Send to

Choose Destination
Biochemistry. 2011 Jul 19;50(28):6225-36. doi: 10.1021/bi200306u. Epub 2011 Jun 23.

Probing the allosteric mechanism in pyrrolysyl-tRNA synthetase using energy-weighted network formalism.

Author information

Molecular Biophysics Unit, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore 560012, India.


Pyrrolysyl-tRNA synthetase (PylRS) is an atypical enzyme responsible for charging tRNA(Pyl) with pyrrolysine, despite lacking precise tRNA anticodon recognition. This dimeric protein exhibits allosteric regulation of function, like any other tRNA synthetases. In this study we examine the paths of allosteric communication at the atomic level, through energy-weighted networks of Desulfitobacterium hafniense PylRS (DhPylRS) and its complexes with tRNA(Pyl) and activated pyrrolysine. We performed molecular dynamics simulations of the structures of these complexes to obtain an ensemble conformation-population perspective. Weighted graph parameters relevant to identifying key players and ties in the context of social networks such as edge/node betweenness, closeness index, and the concept of funneling are explored in identifying key residues and interactions leading to shortest paths of communication in the structure networks of DhPylRS. Further, the changes in the status of important residues and connections and the costs of communication due to ligand induced perturbations are evaluated. The optimal, suboptimal, and preexisting paths are also investigated. Many of these parameters have exhibited an enhanced asymmetry between the two subunits of the dimeric protein, especially in the pretransfer complex, leading us to conclude that encoding of function goes beyond the sequence/structure of proteins. The local and global perturbations mediated by appropriate ligands and their influence on the equilibrium ensemble of conformations also have a significant role to play in the functioning of proteins. Taking a comprehensive view of these observations, we propose that the origin of many functional aspects (allostery and half-sites reactivity in the case of DhPylRS) lies in subtle rearrangements of interactions and dynamics at a global level.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for American Chemical Society
Loading ...
Support Center