questions that arise in biological research, this problem cannot be addressed by traditional laboratory experimentation alone. An approach that integrates experiment and computation is required. We investigate a procedure which states the transmembrane protein structure determination problem as a bound constrained optimization problem using a special empirical scoring function, called Bundler, as the objective function. In this paper, we describe the optimization problem and some of its mathematical properties. We compare and contrast results obtained using two different derivative free optimization algorithms.

  11. How well are protein structures annotated in secondary databases?

    PubMed

    Rother, Kristian; Michalsky, Elke; Leser, Ulf

    2005-09-01

    We investigated to what extent Protein Data Bank (PDB) entries are annotated with second-party information based on existing cross-references between PDB and 15 other databases. We report 2 interesting findings. First, there is a clear "annotation gap" for structures less than 7 years old for secondary databases that are manually curated. Second, the examined databases overlap with each other quite well, dividing the PDB into 2 well-annotated thirds and one poorly annotated third. Both observations should be taken into account in any study depending on the selection of protein structures by their annotation.

  12. How round is a protein? Exploring protein structures for globularity using conformal mapping

    PubMed Central

    Hass, Joel; Koehl, Patrice

    2014-01-01

    We present a new algorithm that automatically computes a measure of the geometric difference between the surface of a protein and a round sphere. The algorithm takes as input two triangulated genus zero surfaces representing the protein and the round sphere, respectively, and constructs a discrete conformal map f between these surfaces. The conformal map is chosen to minimize a symmetric elastic energy ES(f) that measures the distance of f from an isometry. We illustrate our approach on a set of basic sample problems and then on a dataset of diverse protein structures. We show first that ES(f) is able to quantify the roundness of the Platonic solids and that for these surfaces it replicates well traditional measures of roundness such as the sphericity. We then demonstrate that the symmetric elastic energy ES(f) captures both global and local differences between two surfaces, showing that our method identifies the presence of protruding regions in protein structures and quantifies how these regions make the shape of a protein deviate from globularity. Based on these results, we show that ES(f) serves as a probe of the limits of the application of conformal mapping to parametrize protein shapes. We identify limitations of the method and discuss its extension to achieving automatic registration of protein structures based on their surface geometry. PMID:25988167

  13. Scoring docking conformations using predicted protein interfaces

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Since proteins function by interacting with other molecules, analysis of protein-protein interactions is essential for comprehending biological processes. Whereas understanding of atomic interactions within a complex is especially useful for drug design, limitations of experimental techniques have restricted their practical use. Despite progress in docking predictions, there is still room for improvement. In this study, we contribute to this topic by proposing T-PioDock, a framework for detection of a native-like docked complex 3D structure. T-PioDock supports the identification of near-native conformations from 3D models that docking software produced by scoring those models using binding interfaces predicted by the interface predictor, Template based Protein Interface Prediction (T-PIP). Results First, exhaustive evaluation of interface predictors demonstrates that T-PIP, whose predictions are customised to target complexity, is a state-of-the-art method. Second, comparative study between T-PioDock and other state-of-the-art scoring methods establishes T-PioDock as the best performing approach. Moreover, there is good correlation between T-PioDock performance and quality of docking models, which suggests that progress in docking will lead to even better results at recognising near-native conformations. Conclusion Accurate identification of near-native conformations remains a challenging task. Although availability of 3D complexes will benefit from template-based methods such as T-PioDock, we have identified specific limitations which need to be addressed. First, docking software are still not able to produce native like models for every target. Second, current interface predictors do not explicitly consider pairwise residue interactions between proteins and their interacting partners which leaves ambiguity when assessing quality of complex conformations. PMID:24906633

  14. Ultrahigh resolution protein structures using NMR chemical shift tensors

    PubMed Central

    Wylie, Benjamin J.; Sperling, Lindsay J.; Nieuwkoop, Andrew J.; Franks, W. Trent; Oldfield, Eric; Rienstra, Chad M.

