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J Mol Graph Model. 1997 Dec;15(6):359-63, 389.

LIGSITE: automatic and efficient detection of potential small molecule-binding sites in proteins.

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  • 1Department of Pharmaceutical Chemistry, University of Marburg, Germany.


LIGSITE is a new program for the automatic and time-efficient detection of pockets on the surface of proteins that may act as binding sites for small molecule ligands. Pockets are identified with a series of simple operations on a cubic grid. Using a set of receptor-ligand complexes we show that LIGSITE is able to identify the binding sites of small molecule ligands with high precision. The main advantage of LIGSITE is its speed. Typical search times are in the range of 5 to 20 s for medium-sized proteins. LIGSITE is therefore well suited for identification of pockets in large sets of proteins (e.g., protein families) for comparative studies. For graphical display LIGSITE produces VRML representations of the protein-ligand complex and the binding site for display with a VRML viewer such as WebSpace from SGI.

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