Binding of ADP in the mitochondrial ADP/ATP carrier is driven by an electrostatic funnel.
ABSTRACT The ADP/ATP carrier (AAC) is a membrane protein of paramount importance for the energy-fueling function of the mitochondria, transporting ADP from the intermembrane space to the matrix and ATP in the opposite direction. On the basis of the high-resolution, 2.2-A structure of the bovine carrier, a total of 0.53 micros of classical molecular dynamics simulations were conducted in a realistic membrane environment to decipher the early events of ADP (3-) translocation across the inner membrane of the mitochondria. Examination of apo-AAC underscores the impermeable nature of the carrier, impeding passive transport of permeants toward the matrix. The electrostatic funnel illuminated from three-dimensional mapping of the electrostatic potential forms a privileged passageway anticipated to drive the diphosphate nucleotide rapidly toward the bottom of the internal cavity. This conjecture is verified in the light of repeated, independent numerical experiments, whereby the permeant is dropped near the mouth of the mitochondrial carrier. Systematic association of ADP (3-) to the crevice of the AAC, an early event in its transport across the inner membrane, is accompanied by the formation of an intricate network of noncovalent bonds. Simulations relying on the use of an adaptive biasing force reveal for the first time that the proposed binding site corresponds to a minimum of the free energy landscape delineating the translocation of ADP (3-) in the carrier. The present work paves the way to the design of novel nucleotides and new experiments aimed at unveiling key structural features in the chronology of ADP/ATP transport across the mitochondrial membrane.
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ABSTRACT: The reported crystal structures of β2 adrenergic receptor (β2AR) reveal that the open and closed states of the water channel are correlated with the inactive and active conformations of β2AR. However, more details about the process by which the water channel states are affected by the active to inactive conformational change of β2AR remain illusive. In this work, molecular dynamics simulations are performed to study the dynamical inactive and active conformational change of β2AR induced by inverse agonist ICI 118,551. Markov state model analysis and free energy calculation are employed to explore the open and close states of the water channel. The simulation results show that inverse agonist ICI 118,551 can induce water channel opening during the conformational transition of β2AR. Markov state model (MSM) analysis proves that the energy contour can be divided into seven states. States S1, S2 and S5, which represent the active conformation of β2AR, show that the water channel is in the closed state, while states S4 and S6, which correspond to the intermediate state conformation of β2AR, indicate the water channel opens gradually. State S7, which represents the inactive structure of β2AR, corresponds to the full open state of the water channel. The opening mechanism of the water channel is involved in the ligand-induced conformational change of β2AR. These results can provide useful information for understanding the opening mechanism of the water channel and will be useful for the rational design of potent inverse agonists of β2AR.Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics 06/2014; · 4.20 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Background : The SMO receptor, one of Class F GPCRs, is an essential component of the canonical hedgehog signaling pathway which plays a key role in the regulation of embryonic development in animals. The function of the SMO receptor can be modulated by small-molecule agonists and antagonists, some of which are potential antitumour agents. Understanding the binding mode of antagonist in SMO receptor is crucial for rational design of new antitumour agents. Methods : Molecular dynamics (MD) simulation and dynamical network analysis are used to study the dynamical structural features of SMO receptor. Metadynamics simulation and free energy calculation are employed to explore the binding mechanism between the antagonist and SMO receptor. Results : The MD simulation results and dynamical network analysis show that the conserved KTXXXW motif in helix VIII has strong interaction with helix I. The α-helical extension of TM6 is detected as part of the ligand-binding pocket and dissociation pathway of antagonist. The metadynamics simulation results illustrate the binding mechanism of antagonist in the pocket of SMO receptor, and free energy calculation shows the antagonist needs to overcome about 38 kcal/mol energy barrier to leave binding pocket of SMO receptor. Conclusions : The unusually long TM6 plays an important role on the binding behavior of antagonist in the pocket of SMO receptor. General Significance : The results can not only profile the binding mechanism between the antagonist and Class F GPCRs, but also supply the useful information for the rational design of more potential small molecule antagonist bound to SMO receptor.Biochimica et Biophysica Acta (BBA) - General Subjects 07/2014; · 3.85 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Tyrosine kinases are regarded as excellent targets for chemical drug therapy of carcinomas. However, under strong purifying selection, drug resistance usually occurs in the cancer cells within a short term. Many cases of drug resistance have been found to be associated with secondary mutations in drug target, which lead to the attenuated drug-target interactions. For example, recently, an acquired secondary mutation, G2032R, has been detected in the drug target, ROS1 tyrosine kinase, from a crizotinib-resistant patient, who responded poorly to crizotinib within a very short therapeutic term. It was supposed that the mutation was located at the solvent front and might hinder the drug binding. However, a different fact could be uncovered by the simulations reported in this study. Here, free energy surfaces were characterized by the drug-target distance and the phosphate-binding loop (P-loop) conformational change of the crizotinib-ROS1 complex through advanced molecular dynamics techniques, and it was revealed that the more rigid P-loop region in the G2032R-mutated ROS1 was primarily responsible for the crizotinib resistance, which on one hand, impaired the binding of crizotinib directly, and on the other hand, shortened the residence time induced by the flattened free energy surface. Therefore, both of the binding affinity and the drug residence time should be emphasized in rational drug design to overcome the kinase resistance.PLoS Computational Biology 07/2014; 10(7):e1003729. · 4.87 Impact Factor