    2011-01-01

    NMR chemical shift tensors (CSTs) in proteins, as well as their orientations, represent an important new restraint class for protein structure refinement and determination. Here, we present the first determination of both CST magnitudes and orientations for 13Cα and 15N (peptide backbone) groups in a protein, the β1 IgG binding domain of protein G from Streptococcus spp., GB1. Site-specific 13Cα and 15N CSTs were measured using synchronously evolved recoupling experiments in which 13C and 15N tensors were projected onto the 1H-13C and 1H-15N vectors, respectively, and onto the 15N-13C vector in the case of 13Cα. The orientations of the 13Cα CSTs to the 1H-13C and 13C-15N vectors agreed well with the results of ab initio calculations, with an rmsd of approximately 8°. In addition, the measured 15N tensors exhibited larger reduced anisotropies in α-helical versus β-sheet regions, with very limited variation (18 ± 4°) in the orientation of the z-axis of the 15N CST with respect to the 1H-15N vector. Incorporation of the 13Cα CST restraints into structure calculations, in combination with isotropic chemical shifts, transferred echo double resonance 13C-15N distances and vector angle restraints, improved the backbone rmsd to 0.16 Å (PDB ID code 2LGI) and is consistent with existing X-ray structures (0.51 Å agreement with PDB ID code 2QMT). These results demonstrate that chemical shift tensors have considerable utility in protein structure refinement, with the best structures comparable to 1.0-Å crystal structures, based upon empirical metrics such as Ramachandran geometries and χ1/χ2 distributions, providing solid-state NMR with a powerful tool for de novo structure determination. PMID:21969532

  15. Protein Structure Refinement of CASP Target Proteins Using GNEIMO Torsional Dynamics Method

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    A longstanding challenge in using computational methods for protein structure prediction is the refinement of low-resolution structural models derived from comparative modeling methods into highly accurate atomistic models useful for detailed structural studies. Previously, we have developed and demonstrated the utility of the internal coordinate molecular dynamics (MD) technique, generalized Newton–Euler inverse mass operator (GNEIMO), for refinement of small proteins. Using GNEIMO, the high-frequency degrees of freedom are frozen and the protein is modeled as a collection of rigid clusters connected by torsional hinges. This physical model allows larger integration time steps and focuses the conformational search in the low frequency torsional degrees of freedom. Here, we have applied GNEIMO with temperature replica exchange to refine low-resolution protein models of 30 proteins taken from the continuous assessment of structure prediction (CASP) competition. We have shown that GNEIMO torsional MD method leads to refinement of up to 1.3 Å in the root-mean-square deviation in coordinates for 30 CASP target proteins without using any experimental data as restraints in performing the GNEIMO simulations. This is in contrast with the unconstrained all-atom Cartesian MD method performed under the same conditions, where refinement requires the use of restraints during the simulations. PMID:24397429

  16. A structure-based benchmark for protein-protein binding affinity.

    PubMed

    Kastritis, Panagiotis L; Moal, Iain H; Hwang, Howook; Weng, Zhiping; Bates, Paul A; Bonvin, Alexandre M J J; Janin, Joël

    2011-03-01

    We have assembled a nonredundant set of 144 protein-protein complexes that have high-resolution structures available for both the complexes and their unbound components, and for which dissociation constants have been measured by biophysical methods. The set is diverse in terms of the biological functions it represents, with complexes that involve G-proteins and receptor extracellular domains, as well as antigen/antibody, enzyme/inhibitor, and enzyme/substrate complexes. It is also diverse in terms of the partners' affinity for each other, with K(d) ranging between 10(-5) and 10(-14) M. Nine pairs of entries represent closely related complexes that have a similar structure, but a very different affinity, each pair comprising a cognate and a noncognate assembly. The unbound structures of the component proteins being available, conformation changes can be assessed. They are significant in most of the complexes, and large movements or disorder-to-order transitions are frequently observed. The set may be used to benchmark biophysical models aiming to relate affinity to structure in protein-protein interactions, taking into account the reactants and the conformation changes that accompany the association reaction, instead of just the final product.

  17. CLEMAPS: multiple alignment of protein structures based on conformational letters.

    PubMed

    Liu, Xin; Zhao, Ya-Pu; Zheng, Wei-Mou

    2008-05-01

    CLEMAPS is a tool for multiple alignment of protein structures. It distinguishes itself from other existing algorithms for multiple structure alignment by the use of conformational letters, which are discretized states of 3D segmental structural states. A letter corresponds to a cluster of combinations of three angles formed by C(alpha) pseudobonds of four contiguous residues. A substitution matrix called CLESUM is available to measure the similarity between any two such letters. The input 3D structures are first converted to sequences of conformational letters. Each string of a fixed length is then taken as the center seed to search other sequences for neighbors of the seed, which are strings similar to the seed. A seed and its neighbors form a center-star, which corresponds to a fragment set of local structural similarity shared by many proteins. The detection of center-stars using CLESUM is extremely efficient. Local similarity is a necessary, but insufficient, condition for structural alignment. Once center-stars are found, the spatial consistency between any two stars are examined to find consistent star duads using atomic coordinates. Consistent duads are later joined to create a core for multiple alignment, which is further polished to produce the final alignment. The utility of CLEMAPS is tested on various protein structure ensembles.

  18. Efficient Multicriteria Protein Structure Comparison on Modern Processor Architectures

    PubMed Central

    Sharma, Anuj; Manolakos, Elias S.

    2015-01-01

    Fast increasing computational demand for all-to-all protein structures comparison (PSC) is a result of three confounding factors: rapidly expanding structural proteomics databases, high computational complexity of pairwise protein comparison algorithms, and the trend in the domain towards using multiple criteria for protein structures comparison (MCPSC) and combining results. We have developed a software framework that exploits many-core and multicore CPUs to implement efficient parallel MCPSC in modern processors based on three popular PSC methods, namely, TMalign, CE, and USM. We evaluate and compare the performance and efficiency of the two parallel MCPSC implementations using Intel's experimental many-core Single-Chip Cloud Computer (SCC) as well as Intel's Core i7 multicore processor. We show that the 48-core SCC is more efficient than the latest generation Core i7, achieving a speedup factor of 42 (efficiency of 0.9), making many-core processors an exciting emerging technology for large-scale structural proteomics. We compare and contrast the performance of the two processors on several datasets and also show that MCPSC outperforms its component methods in grouping related domains, achieving a high F-measure of 0.91 on the benchmark CK34 dataset. The software implementation for protein structure comparison using the three methods and combined MCPSC, along with the developed underlying rckskel algorithmic skeletons library, is available via GitHub. PMID:26605332

  19. Efficient Multicriteria Protein Structure Comparison on Modern Processor Architectures.

    PubMed

    Sharma, Anuj; Manolakos, Elias S

    2015-01-01

    Fast increasing computational demand for all-to-all protein structures comparison (PSC) is a result of three confounding factors: rapidly expanding structural proteomics databases, high computational complexity of pairwise protein comparison algorithms, and the trend in the domain towards using multiple criteria for protein structures comparison (MCPSC) and combining results. We have developed a software framework that exploits many-core and multicore CPUs to implement efficient parallel MCPSC in modern processors based on three popular PSC methods, namely, TMalign, CE, and USM. We evaluate and compare the performance and efficiency of the two parallel MCPSC implementations using Intel's experimental many-core Single-Chip Cloud Computer (SCC) as well as Intel's Core i7 multicore processor. We show that the 48-core SCC is more efficient than the latest generation Core i7, achieving a speedup factor of 42 (efficiency of 0.9), making many-core processors an exciting emerging technology for large-scale structural proteomics. We compare and contrast the performance of the two processors on several datasets and also show that MCPSC outperforms its component methods in grouping related domains, achieving a high F-measure of 0.91 on the benchmark CK34 dataset. The software implementation for protein structure comparison using the three methods and combined MCPSC, along with the developed underlying rckskel algorithmic skeletons library, is available via GitHub. PMID:26605332

  20. The Semantics of the Modular Architecture of Protein Structures.

    PubMed

    Hleap, Jose Sergio; Blouin, Christian

    2016-01-01

    Protein structures can be conceptualized as context-aware self-organizing systems. One of its emerging properties is a modular architecture. Such modular architecture has been identified as domains and defined as its units of evolution and function. However, this modular architecture is not exclusively defined by domains. Also, the definition of a domain is an ongoing debate. Here we propose differentiating structural, evolutionary and functional domains as distinct concepts. Defining domains or modules is confounded by diverse definitions of the concept, and also by other elements inherent to protein structures. An apparent hierarchy in protein structure architecture is one of these elements, where lower level interactions may create noise for the definition of higher levels. Diverse modularity-molding factors such as folding, function, and selection, can have a misleading effect when trying to define a given type of module. It is thus important to keep in mind this complexity when defining modularity in protein structures and interpreting the outcome modularity inference approaches.

  1. Relating Structure and Internalization for ROMP-based Protein Mimics

    PubMed Central

    Backlund, Coralie M.; Takeuchi, Toshihide; Futaki, Shiroh; Tew, Gregory N.

    2016-01-01

    Elucidating the predominant cellular entry mechanism for protein transduction domains (PTDs) and their synthetic mimics (PTDMs) is a complicated problem that continues to be a significant source of debate in the literature. Several guanidinium-rich homopolymer structures initially designed to mimic oligoarginine, as well as an amphiphilic block copolymer, were end-labeled with FITC. This enabled the monitoring of PTDM internalization into HeLa cells by flow cytometry and confocal imaging. Additionally, their unlabeled counterparts showed improved ability to deliver proteins into cells with added hydrophobic content. In conjunction, pre-incubation with the protein is required, suggesting that the polymers are not just simply interacting with the membrane, but require association with the cargo of interest. However, the mechanism of cellular entry is not dependent on structure within this study, as punctate fluorescence was prevalent within the cells treated with fluorescently labeled samples and protein-polymer complexes. This suggests that the predominant mode of internalization for the presented PTDM structures is endosomal uptake and does not appear to be affected by concentration or structure. The PTDMs reported here provide a well-controlled platform to vary molecular composition for structure activity relationship studies to further our understanding of PTDs, their non-covalent association with cargo, and their cellular internalization pathways. PMID:27039278

  2. Structure and expression of a novel compact myelin protein – Small VCP-interacting protein (SVIP)

    SciTech Connect

    Wu, Jiawen; Peng, Dungeng; Voehler, Markus; Sanders, Charles R.; Li, Jun

    2013-10-11

    Highlights: •SVIP (small p97/VCP-interacting protein) co-localizes with myelin basic protein (MBP) in compact myelin. •We determined that SVIP is an intrinsically disordered protein (IDP). •The helical content of SVIP increases dramatically during its interaction with negatively charged lipid membrane. •This study provides structural insight into interactions between SVIP and myelin membranes. -- Abstract: SVIP (small p97/VCP-interacting protein) was initially identified as one of many cofactors regulating the valosin containing protein (VCP), an AAA+ ATPase involved in endoplasmic-reticulum-associated protein degradation (ERAD). Our previous study showed that SVIP is expressed exclusively in the nervous system. In the present study, SVIP and VCP were seen to be co-localized in neuronal cell bodies. Interestingly, we also observed that SVIP co-localizes with myelin basic protein (MBP) in compact myelin, where VCP was absent. Furthermore, using nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) and circular dichroism (CD) spectroscopic measurements, we determined that SVIP is an intrinsically disordered protein (IDP). However, upon binding to the surface of membranes containing a net negative charge, the helical content of SVIP increases dramatically. These findings provide structural insight into interactions between SVIP and myelin membranes.

  3. Intrinsic Structural Disorder Confers Cellular Viability on Oncogenic Fusion Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Hegyi, Hedi; Buday, László; Tompa, Peter

    2009-01-01

    Chromosomal translocations, which often generate chimeric proteins by fusing segments of two distinct genes, represent the single major genetic aberration leading to cancer. We suggest that the unifying theme of these events is a high level of intrinsic structural disorder, enabling fusion proteins to evade cellular surveillance mechanisms that eliminate misfolded proteins. Predictions in 406 translocation-related human proteins show that they are significantly enriched in disorder (43.3% vs. 20.7% in all human proteins), they have fewer Pfam domains, and their translocation breakpoints tend to avoid domain splitting. The vicinity of the breakpoint is significantly more disordered than the rest of these already highly disordered fusion proteins. In the unlikely event of domain splitting in fusion it usually spares much of the domain or splits at locations where the newly exposed hydrophobic surface area approximates that of an intact domain. The mechanisms of action of fusion proteins suggest that in most cases their structural disorder is also essential to the acquired oncogenic function, enabling the long-range structural communication of remote binding and/or catalytic elements. In this respect, there are three major mechanisms that contribute to generating an oncogenic signal: (i) a phosphorylation site and a tyrosine-kinase domain are fused, and structural disorder of the intervening region enables intramolecular phosphorylation (e.g., BCR-ABL); (ii) a dimerisation domain fuses with a tyrosine kinase domain and disorder enables the two subunits within the homodimer to engage in permanent intermolecular phosphorylations (e.g., TFG-ALK); (iii) the fusion of a DNA-binding element to a transactivator domain results in an aberrant transcription factor that causes severe misregulation of transcription (e.g. EWS-ATF). Our findings also suggest novel strategies of intervention against the ensuing neoplastic transformations. PMID:19888473

  4. Discriminating compact nonnative structures from the native structure of globular proteins.

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Y; Zhang, H; Li, W; Scott, R A

    1995-01-01

    Prediction of the native tertiary structure of a globular protein from the primary sequence will require a potential energy model that can discriminate all nonnative structures from the native structure(s). A successful model must distinguish not only alternate structures that are very nonnative but also alternate structures that are compact and near-native. We describe here a method, based on molecular dynamics simulation, that allows generation of hundreds of compact alternate structures that are arbitrarily close to the native structure. In this way, a significant amount of conformational space in the neighborhood of the native structure can be sampled and these alternate structures can be used as a stringent test of protein folding models. We have used two sets of these alternate structures generated for six crystallographically characterized small globular proteins (1200 alternate structures in all) to test eight empirical energy models for their ability to discriminate alternate from native structures. Seven of the models fail to correctly identify at least some of the alternate structures as nonnative. An atomic solvation model is presented that succeeds in discriminating all 1200 alternate structures from native. Images Fig. 1 PMID:7846040

  5. Graphlet kernels for prediction of functional residues in protein structures.

    PubMed

    Vacic, Vladimir; Iakoucheva, Lilia M; Lonardi, Stefano; Radivojac, Predrag

    2010-01-01

    We introduce a novel graph-based kernel method for annotating functional residues in protein structures. A structure is first modeled as a protein contact graph, where nodes correspond to residues and edges connect spatially neighboring residues. Each vertex in the graph is then represented as a vector of counts of labeled non-isomorphic subgraphs (graphlets), centered on the vertex of interest. A similarity measure between two vertices is expressed as the inner product of their respective count vectors and is used in a supervised learning framework to classify protein residues. We evaluated our method on two function prediction problems: identification of catalytic residues in proteins, which is a well-studied problem suitable for benchmarking, and a much less explored problem of predicting phosphorylation sites in protein structures. The performance of the graphlet kernel approach was then compared against two alternative methods, a sequence-based predictor and our implementation of the FEATURE framework. On both tasks, the graphlet kernel performed favorably; however, the margin of difference was considerably higher on the problem of phosphorylation site prediction. While there is data that phosphorylation sites are preferentially positioned in intrinsically disordered regions, we provide evidence that for the sites that are located in structured regions, neither the surface accessibility alone nor the averaged measures calculated from the residue microenvironments utilized by FEATURE were sufficient to achieve high accuracy. The key benefit of the graphlet representation is its ability to capture neighborhood similarities in protein structures via enumerating the patterns of local connectivity in the corresponding labeled graphs.

  6. Folding and Stabilization of Native-Sequence-Reversed Proteins.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yuanzhao; Weber, Jeffrey K; Zhou, Ruhong

    2016-04-26

    Though the problem of sequence-reversed protein folding is largely unexplored, one might speculate that reversed native protein sequences should be significantly more foldable than purely random heteropolymer sequences. In this article, we investigate how the reverse-sequences of native proteins might fold by examining a series of small proteins of increasing structural complexity (α-helix, β-hairpin, α-helix bundle, and α/β-protein). Employing a tandem protein structure prediction algorithmic and molecular dynamics simulation approach, we find that the ability of reverse sequences to adopt native-like folds is strongly influenced by protein size and the flexibility of the native hydrophobic core. For β-hairpins with reverse-sequences that fail to fold, we employ a simple mutational strategy for guiding stable hairpin formation that involves the insertion of amino acids into the β-turn region. This systematic look at reverse sequence duality sheds new light on the problem of protein sequence-structure mapping and may serve to inspire new protein design and protein structure prediction protocols.

  7. Folding and Stabilization of Native-Sequence-Reversed Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Yuanzhao; Weber, Jeffrey K; Zhou, Ruhong

    2016-01-01

    Though the problem of sequence-reversed protein folding is largely unexplored, one might speculate that reversed native protein sequences should be significantly more foldable than purely random heteropolymer sequences. In this article, we investigate how the reverse-sequences of native proteins might fold by examining a series of small proteins of increasing structural complexity (α-helix, β-hairpin, α-helix bundle, and α/β-protein). Employing a tandem protein structure prediction algorithmic and molecular dynamics simulation approach, we find that the ability of reverse sequences to adopt native-like folds is strongly influenced by protein size and the flexibility of the native hydrophobic core. For β-hairpins with reverse-sequences that fail to fold, we employ a simple mutational strategy for guiding stable hairpin formation that involves the insertion of amino acids into the β-turn region. This systematic look at reverse sequence duality sheds new light on the problem of protein sequence-structure mapping and may serve to inspire new protein design and protein structure prediction protocols. PMID:27113844

  8. Ion mobility mass spectrometry of peptide, protein, and protein complex ions using a radio-frequency confining drift cell.

    PubMed

    Allen, Samuel J; Giles, Kevin; Gilbert, Tony; Bush, Matthew F

    2016-02-01

    Ion mobility mass spectrometry experiments enable the characterization of mass, assembly, and shape of biological molecules and assemblies. Here, a new radio-frequency confining drift cell is characterized and used to measure the mobilities of peptide, protein, and protein complex ions. The new drift cell replaced the traveling-wave ion mobility cell in a Waters Synapt G2 HDMS. Methods for operating the drift cell and determining collision cross section values using this experimental set up are presented within the context of the original instrument control software. Collision cross sections for 349 cations and anions are reported, 155 of which are for ions that have not been characterized previously using ion mobility. The values for the remaining ions are similar to those determined using a previous radio-frequency confining drift cell and drift tubes without radial confinement. Using this device under 2 Torr of helium gas and an optimized drift voltage, denatured and native-like ions exhibited average apparent resolving powers of 14.2 and 16.5, respectively. For ions with high mobility, which are also low in mass, the apparent resolving power is limited by contributions from ion gating. In contrast, the arrival-time distributions of low-mobility, native-like ions are not well explained using only contributions from ion gating and diffusion. For those species, the widths of arrival-time distributions are most consistent with the presence of multiple structures in the gas phase.

  9. Structure of Haze Forming Proteins in White Wines: Vitis vinifera Thaumatin-Like Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Marangon, Matteo; Van Sluyter, Steven C.; Waters, Elizabeth J.; Menz, Robert I.

    2014-01-01

    Grape thaumatin-like proteins (TLPs) play roles in plant-pathogen interactions and can cause protein haze in white wine unless removed prior to bottling. Different isoforms of TLPs have different hazing potential and aggregation behavior. Here we present the elucidation of the molecular structures of three grape TLPs that display different hazing potential. The three TLPs have very similar structures despite belonging to two different classes (F2/4JRU is a thaumatin-like protein while I/4L5H and H2/4MBT are VVTL1), and having different unfolding temperatures (56 vs. 62°C), with protein F2/4JRU being heat unstable and forming haze, while I/4L5H does not. These differences in properties are attributable to the conformation of a single loop and the amino acid composition of its flanking regions. PMID:25463627

  10. Expressed Protein Ligation: A Resourceful Tool to Study Protein Structure and Function

    PubMed Central

    Berrade, Luis; Camarero, Julio A.

    2013-01-01

    This review outlines the use of expressed protein ligation (EPL) to study protein structure, function and stability. EPL is a chemoselective ligation method that allows the selective ligation of unprotected polypeptides from synthetic and recombinant origin for the production of semi-synthetic protein samples of well-defined and homogeneous chemical composition. This method has been extensively used for the site-specific introduction of biophysical probes, unnatural amino acids, and increasingly complex post-translational modifications. Since it was introduced 10 years ago, EPL applications have grown increasingly more sophisticated in order to address even more complex biological questions. In this review we highlight how this powerful technology combined with standard biochemical analysis techniques has been used to improve our ability to understand protein structure and function. PMID:19685006

  11. PROFESS: a PROtein function, evolution, structure and sequence database.

    PubMed

    Triplet, Thomas; Shortridge, Matthew D; Griep, Mark A; Stark, Jaime L; Powers, Robert; Revesz, Peter

    2010-07-06

    The proliferation of biological databases and the easy access enabled by the Internet is having a beneficial impact on biological sciences and transforming the way research is conducted. There are approximately 1100 molecular biology databases dispersed throughout the Internet. To assist in the functional, structural and evolutionary analysis of the abundant number of novel proteins continually identified from whole-genome sequencing, we introduce the PROFESS (PROtein Function, Evolution, Structure and Sequence) database. Our database is designed to be versatile and expandable and will not confine analysis to a pre-existing set of data relationships. A fundamental component of this approach is the development of an intuitive query system that incorporates a variety of similarity functions capable of generating data relationships not conceived during the creation of the database. The utility of PROFESS is demonstrated by the analysis of the structural drift of homologous proteins and the identification of potential pancreatic cancer therapeutic targets based on the observation of protein-protein interaction networks. Database URL: http://cse.unl.edu/~profess/

  12. Protein structure validation using a semi-empirical method

    PubMed Central

    Lahiri, Tapobrata; Singh, Kalpana; Pal, Manoj Kumar; Verma, Gaurav

    2012-01-01

    Current practice of validating predicted protein structural model is knowledge-based where scoring parameters are derived from already known structures to obtain decision on validation out of this structure information. For example, the scoring parameter, Ramachandran Score gives percentage conformity with steric-property higher value of which implies higher acceptability. On the other hand, Force-Field Energy Score gives conformity with energy-wise stability higher value of which implies lower acceptability. Naturally, setting these two scoring parameters as target objectives sometimes yields a set of multiple models for the same protein for which acceptance based on a particular parameter, say, Ramachandran score, may not satisfy well with the acceptance of the same model based on other parameter, say, energy score. The confusion set of such models can further be resolved by introducing some parameters value of which are easily obtainable through experiment on the same protein. In this piece of work it was found that the confusion regarding final acceptance of a model out of multiple models of the same protein can be removed using a parameter Surface Rough Index which can be obtained through semi-empirical method from the ordinary microscopic image of heat denatured protein. PMID:23275692

  13. Protein flexibility facilitates quaternary structure assembly and evolution.

    PubMed

    Marsh, Joseph A; Teichmann, Sarah A

    2014-05-01

    The intrinsic flexibility of proteins allows them to undergo large conformational fluctuations in solution or upon interaction with other molecules. Proteins also commonly assemble into complexes with diverse quaternary structure arrangements. Here we investigate how the flexibility of individual protein chains influences the assembly and evolution of protein complexes. We find that flexibility appears to be particularly conducive to the formation of heterologous (i.e., asymmetric) intersubunit interfaces. This leads to a strong association between subunit flexibility and homomeric complexes with cyclic and asymmetric quaternary structure topologies. Similarly, we also observe that the more nonhomologous subunits that assemble together within a complex, the more flexible those subunits tend to be. Importantly, these findings suggest that subunit flexibility should be closely related to the evolutionary history of a complex. We confirm this by showing that evolutionarily more recent subunits are generally more flexible than evolutionarily older subunits. Finally, we investigate the very different explorations of quaternary structure space that have occurred in different evolutionary lineages. In particular, the increased flexibility of eukaryotic proteins appears to enable the assembly of heteromeric complexes with more unique components.

  14. The structural stability of wild-type horse prion protein.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Jiapu

    2011-10-01

    Prion diseases (e.g. Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD), variant CJD (vCJD), Gerstmann-Straussler-Scheinker syndrome (GSS), Fatal Familial Insomnia (FFI) and Kuru in humans, scrapie in sheep, bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE or 'mad-cow' disease) and chronic wasting disease (CWD) in cattles) are invariably fatal and highly infectious neurodegenerative diseases affecting humans and animals. However, by now there have not been some effective therapeutic approaches or medications to treat all these prion diseases. Rabbits, dogs, and horses are the only mammalian species reported to be resistant to infection from prion diseases isolated from other species. Recently, the β2-α2 loop has been reported to contribute to their protein structural stabilities. The author has found that rabbit prion protein has a strong salt bridge ASP177-ARG163 (like a taut bow string) keeping this loop linked. This paper confirms that this salt bridge also contributes to the structural stability of horse prion protein. Thus, the region of β2-α2 loop might be a potential drug target region. Besides this very important salt bridge, other four important salt bridges GLU196-ARG156-HIS187, ARG156-ASP202 and GLU211-HIS177 are also found to greatly contribute to the structural stability of horse prion protein. Rich databases of salt bridges, hydrogen bonds and hydrophobic contacts for horse prion protein can be found in this paper.

  15. Purification and Structural Analysis of LEM-Domain Proteins.

    PubMed

    Herrada, Isaline; Bourgeois, Benjamin; Samson, Camille; Buendia, Brigitte; Worman, Howard J; Zinn-Justin, Sophie

    2016-01-01

    LAP2-emerin-MAN1 (LEM)-domain proteins are modular proteins characterized by the presence of a conserved motif of about 50 residues. Most LEM-domain proteins localize at the inner nuclear membrane, but some are also found in the endoplasmic reticulum or nuclear interior. Their architecture has been analyzed by predicting the limits of their globular domains, determining the 3D structure of these domains and in a few cases calculating the 3D structure of specific domains bound to biological targets. The LEM domain adopts an α-helical fold also found in SAP and HeH domains of prokaryotes and unicellular eukaryotes. The LEM domain binds to BAF (barrier-to-autointegration factor; BANF1), which interacts with DNA and tethers chromatin to the nuclear envelope. LAP2 isoforms also share an N-terminal LEM-like domain, which binds DNA. The structure and function of other globular domains that distinguish LEM-domain proteins from each other have been characterized, including the C-terminal dimerization domain of LAP2α and C-terminal WH and UHM domains of MAN1. LEM-domain proteins also have large intrinsically disordered regions that are involved in intra- and intermolecular interactions and are highly regulated by posttranslational modifications in vivo.

  16. The structural stability of wild-type horse prion protein.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Jiapu

    2011-10-01

    Prion diseases (e.g. Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD), variant CJD (vCJD), Gerstmann-Straussler-Scheinker syndrome (GSS), Fatal Familial Insomnia (FFI) and Kuru in humans, scrapie in sheep, bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE or 'mad-cow' disease) and chronic wasting disease (CWD) in cattles) are invariably fatal and highly infectious neurodegenerative diseases affecting humans and animals. However, by now there have not been some effective therapeutic approaches or medications to treat all these prion diseases. Rabbits, dogs, and horses are the only mammalian species reported to be resistant to infection from prion diseases isolated from other species. Recently, the β2-α2 loop has been reported to contribute to their protein